Thursday, March 22, 2007

Global Warming: Green house gases now crosses the threshold limit


Recently Northern India was affected with a freak weather with unprecedented rain & wind. Climate Scientists in India are generally agreeing that Global Warming was the real villain behind this uncanny climate.


Global warming has often been described as one of the most serious environmental problems ever to confront humanity, as this problem is inextricably linked to the process of development and economic growth itself. Since greenhouse gases are generated by burning fossil fuels as in power plants, factories and automobiles, it is not easy to reduce emissions, since virtually every facet of our lives is intimately tied to the consumption of energy. Climate change is an unusually difficult issue for the people who make the decisions in democratic governments. First of all, the science is uncertain while governments have to make firm policy decisions, if only the decision to do nothing, long before these uncertainties can be resolved.


Political leaders are already beginning to overstate the clarity of the science in order to attract public support. A lot of money is now going into climate research, and new findings with varying political implications will continue to appear.


Any serious attempt to cut emissions will have clear and immediate costs, but the benefits may not appear for a long time. To the extent that the benefits may be disasters that didn’t happen, they may never be obvious. But the costs will be. As the debate develops, much of it is being cast in terms of the restraint that the present generation owes to future generations.

Research reveals that the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has now crossed a threshold, set down by scientists from around the world at a conference in Britain last year, beyond which really dangerous climate change is likely to be unstoppable.


The implication is that some of global warming's worst predicted effects, from destruction of ecosystems to increased hunger and water shortages for billions of people, cannot now be avoided, whatever we do. It gives considerable force to the contention by the green guru Professor James Lovelock, put forward last month in The Independent, that climate change is now past the point of no return.


The danger point we are now firmly on course for is a rise in global mean temperatures to 2 degrees above the level before the Industrial Revolution in the late 18th century.


At the moment, global mean temperatures have risen to about 0.6 degrees above the pre-industrial era - and worrying signs of climate change, such as the rapid melting of the Arctic ice in summer, are already increasingly evident. But a rise to 2 degrees would be far more serious.
By that point it is likely that the Greenland ice sheet will already have begun irreversible melting, threatening the world with a sea-level rise of several metres. Agricultural yields will have started to fall, not only in Africa but also in Europe, the US and Russia, putting up to 200 million more people at risk from hunger, and up to 2.8 billion additional people at risk of water shortages for both drinking and irrigation. The Government's conference on Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change, held at the UK Met Office in Exeter a year ago, highlighted a clear threshold in the accumulation of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, which should not be surpassed if the 2 degree point was to be avoided with "relatively high certainty".
This was for the concentration of CO2 and other gases such as methane and nitrous oxide, taken together in their global warming effect, to stay below 400ppm (parts per million) in CO2 terms - or in the jargon, the "equivalent concentration" of CO2 should remain below that level.


The warning was highlighted in the official report of the Exeter conference, published recently.. However, an investigation by The Independent has established that the CO2 equivalent concentration, largely unnoticed by the scientific and political communities, has now risen beyond this threshold.


Research commissioned by The Independent reveals that the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has now crossed a threshold, set down by scientists from around the world at a conference in Britain last year, beyond which really dangerous climate change is likely to be unstoppable.


The implication is that some of global warming's worst predicted effects, from destruction of ecosystems to increased hunger and water shortages for billions of people, cannot now be avoided, whatever we do. It gives considerable force to the contention by the green guru Professor James Lovelock, put forward last month in The Independent, that climate change is now past the point of no return.


The danger point we are now firmly on course for is a rise in global mean temperatures to 2 degrees above the level before the Industrial Revolution in the late 18th century.


At the moment, global mean temperatures have risen to about 0.6 degrees above the pre-industrial era - and worrying signs of climate change, such as the rapid melting of the Arctic ice in summer, are already increasingly evident. But a rise to 2 degrees would be far more serious.
By that point it is likely that the Greenland ice sheet will already have begun irreversible melting, threatening the world with a sea-level rise of several metres. Agricultural yields will have started to fall, not only in Africa but also in Europe, the US and Russia, putting up to 200 million more people at risk from hunger, and up to 2.8 billion additional people at risk of water shortages for both drinking and irrigation. A Government's conference on Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change, held at the UK Met Office in Exeter a year ago, highlighted a clear threshold in the accumulation of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, which should not be surpassed if the 2 degree point was to be avoided with "relatively high certainty".
This was for the concentration of CO2 and other gases such as methane and nitrous oxide, taken together in their global warming effect, to stay below 400ppm (parts per million) in CO2 terms - or in the jargon, the "equivalent concentration" of CO2 should remain below that level.


For India, the climate change issue has several ramifications: First, although India does not currently have any obligations under the Convention to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, international pressure will keep increasing in this regard. It is therefore important for us to develop a clear understanding of our emission inventory. We also need to document and analyse our efforts in areas such as renewable energy, wasteland development and afforestation – all of which contribute towards either reducing CO2 emissions or increasing CO2 removal from the atmosphere. Considering that these efforts may often be undertaken for a variety of reasons not directly related to global warming, but yet have benefits as far as climate change is concerned, we may be able to leverage such efforts in the international context.
Second, we need to develop a clear and well articulated position on each of the three basic questions indicated earlier. This position needs to be supported by appropriate analysis. The Indian research community could contribute substantially in this regard.

Finally, we need to recognise that even if countries do undertake immediate and rapid action to reduce their emissions, some degree of climate change is inevitable. If we consider the fact that we have very limited abilities to deal with weather extremes in the present day, the situation may get worse in the future. Therefore, we need to significantly improve our ability to plan and adapt to extreme events such as floods, droughts, cyclones and other meteorological hazards. Any robustness that we build into the system in this regard will always stand us in good stead, no matter what climate change actually transpires. But a strategic plannining towards renewable energy sources will sources will help us to undertake this challenge of Global Warming. We are the only country in the world with a seperate Ministry for New and Renewable Energy Sources. Let us utilise this highlevel policy making body to make India progress further in this field which will eventualy make us more into safer side.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

"Bio Diesel", the upcoming green fuel.


The concept dates back to 1885 when Dr. Rudolf Diesel built the first diesel engine with the full intention of running it on vegetative source.


He first displayed his engine at the Paris show of 1900 and astounded everyone when he ran the patented engine on any hydrocarbon fuel available - which included gasoline and peanut oil. In 1912 he stated " … the use of vegetable oils for engine fuels may seem insignificant today. But such oils may in the course of time become as important as petroleum and the coal tar products of present time."


Scientists discovered that the viscosity ( thicKness) of vegetable oils could be reduced in a simple chemical process In 1970 and that it could work well as diesel fuel in modern engine.
This fuel is called Bio- Diesel.


Since than the technical developments have largely been completed. Plant oil is highly valued as Bio fuel "Diesel" and transformed into Bio Diesel in most industrialised countries. This vegetable oil can be used as it is crushed – ie - unrefined in the engines of cars This vegetable oil can be blended with normal diesel and used in cars. This vegetable oil can be refined and sold as pure diesel Refined it can be exported as a clean fuel to anywhere in the world. Bio Diesel is asubstitute for, or an additive to, diesel fuel that is derived from the oils and fats of plants, like Sunflower, Canola or Jatropha.


It is an alternative fuel that can be used in diesel engines and provides power similar to conventional diesel fuel. Bio Diesel is arenewable domestically produced liquid fuel that can help reduce the countries dependence on foreign oil imports.


Recent environmental and economic concerns (Kyoto Protocol) have prompted resurgence in the use of biodiesel throughout the world. In 1991, the European Community, (EC) Proposed a 90% tax reduction for the use of biofuels, including biodiesel. To day, 21 countries worldwide, produce Biodiesel.


The Advantages of Bio Diesel


- Bio Diesel is the most valuable form of renewable energy that can be used directly in any existing, unmodified diesel engine.

- Bio Diesel fuel and can be produced from oilseed plants such as rape seeds, sunflower, canola and or JATROPHA CURCAS. Bio Diesel is environmental friendly and ideal for heavily polluted cities.


-Bio Diesel is as biodegradable as salt Bio Diesel produces 80% less carbon dioxide and 100% less sulfur dioxide emissions. It provides a 90% reduction in cancer risks. Bio Diesel can be used alone or mixed in any ratio with mineral oil diesel fuel. The preferred ratio if mixture ranges between 5 and 20% (B5 - B20)


-Bio Diesel extends the live of diesel engines


-Bio Diesel is cheaper then mineral oil diesel


-Bio Diesel is conserving natural resources


Transesterification


The process of converting vegetable oil into biodiesel fuel is called Transesterification and is luckily less complex then it sounds.Chemically, Transesterification means taking a triglyceride molecule, or a complex fatty acid, neutralizing the free fatty acids, removing the glycerin, and creating an alcohol ester. This is accomplished by mixing methanol with sodium hydroxide to make sodium methoxide. This liquid is then mixed into the vegetable oil. After the mixture has settled, Glycerin is left on the bottom and methyl esters, or biodiesel is left on top and is washed and filtered.The final product Bio Diesel fuel, when used directly in a Diesel Engine will burn up to 75% cleaner then mineral oil Diesel fuel.


The Technology


Presently, the indigenously designed bio-fuel plant for 250 lt./day is in operation. We have to design and develop bio-fuel plants of 3 to 10 tones per day capacity for installation in different parts of the country. Effective marketing chain needs to be planned for enabling farmers to reap the benefits directly. Bio-fuel mission will provide technological and employment generation focuses for the rural sector. Use of eleven million hectares of wasteland for Jetropha cultivation can lead to generation of minimum twelve million jobs.

The Cost


The cost of Bio Diesel is largely dependent on the choice of feedstock and the size of the production facility. If Jatropha feedstock is used, the fuel will cost depending on the country approximately US $ 0,40 per liter plus tax when applicable.

International Laws and regulation


Several countries have active Biodiesel programmes. Such countries also have given legislative support and have drawn up national polices on biodiesel development. Wide variety of motives for action taken can observe like Increase of energy supply security Reduction of dependence on fossil energy forms Reduction of harmful locally acting emissions.Protection of soil by biodegradable productsReduction of health hazard by using non-toxic products.

Biodiesel Scenario In India


As India is deficient in edible oils, non-edible oil is the main choice for producing biodiesel. According to Indian government policy and Indian technology effects. Some development works have been carried out with regards to the production of transesterfied non edible oil and its use in biodiesel by units such as Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, Tamilnadu Agriculture University Coimbatore and Kumaraguru College of Technology in association with Pan horti consultants. Coimbatore. Generally a Blend of 5% to 20% is used in India (B5 to B20). Indian Oil Corporation has taken up Research and development work to establish the parameters of the production of tranesterified Jatropha Vegetable oil and use of bio diesel in its R&D center at Faridabad. Research is carried out in Kumaraguru College of Technology for marginally altering the engine parameters to suit the Indian Jatropha seeds and to minimize the cost of transesterification.

Bio Diesel Experiments


Initially 5% of the bio diesel was blended with High-speed diesel and later increased to 20%. The railway and Indian oil corporation has successfully used 10% blended biodiesel fuel in train running between Amritsar and New Delhi in the month of Feb 2003. At Kumaraguru College of Technology an auto rickshaw was run on pure biodiesel (B100) prepared from Jatropha oil.

Conclusion


As a substitute for fast depleting fossil fuel. Bio diesel had come to stay. In future, it should also serve to reduce and maintain the price of automobile fuel. The under exploited and un exploited vegetable oils are good sources of biofuel. Our country is endowed with many such plants. Research is being carried out now to convert vegetable oils into biodiesel through biotechnological processes using biodiesel. With a concentrated and coordinated effort. Wide use of bio diesel in our country is going to be a reality in the days to come.

A national mission on Bio-Diesel has already been proposed by the committee comprising six micro missions covering all aspects of plantation, procurement of seed, extraction of oil, trans-esterification, blending & trade, and research and development. Diesel forms nearly 40% of the energy consumed in the form of hydrocarbon fuels, and its demand is estimated at 40 million tons.


Therefore blending becomes the important National Issue which apart from giving the dividends , it saves the country's exchequer. India has vast stretches of degraded land, mostly in areas with adverse agro- climatic conditions, where species of Jatropha , Mahua etc can be grown easily. Even 30 million hectares planted for bio- diesel can completely replace the current use of biofuels. The production of Bio fuels will also boost the rural economy which will bring more enthusiasm in more than one billion lives in the area.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Biodiesel Programme in India


It is good to hear that Biodiesel is fully exempted from excise duty, according to 2007-2008 Budget. In India the Biodiesel Programme is one of the hot subject in Renewable Energy Industry. Suzlon Energy Ltd has plans to diversify into the solar and bio-diesel business within four years. The company expects that this move would produce the right synergies with its existing business in the wind energy space. Their plan is to use the land at the wind farm for growing feedstock for bio-diesel.


Generally in India the program to sell diesel mixed with non-edible oil extracted from Jatropha Curcas and Pongamia Pinnata, which could cut India's import dependence, but would take 4-5 years to launch on commercial scale. It will take time for adequate quantities of Jatropha Curcas and Pongamia Pinnata to be planted and oil extracted for mixing in diesel.


Bio-Diesel Credit Bank : Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA), www.pcra.org, launched Bio-Diesel Credit Bank. It will co-ordinate activities relating to Carbon Credit.


Field Trials : Several Field trials have been performed. Indian Oil Corporation, (IOC) had placed an order of 450 kiloliters of bio-diesel in 2004, for field trials with the Indian Railways and State Roadways. IOC will be able to supplement 5% of diesel with bio-diesel in three years.
The first phase of the project, by Daimler-chrysler India, in 2003-04 saw production of the indigenous biodiesel and completion of road trials on two C-Class Mercedes-Benz cars. The cars, powered by pure (neat) Biodiesel, traversed the rugged terrain of the country in April-May, 2004, and clocked over 5,900 kilo meters under very hot and humid conditions.


The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) is now in talks with country's biggest truck and bus maker Tata Motors and Indian Oil to take its biofuel project to the next stage, for testing its vehicles on bio-diesel developed from jatropha plant.


Zero excise duty for bio-fuels on cards : The government is likely to change the excise duty structure for biofuels in the next Budget to make their use attractive. Petroleum ministry officials said the excise duty on biodiesel and ethanol is likely to be made nil and states would be asked to have a favorable sales tax regime.


Govt to assist, encourage states in bio-diesel production : The government will assist states promote Jatropha cultivation for increasing bio-diesel production in the country under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, the Rajya Sabha was informed on 7 Dec 2005.


Andhra Pradesh State Government Introduces Draft Industrial Policy : The Andhra Pradesh government has introduced a draft biodiesel policy to facilitate both investors and farmers to plant oil-bearing trees in 1.5 million acre in the next four years. Also, a risk fund of Indian Rupees 2 Billion is expected to be created, as loan to the state government, to support small and marginal farmers with maximum five acre land holding. There is also a proposal for constituting a biodiesel board, which would be an autonomous board for integrated development of jatropha cultivation and bio-diesel oil in the state. The proposed board, having legal authority, will monitor the tripartite agreement signed between the stake holders, besides assisting, encouraging, and promoting jatropha cultivation, according to the officials involved in preparing the draft policy said. Following the constitution of policy, the government is determined to promote contract farming for buyback of jatropha seeds. The minimum buy-back price will be fixed considering the different variables including the quality and quantity of the produce. A special department called the Rain Shadow Area Department has been created as a special purpose vehicle for planning, coordination, monitoring and implementation of the biodiesel program.


Production Plans : Number of companies are planning to set up new units. Kochi Refineries Ltd (KRL) is setting up a pilot plant with a US firm to extract biodiesel from rubber seed oil. An R&D exercise, the company proposed to look at the feasibility of the project and would initially have a pilot plant set up with a daily capacity of 100 liters. The company has initiated studies into the availability of rubber seed oil from neighboring Tamil Nadu, especially from the Nagercoil belt.


Another Kochi-based company, TeamSustain Ltd, a division of US-based Dewcon Instruments Inc, is in talks with a US firm for setting up a biodiesel plant in Kochi.

Renewable energy company Bhoruka Power Corporation Ltd, has received a grant of 100,000 dollars from the US government to conduct a detailed feasibility report for a bio-diesel project in State of Karnataka. The study envisages use of Neem or Pongamia non-edible oilseeds for production of bio-diesel as well as power.


The Southern Online Biotechnologies Limited, which is setting up a bio-diesel project in Andhra Pradesh, has signed MoU with several government bodies and non-governmental organisations, for procuring raw material like Pongamia Pinnata (Karanja or Kanuga) and Jatropha seed. The oil extracted from this seed is used to produce bio-diesel. The company is setting up the bio-diesel project at an estimated cost of Indian Rupees 150 million at Choutuppal in Andhra Pradesh, with technology from a German company named Lurgi. The plant capacity is 30 tons per day or 90,000 tons per annum. It would require around 100 tons of seeds per day. The annual requirement of seeds is around 32,000 tons. As the current availability of seeds in the state is less than 4,000 tons, company will use other raw materials like acid oils, distilled fatty acids, animal fatty acids and non-edible vegetable oils like neem, rice bran etc,


Jain Irrigation System Ltd, has plans to set up a Indian Rupees 480 million large-scale commercial bio-diesel plant, with a capacity of 150,000 tons per day in Chattisgarh by 2008. R&D work at 3 tons per day biodiesel pilot plant at Jalgaon, built at a cost of Indian Rupees 5 million. This will be followed by another bio-diesel plant with a capacity of 10 tons per day at Jalgaon. The current concern in the biodiesel industry is finding adequate farmland to make sure our industry receives a regular supply of feedstock.


Nova Bio Fuels Pvt. Ltd, is setting up a Indian Rupees 200 million, biodiesel plant with a capacity of 30 tons per day in Panipat in 2006. Their plant would also supply glycerine to local pharma companies.


Naturol Bioenergy Limited is setting up an integrated biodiesel facility in Andhra Pradesh. The 300 tons per day biodiesel plant will come up in the port town of Kakinada at an estimated cost of Indian Rupees 1.4 billion and would be a 100 per cent export-oriented unit.


An Indian Rupees 9 million biodiesel plant, is coming up in Ganapathipalayam village, about 20 km away from Pollachi. KTK German Bio Energies India, is all set to commence commercial production of biofuel from January 2006. The plant will use rubber seeds for extraction biodiesel.


Biodiesel extracted from Pomgamia Pinatta (Karanj) seeds, was commercially launched in Pune in January 2006. The fuel has been produced and marketed by Pune-based Mint Biofuels, Though the plant initially had a capacity of 100 litres per day, it was scaled up to 400 litres per day. The company will set up a Indian Rupees 300 million plant at Chiplun, which will have a capacity of producing 5,000 tons of fuel per day. Plans are afoot to increase the capacity of the plant to 1,00,000 tons within a period of four years.


Vijayawada based Sagar Jatropha Oil Extractions Private Limited is setting up an Indian Rupees 100 million jatropha oil extraction unit at Gannavaram. The company has also experienced success with contract farming of the jatropha plant in the state. Jatropha oil is mixed with diesel to produce biodiesel.


British Petroleum on Feb. 2, 2006, declared that it will fund a $9.4 million project in India to see if biodiesel can be produced from a non-edible oil bearing crop. The project by The Energy and Resources Institute in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh will study the feasibility of producing biodiesel from the crop Jatropha Curcas. The 10-year project will cultivate around 8,000 hectares of wasteland with the crop and install equipment needed for seed crushing, oil extraction and processing, to produce 9 million liters of biodiesel per year. The project will also include an environmental and social impact assessment. TERI will run the project's daily operations.


Rising crude prices : The rising crude oil prices will lead to higher usage of vegetable oils and fats as alternative fuel. Demand for bio-fuels will invariably increase, it is expected that the demand for bio-fuel from vegetable oils and fats will shoot up to 3 million tons a day.
President of India Plants Jatropha Saplings in Mugal Gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan (Presidential Palace) : Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam has planted Jatropha sapling in Mugal Gardens of Rashtrapati Bhavan. To begin with 800 plants are being planted for educational purposes to promote the use of herbal plants for extracting oil from which bio diesel can be produced. This is being done in collaboration with G.B. Pant Agricultural University, Pantnagar and National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow. A demonstration of Agricultural implements being operated by bio-diesel was also made before the President. President of India Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam always emphasizes on plantation of Jatropha Curcas.


Every State Government if taking steps to promote Jatropha Curcas and Pomgamia Pinatta.


Chhattisgarh : The government has planted in 2005, 80 million saplings of jatropha, a source of bio-fuel, as the state attempts to tap non-conventional energy sources. It has set a target of cultivating jatropha plantations in one million hectares in 2006, covering 20,000 hectares in the first phase. The government would work with NGOs for starting 350 jatropha nurseries, each spread over a maximum of 500 hectares, in 2005.


Andhra Pradesh : State has taken the lead in Jatropha Plantation. The state government has set up a separate department for bringing into productive use the 728,000 hectare cultivable wasteland available for cultivation of Jatropha plantation for production of bio-diesel. The state government is drawing up a roadmap, which will see the involvement of oil majors like Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and Reliance Industries, to make the state the biggest producer of bio-diesel. It is planning to bring between 4 and 5 million acres of land in seven to eight districts of the state under biodiesel plantations and ensure that micro-irrigation is used in a big way in these areas. This will change the ecology of the area.


Tamil Nadu : Underutilised lands could turn into fertile farms and farmers can be assured of a price for their produce. This is a project to produce 100 per cent biodiesel from jatropha. D1-Mohan Bio Oils Limited (a joint venture of Mohan Breweries and Distilleries and U.K.based D1 Oils Plc) plans to bring one lakh hectares under jatropha cultivation in Tamil Nadu. Indian Overseas Bank signed an agreement with Coimbatore based Classic Jatropha Oil (India) Ltd for promoting cultivation of jatropha curcas in Tamil Nadu under contract farming. Classic Jatropha Oil, a subsidiary of Tirupur based major knitwear exporters, has been involved in developing the Jatropha cultivation for a long time.


India's vehicular pollution is estimated to have increased eight times over the last two decades. This source alone is estimated to contribute about 70 per cent to the total air pollution. With 243.3 million tons of carbon released from the consumption and combustion of fossil fuels in 1999, India ranked fifth in the world behind the U.S., China, Russia and Japan. India's contribution to world carbon emissions is expected to increase in the coming years due to the rapid pace of urbanisation, shift from non-commercial to commercial fuels, increased vehicular usage and continued use of older and more inefficient coal-fired power plants.D1 Oil plc. : A UK producer of green fuel, Newcastle-based D1 Oil plc, has 10,000 hectares of the crop planted in India and its target of 267,000 hectares by the end of 2006 is on track.


Commercial Developments in India:


Reliance Industries Ltd to enter Bio-Fuel : Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) is planning to enter the bio-fuel segment in a big way. To begin with, the company has earmarked 200 acres of land at Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh to cultivate jatropha, which can yield high quality bio-diesel. The area of cultivation will be increased to many thousands of acres depending on the progress of the project. The project is being implemented by Reliance Life Sciences, a subsidiary of RIL.Several smaller Indian companies are already working towards developing bio-diesel. Companies like Nandan Bioagro and Labland Biotech have tied up with British oil company D1 Oils to produce jatropha and trade in it. The company will encourage hundreds of farmers to cultivate the crop under an arrangement with the company.A jatropha seed contains 31 to 37 per cent extractable oil. A jatropha plantation over 100,000 hectares is expected to yield 250,000-300,000 tons of crude jatropha oil per annum. It is estimated that an initial 100,000-hectare jatropha farm will yield revenues of $100 million per annum. Reliance is also in talks with Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan Governments, to get access to land for contract farming.Godrej plans Indian Rupees 5 billion for bio-fuel projects : Godrej Agrovet Ltd is planning to invest over Indian Rupees 5 billion, for jatropha and palm oil cultivation in the states of Gujarat and Mizoram. The company would cultivate jatropha or palm oil according to the nature of the waste land in these states.According to industry sources, Godrej Agrovet would invest Indian Rupees 2.5 billion for bio-fuel plant cultivation along with the palm oil processing and plant cultivation project in Gujarat while it would invest Indian Rupees 2.5 billion for both jatropha and palm oil cultivation in Mizoram. Godrej would be cultivating both jatropha and palm oil in an area over 10,000 acres in Mizoram as per the fertility of the land. The company is also in the process of setting up mills in Walia (Gujarat) at an estimated cost of $ 10 million.Emami Ltd, one of the leading toiletries outfit in the country, is planning to enter into the farming of jatropha, a source of biodiesel. The company might float a joint venture outfit with a leading European company in the field of bio-diesel for the new business. Emami group is now talking to some companies in United States, UK and Austria for technical collaboration for the extraction of oil from jatropha. The project will be first of its kind in the Eastern India. The company will start farming of jatropha in Suri in West Bengal and Balasore in Orissa.


Biodiesel will have a pronounced impact on edible oil prices : Prices of both palm and soy oils will firm up in the coming years, with demand for biodiesel alone grabbing at least six million tons of oils despite the slower growth of the economy.Crude Palm Oil futures have gone up from 1,300-1,500 ringgit to a new higher range of 1,400 to 1,600. Malaysia and Indonesia are the world's largest producers and exporters of palm oil, while Brazil and Argentina are among the top soy oil producers.

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