Brazil Starts Biodiesel Drive

    August 25 was the official launch of the endeavor by Brazil to produce a biodiesel fuel on an industrial scale using the castor-oil plant. A pilot project has been underway for two months in Quixeramobim, state of Ceará.

    Quixeramobim is a town in the semi-arid region of
    the Brazilian Northeast where 70 hectares are being cultivated,
    creating 60 jobs. 

    At the moment, the project is producing 350 liters daily of
    biodiesel. When the project is completely operational it will produce 800 liters

    So far, a total of US$ 508,000 (1.5 million reais) has been
    invested by the state, local authorities and a consortium of privately-owned
    thermoelectric power plants.

    The Brazilian Farm Research Corporation (Embrapa) has provided
    technical assistance.

    “The cultivation of the castor-oil plant to extract a biodiesel
    is part of the Brazilian government objective of stimulating the production of
    biofuels,” explains Cezar Martins da Rocha, of the Ministry of Agriculture, who
    adds that the project will be expanded further in the semi-arid region of
    Brazil’s Northeast.

    Rocha is from Ceará and is one of the architects of the
    project. He says the production of biodiesel from the castor-oil plant helps to
    clean the air.

    “It is a clean source of energy that absorbs carbon gases in
    the atmosphere,” he declares. “Besides its potential here in Brazil, it has a
    great future in foreign markets, as well.”

    Agência Brasil


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