Green Car Congress  
Go to GCC Discussions forum About GCC Contact  RSS Subscribe Twitter headlines

« BMW and Total Partner to Support Rollout of Hydrogen ICE Cars | Main | Japan’s Energy Policy Review; From E3 to E10 by 2020 »

Print this post

Philippines President Pushes Jatropha Planting for Biodiesel

3 June 2006

Manila Times. Philippines President Arroyo on Saturday ordered the Department of Energy to widen the propagation of jatropha plants not only in military camps but in all available public lands. The President had earlier ordered the conversion of idle lands in military camps into plantations for jatropha.

The President asked Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla to coordinate with the local government units and even private agencies by urging them to plant more Jatropha trees in their unused lands.

“Jatropha is the best alternative fuel and we need to propagate it,” she pointed out, adding that Jatropha is easy to plant and grow even without fertilizer.

She congratulated the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) chief, Maj. Gen. Romeo Tolentino, and his men for helping the government in its campaign to ease the country’s dependence on imported crude oil.

The Nolcom is the first military command to comply with the President’s order to plant Jatropha trees in military camps.

Lotilla informed the President that the country needs at least 100 to 200 hectares of jatropha plantations to be able to start production of jatropha diesel.

June 3, 2006 in Biodiesel, Other Asia | Permalink | Comments (48) | TrackBack (1)

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341c4fbe53ef00d834271b7053ef

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Philippines President Pushes Jatropha Planting for Biodiesel :

» Philippines President Pushes Jatropha Planting for Biodiesel from Seven Generational Ruminations
Philippines President Pushes Jatropha Planting for Biodiesel - covers a plan in the Philippines to plant a lot of Jatropha, so that they can launch large-scale biodiesel production. This follows a similar plan from one of the states in India. Jatropha pr [Read More]

Comments


I'm not familiar with this plant; can anybody give some idea of its prospective EROEI, or other information on it?

As I understand it (From some of the posts on this fine site, actually) the Phillipines is already well-positioned to deal with a fuel crunch. This sounds like good news for them.

1600 liters of diesel per hectare per year, according to wiki. So, how many acres would i need to power 1 diesel new beetle 10,000 miles per year.

assume 40 mpg, so 250 gallons (950 liters) gives me 1.5 acres (.60 hectare). i could live with that, assuming the processing wasn't very energy intensive, which it sounds like all the necessary processing is squeezing and filtering, so that should be ok.

assuming you had no other profit channels from the plants and you could still make pretty decent bucks from totally wasted land that sells for pennies on the acre.

It is possible to construct engines that run on straight vegetable oil (SVO), such as

http://www.elsbett.com/us/about-us/introduction.html

However, such engines tend to produce a lot of particulate matter. This is because biological fats and oils are actually triglycerides, i.e. three long paraffin/olefin chains connected by a glycerine chain. This makes it harder for the oxygen to attack the carbon-carbon and hydrogen-carbon bonds during combustion. The VW Ecomatic is an exception in that it may be fuelled with SVO.

For use as a (partial) substitute for mineral diesel, the triglycerides have to converted into fatty acid methyl esters in a process called transesterification. This requires the addition of methanol, which may be produced from mineral hydrocarbons or forestry waste. Some 9% of the output mass is glycerol, which is poorly suited to mobile applications due to its low energy density and high viscosity. However, there are other uses for it:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glycerol

Fatty acid methyl esters (aka FAME, biodiesel) can be produced from a great variety of feedstocks, including spent restaurant grease, animal fats and tallow, vegetable oils (both edible and inedible), even algal oil.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biodiesel

Neat biodiesel (B100) is superior to mineral diesel in many ways but requires fungicidal additives to prevent biological degradation in storage. This is one reason why it is commonly blended with mineral diesel instead. High cost and limited available quantities are others, though that situation is very different for developed and emerging economies. For every unit of fossil fuel energy used in agriculture, approx. 3.2 units of biodiesel energy are produced.

Tropical countries can achieve significantly higher yields per hectare than those in more temperate latitudes, due to the greater availability of sunlight, water and nutrients (typically compost + other fertilizer). Theoretically, central Africa would be in a good position to lift itself out of misery and poverty by selling biodiesel (feedstocks) to Europe. In practice, that is not happening today.

Finally, note that FAME can only be used in diesel, not in gasoline engines. Increasing the proportion of these engines to take advantage of these homegrown fuels has consequences for ambient air quality, both good (no sulphur, lower HC& CO) and bad (higher NOx, PM), relative to gasoline. Biodiesel exhaust has an odor reminiscent of french fries. This can effectively be suppressed with an oxydation catalyst (standard issue anyhow on European vehicle diesels).

Then, DPFs don't exactly like biodiesel.
Still prefer DME -pathways for those compression ignition engines.

Mo -

please provide a reference regarding DPFs and biodiesel. I don't believe your assertion is correct.

As for DME, it is indeed a very good substitute for mineral diesel in terms of emissions. However, it is an expesnive synthetic compound that must be pressurized (cp. LPG on the gasoline side) for transportation in lqiuid form.

What is Jatropha's advantage over Palm oil?
A: Better suited to poor soil and to alkaline soils.
B: It stands up to drought well.
C: Suited for tropical and semiarid climates.
D: Poisonous plant; may be used to fence crops from wildlife.
E: Less capital needed, 3yrs/1st yields, 5yrs/maturity.

"Totally wasted land"? Turning millions of acres of wilderness into jatropha farms would be just another kind of ecological disaster, a further destruction of environments and reduction of biodiversity to serve the automobile culture.

Rafael,

just a funny little difference between two editions of a recent text, I remembered:

http://www.ufop.de/downloads/Final_Report_SMDS.pdf
http://www.ufop.de/downloads/SMDS_Bericht_130206.pdf
( I expect you to understand the latter as well, by your name and written tongue... )


"The background behind the formulation of the premium fuel is the consideration that biodiesel
in its pure form can only be used in commercial vehicles or approved cars without a particle
filter (DPF). A maximum portion of 5 % RME in DF is today the probable upper limit for
compatibility with diesel particle filters. Maybe a B20 fuel (20% RME and 80% DF) will be
appropriate in the future."
vs.
"Hintergrund der Formulierung des Premiumkraftstoffs ist die Überlegung, dass Biodiesel in
reiner Form heute nur noch in Nutzfahrzeugen oder freigegebenen PKW ohne Partikelfilter
(DPF) einsetzbar ist. Ein maximaler Anteil von 20% RME in DK gilt heute als eventuelle
Obergrenze für die Kompatibilität mit Dieselpartikelfiltern."


Technically the limitations of current systems might of course well get
overcome, but regarding the perspective degrees of freedom and potentials of pathways exploiting biomass instead of just an oily content of selected seeds, I'm not sure, that's economically and ecologically rational to do.
( http://jungle-world.com/seiten/2006/17/7635.php , if I may insert one more recent foreign link, touching this, as an explanation. )
Especially if compared to fuels that can reduce PM a n d NxOy by themselves to an extent and, at the same time, guarantee excellent standardization - aftertreatment included.


Technologically we (europe, that is) are developing some nasty dinosaurs on this dino-fuel, in my eyes.
At the moment we're trying to push "Euro-VI".
We're not even c o u n ting ultrafine particles yet, just weighing particle mass. We're not even focussing on nitrous oxides, so far.
But we will do, some day, to continue having people replace their old tech with the "newest achievements".

In the end, with the reset in form of introducing DME or H2 or some sort of circular-CO2, a much broader base of classic internal combustion engines could stay with us, justifiable by the enthousiast.

An old diesel of 400000kms retrofitted with a future DME-CommonRail would do 400000 more kilometres, reconditioned perhaps, while retaining its ability to be driven across africa on the lowest quality fuels, where necessary.

( How many sequential generations of current and arising compact diesels in production, use and recycling that would equate to, some of which calculated to maybe 130000kms, hardly up to the task when sold to developing regions that used to buy ours fourth hand? )

I do want this reset now, but it's left to the market, not organization will.
Biodiesel is an additive in my eyes. Nothing to base development on. Local niches may rely 100% on it, but global tech needn't, mustn't, adapt to it.
Let's not waste ever more time and consumers' last resources on those dead ends. Let's optimize something else. Not industry's profits.

I think there is already enough pressure on the worlds rainforests with the present demand for food and timber. Adding automobile fudel as an incentive for deforestation as well is a really quite disheartening.

Mo -

thx for the links. Being Austrian, I do speak German. From what I've read, none of the DPF manufacturers have stated that high biodiesel blends represent a technical problem. It's strictly a CYA legal issue of warranty coverage by the carmakers, who at the time had not yet got around to testing vehicles equipped with DPFs with high biodiesel blends.

Wall-flow filters with platinum in the washcoat (to reduce the light-off temperature) are sensitive to acid formation during the soot build-up. However, since they can handle mineral diesel with traces of sulphur (which is converted to SO2 during ombustion and later, H2SO3 and H2SO4), chances are naturally sulphur-free biodiesel is if anything, less aggrssive. DPF that rely on consumable Cer additives to reduce the light-off temperature (Citroen PSA) make do without a washcoat anyhow. Retrofit DPFs don't accumulate soot at all. Therefore, I would not expect any type of DPF to be the limiting factor wrt the biodiesel blend that may be used. Still, get that in writing from your car dealer to be certain your warranty will remain in force.

Wrt low biodiesel blends, I agree. Most countries recognize that consumers are prepared to pay more only if their peers have to as well, i.e. no free riders. Given the quantities of renewable fuels that can be produced, that means a government mandate to deliver low blends everywhere. Setting up a new distribution infrastructure for a high blend grade appears to make little economic sense, for biodiesel or for ethanol (though some Americans may disagree with me).

Wrt H2, the best way to transport it is in liquid form, attached to carbon atoms. DME is a good example but expensive and not suitable as an additive. Gradually reducing the crude oil fraction of regular fuels by blending in suitable liquid renewable additives yields a more significant change in a shorter time. Changes to the fuel distribution infrastructure are a really high hurdle for the oil & gas as well as the auto industry (cp. CNG in Germany).

Whether biofuels make economic and ecological sense depends largely on how you calculate the cost of the alternatives, i.e. refined crude oil and xTL synthetic compounds. If you subscribe to the notion that any dictatorship sitting on huge oil reserves that you depend on (directly or via world trade) has the potential to become a threat (economic or via WMDs), the n you need to add the cost of military intervention to that of procuring the oil (incl. that from neighboring states). Iraq has cost the US taxpayer = US consumer over $250 billion so far - not including the human and ecological toll.

Of course, it would be wrong to bulldoze the remaining tropical forests for the sake of increased biofuel production. There is plenty of land in the tropics with less valuable vegitation. Consider, however, that vast tracts of the Amazon have already been deforested to make way for soybean crops. Most of this is used as cattle feed in the EU. Wouldn't it make sense to cut back on red meat in favor of a reduced dependence on oil from the Gulf and lower CO2 emissions?

Wrt NOx, perhaps it is worth noting that European carmakers are highly innovative on both the gasoline and the diesel front. Calling modern diesels dinosaurs is inappropriate considering the revolution they have undergone in the past 15 years. Diesels forced research on direct injection, stratified combustion and NOx reduction in the presence of oxygen (EGR, NOx store & SCR catalysts). The lessons learnt are now being applied to stratified spray-guided gasoline direct injection. HCCI combustion research has also benefitted greatly from such cross-pollenation.

Finally, the only organizations capable of mass-producing technologies that improve th situation are profit-oriented private companies. The trick is to slowly move the goalposts so they have a financial incentive to do the right thing. Profit is not intrinsically a bad idea!

"Of course, it would be wrong to bulldoze the remaining tropical forests for the sake of increased biofuel production. There is plenty of land in the tropics with less valuable vegitation. Consider, however, that vast tracts of the Amazon have already been deforested to make way for soybean crops. Most of this is used as cattle feed in the EU. Wouldn't it make sense to cut back on red meat in favor of a reduced dependence on oil from the Gulf and lower CO2 emissions?"

Absolutely. But I don't think reasoning of this kind alone is going to change people's eating habits despite wishes for energy independance....

Marcus,

Perhaps "reasoning of this kind" is not going to change people's eating habits, but if gasoline hits $5 in the U.S. and soybeans get diverted to biofuels, then the price of meat will go up, and behavior will change, without much change in reasoning. It happened in the 70's when the El Nino's cut anchovy supplies, forcing farmers to use soybeans for cattle. Hamburger doubled in price, and people screemed bloody murder. Same story, different generation.

Well Rafael,
I'll try to explain.

PSAs FAP is around since at least 2000.

Now in 2005/2006 we're beginning to separate older diesels that won't be allowed to enter cities during PM-episodes from newer ones. No filtration needed yet, just the first atmospheric barriers, tax penalties coming.

Around 2010 "Euro-V" will become effective, enforcing filters on heavier cars, not necessarily on lighter ones, as simple particle mass reduction will be sufficient.

"Euro-VI" talks and call for papers just began.
Maybe particle counting will become the focus, maybe NOx, perhaps a little bit of both.

And there are roman numbers left. If you want to look at
http://www.empa.ch/plugin/template/empa/*/45120/---/l=1 (a .pdf-file),
for example, or think of nitroproteins and other nitrided themes, PM2.5 and smaller ( PM10 is out, not without reason)...
it is clear that the industry in need of renovation pressure, looking for ways to outdate those beloved tin cans, won't run out of sorry themes, right?

Yes: They ARE problems and should NOT be dispersed and diluted. But realistically that makes for fifteen more years of continuous refinement of machines burning ancient fuels. Dinosaur development that cannot be justified, even if some innovations will be carried over. 2000bar injection pressures won't, for example. Unnecessary on good fuels.

The more efficient our fleets, the longer this period until the transition worth being called one.
Nonetheless leaving hardly any more oil in the end with the same CO2-level resulting.
Give or take a few years - thats all this efficiency thing is about, right? No real benefit ecologically and don't even think about health!

So the filters are on the shelves for six years now, and still unused for anything but smoothing out and enhancing product demand.

If you want to follow one more link
http://www.autogas-forum.de/de-version/

it'll show quite a development in the number of LPG stations for germany, although the support is on CNG with our German Sonderweg ;)

This same infrastructure is just what's needed for DME with its low pressures.
Quite easy to build up, as shown in those numbers.

This CNG is just what's needed for initial production of DME. Who wants those damn CNG tanks anyway?
Impossible to retrofit in acceptable sizes, detrimental structurally to crash safety even in common sizes, as shown recently...

And then those diesels are just what's wanted, efficiencywise, and what has to be cleaned up, emissions wise.

Why not take a few steps at once now?
A lot of appreciated cars could be saved by conversion instead of becoming shreddered.
Let's figure out the actual systems - that's business too, if you want profit ;)
But in principle the tech is on the shelves already...

The transition is without problems, as there is still diesel fuel around.
And the alternative pathways can be phased in just as fluently.

If there were a better decision, we'd still have to make it. Today, as I think, not in 15 years from now on, after squeezing out the fossil concept for the ultimate complication.

Okay, that became off topic here, so for the RME / FAP / DPF...:
No new cars are left around here allowed burning biodiesel.

As far as I noticed VAGs official concern with DPFiltered ones is ashes being built up.
Then regeneration times seem to be up to four times as long and perhaps strategies would have to be altered and made flexible analog the E85-cars.

But biodiesel as a perspective that would justify this, seems dead in europe. Squeezing out those poor little vegetables for our ancient burning of oil is the wrong way, I think. So that's not the worst omission.

You are probably correct JMartin. Hamburgers will get more expensive. But this just means that soybeans have become more valuable and thus the incentive to clear land for them will be greater as their selling price increases.

The question boils down to a balance between supply and demand and whether ecological considerations are going to limit supply in the face of considerable increases in demand (ie higher prices since people will now want soybeans for both beef and fuel).

With the price incentives so far there has been a high rate of deforestation. If the incentive for growing soybeans increases further I can't see things getting any better.

some palm oil vs jatropha facts here!

Jatropha pros
- jatropha oil is thinner then palm oil, which make it easier to process and use. Palm oil is semi-solid in room temp.
- jatropha tree require less nutrient less moisture and care compare to palm oil which need fertile soil and intensive care. It is said that jatropha trees will have higher yield if the soil is rich.
- jatropha tree productive life span(>50 yrs) is much longer then oil palm(>20 years). Oil Palms will be replanted once their height is too tall and make it hard to harvest the fruit. Since we are harvesting jatropha kernal so i guess kernal can last longer then oil palm fresh fruit branch.
- jatropha other uses is root as medicine, wood as soft wood, kernal cake as high N fertiliser.
- we are using idle land, not clearing rain forest like indonesia. Take note that in Malaysia we emphasize on the sustainability of oil palm, there will be more focus on increasing yield per acre then planting more acres.

Now the oil palm pros.
- oil palm oil production is supreme to all oil crops, with up to 5000 litres per hectare, it is 10 times more then soya and >2 times more then coconut oil. 1 hectare can fuel 5 diesel beetles for a year :)
- it is a cash crop, there will always a market demand for oil palm.
- multiple uses for palm oil, compare to jatropha oil is poisonious to consume.
- high energy balance of 9.5:1 http://www.mpob.gov.my/html/05_pi/05_f1g.htm

which one?

Vegetable Oil yields and characteristics

Jatropha information and links.

""Totally wasted land"? Turning millions of acres of wilderness into jatropha farms would be just another kind of ecological disaster, a further destruction of environments and reduction of biodiversity to serve the automobile culture."

This is why I think that environmentalists are people who do not want to solve problems.

Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way.

Let's not forget that harvesting Jatropha requires either slave labor, or mechanisation (driving up investment costs).

If you harvest manually:

:: For oil palm, an average of around 16 man-hours is needed to harvest the feedstock to produce one ton of oil.
:: For avocado, an average of around 40 man-hours is needed to harvest the feedstock to produce one tonne of oil.
:: For jatropha, an average of 500 man-hours is needed to harvest the feedstock to produce one ton of oil.

You see the problem. For the rest, Jatropha has interesting properties.

I wanted to add that harvesting costs make up 30 to 40% of the entire production cost. So they're absolutely crucial. That's why Jatropha might not become a widely used energy crop.

"This is why I think that environmentalists are people who do not want to solve problems.
Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way."

Robert, please proceed with caution, since in your mind you are 'solving' a problem, but when your machissimo wanes, you may realize you have in fact created more problem(s).

1600 liters of diesel per hectare per year, according to wiki. So, how many acres would i need to power 1 diesel new beetle 10,000 miles per year.

AND:
Now the oil palm pros.
- oil palm oil production is supreme to all oil crops, with up to 5000 litres per hectare, it is 10 times more then soya and >2 times more then coconut oil. 1 hectare can fuel 5 diesel beetles for a year :)
- it is a cash crop, there will always a market demand for oil palm.
- multiple uses for palm oil, compare to jatropha oil is poisonious to consume.
- high energy balance of 9.5:1 http://www.mpob.gov.my/html/05_pi/05_f1g.htm

which one?
Biodiesel from algae, ("NREL's research showed that one quad (7.5 billion gallons) of biodiesel could be produced from 200,000 hectares of desert land (200,000 hectares is equivalent to 780 square miles, roughly 500,000 acres)" - http://www.unh.edu/p2/biodiesel/article_alge.html). In other words, 142,000 liter per ha per year, about 28 times what you can get from oil palm!

Of course, ponds would require a certain investment, but that can be overcome. I would suggest integrating biodiesel ponds with wastewater treatment (see http://www.renewableenergyaccess.com/rea/news/story?id=44928). (If this works in frigid New Zealand, it works anywhere, excluding perhaps the poles.) This way you get your fertilizer for free, and you get clean water as a byproduct. You can potentially recover the nutrients from the byproducts of biodiesel production. Looks like a win-win-win proposal to me.

Well, this 142,000 litres per ha per year, we didnt see anyone investing in it yet. Do we have any working model yet?

Seems like the first one is just starting up (see http://www.renewableenergyaccess.com/rea/news/story?id=44928).

I guess algae-growers are not a politically important segment of the country. Or perhaps they neglected to pay their lobbyist enough money to take your Congressman to lunch. Maybe they donated to the wrong party in the last election.

But not to worry, once the New Zealanders perfect the technology, perhaps we can buy it from them...

True true, USA wont want to plant algae to kill their own soy oil. Malaysia sure making full focus on oil palm plantation rather then algae planting. Other poorer country wont have the technology to plant and harvest and process algae, not to say research...

Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, and India might candidates to lead the way with algae oil. They all share the commonality of demand/growing demand for oil/energy from the Middle East. They also face the specter of a faceoff between the West and Iran. Japan, and Singapore are densely populated, and will benefit from their biotech to further increase the very high yields of algae oil. India might not want to run afoul with its newly warmed relationship with US, as well as not be held hostage by pipelines/supertankers running through/south of Pakistan. South Korea may want to restore their reputation with biotech, gain energy independence, and reduce risks with oil geopolitics with algae oil as well. Another fact that is that unlike H2, they may reasonably stand a chace to reduce net carbon emmisions. For the worlds climate, this will be a great boon.

Interesting to see what the developments will be in the coming years.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Green Car Congress © 2013 BioAge Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved. | Home | BioAge Group