|The CPU 1000 unit.|
Brazil’s first commercial jatropha biodiesel project goes into operation this month following the delivery of BioDiesel Technologies’ (BDT) processing unit.
BDT will deliver an additional four processing units to increase the plant's annual capacity to 40,000 tonnes (about 10 million gallons US) by the end of 2007. The President of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, will officially open the plant in September.
The Compact Production Unit (CPU) 1000, which is installed in a 20-foot ISO container, is designed to use oils and fats of vegetable and animal origin, or used edible oils. It produces 1,000 liters of biodiesel per hour (8 million liters per year).
Project operator, Compahnhia Productora de Biodiesel de Tocantins, has formed agreements with local cooperatives and small farmers in the state of Tocantins to supply the biodiesel facility with the required feedstock. This has led to the establishment of 48,000 hectares of jatropha plantation.
The multi-feedstock technology provided by BDT will also allow the use of animal tallow for the manufacture of biodiesel. This could prove to be a significant source of income to the large slaughter-house industry within the Tocantins state, which has more than 6 million head of cattle.
This operation, bringing local agricultural communities into the biofuel production process, is the model upon which future Biodiesel operations in Brazil will be constructed; hence President Lula will show his support for the project in September. Brazil has introduced mandatory blends of 2% by 2008 and 5% by 2013 as well as numerous tax incentives for biodiesel producers that source their feedstock from local communities.
Compahnhia Productora de Biodiesel de Tocantins is examining project sites for a further two projects within the region, taking total regional production to more than 120,000 tons of biodiesel per year.
BDT, a biodiesel equipment manufacturer and project developer based in Austria, has 17 multi-feedstock projects operating in 10 countries worldwide.