FACTBOX - Major Biofuel Projects Around the World
North Dakota Biodiesel Inc. plans to build a $50 million biodiesel manufacturing plant in Minot, North Dakota, drawing on local canola crops as a source, said an article posted on the US Department of Energy's Web site (www.energy.gov/engine/content.do).
The facility will be the largest biodiesel refinery in North America, able to produce 100,000 tonnes of premium biodiesel annually from more than 355,000 acres (144,000 hectares) of canola. Construction on the plant is expected to begin in August, with the first sale of biodiesel products likely in December 2006.
Union Pacific, the largest US railroad, plans to nearly double its annual tonnage of ethanol shipments by 2008, a company official said in May.
Jerry Finan, senior product manager for corn refining at Union Pacific Railroad (UP), told a an ethanol industry conference that UP expects to transport 2.8 billion gallons of ethanol a year by 2008. It currently transports 1.5-1.7 billion gallons per year, he said.
Leading oil palm planters IOI Corp and Kuok Oil & Grains are separately building two refineries in Rotterdam to process more than 1 million tonnes of palm oil a year. Industry experts say the plants will deliver much-needed supply to Europe's biodiesel plants in future.
State oil giant Petrobras has projects to increase ethanol exports to 9.4 billion litres in 2010 from 2 billion litres in 2005.
Japan's Mitsui & Co. is to team up with Petrobras and Vale do Rio Doce (CVRD) to study how to expand Brazil's ethanol exports, Japanese media have said.
Austrian starch, sugar and food processor Agrana will build a 105 million-euro bioethanol plant with an annual capacity of 200,000 cubic metres.
Abengoa Bioenergy, Europe's top ethanol producer, is due to open a 200 million-litre plant in northern Spain at the end of this year. It wants to start up another two in Europe in the next five years, and is most interested in Germany and Britain. It is also bidding for a project in France.
The bioenergy unit of Abengoa produced 260 million litres of ethanol in Spain last year and about 400 million litres in the United States.
France's main biodiesel maker Diester Industrie, owned by oilseed producers, should be able to lift its output to around 1 million tonnes a year in 2007-2008 under a new quota agreed by the government earlier this year.
French maize producers and Abengoa, the top European ethanol producer and the fifth in the United States, hope to produce 100,000 tonnes of ethanol, or 1.26 million hectolitres (mhl) at a plant to be built in southwestern France.
Other French bioethanol projects include two joint sugar and wheat-based production plants, one proposed by France's top sugar producer Tereos and the other by Cristal Union, with a capacity of 200,000 tonnes each.
A 100,000-tonne biodiesel plant, owned by British supermarket giant Tesco and renewable fuel maker Greenergy, is expected to come onstream on England's east coast by next year, expanding the potential for green fuels. Greenergy hopes to sell up to 3 million tonnes a year of biofuel.
British Sugar's largest UK sugar factory has filed a planning application to build an ethanol plant with a production capacity of 50,000 to 60,000 tonnes in eastern England.
Dutch independent refiner Petroplus said in May it planned to ramp up sales of its "Bio-plus" (5 percent biodiesel) fuel this year after securing up to 25,000 tonnes per year of biodiesel from Scottish start-up Argent Energy. The company produces 200,000 tonnes of biodiesel a year.
U.K. biodiesel developer D1 Oils has started a joint-venture project to produce biofuel in Saudi Arabia for export to Europe.
Saudi company Jazeera for Modern Technology will provide land to grow jatropha, a non-edible plant producing oil for b