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German Utility Dumps Plan For Palm-Oil Power Plant On Concerns About Clear-cutting In SE Asia -

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hatrack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-01-07 11:42 AM
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German Utility Dumps Plan For Palm-Oil Power Plant On Concerns About Clear-cutting In SE Asia -
A leading German utility has abandoned plans to convert a British power station to run on palm oil, in a blow to the promotion of biofuels in Europe. The decision by RWE npower to scrap the project at its Littlebrook plant in Dartford, Kent, which was seen as a test case for palm oil as an alternative energy source, comes after it was unable to secure sufficient supplies without risking damage to tropical rainforest. The move highlights the mounting alarm over the scramble in South-East Asia to bring more land into palm oil cultivation.

Widely used in processed foods, such as margarine, and in cosmetics, palm oil is burning bright on commodity exchanges. The price in Rotterdam soared to an eight-year high last week of $620 per tonne, buoyed by fears that floods in Malaysia would damage production. It has risen by more than 50 per cent over the past year in expectation that the burgeoning market for biodiesel will transform a previously dull commodity into the fuel of the future.

The Indonesian Government has signalled that 40 per cent of its palm oil crop will be designated for biofuel production in an attempt to reduce the countrys reliance on crude oil. RWE npower had hoped that palm oil would produce electricity in a carbon-neutral process that would not add to greenhouse gas emissions. According to a spokesman for RWE npower, the process works but the company was unable to guarantee that enough palm oil could be bought from sustainable plantations.

There wasnt enough palm oil that we could demonstrate was sustainable, the spokesman said. The bottom line is: are you contributing to global warming by chopping down rainforest? The company hired independent auditors to establish whether palm plantations in Malaysia could be accredited to standards set by the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil, an organisation committed to promoting a sustainable palm oil industry.

EDIT

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,9072-2525637,00.html
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Dogmudgeon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-02-07 03:56 PM
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1. They should try oil-producing alga
Even Chlorella, which is edible/healthy/awful-tasting, is about 40% oil by weight. Some of those oil-producing alga are very efficient little factories for turning simple sugars and a few nutrients into lipids.

--p!
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NNadir Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-02-07 04:05 PM
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2. Well there's always coal...
Repeat after me...sequestration...IGCC...biofuels...
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