Brazil may soon leap from the fourth to the second position among the main world producers of biodiesel, overtaking Italy and France, and becoming second only to Germany. This thanks to the greater consumption of B2 (mineral diesel with a mixture of 2% biodiesel), which became compulsory January 1st, in the country.
The statement was made by the director of the Renewable Fuel Department at Brazil's Ministry of Mines and Energy, Ricardo Dornelles, on stating that production in 2007 was 450 million liters (119 millions gallons) and should reach 850 million liters (224 million gallons) this year.
Dornelles pointed out the global demand for clean sources of energy, due to climate and environmental matters: "Markets are going to open up and Brazil may become a large exporter of biodiesel. This depends on other nations implementing their programs, breaking barriers and establishing standards, but we have great potential."
According to the ministry, between 60% and 70% of Brazilian biodiesel is currently produced from soy oil. Animal fat and castor seeds answer to around 10%, each, and the remains come from cultures that are not so intensive.
But from the technical point of view, soy is not the best option, as it presents lower productivity in liters of oil per hectare sown than do other sources, like castor beans and sunflower.
"There is government concern in strengthening other cultures, so that they may post greater productivity," stated Dornelles.
He guaranteed that, for consumers of biofuels, price changes should be minimal due to the compulsory mixture of B2, mainly due to competition among retailers.
At the end of October, 2007. magazine Biodieselbr was launched on the Brazilian editorial market. The publication is bimonthly and promises to bring detailed articles about the facts and tendencies for renewable fuels. It is an initiative of site www.biodieselbr.com, which has been in operation for around four years. The same journalists who produce the site will develop the magazine project.
The intention, according to the statement, is to bring into discussion problems and solutions from the point of view of specialists, mill owners, farmers, financers, government and researchers on the matter.
The first edition brought, among its articles, a vision of Germany, the most developed country in the world regarding the use of biodiesel, and also an interview with Agriculture, Livestock and Supply minister Reinhold Stephanes.
The news will be written by journalists and correspondents from several parts ofÂ Brazil. The first issue had 12,000 copies printed and was distributed for free. Subscriptions for other editions are on sale. Those interested may find further information at www.biodieselbr.com.