October 2008

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This page includes information on news and events in October 2008. (News and events are archived here at the end of the month.)

Events

  • 28-30 October 2008, Berlin, Germany: Biofuels 2008 - 3rd Annual Meeting.
    • This third annual conference will bring together leaders from Europe's biodiesel, ethanol and biogas producers, oil and gas majors, agribusiness companies, governments and regulatory bodies, technology providers and automotive manufacturers amongst others to examine the key issues and challenges at the heart of the region’s biofuels industry. Organized by the World Refining Association. (Themes: biofuels, technology, legislation)

News

  • Algae-based oil would save 160m tonnes CO2, 24 October 2008 by LowCarbonEconomy.com: "Algae-based transportation fuel could reduce global carbon dioxide emissions by over 160 million tonnes, according to the Carbon Trust."
    • "The organisation has set up a funding initiative to boost research and development into algae biofuels with the aim of creating an alternative to fossil fuels by 2020."
    • "It has set up the Algae Biofuels Challenge, which it will fund with up to £6 million and will also have the backing and funding of the (U.K.) Department of Transport.
    • "According to the Carbon Trust, algae could produce between six and ten times more energy per hectare than conventional biofuel feedstocks, while generating just 20 per cent of the carbon emissions of fossil fuels."[2]
  • Biofuel plants hit economic road block, 12 October 2008 by the Associated Press: "[W]eeds have begun to encroach on the [Lilbourn, MO] Great River Soy biodiesel plant, which produced just 94,000 gallons over two weeks before it ran out of money and was shuttered."
    • "It's a scene that has been repeated throughout the United States."
    • "Hopes ran high in many small towns amid an explosive interest in biofuels and a rush to build large plants. Unseen by planners, however, was the coming spike in crop prices and a financial meltdown unlike any that America has seen since the Great Depression."[3]
  • British biofuels hit the environmental mark, 12 October 2008 by Farmer's Weekly: "Nearly all (97%) of biofuels sourced from British feedstocks met the government’s RTFO (Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation) environmental standards, according to the first report by the Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA) – the body set up to administer the RTFO. That compared with just 20% for all biofuels used by UK fuel companies."
    • "Speaking on behalf of the biofuel industry, the Renewable Energy Association’s Clare Wenner said the findings clearly showed the UK biofuels industry was delivering on its promises to provide biofuels that both made greenhouse gas savings and were produced in a sustainable way."
    • "The report also showed that an overall carbon reduction of 44% was achieved against a government target of 40%."[4]
  • Biofuels standards challenged by new report on Malaysian Palm Oil , 8 October 2008 by Friends of the Earth UK: "Malaysian palm oil is finding its way into British petrol tanks despite concerns about its carbon balance and the rainforest being destroyed to produce it - according to a new report by Friends of the Earth international."
    • "The UK Renewable Fuels Agency (RFA) has reported that Malaysian palm oil being used for fuel in the UK meets a 'qualifying environmental standard', but Friends of the Earth's research reveals it is far from green."
    • The FOE report finds that Sarawak state in Malaysia "plans to more than double its 2007 levels of oil palm acreage by 2010....at the expense of tropical forests" and that "companies regularly practice open burning on carbon rich peat soils releasing millions of tonnes of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere".[6]
    • See the report Malaysian Palm Oil: Green Gold or Green Wash?



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