Vietnam

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Vietnam, with a vibrant economy that is still recovering from the 30 year Indochina War and the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997, is poised to become an important nation in the production of biofuels.

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  • Coconut and mango waste could help power Asia 22 March 2012 by Syful Islam for SciDev.Net: "[DHAKA] Researchers in the United States say agricultural waste from coconut and mango farming could generate significant amounts of off-grid electricity for rural communities in South and South-East Asia."
  • "Many food crops have a tough, inedible part which cannot be used to feed livestock or fertilise fields. Examples of this material — known as ['endocarp'] — include coconut, almond and pistachio shells, and the stones of mangoes, olives, plums, apricots and cherries... Endocarp is high in a chemical compound known as lignin. High-lignin products can be heated to produce an energy-rich gas that can be used to generate electricity."
  • The researchers identified high-endocarp-producing regions of the world – and noted that coconut and mango agriculture account for 72 per cent of total global endocarp production. Coconut production alone accounted for 55 per cent... Most coconut endocarp comes from South and South-East Asian countries, including Bangladesh, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  • They then overlaid these findings with energy consumption data to identify communities with little access to electricity, who could benefit from endocarp-based energy.
  • [Tom] Shearin [co-author and a systems analyst at University of Kentucky] said endocarp was preferable to crop-based biofuels as it had no value as a food item. "Its exploitation as energy source does not compete with food production," he said. [1]
  • Powering the Mekong with rice husks, 21 September 2008 by Vietnam News Service: "As the search for alternate sources of fuel continues in earnest, Vietnamese scientists have found great potential for a source of power in the scourge of the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta rivers – water hyacinths and rice husks."
    • "Local authorities estimate that the Mekong Delta annually produces some 3.6 million tonnes of rice husk."
    • A machine can process the plant waste into 'firewood'. "The cylindrical firewood pieces are about 73mm in diameter and 0.5 to one metre long each. One kilogramme of this firewood can be used to cook meals for four people for a whole day."[2]
  • PetroVietnam sets up biofuel firm, 10 August 2008 by VietnamNet: "The Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) is establishing a biofuel production and distribution company....The company will produce ethanol, from cassava".
    • "The project is a part of the biofuel development programme, ratified by the Government last year. The programme aims to develop strategies for 2015 with a vision to 2025 for the production of renewable energy and the partial replacement of traditional fuels."
    • "As part of the programme, around 250,000 tonnes of ethanol and vegetable oil will be produced to meet 1 per cent of the country’s petroleum demand by 2015."
    • "Viet Nam has the potential to develop biofuel from sugar cane, cassava and seaweed, among other sources. In addition, by-products like rubber, fish fat, and recycled lubricants can be used to manufacture fuels that replace petrol."[3]

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  • Green Energy Ltd - a for-profit corporation engaged in two aspects of the biofuels industry, production of biofuel feedstocks on GEV agro-stations and the acquisition of feedstocks through forward contracts with independent producers, and refinement and sale of biodiesel in the transportation and stationary engine markets.

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