We've blogged here in the past how Europe is already heavily into diesel which is more efficient for running vehicles than gasoline, and now can be burned with less pollution. My blog partner here just recently blogged about the problems the corn/ethanol folks are facing. Corn or sugar derived ethanol is just a way of trying to stretch our limited gasoline supply. Meanwhile, the diesel picture seems to be getting ever brighter.
A major oil refiner has just announced a plan to put more than eight hundred million dollars into a biodiesel refinery in Singapore. No, that wouldn't be an American oil company. It's Neste of Finland. And they'll build the world's largest biodiesel production plant. Neste plans to use palm oil as its raw material. That raises environmental issues because palm oil often requires destruction of the natural forests. There are no native palm forests that run for hundreds of miles. None of those doomed forests to be replaced by palms are in Europe or North America, of course.
Meanwhile there's increased interst in biodiesl in the U.S. San Francisco now runs over 1500 diesel vehicles on biodiesel fuel, the first U.S. city to convert its entire municipal diesel fleet.
And tofay there's a major newespaper profle of one Minnesota researcher who's hoping to turn algae into biodiesel. There's even a fan site for algae as an energy source.
If you want to follow the various twists and turns in the biofuel biz: biodiesel, ethanol from corn or cane, etc., here's the site for you.