Friday, March 20, 2009

Foreign investment in Biofuel PNG and SHELL drops others to go biofuel!

Japan’s Cosmo Oil announces $800 million biofuels feedstock project for Papua New Guinea

In Papua New Guinea, Japan’s Cosmo Oil announced that it intends to invest $800 million in the prospective development of corn, cassava and peanuts as biofuels feedstocks.

The company said that it will conduct six months of pre-feasibility studies including crop data gathering, followed by a three-year cultivation trial, prior to final crop selection and full-scale plantation gets underway.

Shell to drop wind, solar, focus on biofuels

In the UK, Shell Oil will abandon wind, solar and hydro and concentrate its renewable energy investments in biofuels, the company announced. The new direction was outlined at a company strategy meeting where executives concluded that other renewable energies were not economically viable, but said that Shell would continue investing in carbon capture and sequuestration.

Shell, the largest global purchaser of biofuels for mandated blending, said that biofuels fit the company’s core strengths in fuels, logistics and trading. Shell recently increased its investment in Codexis and tied the enzyme company investment to support of it joint venture in cellulosic production with Iogen. The company also has an algal fuel joint venture, Cellana, with HR Biopetroleum.

Shell biofuels head Graeme Sweeny will be conducting a free biofuels webinar on April 7th to discuss the company’s thinking on biofuels and interact with participants.