Biofuels ‘made in Italy’ to Coldiretti

An analysis of Coldiretti sums up the impact of transport in the biofuel sector. According to Coldiretti import of vegetable oil of Brazilian origin implies a sea voyage of over 9 thousand kilometers with an energy consumption which corresponds to 6 percent of the energy contained in the products transported.

The vegetable oil transport from the Congo, about 5,000 kilometers by sea, consumes 3.3 percent of energy transported. The energetic nature of environmental costs are added to those arising from clearing of forests and natural habitat destruction to the detriment of biodiversity of the places of origin of the raw material as was done in China, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

According to Coldiretti importing biofuels, it may be limited by the presence in Italy of the land, the professional competence and appropriate technologies to developing within the confines of the production of bioenergy. Italian agriculture has enormous potential especially in the bioethanol sector, produced by the fermentation and distillation of sugar materials, starch or by-products such as cereals, sugar beet and the distillation of wine. Despite all speak in favor of biofuels, imposing even short-term targets for the uptake of biofuels, little or nothing is done instead on the side of the fines to be imposed in case of failure to achieve objectives.

Biofuel from milk in New Zealand

Biofuel from latteIn New Zealand is pioneering the production of biofuel from milk. The product “Gull Force 10 biofuel” is a mixture of gasoline mixed with ethanol at 10%. Ethanol is made from whey which is a natural by-product dairy industry in New Zealand. The Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark, has commented on the trial that could lighten the energy bill and greenhouse gas emissions of the southern country. According to a national policy approved in February 2007 by the New Zealand government biofuel, it must be introduced above 3.4% by the oil companies by 2012. No coincidence that the idea of producing bioethanol from milk came from a small national oil company the Gull petrol, which thus adapts to time with new regulations and injects a vital economic boost to the local dairy industry. The national establishment Fonterra’s Edgecumbe is already able to produce 30 thousand liters of ethanol per day.

De-taxation of biofuels in New Zealand. To facilitate the introduction to the biofuel the New Zealand government has eliminated all forms of taxation on the share allocated to bio-ethanol so as to encourage competition between companies and the reduction of the production cost. Prime Minister Helen Clark, who in the press agencies is photographed in a biofuel gas station told the press to believe in the potential of renewable energy in the country.


Biofuels are fuels extracted from agro-energy. In other words, they can be obtained from the processing of agricultural raw materials, biomass, and wood. For these reasons, biofuels are considered a renewable energy source. Biofuels can be used in replacement of oil to power engines, cars, and machinery. Few people know that the first diesel engine invented by Rudolf Diesel in 1893 working right with peanut oil. During the twentieth century to the plant, it was preferred fossil fuel that source, produced by the nascent oil industry. Only in recent years, biofuels are coming back into vogue as a response to the depletion of oil resources, the rising prices of crude oil and the problem of global warming.

Biodiesel History

In a way, the cars are born with biofuels. In 1853 scientists E. Duffy and J. Patrick realized the vegetable oil transesterification process from which is derived biodiesel. The use of biodiesel, however, became known in the World Exhibition in Paris in 1898, when Rudolf Diesel used it to fuel the engine of the same name of his invention constructed five years ago (10 August 1893). To celebrate this anniversary was declared August 10 the International Day of biodiesel even if, in reality, Rudolf Diesel did not use the occasion transesterified biodiesel yet simple peanut oil. The same Rudolf Diesel in a public statement of 1912 considered biofuels derived from biomass and vegetable oils a major asset as much as oil.

Forgetfulness of biodiesel in the ’20s

Biodiesel experienced a period of decline, dictated more by reasons of cost or technical nature in the 20s of the twentieth century. The petrodiesel was cheaper compared to biodiesel. Automakers began to adapt the engines to the lower viscosity of the fossil fuel and biofuel slowly went into a kind of oblivion. Mass production allowed the oil industry to achieve significant economies of scale and lower average costs. Conversely, the inadequate production of biofuels made them even more expensive and little used.

The rediscovery in the 70s

Biofuels were back during the oil crisis of the 70s. Concern about the depletion of fossil reserves and global warming prompted Western governments to the rediscovery of biodiesel and bioethanol.

Biodiesel between EU goals

Since early 2000, the European Union has set up a biodiesel recovery plan to reach up to 20% of the satisfaction of domestic fuel demand. In countries like France biodiesel, it is known as diester and produced by the transesterification of rapeseed. It is mixed up with 5% of the diesel fuel, and the domestic automakers are experimenting thrusters able to use biodiesel up to 50%. But few countries have fulfilled the commitments set by the European Directive.