Peru inaugurates first biodiesel plant

Peru’s first biodiesel plant was inaugurated in Lima’s Lurín district on Thursday with an investment of $25 million. The general manager of the Peruvian company Heaven Petroleum Operations, Samir Abudayeh, said the plant will have an initial daily production of 120,000 gallons of biodiesel with a later production at 240,000 gallons a day, Radio Programas radio reported.

“With this plant, using Peruvian technology, we begin the era of biofuels in our country,” said Abudayeh. “Biodiesel will create a series of development poles at the national level in the agriculture and agro-industrial sectors”

Made from fat or vegetable oil, biodiesel is a clean burning alternative fuel compared to conventional diesel. With little or no modifications, it easily replaces petroleum diesel in compression-ignition engines, which includes cars, heavy equipment and boats.

“The most important thing is that we are contributing in a real way to protect the environment,” Radio Programas reported Abudayeh saying. “Our new fuel will reduce carbon dioxide emissions, which harm our atmosphere.”

During the plant’s first phase, it will reportedly use soybeans to produce the biofuel. Abudayeh said they will later cultivate crops such as Jathropa Curca, also known as White Pinenut, on 50,000 hectares along Peru’s coast. The cultivation will require a $200 million investment and is expected to create 15,000 jobs.

Abudayeh added that “due to the geographic diversity and the availabilty of vacant and deforested land with development potential, Peru could become the biggest producer of biodiesel in Latin America.”

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