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From Coconuts to Biodiesel Fuel

The concept of producing bio diesel fuel from coconut oil is something of the imagination.


Yet on the small island of the Madang Province, a company operating on a small plantation on Karkar island has succeeded in making its own fuel.

It comes after plummeting copra prices forced plantation owners to re-think how they were to continue operations with large hectares of coconut trees.


PNG Biofuels has invested into a pilot program to use the humble coconut to produce environmentally friendly bio-diesel fuel.


It comes after copra prices plummeted forcing large plantations on the Island to trim their operation.


Brett Middleton said, “Copra prices last year dropped severely and there was really no income to be earned from it. In the last two years we were looking for avenues to raise the value of copra.”


Mr. Middleton belongs to an agricultural family connected to the island for almost 100 years. His …. Plantation on the island is supplying coconuts growing on hectares of land to develop an environmentally friendly fuel alternative.


“It is not biofuel or coconut oil mixed with fuel. It is true diesel. You will be able to run your car 100% on this fuel alone. You can mix it with diesel if you wish to but the quality of our diesel beats engine fuel currently on the market. There are no exhaust fumes…”


PNG Biofuel’s General Manager, Kevin Bolton and a small group of locally employed staff are producing the country’s first workable biodiesel fuel from the humble coconut.


The first known usage of this kind of fuel was in Bougainville during the crisis. However the oil wasn’t refined to remove access water well enough causing rusting in the engines.


This product is powering lights, trucks and generators around the plantaion’s estate on Karkar.


The biodiesel fuel is being used on all machinery that has diesel engines. The fuel is safer and cleaner. Machines using the fuel do not emit dirty fumes.


If the project becomes successful and help is given where needed, the technology can be used to create an alternative to complement fossil fuel and make use of coconuts laying idle since the copra prices dropped.

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