Chinese filling stations will start offering biodiesel next year

Peking, Shanghai and Guangzhou will be the Asian Giant’s first cities in which drivers can fill up on biofuel comprising a mix of 5% biodiesel and 95% diesel. Four state companies have been selected to supply the filling stations.

A conference held last week at the Huazhong de Wuhan University of Science and Technology (Hubei Province) served as the backdrop for various members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences to announce government plans (specifically the State Energy Department) regarding the sale of biodiesel.

Three cities (Peking, Shanghai and Guangzhou) and four state companies (China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), China National Cereals, Oils & Foodstuffs Corporation (COFCO), Sinopec, and China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC)) have been selected to commercialise and produce the fuel, respectively. The biofuel, B5, containing 5% biodiesel will be available as from next year as part of a pilot project in these three cities.

200,000 tonnes in 2010 and 20 million tonnes by 2020

CNPC and COFCO have already announced they have signed an agreement with the State Forest Department to plant 13,000 hectares of crops for biodiesel production over the next 15 years, while Sinopec already has a biofuel refinery capable of producing 100,000 tonnes per annum.

The fourth company involved, CNOOC, also has a biodiesel refinery which is similar to that of Sinopec, which will be supplied with approximately 34,000 hectares of jatropha. It is also currently construction another plant on the island of Hainan in the south of the country, which will have a capacity of 60,000 tonnes per annum.

Based on these figures and the plan established for the period 2006-2010, biodiesel production in China will reach 200,000 tonnes per annum in 2010, and is expected to reach 2 million by 2020.

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