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Kenya: Biwako Bio-Laboratory to invest in jatropha biodiesel

Japan's Biwako Bio-Laboratory will invest $19.4 million (€13 million) in a jatropha biodiesel facility and jatropha plantations in Kenya.
The Green Africa Foundation is coordinating the plantation effort on Biwako's behalf. More than 500,000 seedlings have been planted in the Eastern Rift Valley, Coast and Nyanza provinces over the past year under Green Africa's auspices. The provinces suffer from severe forest degradation and jatropha is being used to stabilise forest as well as produce farm income.

The Green Africa Foundation said that the EU decision to focus its biofuels target on sustainable biofuels will help the growth of the African biofuels industry. The Green Power jatropha biodiesel plant in Nairobi is attracting much attention from local farmers, as jatropha continues to be a hot topic across the continent.

Jatropha seeds yield up to 40% oil and waste matter is sold as fertiliser. However, with yields of 1.7 tonnes of oil per acre, jatropha lags behind the 4 tonnes per acre realised from palm oil.

Additional information: Green Africa Foundation
News date: 06/03/2008

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