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Anger at Kenya biofuel approval

A government decision to allow a biofuels project to go ahead in Kenya has caused a furore with Kenyan environmentalists.
The project involves growing sugarcane for biofuels in coastal wetlands. The Tana Integrated Sugar Project aims to produce 23 million litres of ethanol a year.

The $369 million (€232 million) plant will mill 8,000 tonnes of sugarcane a day and generate 34 megawatts of electricity, as well as creating thousands of jobs, the project's developers say.

The project's supporters argue the development in the Tana River Delta will produce ethanol and generate power, providing thousands of jobs. Nature Kenya says the project threatens the habitat of hundreds of species in the 20,000-hectare site.

'Clearly these species are going to be really negatively impacted,' Sarah Munguti, the organisation's spokeswoman, declares.

The area, more than 100km (62 miles) north of the port city of Mombasa, has 350 species of birds as well as lions, elephants, rare sharks and reptiles including the Tana writhing skink, according to the UK's Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

Additional information: RSPB web site
News date: 03/07/2008

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Comments and remarks to Wim Jonker Klunne

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