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World Biofuels Symposium
November 13-15, 2005
Beijing, China

2nd Annual Canadian Renewable Fuels Summit
December 13-15, 2005
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Hosted by:
Candadian Renewable Fuels Association

National Biodiesel Conference & Expo 2006
February 5-8, 200
San Diego, California
National Biodiesel Board

11th Annual National Ethanol Conference: "Policy & Marketing"
February 20-22, 200
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Sponsored by:
Renewable Fuels Association

22nd Annual International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo
June 20-23, 200
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

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Posted on  

December 20, 2001

Japan eyes ethanol to cut greenhouse gas emissions

By Aya Takada

TOKYO, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Japan, under pressure to cut greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming, is considering introducing a policy of blending ethanol with gasoline to reduce automobile emissions.

Industry officials say use of the bio-fuel in Japan, if mandated by the government, would create a big export opportunity for ethanol-producing countries like Brazil.

Japan, the world's second largest consumer of gasoline after the United States, has no extra agricultural produce to be used for fuel output.

Giant trading house Mitsui & Co , which is backing ethanol's introduction to the Japanese fuel market after an import pact with Brazil last month, told Reuters worldwide use of the alcohol for fuel was seen doubling to about 35 million kilolitres over the next several years.

``We estimate the potential size of Japan's ethanol market at nearly six million kilolitres a year, based on the assumption that Japan would adopt an ethanol-to-gasoline blending ratio of 10 percent,'' said Mitsui biomass project manager Norimichi Okuda.

``This market will be realised if the government decides on the mandatory use of ethanol as fuel additive,'' he said.

An ethanol blending ratio of 10 percent is common in the United States, the second largest producer and consumer of ethanol. It produces the fuel from corn.

In Brazil, the top ethanol producer and consumer, the level of sugarcane-based ethanol in the nation's gasoline will rise to 24 percent in January from 22 percent now.

The Japanese have not used ethanol as fuel because they have not had any compelling need for an alternative to an ample supply of low-cost gasoline, which Japanese oil refiners produce from imported crude oil.

But Japan has turned serious about using ``green'' energy, with industrialised nations agreeing under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which takes effect next year, to cut carbon dioxide emissions by an average of 5.2 percent from 1990 levels by 2012.

Greenhouse gases, which come mainly from burning fossil fuels, are thought to cause rising global temperatures.



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