Palm Oil Developments No.53 (Dec 2010) p1-3

Palm Biodiesel: Development and Current Status

HARRISON LAU Lik Nang, CHOO Yuen May , LIM Weng Soon

Biodiesel is one of the liquid biofuels that has been successfully evaluated as diesel substitute and gained worldwide acceptance (Choo et al., 2005). Today, many countries have mandated or given incentives for the use of biodiesel, whether derived from palm, soyabean, rapeseed or other feedstock in their diesel fuel. The leading countries in producing and promoting the use of biodiesel through mandates and incentives are the European Union and the United States. Other countries in Southeast Asia such as Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines have also introduced the use of biodiesel in recent years. The major reasons for the use of biodiesel in these countries are to enhance energy security by reducing dependency on fossil fuel import, to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and to support the agricultural sector which supplies the biodiesel feedstock. At the current moment, most of the engine manufacturers and original equipment manufacturers (OEM) of fuel injectors have provided warranty to use biodiesel subject to a maximum blending ratio of 5% based on volume. The blending ratio may be increasing from time to time as seen in the European Union (EU) diesel specifications (EN 590:2009+A1:2010) where the maximum limit of biodiesel of 7% has been allowed. Other issues such as sustainability of biodiesel production and potential GHG emissions saving of using biodiesel are being discussed globally.

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