Jatenergy strikes Jatropha deal with Lufthansa

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Published: September 29, 2011

Latest news from ATW’s Eco-Aviation Today: Australian bio-fuel producer Jatenergy has sold 200 tonnes of crude Jatropha oil to Lufthansa for use on the airline’s trial using biofuels on its Hamburg to Frankfurt services, according to BioFuel International.

Jatenergy said that the Jatropha is sourced from its plantations in central Java, had been sold at $ 1,000 per tonne, which equates to around $ 140 a barrel.

The Jatropha was refined by the Finland’s Neste Oil.

Jatenergy CEO Phil Hodgson said the demand from airlines for biofuel had increased significantly after the recent approval by the standards group ASTM International for the blending of up to 50% of biofuel with conventional jet fuel.

“We can’t produce enough Jatropha oil at the moment to meet demand,” Hodgson said.

Of concern for the airline industry Hodgson said that power generators and traditional biodiesel producers “had also expressed interest” and at prices linked to vegetable oils such as palm oil, which has been priced between $ 1,000-$ 1,250 per tonne during 2011.

Lufthansa (LH) commenced a six-month trial in mid-July between Hamburg and Frankfurt, with a 50:50 biofuel derived from Jatropha, Camelina and animal fats (ATW Daily News, July 19). LH is using an Airbus A321 for the trial.

Jatenergy is producing oil from just 2,000 hectares and plans to expand its plantings by 9,000 hectares initially and, over the next five to six years, to more than 100,000 hectares.

“Central Java has the potential to be a world scale plant oil producer,” Hodgson said.

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