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Oil price spikes accelerate need for biodiesel

Friday, August 13th, 2004

Oil price spikes accelerate need for biodiesel work

The high price for oil is making renewable transport fuels commercially attractive but New Zealand is lagging behind the world in making them available, the Employers & Manufacturers Association (Northern) says.

Biodiesel would be competitively priced with petroleum based diesel in New Zealand right now if it was available, said Alasdair Thompson, EMA's chief executive.

"Biodiesel in New Zealand could probably compete on an even footing with petroleum based diesel at around $US35 a barrel for oil," he said.

"But instead of encouraging the adoption of renewable transport fuel blends like biodiesel and ethanol the government appears fixated on the discredited Kyoto Protocol.

"Professor David Bellamy said recently in the UK's Daily Mail that global warming is 'poppycock' and along with 18,000 other scientists, that the Kyoto Protocol represents a vast squandering of resources.

"Ironically our trading partners Australia, the US and others, which are not signing the Protocol, are well ahead of us in the introduction of renewable transport fuels.

"The ironies run deep since the feedstocks here for making such as biodiesel from waste animal fats and vegetable oils are potentially far better than for most others.

"The use of biodiesel also results in less particulate and carbon gas emissions; New Zealand needs to seen to be walking the green talk on this issue.

"We want to know what government is planning to do to introduce biodiesel blends to help offset the price spikes that seem likely to become the norm for oil henceforward."


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