Cleaner fuels soon

Greece will use household, industrial and farm waste to produce fuel, Deputy Development Minister Giorgos Salagoudis said yesterday. Addressing a meeting of ELFORES, the Greek forum for the promotion of alternative fuel sources, set up by former Socialist Transport Minister Tassos Mandelis, Salagoudis said that the government will use biofuels, that is, fuels developed from sources such as vegetable oils, for 2 percent of total transport fuel in 2005, aiming to increase this to 5.75 percent by 2010. He said interest was concentrated on the production of biodiesel, an alternative fuel produced from domestic, renewable resources. Biodiesel contains no oil, but it can be blended at any level with petroleum diesel to create a biodiesel blend. It can be used in compression-ignition (diesel) engines with little or no modifications. The target of substituting 2 percent of transport fuel in 2005, means that 45,000 tons of biodiesel must be produced next year, with production rising to 150,000 tons by 2010 to meet the target for that year. Salagoudis said a pilot unit is being built in Volos by a private company, ELIN. Another unit is being built in the town of Kilkis, north of Thessaloniki, by ELVY. Both these projects are jointly financed by the State and the European Union. Greece will also produce bio-ethanol from sources such as wheat, corn and beetroot. Production will reach 250,000 tons next year.