The oil majors may be forced to import bio- ethanol into New Zealand,
with Gull Petroleum having tied up most of the local supply.
Gull has launched a biofuel-petrol blend containing 10 per cent
bioethanol. Under government regulations all oil companies must start
offering biofuels by next April, and by 2012 biofuels must make up at
least 3.4 per cent of their fuel sales.
Anchor Ethanol, the supplier for Gull, manufactures ethanol from whey.
General manager Roger Ryan said he had been approached by other oil
companies, but there was little scope to ramp up production as it was
more profitable for Fonterra to sell the lactose extracts from whey.
BP spokeswoman Diana Stretch, said BP knew of no other ethanol supplies
in New Zealand. It had been testing locally supplied bio- diesel for
almost three years and aimed to have this available to motorists before
BP would have to introduce a bioethanol- petrol blend, however, toward
the end of the 2008-12 period to meet its obligations.
Shell spokeswoman Jackie Maitland said it had not ruled out importing
bioethanol if it could not meet its needs locally, while Mobil spokesman
Alan Bailey said it was looking at a range of possibilities.
Check for earlier Pacific Biofuel posts: http://pacbiofuel.blogspot.com/