ECA – Green Oil
Bio-Fuel With A Social Component
ECA Works For The Future
In these times of permanently rising prices for raw materials, especially substances that are used for energy-production, the search for alternatives is growing in size and influence. Many tries, some success and many disadvantages all the same – that characterises the lion’s share of alternative energy sources.
With ECA’s implemented concept of a sustainable, environmentally friendly and sound supply of fuels there are no such disadvantages worth mentioning. On the contrary, it creates a distinct win-win-situation for all parties involved.
The basis of this sustainable generation of bio-fuel is the Jatropha-plant. Jatropha-oil is extracted from the plant’s seeds, which in turn is a simple pre-product of bio-diesel.
The particular benefit: the Jatropha-plant grows even in dry areas with low yielding, depleted even desert-like soil. And it needs almost no fertiliser. The Jatropha-shrub can withstand dry periods of up to eight months. Jatropha can be farmed in all tropical or sub-tropical parts of the world.
It is therefore quite unnecessary to use soil for energy-plants that is fit to produce food. Which, in itself, is an increasingly important argument. Since parts of the plant are poisonous Jatropha need not be protected from farm- or wild animals, they simply do not eat this plant. Remains of the production-process can be used as fertiliser.
Jatropha is a very frugal plant. A research-project shows that this plant thrives even in the Egyptian desert. The irrigation water is not valuable drinking water but indeed urban wastewater.
These advantages translate into further assets: small farmers in savannah or desert areas can grow this plant with minimum effort – for example in Indonesian Timor, the headquarters of ECA. The German-Indonesian company supports the farmers on location, guarantees throughout reliability in production with its experts from Germany and Indonesia, and therefore lasting supply availability.
Why There Is ECA
The German-Indonesian and owner-operated company banks on reliability, on respectability and technical competence by experts on location as well as in Germany. ECA produces Jatropha-oil at an acceptable market-price and offers an excellent alternative to fossil fuel.
Bio-diesel is becoming increasingly popular and at the moment the Jatropha-oil as one of the pre-products is in short supply on the international market. The up to now weakly developed Timor-region (not to be mistaken with East-Timor) has ideal cultivation areas with partly dry, desolate soil. Here, in collaboration with the farmers of the region, a new industry originates which does not compete with the cultivation of food-plants. The result: no possible rain forest clearings, a contribution to environmental protection, and no pointless CO2 impact.
ECA and its operators have a sound market-knowledge in Indonesia through the close collaboration with experts on site. They introduce special knowledge about plantation planning and want to introduce an environmental and social component in the energy market.
The Market On Location
Knowledge ist to be passed down to the people. This is what ECA is committed to. Taking over responsibility in Indonesia – being thus in fact more than only a marketing-measure. The locals are to be closely integrated and trainings will be carried out. In addition research and development is carried out directly at the producers, so that the efficiency rises and the proceeds are doing justice to an international market. So that German dependability is fully reflected in Indonesia.
An expansion of the value creation chain towards small farmers via plantation expansions and new establishments belongs to the same planning. With this the yield return is clearly raised in the medium and long term for the producers as well as for ECA. And a lasting ability of delivery is guaranteed.
What The Others Do
More than a 1,000 study groups worldwide are occupied with the Jatropha-plant. In India and Africa there were pilot projects with Daimler-Chrysler, BP India and others as financiers. In India a five-year-project ran until the end of 2007 that was financed by Daimler-Benz and the German investment and development society (DEG – Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft). It appeared that the quality of the fuel had been excellent throughout and, for example, that rapeseed-oil-diesel had been beaten in all parameters.
The most important conclusion up to now: The farming of Jatropha diminishes greenhouse gases if it is cultivated on previously sparsely covered or infertile soil. Jatropha-diesel lowers the CO2 output compared with fossil-diesel at an average of about 50 percent, under good conditions even up to 100 percent. In comparison: With bio-diesel from rape or bio ethanol made from grain the saving amounts up to 55 to 80 percent.
The BP group already thinks ahead: Up to 2016 the company wants to invest a total of one billion US-dollars to build up a leading position in the business of bio-fuels. The group invests 9.4 million dollars into a Jatropha-project lasting for ten years. About 8,000 hectares of desolate land will be planted with Jatropha. The target is nine million litres of bio-diesel per annum.