South African Biofuel Industry To Raise Sorghum Production Fivefold
South Africa’s plan to source all grain needed for biofuel production locally means sorghum output will have to increase at least fivefold. Energy Minister Ben Martins announced recently that biofuel must comprise at least 5 percent of diesel and 2 percent to 10 percent of gasoline starting Oct. 1, 2015. South Africa’s current sorghum harvest of 151,064 tons will not cut it as the nation needs an additional volume of 620,000 tons to produce enough bioethanol to meet the 2 percent inclusion rate. One ton of sorghum produces about 400 liters to 440 liters of bioethanol.
Areva Urges Utilities to Buy Uranium as Price is Set to Go Up
Areva SA, the second largest producer of uranium, says that the slump in uranium prices following the reactor meltdown in Fukushima is about to end. Power Utilities are urged to increase orders of uranium by 2015 or face soaring prices as new atomic plants come into play, in addition to the reactivated reactors in Japan, says Areva’s mining division head Olivier Wantz. Global uranium demand is anticipated to rise 48 percent by 2023, according to the World Nuclear Association. Sixty-eight reactors are under construction worldwide, including 28 in China, 10 in Russia, 7 in India and 5 in South Korea.
Polish Regulators Recommend Paying Utilities to Avoid Blackouts
Poland needs measures to encourage power station operators to build plants and prevent them from closing existing ones to avoid blackouts, says energy market watchdog Urzad Regulacji Energetyki. The work on introducing legislation for a capacity mechanism, which guarantees producers a price for generating backup electricity, may start in the first quarter. As a temporary measure, the regulator may offer from January an operational reserve that would encourage utility operators not to close their plants. The country is preparing regulations similar to those drafted in the U.K., which would pay operators to run plants when prices don’t cover costs.
Brazil’s Buy-Local Mandate Hurting Major Wind Suppliers
Vestas Wind Systems A/S and Suzlon Energy Ltd., the two biggest wind-turbine suppliers by sales, are losing market share in Brazil because they do not use enough parts made in Brazil. The country’s introduction of local-content requirements to promote domestic manufacturing is reshaping its $2.75 billion wind industry. Neither Vestas nor Suzlon has landed a new deal in more than 18 months. Vestas’ share in the market is sliding to 11 percent, down from 17 while Suzlon is rumored to leave Brazil soon as it cannot afford to build the local factories it needs to meet the mandate.
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