Petrobras plans to invest $400
million in biofuels over the next four years, the Brazilian oil
giants head of technology management said on
According to João Norberto Noschang Neto, biofuels
development presents a major challenge on a global scale, and
Petrobras hopes to maintain its leading position.
We are using a number of approaches in our research,
including the reuse of glycerin (a byproduct of biodiesel
production), rejuvenation of mature fields, and even cellulosic
ethanol and aviation biofuel development, he said.
Norberto spoke at the Ethanol Summit in Sao Paulo.
He added that projects were already under way to
exploit microalgae for producing oil feedstock for biofuels and to
develop biotechnology platforms.
We are also focusing on process sustainability and analyzing the
biodiesel and ethanol life cycle throughout all production
phases, he said.
The official pointed out that
one of the challenges facing the biofuels sector is vertical
growth in productivity.
Research has already shown
that it is possible to improve productivity, even in
first-generation ethanol, by extending harvesting periods,
storing cane and rotating cane with other crops.
Petrobras also prioritizing the development of
second-generation biofuels, including cellulosic ethanol
produced from cane bagasse, with an expected increase in
productivity of 40%.
Petrobras began its biofuels project in 2004, and in order to
accelerate the process, we joined forces with Novozymes for
their enzyme technology, and KL Energy to collaborate on
testing and mature technology development, said