Wednesday, November 15, 2006

coconut oil as fuel - a safer subject than politics

Coconut oil as fuel is used in the Solomon islands for boats as a substitute for diesel, but it takes ten coconuts for one k - so that is just too many. A TV program -SBS probably - ran a story on this a couple of days ago. I'm posting about a safe subject - if I talk about Fiji politics, steam comes outa me ears!

I wonder how much work is done in Fiji about bio fuels such as coconut oil. Apparently they tried using it at Sigatoka and also in Taveuni. A researcher, Morris wrote about it in Island Business.

Morris says a coconut oil-producing operation in such a localised setting would be a viable alternative, “with people in rural areas processing coconuts around them and producing oil they will use themselves, so they no longer have to buy diesel from the mainland”.

A project in Welagi, a village on the Fiji island of Taveuni, demonstrated that coconut oil could be used in a diesel generator. The project is highlighted in Cloin's paper, not only because it proves the technology works, but also because of the special challenges it presents.

As part of a French-funded project, the village obtained a small copra oil press that enabled it to produce oil from dried copra.
I suppose you can fuel your boat, go on a picnic, use some oil to fry the fish, and even have a back massage.


Pandabonium said...

I understand it is very much in use in Vanuatu, which used to have to ship its coconut to Fiji for processing. Now they use it locally for buses and taxis.

Sadly, it is hard to avoid politics even with this topic. England offers subsidies to alternative fuels and big corporations have built big factories in Singapore and Malaysia to make coconut bio diesel for the England market. Unfortunately, they are cutting down rain forests in Malaysia to plant coconuts to make biodiesel with.


Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

You can't win can you!
Do you want the forest or the fuel?
Bikes are better than cars of course in some situations but not many people would go along with that these days.
But 10 coconuts to one k - well that's just too much work, scraping and boiling! You may as well walk or swim!

laminar_flow said...

Gives a new meaning to tree-hugging.