Seawater Based Biofuels Project For Egypt12 April 2010
EGYPT - Energy Allied International, a based in Houston, Texas, and The Seawater Foundation and Global Seawater Inc are to jointly develop the world’s first commercial scale seawater-based biofuels project in Egypt--“New Nile Co.”
New Nile Co will be one of the largest biofuels investments to date in the Middle East or Africa.
ISAS is an Advanced Biofuels production model that uses effluent from seawater aquaculture (e.g. fish and shrimp ponds) as a natural fertiliser to cultivate sizeable plantations of salicornia, a halophyte (i.e. naturally salt resistant plant) capable of yielding large volumes of high grade vegetable oil for use as a biofuel feedstock.
According to Dr Carl Hodges, Chairman of The Seawater Foundation and Co-Chairman of Global Seawater: “Energy Allied International’s expertise in developing large scale energy projects in the Middle East and Africa, tied with The Seawater Foundation’s and Global Seawater’s extensive knowledge of developing and operating ISAS models, is a winning combination to ensure the success of the world’s first, commercial scale, seawater-based biofuels project.”
Unlike First Generation Biofuels producers which threaten to displace traditional food crops (e.g. corn) due to reliance upon freshwater and nutrient-rich soil, New Nile Co will produce Advanced Biofuels by applying the ISAS model, which relies exclusively upon the use of untreated seawater and arid, desert and degraded lands that are currently unproductive.
Mike Nassar, Chairman of Energy Allied International, said: “New Nile Co is poised to launch a great agricultural revolution in Egypt, by making productive use of the country’s abundant agricultural-skilled labour, unlimited access to seawater and vast desert lands.”
New Nile Co intends to produce tens of millions of litres of biofuels from a 50,000 hectares (roughly 125,000 acres) project site.
Together with Gensler, one of the world’s leading architecture design firms and the project’s lead Planning Advisor, the developers are presently assessing a number of potential site locations situated inland, along the Mediterranean and Red Sea coastlines. Having already successfully applied the ISAS model in Eritrea, following extensive research and development in Mexico, the developers are confident of achieving similar positive results in Egypt.
In addition to automotive markets requiring the use of blended biofuels, New Nile Co will target the European civil aviation market which is subject to strict EU regulations, with aviation entering the EU Emissions Trading Scheme in 2012. New Nile Co’s developers are presently engaged in discussions with the Egyptian government with respect to the potential project site locations and intend to complete the bankable feasibility study in 2010, with construction to begin in early 2011.
TheFishSite News Desk