If you thought that only the Americans and the Europeans have plans to green themselves up, then you were wrong. Russia, still one of the world’s biggest economical powers, plans to start building the country’s first biofuel plant in Siberia.
The works will be done by state-owned Russian Technologies corporation during 2011, as Sergei Chemezon, the company head stated on Monday. Because of the harsh winter conditions in Siberia, the works will only start after March-April next year. “It is impossible to start building in winter there due to the weather, but we will have finished all project design works by the end of the year,” he told Dmitry Medvedev, the Russian president.
“I think, biotechnologies will be in great demand… wood chips, knots and roots will be processed to produce the biobutanol necessary to create new modern fuel,” he said, adding that obligatory biobutanol additives from 10 to 15 percent are used in many countries.”
He also specified that the key difference to other countries is the material they will use for making biofuel. While others use mainly biomass, scraps of cane, corn and rape, the Russian company will use wood chips.
I don’t know how green this approach is, since it relies on a byproduct of wood and the cutting of forests. If the deforestation/reforestation is done rationally, there’s no problem, but if those wood chips will be the only reason of cutting trees, then that biofuel would do more harm than good. Anyway, it’s a matter of local policy, and the same issue applies all over the world, not only in Siberia.