Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Plant with a Bad Name

A very detailed report on Jatropha from Hardman and Co, (March 2011)

To download the report click here

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mountain Biking in NatureWalk

NatureWalk Turrubares, Costa Rica is ideal for mountain biking with something for everyone from beginner through professional

Below you'll see some pictures from a mountain biking event held in NatureWalk on weekend in June

Monday, June 27, 2011

Aviation Biofuels About to Take Off

by Dr. John CK Daly for

An extraordinary convergence of recent events seems poised shortly to make aviation biofuels the belle of the investor's ball.

The first is that on 8 June the follows the international standards certifying body ASTM International announcing its approval of its BIO SPK Fuel Standard, to be made official later in the year, of the use of hydrotreated renewable jet (HRJ) Jet A-1 fuel in commercial aviation. The potential financial implications are massive, as together the airline industry and the U.S. military use more than 42.25 million gallons (1.5 million barrels) of jet fuel a day.

One of the leading contenders for ramping up production of Jet A-1 HRJ is camelina, which has undergone extensive testing by both civilian airlines and the U.S. military. Camelina HRJ qualifies as a "drop-in" fuel, which can simply be mixed with regular Jet A-1 in a 50-50 ratio, allowing jet engines to function without any modifications.

In March 2010 Biomass Advisors released their 116-page study, Camelina Aviation Biofuels Market Opportunity and Renewable Energy Strategy Report, projecting that by 2025 one billion gallons of camelina biofuel would be produced for the aviation and biodiesel sectors, creating 25,000 new jobs and producing over $5.5 billion in new revenues and $3.5 billion in new agricultural income for U.S. and Canadian farmers. Biofuels Digest is projecting that global advanced biofuels capacity will reach 4.003 billion gallons by 2015, based on company announcements to date, with capacity reaching 718 million gallons in 2011, 1.522 billion by 2012, 2.685 billion by 2013, and 3.579 billion gallons by 2014.

Fuel and oil comprise 25 percent of civilian airlines' operating costs. When the price of jet fuel rises one cent, it increases the global cost of aviation $195 million.

The second development is that the critical mass of HRJ fuels on both civilian and military aircraft has been completed, with various military and civilian aircraft flying with HRJ additives made not only from camelina, but jatpropha, algae, babasu and coconut oil, among others. Production is set to soar from small "designer" batches of HRJ produced up to now for testing.

Quick of the block in playing to the big boys, Neste Oil will showcase its NExBTL HRJ renewable aviation fuel at the Paris Air Show later this month and airlines in the Virgin Group are collaborating to attempt to develop and share aviation biofuels at their common port of Los Angeles International airport. More airlines are sure to follow.

Another unexpected development leveling the playing field for aviation biofuels was the unexpected vote on 16 June by the U.S. Senate to repeal tax credits worth about $6 billion annually for producing ethanol, produced from U.S.-grown corn. With its 73-27 vote, the Senate passed an amendment to end the 45-cent-a-gallon subsidy the government gives oil companies for blending ethanol into gasoline and the 54-cent-per-gallon tariff it places on imported ethanol to protect the domestic market. Other biofuel producers for years have complained about the subsidies, which, contrary to popular imagery, go primarily to the oil companies, not small-time farmers.

Ethanol is the most heavily produced biofuel in the U.S., with nearly one third of U.S. corn production diverted to producing it while Brazil distills its ethanol from sugarcane, as an additive to gasoline. Other biofuel producers have complained that the subsidies both gave an unfair advantage to bioethanol producers but also soaked up much of the investment funding that might have other supported other renewables.

Between receiving formal approval for civilian airline use and the federal government preparing to end its support for U.S. ethanol welfare queens, sharp investors will be looking for potential winners on a playing field that is suddenly becoming much more level. And I haven't even mentioned Pentagon interest in biofuels - yet.

A story for another time.

To read the full story visit The Market Oracle Here

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

7 Airlines commit to flying on Biofuels

20 June 2011

In the US, a group of seven airlines has signed letters of intent with Solena Fuels for a supply of 100% biomass-derived jet fuel to be produced in northern California.

The fuel will be produced at Solena's GreenSky California biomass-to-liquids (BtL) facility, located in northern California. At the plant, 550,000 tonnes of urban and agricultural waste will be converted into 16 million gallons a year of jet fuel by 2015. The facility will also produce 14 million gallon a year equivalents of other energy products.

'Today's announcement reinforces the ongoing steps that ATA member airlines are taking to stimulate competition in jet fuel production, contribute to the creation of green jobs, and promote energy security through economically viable alternatives that also demonstrate global and local environmental benefits,' says Nicholas Calio, the president and CEO of the industry trade organisation for the leading US airlines Air Transport Association of America (ATA).

'It is through the leadership and commitment of ATA member airlines and the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative (CAAFI) that we are able to bring this groundbreaking alternative aviation fuels project in California to fruition,' he continues.

American Airlines and United Continental Holdings led the development of the agreement with Solena and were joined by five additional ATA member airlines – Alaska Airlines, FedEx, JetBlue Airways, Southwest Airlines and US Airways – and ATA associate member Air Canada in signing the letters of intent, as well as Frontier Airlines and Lufthansa German Airlines.

To read more coverage visit Biofuels International

World Jatropha Biofuel Report May 2011

Many of our clients have asked us to keep them up to date with happenings and news in the biofuels industry and click here to download the World Jatropha Biofuel Report May 2011

Monday, June 20, 2011

Biofuel-powered jet flies across the Atlantic.

Honeywell shows off capabilities of its “green” jet fuel

By Polya Lesova, MarketWatch

PARIS (MarketWatch) — A business jet flew from New Jersey to Paris powered with a blend of “green” jet fuel and petroleum-based fuel, successfully completing the first biofuel transatlantic flight, Honeywell International Inc. said Saturday.

The flight highlights the growing importance of making aviation more environmentally friendly ahead of next week’s Paris Air Show, which will bring together key players from the aerospace and defense industry.

This year, the show — Monday through June 26 — will devote a specific area to companies working on developing alternative aviation fuels.

Europe's week ahead: Paris air show.The aerospace and defense industry will gather next week at Le Bourget airport for the Paris Air Show.MarketWatch’s Polya Lesova reports.

The Honeywell-operated Gulfstream G450 jet left Morristown, N.J., at 9 p.m. on Friday and landed at Le Bourget airport outside Paris about seven hours later, closely tracking the route of Charles Lindbergh’s historic first flight across the Atlantic.

Honeywell’s “green” jet fuel was derived from camelina, an oilseed crop that can grow on marginal lan, and its use on the flight saved around 5.5 metric tons of net carbon dioxide emissions compared to the same flight powered by petroleum-based fuel, Honeywell /quotes/zigman/234291/quotes/nls/hon HON -0.89% said.

”This first biofuel trip across the Atlantic, along with more than a dozen other commercial and military test flights conducted to date, demonstrates that Honeywell Green Jet Fuel more than meets the demanding requirements for air travel,” said Jim Rekoske, vice president and general manager of renewable energy and chemicals for Honeywell’s UOP, in a statement.

“Now that the initial ASTM International approval is in place, we are one step closer to commercial use that will help the aviation community reduce its carbon footprint and dependence on crude,” he said.

Honeywell said it has produced more than 700,000 gallons of “green” jet fuel from camelina, jatropha, algae and other sources for use in commercial and military testing. In the 16 biofuel flights conducted to date, the fuel has met all specifications for flight on military and commercial platforms without any modification to the aircraft or engines, according to the company.

Interest in renewable sources of fuel has been growing in the aviation industry. For example, at last year’s Farnborough Airshow in the U.K., EADS unit Airbus showed off an aircraft powered by algae juice. Read more about the efforts of Airbus in this area.

To read the full article visit MarketWatch here

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Lowly shrub grows in stature as biofuel

Jatropha seed oil touted for jets
By Mark Kellner - The Washington Times

A plant that some have scorned as a predator might well turn out to be part of the answer to rising fuel bills for consumers.

Jatropha curcas, a poisonous, semi-evergreen shrub that can grow as high as 20 feet, produces seeds laden with oil that backers say is an ideal biofuel. One company that maintains 194,000 acres of the plant under cultivation in India is looking to expand farming, and fuel production, in the United States.

Mission NewEnergy, an Australian-based firm with operations in India and Europe and a recently opened branch in San Antonio, says it can deliver refined Jatropha oil at about $40 to $50 a barrel. The firm’s U.S. entry also included listing its shares on Nasdaq, complementing its Australian Stock Exchange presence.

Mixed with traditional jet fuel, Jatropha oil already has been used on test flights by Continental Airlines, Air New Zealand and other carriers. Once approved for general use, Jatropha could help cut one of the aviation industry’s highest costs.

Jatropha can provide “environmentally responsible fuel without compromising the food supply, so we can help the Earth while helping the public,” said James Garton, president of the firm’s U.S. branch. “That means we can finally reverse the skyrocketing prices at the pump and dependence on traditional sources of oil.”

The race for the next big thing in biofuels is attracting serious investor attention. Jatropha is seen as a leading candidate along with such rivals as algae and camelina, a flowering flaxlike plant that, like Jatropha, can grow in marginal agricultural lands.

Jatropha has been touted as among the most promising biofuel sources, but it is not without problems.

In a study released last month, a team of researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology looked at the efficiency of Jatropha and more than a dozen other proposed biofuel sources. Jatropha scored well as a fuel source and because the plant’s husks, shells and meal could be used as fertilizer and other industrial purposes. Some of that gain, however, is offset by production and refining costs and the need for land to cultivate the plant.

“You can’t say a biofuel is good or bad - it depends on how it is produced and processed, and that’s part of the debate that hasn’t been brought forward,” James Hileman, who teaches in MIT’s Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, said in a statement accompanying the survey, which was published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology.

Mission NewEnergy said it is linked to its producers via contract farming agreements in more than 15,000 villages across five Indian states. Those operations, the firm said, are providing sustained employment for more than 140,000 previously impoverished farmers. It takes three to four years to get maximum yield from a Jatropha plant, with a 20-year productive life estimated for most plants.

Using a biofuel such as Jatropha in an industry such as aviation has its appeals.

At the end of May, two industry executives briefed congressional staffers on a report about the use of biofuels in the U.S. aviation industry. Speaking with The Washington Times by phone after the event, the executives noted the need for biofuels as a way to help meet the rising cost of jet fuel. A 1-cent increase in the price of jet fuel rings up an extra $175 million in costs for U.S. airlines, reports indicate.

“Fuel is our single biggest cost. Today, fuel costs 47 percent more than it did last year. That’s a pretty big spike for your single largest cost,” said Keith Loveless, vice president of corporate and legal affairs for Seattle-based Alaska Airlines. “We are looking for all sorts of alternatives,” he added.

Added Billy M. Glover, environment and aviation policy vice president at Boeing Commercial Airplanes, “It’s not a matter of one [biofuel] feedstock being better than others. It’s going to take a portfolio of feedstocks, a portfolio of processing methods. … [T]o get to scale and make biofuels viable, you need feedstock options and a variety of processing methods.”

Jatropha is being developed in Ghana, Tanzania, Peru and other nations such as India; a common denominator is the effort to grow the plant in areas where other crops aren’t easily cultivated. Some environmentalists have said Jatropha has been overhyped and that optimal oil production requires initial irrigation and fertilizer that otherwise would be used for food production, a condition supporters say would affect only the short term.

Government officials in the southern African nation of Namibia late last month put the brakes on plans for large-scale Jatropha plantations in the country’s northeast, citing the need for more study on the potential disruptive impact on food cultivation, landownership patterns and a loss of access to communal property.

Patrick M. O’Brien, a retired executive of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service who is now consulting for Mission NewEnergy, said Jatropha could find a domestic production base in an area extending “from Texas around the Gulf Coast up to South Carolina,” although not too far north because of frost concerns. The areas where Jatropha could be grown domestically include some where farmers might reap profits.

To read the full story in the Washington Times, click here

Friday, June 10, 2011

Opec Concerned about the Growth of Biofuel Production

by Matt Hartwig, and published on the Renewable Fuels Association

Just when America had all it could handle with the intense political struggle on Capitol Hill and around the country, a new column by Financial Times Commodities Editor Javier Blas tells us that the internal politics of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or OPEC, may be far more troublesome.

Blas reports that after nearly a decade of relative cooperation among the member countries, the coalition is beginning to unravel. Blas warns that the more moderate voices in the cartel (yes, amongst this group Saudi Arabia is the moderate voice) are losing their influence.

Instead, rogue nations like Iran and Venezuela are exerting more influence in a drive to keep global oil prices above $100 per barrel. Previously, this level was thought to be too high and would result in demand destruction that the cartel sought to avoid. But no more. As Blas writes, “The hawkish camp needs much higher prices than it did over the last decade to survive economically. Venezuela, Iran and their allies need oil prices above $100 to balance their budgets after years of expansionary policies, generous subsidies and rampant military spending.”

That last rationale for higher oil prices should give everyone pause. Nations with expressed ill-will and desire to see America fall are seeking to bolster their efforts by increasing the rate of wealth transfer from America to oil-rich regimes. Americans are already sending nearly $1 billion a day overseas to pay for our oil addiction.

All of this comes against a backdrop of American political angst and misleading efforts to derail America’s pursuit of renewable alternatives to oil. Many lawmakers, including those claiming to be tough on countries hostile to the U.S., are seeking to undermine the growth and evolution of American ethanol and biofuel production and cement oil’s position as the default American fuel. They are seeking to prevent the installation of blender pumps that offer consumers a choice when refueling. They are seeking to pull the rug out from under and industry that is still maturing and threatening to derail the progress of new ethanol technologies like cellulosic ethanol production. The only outcome of such policies is higher gas prices and an increase in oil imports – the exact outcome for which Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are cheering.

The black and white of it is that ethanol is the only alternative to oil that is having any impact on America’s voracious oil appetite. The use of 13 billion gallons of ethanol in 2010 reduced America’s need for imported oil by 445 million barrels – more oil than we import from Saudi Arabia annually.

Moreover, ethanol is reducing the pain American’s feel at the pump as a result of oil markets being held hostage by the whims of OPEC. According to a report from respected economists at the Center for Agriculture and Rural Development, the mere presence of ethanol in the market kept gasoline prices $0.89 lower than they otherwise would have been in 2010. That is a savings of some $800 for the average American family.

The impact of ethanol can even be seen in oil pricing around the world. As RFA’s Geoff Cooper noted in his analysis of the unusual and growing spread between the West Texas Intermediate crude contract at the terminal in Cushing, Oklahoma and the Brent Crude price in the UK, “… ethanol now constitutes 10% of the U.S. gasoline pool and represents a rapidly growing share of U.S. refinery input. In other words, the glut of North American oil creating the logjam at Cushing is in large part the result of increased ethanol production and use. Larger ethanol supplies are eating into U.S. oil demand and putting downward pressure on WTI prices.”

To be clear, all OPEC members are concerned about the growing role of biofuels. In confidential 2010 U.S. Embassy cables recently uncovered by WikiLeaks, Ambassador James Smith stated that the Saudi assistant petroleum minister had expressed concern that Saudis could be “greened out” of the U.S. fuel market by biofuels like ethanol. According to the cable, “Prince Abdulaziz (the Assistant Minister of Petroleum) noted that in 2009, the U.S. for the first time consumed more ethanol domestically than Saudi oil. Saudi officials watched the ethanol debate with great interest…”

Even the “moderate” voices in OPEC are concerned about the growth and potential of American ethanol production to replace the need for imported oil.

With the motives of OPEC nations clear, it begs the question, “Why would we let them off the hook?” Instead of seeking to turn back the clock to the days of gas lines and oil embargoes, the nation should be seeking ways to expedite the growth and evolution of the American ethanol and biofuel market. Sadly, as is the case within OPEC, politics are threatening to trump sound policy.

To read more visit the Renewable Fuels Association Site here

Colone as a currency play

We have known for some time that the Colone (Costa Rican Currency) has been performing strongly against the Euro and the Dollar.

The Colone is up over 22% against the dollar over the past 16 months and almost 30% against the Euro and our views are backed up by this interesting article by Jackie Flynn, Publisher of International Living:

to Protect and Grow
Your Savings as the End
of the "Age of America" Draws Near...

Dear International Living Reader,

Donald Trump... Mitt Romney... Barack Obama...

Despite all the hype, it won't matter much who becomes America's next Commander in Chief...

...Because according to a top-level economic report,
the next president of the United States could be the LAST
to lead the world's biggest economy...

This tectonic shift in global economic power would have two very important consequences:

  1. The standard of living in the United States will drop.
  2. The buying power of the U.S. dollar will plunge even further.

According to the report – which the International Monetary Fund quietly posted on its website last month – adjusting for exchange rates, the Chinese economy will grow to $19 trillion in 2016. Meanwhile, the size of the U.S. economy will rise to just $18.8 trillion.

Take a moment to digest that...

In the 1980, China was poorer than Afghanistan...and it had half the per capita income of Niger or Chad.

And as recently as a decade ago, the U.S. economy was three times the size of the Chinese economy...

...Yet in less than five years from now China
could eclipse America in economic might...

Unfortunately, most folks simply aren't prepared for this. And as a result, they are in danger of seeing their savings shrink over the coming years. That's because:

  • They have ALL of their savings in U.S. dollars or U.S. dollar-based assets such as their house and other property investments.
  • They have ALL of their stock market investments in U.S.-based companies that rely for their profits on a stagnating U.S. economy.
  • They have too much of their money invested in U.S. government bonds – investments that could be WIPED OUT as inflation rises.
  • They have no exposure to dollar-hedging natural resources such as oil and agricultural commodities.

But investors who understand the ongoing shift of power stand to profit from the growing number of opportunities outside of America's borders.

  • You can reduce your exposure to the U.S. dollar by investing in "anti dollars" – currencies that go UP when the dollar goes DOWN.
  • You can invest in the world's fastest growing economies – places such as Brazil, India, Turkey and Indonesia – and favor companies poised to profit from the explosive growth of the emerging market middle class.
  • You can keep a portion of your wealth in assets that rise along with rising inflation – such as precious metals and currencies that have done well in inflationary cycles.
  • You can benefit from the strong trend upwards in commodities prices brought on by rising populations and per capita incomes in the emerging world.

And an all-new International Living Investor will show you in a jargon-free, easy-to-understand way how you could protect what you already have and position your portfolio for future profits.

But, ultimately, it's up to YOU which group you belong to – those who take action or those who don't.

It's Happened Before –
When the Sun Set on Britain's Empire

This won't be the first time an economic superpower has come and gone. And it won't be the last.

Imagine, just for a moment, it's 1910...and that you are part of the comfortable British middle class.

You work for a successful business. You earn a decent wage and provide for your children. You are neither at the top of the economic pyramid...nor the bottom.

Life is good...

London is the center of the world. And the British Empire stretches all the way from Canada.

The currency in your bank account, the British pound, is the currency of global trade. And your government is the world's biggest creditor.

You're not worried about this changing. Because your army...and navy...are the most powerful on the planet. And because you have known nothing different. As far back as you can remember Britain has stood head and shoulders above all the world's other economies.

The world is the way it should be. And you see your children...and your grandchildren...enjoying the same standards of living as you do. Or better.

But it is a false sense of security.

Because by 1920 Britain is close to bankruptcy... Its empire is in tatters... The pound is devalued... And you and your children face an uncertain future...

Greece. Rome. Portugal. Spain. All at one stage or another have been dominant world powers, only to shrink in stature and be forced to share the world's economy with others.

The End of the "Age of America"...

This is a story that affects YOU.

You see, like it or not, the end of the "Age of America" is the biggest economic story of our time...

...It will change how you live and how your children live.

...It will affect every investment decision you make for the rest of your life.

...But it will also create huge opportunities to profit, as the rest of the world catches up to the standards of living we've taken for granted for so long in America.

That's why I'm offering you a 100% free subscription to our newest investment advisory service, International Living Investor.

...Plus you'll get a copy of our special investment report, "The End of the Age of America – 3 Simple Steps to Safety."

In it you'll find:

  • The 3 Best "Anti Dollar" Currencies to Own Now – Perhaps the single best currency diversification strategy, as the dollar slowly loses its footing as the world's reserve currency.
  • The Paycheck You're Not Collecting (But Could Be) – How to get "paid up front" for owning overseas stocks. And our picks for the 3 best income emerging market stocks to own now.
  • The 4 Rules ALL Super Investors Follow – The 4 rules pros use that have been PROVEN to beat the market...and how to apply them to your own portfolio.

Why There's Never Been a
Better Time to Invest Overseas

It's critical that you take steps now to protect your portfolio from the changes that are coming.

But that doesn't mean you should panic. Far from it!

Because as International Living Investor editor Chris Hunter puts it, "There's never been a better time to be a global investor."

In fact, right now it's virtually impossible NOT to make money from the tectonic shift of resources and capital away from America to the emerging world.

Here are just some of the potential profit making recommendations readers of International Living Investor have had access to so far.

  • How to Avoid the Dumbest Investing Mistake of 2011 – The single most important rule for investing in the global commodities markets and the two emerging powerhouse economies best poised to profit from higher energy prices.
  • The Best Asset to Own as America's Power Fades – Why America is destined to lose its "top dog" economic status and the one asset to own as its power begins to fade.
  • These Markets Could Triple over the Next Few Years – The 5 key factors for emerging market gains... and the 4 emerging markets that could triple as a result.
  • You Could Make 1,000% on This Sector, So Why Wouldn't You – The one sector that could rise by 1,000% by 2014. And the best way to play it.
  • This "Safe Haven" Currency Is about to Skyrocket – Why a tiny landlocked country's currency could still be the best place for your cash when world markets come under stress and how to buy into it through an easy ETF.

Don't worry. You won't need to open up an offshore account to profit from these global growth plays. And you won't have to send a single dollar overseas.

In fact, all the investment ideas you'll hear about from International Living Investor can be bought and sold on regular U.S. stock exchanges...using regular dollars...and a regular U.S. broker.

International Living Investor won't clog up your inbox either. All the investment insights and recommendations will be packed into four easy-to-read issue each week.

Here's exactly what you'll get when you enter your email address below.

  • Profit insights from Chris and his team of guest investment experts. These will arrive in your inbox every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Each one will take no more than 4 minutes to read. And each one will be easy to understand and jargon free.
  • Immediate access to our latest special investment report – "The End of the Age of America – 3 Simple Steps to Safety." And the three actionable recommendations on how to protect your savings as America's position of economic "top dog" changes.
  • Our iron-clan guarantee that we will NEVER rent or sell your email address.

International Living Investor is more than just investment recommendations. It's a wide-lens view of the biggest trends shaping the world today...and the perfect complement to your daily IL Postcards.

Investors' faith in Wall Street is at an all-time low...and for good reason.

There's a growing disillusionment with America's big corporations, banks and political parties. And the 2008 stock market crash was a big blow to all of us.

Yet there are literally thousands of ways to profit from the power shift away from traditional economic strongholds of Europe and the United States to the world's growth economies.

And few investors are even looking at these opportunities. Instead, they continue to invest in the same bunch of U.S. companies...with the same negative results.

It's hardly surprising most investors are so glum! If you buy the same stocks everyone else is buying, you'll have the same results as everyone else. That's just the way the market works.

But by looking outside the box...and outside of immediately increase your chances of investment success.

It's an exciting time to be an international investor. I hope you'll join us as we embark on what's set to be an extraordinary journey.


Right-click here to download pictures. To help protect your privacy, Outlook prevented automatic download of this picture from the Internet. Jackie Flynn
Jackie Flynn
Publisher, International Living

P.S. Too many Americans miss out on some of the world's most profitable investments because they believe investing overseas is "too foreign" or "too risky." But as an IL Postcards reader, you already have a global perspective. And you know that opportunities don't end just because America's borders do. If I'm right, you already know more about these exciting opportunities than most...which is why I believe International Living Investor is an essential part of what International Living as to offer.

P.P.S. Remember, International Living Investor is completely free to receive. There are NO hidden agendas and NO hidden costs. If you're not completely happy with the actionable recommendations Chris and his team provides, you can simply unsubscribe with one click of you mouse. But judging from the number of IL Postcards readers already enjoying Chris's insights –it will make the perfect complement to your daily Postcards.

To read more visit International Living

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Free Webinar

Our next webinar in our webinar series is on Thursday the 9th of July

Titled "Now you can own a Green Oilfield", it details our Renewable Energy Farm Investment Opportunity in the Southern Zone Costa Rica.

Combining biofuel annual income and land capital appreciation with the expertise of United Biofuels of America, gives you an unbeatable investment opportunity.

To read more and register for this free webinar, click on the following link or copy and paste it into your browser:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

500 houses to get solar panels as part of clean energy project

As part of a pilot program to promote clean energy, the roofs of 500 homes in Costa Rica will receive solar panels that can produce electricity for the company Nacional de Fuerza y Luz (CNFL).

costa rica solar panelThe project will cost $1 million and be financed by CNFL, according to the Costa Rican daily, La Nacion. For the participants there aren’t any bills, but they will receive a monthly fee for renting their roof and allowing the installation of CNFL’s technical equipment. On each home, CNFL will place two 200 watt panels. The company will also install an “inverter” that can pass direct current to alternating current. In total, the equipment to be installed in each home will cost $2,000 and remain as assets of CNFL.

If a house uses more than 400 watts, the extra watts required will come from conventional electricity sources. If the demand is lower than 400 watts, the excess will go to the national electricity distribution system.

The first 300 panels will be set up between November and December this year and the last 200 in January 2012. The CNFL will soon publish a report on the process for selecting suitable houses. According to Henry Solis, the Director of CNFL’s Innovation and Energy Sufficiency Department, the main aim of the project is to show people how they can contribute to prevent climate changes. He also hopes that the project will lead to a greater demand for electric cars.

“The cost of this equipment is still very expensive and hard to finance, but it is expected that in 3 years a new generation of affordable panels will be available,” Solis said.

CNFL is the second distributor within recent years to launch a pilot scheme on distributed generation. Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) also started off its program in late 2010. ICE’s goal is to install 5 megawatt capacity wind-based generators, water, sunlight and biomass (waste). The plan includes many Costa Rican businesses and industries though the subscribers will pay for the cost of the equipment.

To read more on this story visit the Costa Rica News