Columbian group commits to cassava-to-ethanol

By | November 11, 2009
Representatives of Columbia-based Grupo GPC presented a commitment to produce renewable energy in Columbia at the Clinton Global Initiative Fifth Annual Meeting in September. GPC intends to use marginal lands in Columbia to grow inedible cassava varieties for conversion into ethanol.

"Our cassava bioethanol plants will create thousands of new jobs in an area of Columbia heavily affected by the country's half century of violence, and at the same time develop alternative sources of energy and reduce our country's dependence on petroleum," said Frank Kanayet, CPC's executive chairman.

Development of an industrial pilot-scale facility is currently underway. Development of the first commercial-scale facility will begin in 2010. Two additional commercial-scale plants will begin development in 2011 and 2012. Each commercial plant is expected to have a production capacity of 350,000 liters (92,460 gallons) per day and require the cultivation of 21,000 hectares (51,892 acres) of cassava. The project is expected to generate 3,000 direct jobs and 5,000 indirect jobs.