Brazilian state studies ethanol pipeline

Eric Watkins
Senior Correspondent

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 1 – Brazil's Companhia Paranaense de Energia (Copel), owned by the Parana state government, has concluded feasibility studies for a 528-km, $336-million ethanol pipeline that would link ethanol mills in Parana state to Paranagua port.

The project is one of several under consideration for Parana, which has fast become one of Brazil's leading regions for the production of ethanol.

Luiz Antonio Rossafa, Copel corporate management officer,
Rossafa said the pipeline project would involve 12-in. pipe and 3-4 years of construction. He said it would create synergies with ethanol producers such as Copel gas subsidiary Compagas and state-owned Petrobras, which has identified $700 million in investments in biofuels and other renewables during 2007-11 (OGJ Online, July 11, 2007).

Copel could create a consortium or a special-purpose company to develop the project if it proceeds. A company spokesperson said the decision on the pipeline will be made by company management, state lawmakers, and Parana Gov. Roberto Requiao.

The port of Paranagua, run by Requiao's brother Eduardo, is investing in a new ethanol export facility to capitalize on plans by companies like Petrobras and Odebrecht to increase ethanol export capacity.

Since 2003, land devoted to sugarcane in the state of Parana has risen to 525,000 hectares from just 350 hectares. In 2005-06, the state produced 1 million cu m of alcohol fuel, of which 35% consisted of anhydrous alcohol and 65% of hydrated alcohol.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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