The past few days have been intense, with important milestones recorded – and even historic ones – for the development of biofuel in the southern hemisphere, especially in South America. I participated in international forums for debate and reflection on advanced biofuels in Canada and Sweden. It was an agenda that peaked on September 15 with the announcement of the signing of the contract with the government of Paraguay that authorizes a Free Zone regime for our Omega Green project, an advanced biofuel plant in the Villeta district, on the banks of the Paraguay River.
The strength of this document begins with the weight of your signatures. Paraguay’s three ministers of state validated the contract: Finance, Benigno Lopez, Industry and Commerce, Liz Cramer, and Public Works and Communication, Arnoldo Wiens Durksen. The installation of the Free Zone was authorized by Presidential Decree nº 3269, of the President of Paraguay, Mario Abdo Benítez, signed on January 20, 2020.
For Omega Green, the Free Zone guarantees the maintenance of the legal conditions of the project for a period of 30 years, renewable for another 30, reinforcing the economic and legal security for the investment. The new Free Trade Zone is part of Paraguay’s national investment program and is the first of an industrial nature with a focus on exports to countries in Europe, Asia and North America – the destination of Omega Green products.
The decree highlights the initiative’s ability to boost foreign trade, add value to raw materials produced in Paraguay, such as animal fats, vegetable oils and waste oils, generate jobs and bring cutting-edge technology to the country.
The definition of the Free Zone model is a fundamental step in the evolution of Omega Green because it provides the legal and economic bases for defining the commercial conditions for negotiating the product. On Friday (09/18), we held a press conference together with the Government of Paraguay, to talk about the significance of this advance with the concession of Zona Franca.
Canada and Sweden
This message of the consistent evolution of advanced biofuels in Paraguay was echoed by me in two other important international environments. My participation in the Evaluation Seminar of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), on September 10, was portrayed in the previous article “Green aviation kerosene (SPK) will help the aviation industry to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. greenhouse effect”, a product that will be produced at Omega Green.
The aviation sector needs to comply with the CORSIA (Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation) definitions and advanced biofuels play an important role in the aviation industry’s pursuit of these GHG (greenhouse gas) reduction targets.
I draw your attention to the active role that Brazil and Paraguay must take as active members of these global regulation forums. CORSIA is a serious and viable program and must be adopted by countries.
On September 16, I participated in the virtual conference on advanced biofuels, promoted by the Swedish Bioenergy Association (Svebio), in Stockholm, that country’s capital. The event highlighted global opportunities related to bioenergy and the low carbon bioeconomy, with a special focus on policy updates, the market for advanced biofuels and alternatives for transportation.
It was yet another opportunity to highlight the importance of connecting the southern and northern hemispheres and to stimulate a commitment to public decarbonization policies in order to achieve the global goal of reducing GHGs. I also recommended that the advanced HVO biofuel be used in hybrid cars in large urban centers, such as São Paulo, Paris, London and Stockholm.
It is a solution for rapid reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in places that have more critical pollution situations – a decision and an investment of ours as a society (read more in Hybrid vehicles that use biofuels are the best solution for passenger transport).
In the event, I highlighted the leading role that we are developing from Omega Green. The engineering project is estimated to be completed by the end of the year, which allows maintaining the forecast of compliance with the schedule with the start of works for the beginning of next year, following the global recovery of the economy, with an estimated execution time of 30 months.
Green Diesel in Brazil
Last but not least, I participated in a public hearing in Brazil, promoted by the National Agency for Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP), on Thursday (17/09) with the aim of offering subsidies and additional information on the proposal for the specification of Green Diesel (HVO) and the obligations regarding quality control to be met by the economic agents that commercialize this fuel in the national territory.
As a businessman and sector representative, I argued that Green Diesel demands its own regulatory framework, distinct market and specific production chain for a new economic agent.
With this stage accomplished, we will open the field for strong investments in this area – as we announced last week in Paraguay -, which will reinforce South America as a reference in the advanced biofuel production model.
And so, together, we can build a greener and more sustainable world.