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Friday, January 02, 2009
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Project to make Biofuels from Kelp Funded

UK - A team of Scottish, Irish, and Northern Irish marine scientists led by the Scottish Association for Marine Sciences has been awarded a €5 million ($7.4 million) grant from the European Union for its BioMara Project to determine the feasibility of producing renewable fuel using seaweed as a feedstock. The project will begin in early 2009.

In October, the Scottish Association for Marine Sciences issued a report stating that the brown seaweed Laminaria hyperborean, more commonly referred to as kelp, might be farmed off the coast of Scotland as biomass for the production of methane and ethanol.

There are approximately 386 square miles of kelp forests in the waters around the United Kingdom that are sufficiently dense enough to be commercially harvested, the Scottish Association for Marine Sciences said. The report was published for The Crown Estate, the property-holding organization for the British monarchy. The Crown Estate is providing €100,000 ($148,000) for the BioMara Project.

Highlands and Islands Enterprise has also provided approximately €800,000 ($1.2 million) in matching funds for the project and the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment in Northern Ireland, and Irelands Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, have also committed funds toward the project.

TheBioenergySite News Desk


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