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Develop bioethanol from cassava

Administration in Sidoarjo regency, in cooperation with the 10 November Institute of Technology (ITS), Surabaya, is developing bioethanol as an alternative to replace kerosene increasingly rare.

Meanwhile, institutions are developing technology that is applied, the processing plant design and conduct a series of research and training programs for farmers, local government is encouraging the planting called gendruwo (very large) plant cassava as raw materials for alternative energy.

Regent of Sidoarjo, Win Hendrarso, hailed the development of bioethanol as alternative energy, since the government-run oil-gas to energy conversion program failed, with natural gas, liquid, which can not be reached for the majority of poor people.

"I do not want to see people formed long queues for scarce and expensive oil. We must find solutions to the energy crisis and bioethanol can help make energy a successful campaign," he told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.

District administration and ITS has been providing training for local farmers and conduct research on how to produce bioethanol from cassava, as has been done in other provinces, he said. Farmers will be encouraged to intensive sugar cane and soybean crops, which can be used to produce alcohol. The district administration is committed to build a large factory to produce bioethanol, he added.

ITS Chairman of the research team, Sri Nurhatika, said that if the energy project that can be successfully implemented, one liter of bioethanol will be equal to nine liters of kerosene.

"A liter of bioethanol cost Rp 10,000, but the cost of kerosene to Rp 4,000 per liter," he said, adding that the development of cassava bioethanol to become more efficient and secure grains from or sugar cane, which can be vulnerable to food crisis in the future.

He said cassava waste can be recycled as feed for animals, such as processing factory will extract the carbohydrate component of cassava, the discarding of protein.

"The technology is environmentally friendly and will not waste dump."

Sri said the team is also conducting an experiment on the use of bioethanol for motorcycles and cars. "If this project is reasonable and efficient, we will campaign for the use of bioethanol for cars."

Eko Bambang Alfiatno, researchers from the University of Airlangga, said the bioethanol from crops such as cassava and bananas must be promoted and developed further by the government to win the race in the world of alternative energy.

"Indonesia still has a land area of neglected land that can be converted into and cassava plantations for the production of alternative energy," he said, adding that the existing agricultural land must be preserved for agriculture to avoid food shortages.

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