Costa Rican gasoline will have at least 7% ethanol by the second half of 2008, an effort to reduce contamination produced by hydrocarbons, according to the National Oil Refinery (RECOPE).
The refinery’s longer-term goal is for gas to contain 10%-15% ethanol by 2011. Additionally, it will strive for fuel containing 2-5% biodiesel obtained from palm oil to be available for diesel consumers.
To produce the ethanol necessary for this change, the government will promote the cultivation of sugarcane and industrial cassava (TT,May 11).
The introduction of ethanol will be carried out slowly so that consumers can get used to this new product and to guarantee availability of prime agricultural materials necessary for its production.
During the next two weeks, the refinery, which has a monopoly on refining and distributing fuels in the country, will be opening bidding on an expansion of its plant to equip it to handle ethanol and biodiesel.