Brazil's Petrobras, Denmark’s Novozymes sign biofuels deal

15 October 2010 18:45  [Source: ICIS news]

SAO PAULO (ICIS)--Brazilian energy giant Petrobras has reached a partnership deal with Danish enzymes producer Novozymes to develop new methods of producing biofuels from sugarcane bagasse, the companies said on Friday.

Petrobras plans to develop ethanol using bagasse cellulose. Converting the cellulose would require a specific enzyme manufactured by Novozymes, the companies said.  

The companies had been in talks since 2007 for the bagasse-to-ethanol technology agreement.

Since then, Petrobras has been working on processes to convert bagasse into ethanol, while Novozymes has been studying enzymes in an effort to make the process commercially viable.

"The commercial potential of cellulose ethanol in Brazil is considerable due to the large volumes of sugarcane bagasse available in the country," the companies said in a statement. 

Brazil is the world’s largest sugarcane producer, with a 600m tonnes/year capacity. The country produces 27bn litres of ethanol a year. 

The companies did not reveal investment figures.

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By: Hellen Berger
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