Jatropha Curcas Oil: From Potential to Kinetic EnergyRoy
Jatropha curcasFrom Potential to Kinetic Energy Roy Beckford University of Florida, IFAS, Lee County, Florida 239-533-7512 firstname.lastname@example.org
In the beginning there was biodiesel…• “The use of Vegetable oils (Bio Diesel) for engines may seem insignificant today. But such oils may become in course of time as important as Petroleum and Coal tar products of the present time" - Rudolf Diesel, 1912
History of Jatropha curcas (Jc)• Used by indigenous peoples in the Caribbean and Latin America• Used for medicine (internal and external) and food (seed for snack; leaves cooked with meats)
History of Jatropha curcas (Jc)• Intercropped with corn in Haiti• Leaves used in religious rituals• Seeds are crushed in a mortar and pestle and boiled to release oil• This culture has been practiced for more than 200 years
Making Connections • Edison studied Jatropha curcas plant to determine its potential for producing rubberThomas Edison Jatropha tree at Edison 1847 - 1931 House, Fort Myers, Fl. Planted in 1929
• Potential energy is energy that is stored in an object.• Kinetic energy is energy of motion.• Potential and kinetic energy are energy partners.
The State of Jatropha Energy GEXSI… Conducted he first worldwide study assessing the current status of Jatropha projects. The project was conducted on behalf of the WWF, providing input for the Roundtable onGlobal Exchange for Social Investment Sustainable Biofuels.
The State of Jatropha Energy Hectares under productionGEXSI interviewed 170 experts in 55 countries and collected160 online questionnaires to create the first online inventory of Jatropha projects
The State of Jatropha Energy• The largest Jatropha projects are government initiatives that typically work with smallholder farmers in Asia and Africa.• The biggest private companies in the field regarding planted acreages are:- D1-BP Fuel Crops (Asia and Africa)- Mission Biofuels (Asia)- Sunbiofuels (Ethiopia, Tanzania, Mozambique)- GEM Biofuels (Madagascar)
The State of Jatropha Energy• Major oil companies (e.g. in China) are devising their market entry.• This suggests that the industry structure will change dramatically in the next few years with large (multi-)national energy and oil companies entering the field.• What are the implications for smaller established farmers/investors?
Shifting Gears…Moving from ‘Potential’ to ‘Kinetic’ 13,000,000 hectares2015 P R O D U C T I O N2008 900,000 hectares PRODUCTIVITY 2008 2015
What is Driving ‘Production’ Production is driven by climbing crude oil prices and the quest for larger volumes of alternative and sustainable feedstock.• We are at the dawn of the bio-dieselization of American farms and industry• Jatropha shows significant promise, even as it remains largely scientifically unexploited, and thus a largely undomesticated crop• It originated in the Americas, making it suitable for regional attention• Its on everyone’s top 10 list of biodiesel crops
Current Oil Yield Patterns• Studies conducted by IPGRI, CGIAR, University of Hohenheim Stuttgart, indicate an average seed yield per shrub of 15 kilograms or 33 pounds.• Collections by this author from various shrubs grown as ornamentals, indicate a range of 25 to 42 pounds of seeds per shrub per year.
Current Oil Yield PatternsKnown values for ‘undomesticated’ Jatropha:• 1 gallon of Jatropha oil weighs 7.7 lbs• Specific gravity of curcas oil = .9186• Seeds equal 70% of fruit weight• 35%-38% seed oil content occurs regularly• In the areas of origin, Jatropha plants reach maturity at three years and will continue to yield optimally for 30 or more years.
Current Oil Yield Patterns Doing the math (Data from 1 four year old shrub chosen at random)• Shrub yield (fruit) = 60 lbs• Seed yield (after hulling) = 42 lbs• Seed oil content = 35% (of seed weight)• .35 X 42 = 14.7 lbs of oil• 1 gallon of curcas oil weighs 7.7 lbs• 14.7 7.7 = 1.9 gallons
Jatropha yield projections Forecasted yield per acre (# of seedlings/acre = 640)Year Yield per Pounds % oil Wt. of Gallons Estimated Estimated shrub oil of price of value of oil (lbs) oil oil (unit) (total)* 1 5 3200 36 1,152 149.6 $3.50 $523.60 2 10 6400 36 2,304 299.2 $3.50 $1047.20 3 20 12,800 36 4,608 598.4 $3.50 $2,094.40
Jatropha yield projections Best case (ideal) scenario at year 3; yield per acreYear Yield per Pounds % oil Wt. of oil Gallons Estimated Estimated shrub of oil price of value of (lbs) oil oil (unit) (total)* 3 40 25,600 9,728 1,263.37 $3.50 $4,421.79 38
Shifting to Higher Gear…Moving into ‘Kinetic’ Phase 13,000,000 hectares2015 P R O D U C T I O N2008 900,000 hectares PRODUCTIVITY 2008 2015
Productivity…The Soybean Example• Average yield of soy per decade indicates that the yields increased from 14 bushels per acre in the 1920s to 43 bushels per acre in the 1990s, a threefold increase.• Continued yield improvements can be expected in the future as new pest- resistant varieties are released and management is fine-tuned. IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY - Iowa Agricultural Statistics.
Making the case for R&D…The Soybean Example• Transgenic soybeans are the result of incorporating a foreign gene into the DNA of the soybean plant.• The most popular example currently of a transgenic soybean Roundup Ready soybeans which were planted on an estimated 70 percent of North Dakota soybean acres in 2003. North Dakota State University Agriculture and University Extension
Production to Productivity Challenges• Dealing with the variable yields and needs of Jatropha plants across regions of production• Matching the right ‘variety’ of Jatropha to the right region of in which it will be produced• Productivity variables include site specific nutrient availability and plant needs, water requirements, fruit and seed oil yields, fruiting periods, susceptibility to local pests and endemic diseases• Variables need to be tackled in order to stimulate and maintain high levels of productivity in the future
What Will Drive Crop ‘Productivity’• Provide optimum growing conditions (BMP’s)• Pruning is essential (Manual or Mechanical)• Flowering and pollination improvements• Identification of distinct varieties (existing)• R&D for high yielding cultivars/hybrids (high fruit bearing)• R&D for increase in seed oil content• R&D for cold tolerance• Older fields will benefit from high yield genotypes (budding/grafting experiments)
A summary of objectives and findings on Jatropha curcas production in Florida.• To determine drought tolerance of the species• To assess the impact of flooding and frost on the species ability to survive in Florida• To document the occurrence of non-introduced pests and diseases on the plants• To evaluate the effect of pruning on flowering, and on fruiting yields• To estimate preliminary oil yields in South Florida conditions• To provide an open and interactive environment of information exchange with farmers• To provide UF/IFAS scientific disciplines with empirical data collected from the project to inform ongoing research and development work. Roy Beckford/Martha C. Avila and Collaborators
Optimum Growing Conditions• Soil pH (6.8 – 8.0 tolerated)• 24 inches of rain or irrigation equivalent• Provision of organic nutrients• Spacing (dependent on soil nutrients)• Integrated Pest Management (IPM)• Avoid extended flooding (> 2 days) at all costs!!
Waterlogged Jatropha• Affected plants tested positive for phytopthora root rot (after 3 days of standing water)
Effects of Pruning• Increases terminal branching• Stimulates increased flowering• Increase fruit yield by more than 25%• Provides fruiting uniformity
Flowering and Pollination• Honey bees provide excellent pollination of Jatropha curcas (as observed in Florida)• Identifying the most proficient pollinators is a key step toward productivity goals
Pruning + Flowering + Pollination + = Fruit Uniformity
UniformityPhoto taken at 10 acre Jatropha farm belonging to Bryan Beer II, Labelle, Florida
Uniformity aids Mechanical Harvestingwww.oxbocorp.com
R&D for Higher Yielding Plants• Selection of plants from high yield sources (mother trees)• Selection should aim at pest and disease resistant stockR&D objectives will include:• Gene manipulation for higher and improved fruit yields on individual shrubs, combined with higher oil content increases in seeds.• Creating resistance to fungal diseases to which Jatropha curcas is currently susceptible.• Improved tolerances or resistance to pests which feed on the plant and are disease pathogens.• Development of plants that bear sterile seeds (controversial).
Effect of Frost (before) December 20/07 (Before Frost)
Effect of Frost (after)January 5/ 08 (Morning after second consecutive night of frost… 24 Degrees F)
Effect of Frost (after) January 19/08 – 2 weeks later
Effect of FrostMay 15/08 (effects of January frost not noticeable)
Effect of Frost (control plot)• January 5, 2008; 8:30 AM
Beginning of Rainy Season; July 2008 (control plot)
Plants at 6ft Tall – February 09 (control plot)
Budding/Grafting Experiments• Jatropha curcas can be propagated by seed as well as by vegetative means• Vegetative propagation includes cuttings, grafting, budding and air layering techniques• Existing fields will benefit from these techniques as a means of improving yield and productivity patterns
Vegetative Propagation - Cuttings• Jatropha grows well from cuttings• Trees from cuttings show a lower longevity (IPGRI)• True taproots are not developed, rather…• Pseudo taproots are formed which grow to ½ the depth of true taproots• Trees with pseudo taproots are more susceptible to drought and wind conditions****There is emerging evidence to debate this information Seedling showing taproot
Micro-plants Production Various techniques are currently been used• Clonal propagation is the fastest way to develop high-yielding varietiesCAVEATS!• Garbage in, garbage out• Results in cytoplasmic uniformity• Cytoplasmic uniformity presents major pros and cons
Utilization RoutesEnergy Routes• Curcas oil• Biodiesel (trans-esterification)• Biomass to bio-gas (methane)Non-energy Routes• Leaf litter compost• Biomass to organic fertilizer• Biomass to bio-char• Organic insect repellents• Medicinal glycerin Nature.com
Income Streams1. Carbon Credits2. Intercropping (Peanut and Perennial peanut)3. Silviculture4. Jatropha Oil (video http://www.agoilpress.com/video.php?type=jatropha2)5. Seed6. Pressed Cake7. Fruit Hulls (husks)8. Glycerin