Biofuels: sunflower oil instead of diesel

At a time of soaring oil prices and global warming, producers of pure vegetable oils are wondering about the ban on the marketing in France of their biofuel, however recognized by a European directive.

In the region of Agen (Lot-et-Garonne), the small SARL Valenergol created in 1995, produces pure vegetable oil (HVP) based on sunflower and intends to demonstrate that it can completely replace, at least in part, diesel fuel for diesel vehicles.

"The energy balance is incomparable: for a unit of energy invested, we get seven, 3,5 in the form of oil and as much in the form of cake, a source of protein for breeding", explains Alain Zanardo, professor of environmental sciences at the University of Agen and activist for the cause of HVP.

However, and although vegetable oils are recognized by European Directive 2003 / CE / 30 relating to the promotion of “the use of biofuels”, Valenergol has been prosecuted by customs since 1997 for use of “prohibited fuel and diversion of TIPP ".

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© Michel Gangné
Alain Juste, one of the co-managers, producer of pure vegetable oil made from sunflower, poses near a dummy pump, October 14, 2005 in his warehouse in Agen

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