Pongamia biodiesel research starts in Queensland

The University of Queensland Centre of Excellence for Integrative Legume Research (CILR) , has begun research to establish the Pongamia Pinnata tree as a resource for Australia’s biodiesel industry.

Using Pongamia for biodiesel production has the two-fold environmental benefit of growing trees that store carbon while producing oil for fuel. Pongamia will grow on land not fit for food crops and does not need nitrate fertilisers like most other biofuels crops. How productive it will be under these circumstances is yet to be seen.

In a report by the Invasive Species Council called The Weedy Truth About Biofuels the authors  rated Pongamia as the least invasive of a range of potential biofuels plants. However, the report still recommends the trees not be planted near sensitive areas such as National Parks due to its propensity to spread.

CILR has now agreed to a $1 million research contract with Pacific Renewable Energy (PRE). PRE is set to partner CILR and put in another $1 million as part of a Queensland Government SmartState fund.

CILR Director, Professor Peter Gresshoff said:

Momentum is really starting to build. We’re getting a proper financial basis for research and now we have to make sure we lay a solid basis for a biodiesel industry in Australia to replace crude oil

Twelve hectares of Pongamia planted near Caboolture should, in two or three years, give insight into how its oil handles.

PRE was co-founded by George Muirhead. Mr Muirhead had seen the Pongamia oil used as fuel by an academic who was searching for affordable fuels for villagers in Bangalore, India. This research resulted in a village trial in which the oil was used to fuel a generator and that powered a cold room.

Source: Courier Mail


27 Responses

  1. who can give me information on biofuel trees?

  2. We live on 98 acres 20 klms north of Bundaberg and I am quite interested in growing the Pongamia trees, and would like to know where I could buy some as a trial. I would also like to have an update on the trees that are growing at Caboolture, if possible.

  3. Hi Gilda
    Earth Equity is a new biofuels company based in Northern New South Wales.
    We are interested in working with landholders in your area to establish plantings of Pongamia and Moringa for seed selection and biodiesel production.
    Check out our website at http://www.earthequity.com.au and give me a ring on (02) 66886215, mob. 0428139407, or email if you would like more information.

    Peter Gould

  4. I’m interested in purchasing quality pongamia seeds.
    Pls phone 0412274571

  5. Very interested, we have 50 acr. and can use at least 15 of it or more.
    What is the water use of them trees to get them going?
    Our ground is not good enough to grow special trees, fruits or what ever.
    Thanks for responding

  6. We are working on Pongamia plantation, oil expelling, biodiesel production, biogas and organic manure – all activities related to Pongamia. We can provide information related to this subject against any specific questions.

  7. Anyone wanting more info and commercial plant stock of pongamia (seeds are unreliable), contact George Muirhead of Pacific Renewable Energy on 0411 619 722

  8. Hi, we are producers of moringa plant in the Philippines and we want to establish ties with your company prefarably in Australia. thank you and hope to here from you very soon.

    • pls I need to be a partner I can plant a tree in the souther pacific Tonga is I like thi project I am stiil find thi project where is the factory and the big boss I ccan t this project for so many trees I invesegate thi prject that s why I look for it pls contact to us please

  9. Pongamia seedlings up to 1.5m ht are available from Clare at Evergreen Fuels, phone 0417 981153. Seedlings are from wild collected seed taken from proven high producing, well shaped parent trees.

  10. we are leaders in supply of high qualtity bio fuel and bio manure extracted from pongamia seeds. in case of any bulk requirements you may contact us on +91 98860 82899 or email at julesh.bantia@gmail.com.
    at present we have a pongamia plantation on 50 acrs of dry land.

  11. Tamilnadu retired forest officers embarked on large scale pungam plantation in railway lands during 2009.We have planned to plant 1.5 M height container pungam seedlings. We are also thinking of high yielding trees Tissue may be multified and Tissue culture plants will be tried during 2010. The aim of the project to produce bio-desal to cater the needs of the railway department to run the desal engine.Particulars for convertion of 50 kg seeds in to oil and cake may be given.

    • I like to share thiis project pls contact to us pls mob 0067612625 I am stiil looking for this projects I need a seedling to starter a planting write now thanks the God to open for me this project i can find your company I waite for you I relly want to grow the seed If I got today I can start oo
      Nafe kuila

    • Very interested to find out how the tissue culture trees grow . Do they develop a tap root? Is plant material of high yeild trees available for export from yourselves?

  12. hi,our company interested to grow pongamia in 10000 ha. anybody wold like to share their experience.

  13. I am wonder whether there are any commercial plantation for Pongamia now.
    What will be the secured productivity yield in term of seed weight per tree and per ehcatres with planting scale.

    As there are so many hype for the Jatropha crops and all end up with the very negative result of far below the claimed yield.

    How sure that Pongamia will not be the enxt miracle plant and end up with shit as Jatropha.

  14. Anyone could provide the proper germinated seeds of Pongamia for our experimental plantation in Thailand.
    Kindlys end all details of the crop literature and the proper cultivation methodologies to us
    Tel +66851095555

  15. i ned to come to me I like this project I want to plant this trees for so many arces I like to invest this projects pls contact us asp I wait for you I am a Tonga n we Interst to plant a forest in my life my ph 0067612625 or 0067670625 I can to this project to be a farmer

  16. Attention respondents!

    Please to my site http://www.BioDzl.com for supply of Pongamia and other Oil trees. We work across the Globe.
    Bharat Thakkar
    CEO, BioDzl.com

  17. Does this Pongamia plant affect the ecsystem. such as the rivers and the fish in these rivers ?

    I am from Fiji,currently we are planning to invest into planting Pongamia trees.The only concern we have is whether this will affect our ecosystem.

  18. Can anyone tell me where I can buy some pongamia seedlings from . I am situated near Mackay and also plant spacing info would be good.

  19. I am in need of the hybride seeds of Pongamia for the cultivation in large acres. I need to get the information about the production and plant charactaristics of the hybrides. I am looking for the Indian climate. Kindly suggest me the suppliers or the company who are in these fields.

  20. I’m interesst to plant a 1000 ha of pongamia or
    best regards romano

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