Illinois Sustainable Technology Center - University of Illinois

ISTC Sustainability Seminar Series

A Systematic Approach to Renewable Energy: Growing Jatropha curcas for Biodiesel Production in Haiti

Tim Lindsey and Joe Pickowitz, Illinois Sustainable Technology Center

March 18, 2009

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Tim Lindsey and Joe Pickowitz of ISTC will discuss their recent trip to Haiti with Kathleen Robbins who works with the organization PARTNER FOR PEOPLE AND PLACE, which provides planning and technical assistance for humanitarian and environmental projects on the frontline of poverty. The group operates a Haitian nonprofit business, Jatropha Pepinye, to support the cultivation of Jatropha curcas, a plant that provides a cash crop to farmers, and oil for value-added products like biodiesel and soap. The business itself - a tree nursery - provides jobs and training to local residents and field trials for Jatropha research. In a related project, the organization is developing alternatives to traditional charcoal-making using sustainable forestry and high-efficiency energy conversion. The group sees renewable fuels as part of the effort to re-green Haiti, which is almost totally deforested. The seminar will be broadcast live at and archived there for later viewing.

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