Guatemala launches pilot ethanol tests

February 26 (SeeNews) - Guatemala's energy ministry presented on Wednesday a pilot plan to test ethanol in 25 vehicles and five motorcycles during four months.

The government will use blends containing 5% and 10% of ethanol, supplied by local alcohol association APAG. The ethanol is obtained from molasses, a byproduct of sugarcane.

Guatemala has five distilleries producing 65 million gallons (246.1m litres) of ethanol a year, mostly for exports. The state estimates it would need 36 million gallons a year to provide a 10% mix for all vehicles in the country.

The pilot plan is supported by the Organisation of American States (OAS) and the governments of Brazil and the US. In August, Guatemala and OAS signed a memorandum of understanding whereby the financial management of the plan was assigned to the organisation's Sustainable Development Department.

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Diana Hristova is our expert for Latin America. She has spent several years following the diverse industries in the region, the energy sector most of all. Now Diana is exploring Latin America’s huge wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower potential.

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