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Environment

Neste Oil Produces Diesel From Fish Fat

by Melody M. Bomgardner
May 21, 2012 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 90, ISSUE 21

Finnish refiner Neste Oil says it has begun producing renewable diesel from waste fish fat at its Singapore refinery. The waste fat comes from farmed freshwater fish, called pangasius, which are raised in Vietnam, Thailand, Bangladesh, and other Southeast Asian countries. After the fillets have been removed, more than 30% of the waste is fat. The waste fat contains little valuable omega-3 or -6 fatty acids, and the buildup of chemicals and antibiotics from farming practices limits its use in food. To make the fuel, Neste reacts the fish fat with hydrogen in the presence of a catalyst. The resulting hydrocarbons have lower tailpipe emissions than petroleum diesel.

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