Biofuels should play role in Australia’s fuel security solution

Mar 22, 2022

Biofuels should play role in Australia’s fuel security solution

Mar 22, 2022

KATTER’S AUSTRALIAN PARTY (KAP) MPs, Bob Katter and Shane Knuth, say the State and Federal Governments have had a golden opportunity over the years to establish a biofuels and bioenergy industry in Queensland through the sugar and grains industries, but haven’t allowed it to properly flourish.

The pair recently stopped by at the Tableland Sugar Mill at Arriga near Mareeba, which already produces 24 megawatts of electricity – enough to power 26,280 homes – by converting 100 per cent renewable sugarcane fibre, known as bagasse, into green energy.[1]

Mr Knuth and Mr Katter are again calling on both levels of Government to invest and legislate for  the biofuels industry especially ethanol, as North Queensland currently only has one ethanol plant at Sarina. [2]

Hinchinbrook MP, Nick Dametto has announced his intention to strengthen Queensland’s ethanol mandate laws with an Amendment Bill.

Member for Hill Shane Knuth said the blame for high fuel prices lies squarely on past and present State and Federal Governments.

“For years the KAP have been pushing for Australia to be self-sufficient with sourcing ethanol and biofuels and we cannot afford to keep delaying this at the expense of motorists,” Mr Knuth said. 

“A number of years ago, KAP pushed and delivered on the fuel mandate in Queensland which stated that at least 4 per cent of all fuel sold in Queensland needed to be ethanol (E10), but it is no surprise that the Government is not holding oil and fuel companies to account to deliver this.

“Not one fine has been issued since this legislation was introduced.”

Mr Knuth pointed out that he knows of farmers who make and produce their own diesel to run their own machinery.

“This is a great example as to why the Government needs to invest in Australian-made renewable fuel sourced from sugar, grain and algae,” he said.

“The economic benefits of this would be astronomical for communities with more affordable fuel prices, more income for farmers, and local jobs.” 

Kennedy MP, Bob Katter, said a nationwide biofuels mandate was one of the four solutions he has been pushing through his proposed Sovereign Fuel Security Bill. The other measures include waste-to-diesel technology, Australian made EVs for metropolitan based public servants, and a ban on the export of Australia’s indigenous oil supply which will boost the nation’s domestic refining capacity.

“If China embargoes our fuel that is mostly supplied out of Singapore and South Korea, then we will have no fuel and see massive queues at every petrol station in Australia,” he said.

“The Government says we have 30 days fuel supply, but I don’t even think it will last 3 days if there’s a rush on. We must have supply of electricity and fuel if we are to survive as a country.

“Under our Sovereign Fuel Security Bill Australia will be 80 percent self sufficient in fuel, rather than the current status quo which is about 10 days.

“If the Federal Parliament doesn’t act on sovereign fuel security, China could take control of our country in two weeks. Game over. So, let’s act now!

“Farmers are paying 100 percent increases on two major cost input items, fuel and fertiliser. Electricity has also gone up 300 percent. You just can’t keep farming under these conditions. We must bring down fuel and fertiliser costs if farmers are to survive.”