Energy in its various forms like light, heat, mechanical, gravitational, electrical, sound, chemical and so on is vital for supporting our daily life and businesses. Statistical data showed that more than 80% of global energy consumption comes from fossil fuels as a fundamental driver of the industrial revolution. Eventually, the level of dependence on fossil fuels sourced from oil, coal, and natural gas will decline as the known supply on the planet diminishes, the challenges and costs of exploiting the remaining reserves increase, and the effects of our planet’s continued use become more increasingly critical.

The world community is in an energy crisis and there is an urgent need to accelerate energy security to effectively respond to challenges related to the security, affordability, and sustainability of energy supplies for the growing community. Biofuels have the potential to reduce the world’s dependence on limited supplies of fossil fuels, to minimize greenhouse gas emissions and climate change risks. Biofuels such as biodiesel (the most common type of methyl ester) and biokerosene (another type of methyl ester) are renewable, environmentally friendly, non-toxic and low in emissions. These fuels can be obtained from coconut oil through the process of transesterification of coconut oil in the presence of methanol or ethanol and catalyst. Coconut oil as feedstock of biofuels has advantages over other vegetable oils as it contains more than 60% medium chain fatty acids (C8-C12) (MCFA), the best feedstock for bio-kerosene or jet fuel.

Biofuel processing technologies have been developed by several research institutions and research centers using various technologies both with and without heating. Bio-kerosene or jet fuels must meet a series of strict criteria and very sensitive properties. Several crops such as jatropha, calodendrum, sunflower, soybean etc, have been studied by researchers and they found that coconut-based biokerosene is the best suited to the properties of fossil jet fuel. 100% of Coconut Methyl Ester (CME) or coconut biodiesel produced by The Philippines Coconut Authority Zamboanga research center (PCA-ZRC) has undergone road tests with outstanding results. In addition, ethanol required in CME production can be obtained from coconut husk. This finding further affirms the coconut as a tree of life and a renewable energy biomass tree that has the potential to support global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emission and capitalize on market opportunities arising from consumer preferences for environmentally safe products. Biodiesel can also be an alternative energy source in remote areas where fuel prices are usually high if it is not subsidized by the government.

Charcoal briquettes made from coconut shells is another energy source that can be converted into an alternative energy source for BBQ and Shisha, and combustible gasses to be used in cooking or heating, and has the potential to minimize cutting of wood in wood-based charcoal products. For all coconut-based bioenergy products, processing technology optimization might be required for better results and higher production efficiency.

Globally 65.67 billion nuts, equivalent to 11.8 Million MT of copra were produced in 2022. Depending on the types of coconut, one drupe of coconut consist of 30-39% mesocarp (husk), 16-17% endocarp (shell), 30-32% endosperm (kernel/meat), and 12-24% water. If we need to achieve a sustainable and resilient coconut sector and to fulfill market opportunity, increasing productivity from the current state of about 1.1 MT copra/ha/year to its highest potential which can reach about more than 3 MT copra/ha/year is a must to provide balanced benefits for food security and energy security and to achieve welfare and prosperity for all who are linked to coconut sector.

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