Coconut Oil + Kerosene = Fuel [Illustration by Shinod AP]
Coconut Oil + Kerosene = Fuel [Illustration by Shinod AP]

March 27: Fossil fuels or fuels that are naturally found in the earth, are being rapidly consumed by humans. And the world has begun searching for an ‘alternative fuel’. Necessity is the mother of invention. And out of necessity, a coconut farmer in a village in Thailand has ‘invented’ an alternate fuel.

Guess what this ‘invention’ is – a little kerosene mixed with a lot of coconut oil!

All Kitti Maneesrikul of Samut Songram had, was an abundance of coconuts and a strong belief that every part of a coconut can be used. So he went ahead and made the oil.

Kitti is very happy with this fuel. He drives his car in it and even uses it in his oil extracting machines. The oil is much cheaper than diesel. Every month his family saves 5,000 baht or Thai currency ($115), which they would otherwise have spent on diesel, reports The Indian Express. Kitti says he makes 300 litres of fuel every week.

Now, several of his relatives and friends are also using the new fuel. They re-use the coconut oil used for cooking and then add one part of kerosene to 20 parts of coconut oil. This fuel can be used in industrial machinery and trucks as well. Not only does it not damage the engine, but the vehicle runs a longer distance on one gallon of coconut oil than on a gallon of diesel.

In South Thailand, this oil is being used even by ferrying companies to run their boats. One company, that takes tourists to a holiday island in Koh Samuai, is using coconut oil to run three boats.

Nowadays, scientists all over the world are trying to find a fuel that will drive cars, fly planes and run machines. But at the same time, this new fuel should not be too costly, should not pollute the environment and should not cause diseases. Such a fuel is yet to be found.

But Kitti says that his fuel does not pollute the environment as it does not give out carbon dioxide. But the Thai scientists want to make sure. They have yet to do several tests on this new oil before it can be proved that coconut oil with kerosene makes a safe fuel.

386 words | 3 minutes
Readability: Grade 8 (13-14 year old children)
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Filed under: world news
Tags: #environment, #scientists, #machines, #coconut, #invention, #thailand

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