Sometimes I allow myself to imagine that I am good with Google.
Here is a page from Brazil (in Portugese?) listing "produtos" (products?) in the category of "sementes nativas" (native seeds?) that include "Oleo-de-copaíba: Copaifera langsdorffii Desf." That's our boy.
At that link there is a phone number and a Google map and a postal address and a web contact form. What looks like the main page of the site says this when I run it through Google translate:
Company specializing in production and sales of seeds native and exotic , forest plug , fastest way to produce seedlings, and the innovative acorn live creative and fun way to restore nature.
The Florestando stresses the value of the environment, working for the preservation and conservation of biodiversity. We are dedicated to collecting native seeds for seedlings that meets the permanent preservation areas and legal reserves. We work with low-impact techniques, redemption of shares of . flora and multiplication of new forests with high diversity and genetic variability.
Allowing for a language barrier, these Floristando folks sound like our kind of people. I think that with some language help and an international method of payment, this might be a seed source.
"Natives ... drill a 5 centimeter hole into the 1-meter thick trunk and put a bung into it. Every 6 months or so, they remove the bung and collect 15 to 20 liters of the hydrocarbon.
Please note the underlined areas. Let's assume you've got seeds in hand ready to plant. Just how long is it going to take to get a tree with a trunk a meter in diameter? Assuming you can get by with 20 liters of fuel per week, that means you'll need at least 25 of these 1 meter wide trees to provide you with a minimal supply other the course of a year. Maybe an acre of sunflowers would be more productive.
An acre of sunflowers requires a lot more harvesting/processing work than is described for these trees, though... Though I assume there is at least some filtering and dewatering to do before you can use this oil, even if you don't go through the whole biodiesel making process...
Another article about that Aussie guy is claiming these trees will produce for 70 years, and provide 4800L per acre...
Michael good point on the length of time before the trees produce "diesel" if biodiesel is the main aim. Plus it's kind of unproven as I haven't got any hard details on growth rates, water requirements and yields, and am quite dubious about the claim of being able to put it straight in the tank . I've read it takes 15-20 yrs for an australian diesel tree to be ready to produce at full capacity. In the canaries we have all year round sun and no winter to speak of. You can generally half the growing time for anything, I get peas in 40 days from planting seed and have had corn in 90 days. I have planted blackberry cuttings and had edible fruit within 5 months. I'm thinking with our weather and maybe an aeroponic setup for saplings we can get well under 10 yrs. Personally I am not needing a return on investment from biofuel what is more important is that I need nitrogen fixing trees, and if they produce diesel in 10 yrs (or 15 or 20) then that's a bonus. If after 3 yrs there's some sort of small tree I can drill a hole in and get half a cup of diesel to prove the concept then that would be great too.
Doing my own research and using Wikipedia, a typical Diesel tree takes 20 years, though in another article it said it was a 15 year investment. That being said, if you start now and keep them in a greenhouse (as they are a tropical plant) at least you could be energy independent in 15 years when you know it will be worse than now. Also the article I am posting below (that others have posted) tells that some trees only gave up 2.5l and some gave 60l, but the average is 40-45l. Something to take into consideration.
So while doing sunflower seed farms for now to keep the oil going, it will be less energy intensive to have trees later on as it takes nothing to tap the tree and filter it, vs using tractors to plant and harvest, then using 4 different machines to hull, crush, filter and finally convert into diesel. While these are small scale, it is added costs that have to be paid back in the money saved by making your own. Whereas, investing now and waiting you just have to push a cart to tap your future oil reserves.
Other places like malaysia and Thailand have been developing these trees for the backwater areas.