Currently biofuels only account for 3% of today’s 100mn b/d liquid fuel demand.
However, developing new technologies that drive biofuel production from municipal waste, agricultural residue and recycling plastics wastes could be a game changer for the energy transition.
According to Wood Mackenzie, this could supply an additional 20mn b/d of liquid biofuel by 2050, so satisfying a quarter of all future liquid fuel demand (95mn b/d in 2050), equivalent to around three quarters of 2050 middle distillate demand.
Wood Mackenzie vice president Alan Gelder said, “Many governments have understandably pulled away from using food-based biofuels, which has hampered the industry’s growth. However, there still is plenty of opportunity for growth, especially when we look at waste-based alternatives.
”For some areas of the transport sector, such as air travel, there is little alternative to liquid fuel, making decarbonising difficult. This source of biofuel could be tremendously beneficial, providing a cleaner fuel alternative that addresses both future power and environmental needs.”
Shipping industry steps up marine biofuel initiatives
GoodFuels has successfully supplied sustainable marine biofuel to NYK’s bulk carrier MV Frontier Explorer, in the first such delivery to a major maritime client since the company opened its Singapore office.
The vessel was refuelled with biofuel in a blend with VLSFO during its port call to Singapore early July, en route from Australia to India.
The delivery was the first to be managed under GoodFuels’ partnership with ITOCHU, which was announced in May.
Kuehne+Nagel has secured the equivalent volumes of a waste-based next generation biofuel, claming it saves CO2e emissions of 40,000 TEUs.
The Kuehne+Nagel biofuel concept (pictured) is based on next generation biofuels according to RED II* and allocates fully traceable contingents of biofuel to the customers’ cargo.
Sustainable fuels include biofuels such as hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), or bioethanol, and synthetic fuels (synfuels) such as ammonia or methanol. The sector could account for 37% of transport energy demand by 2050, according to Mckinsey.
Biomass projects across the UK were recently awarded £37mn in funding, as the government drives forward its plan to scale up domestic renewable energy, including from biomass.
The Hydrogen BECCS Innovation Programme supports the development of technologies to produce hydrogen generated via ‘BECCS’ (bioenergy with carbon capture and storage).