$79 Million in Funding Available for Bioenergy Research and Development

9 May 2019 – Last week, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced the availability of more than $79 million for the research and development of biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. Of particular note for the CAAFI community, the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) included a topic on Optimization of Biomass-Derived Jet Fuel Blends and several other topics relevant to advanced/drop-in fuels and feedstocks. The other topics areas are: Cultivation Intensification Processes for Algae; Biomass Component Variability and Feedstock Conversion Interface; Efficient Wood Heaters; Systems Research of Hydrocarbon Biofuel Technologies; Renewable Energy from Urban and Suburban Wastes; Advanced Bioprocessing and Agile BioFoundry; Plastics in the Circular Carbon Economy; Rethinking Anaerobic Digestion; and Reducing Water, Energy, and Emissions in Bioenergy. The FOA is meant to advance DOE’s objective to reduce the costs of biofuels and biopower, while enabling the creation of high-value products from biomass and/or waste resources.

For more information read the full FOA here.

Auburn University Awarded Grant for Carinata Feasibility Study

23 April 2019 – With funds made available by U.S. Department of Energy, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey awarded a grant of nearly $40,000 to Auburn University to conduct a feasibility study of whether Carinata can be grown in the state and converted to biofuel. The effort intends to leverage the Freight/Fuel Transportation Optimization Tool (FTOT) to identify supply chain needs in the state. FTOT can be used to understand how much biofuel can be produced in the near-term in a certain area. It can analyze the potential availability of biofuel feedstocks such as Carinata out to 2030 and anticipate demand to analyze how that material would optimally flow through the supply chain over the transportation network. A Volpe team led by CAAFI’s Kristin Lewis developed the tool.

Read the news release from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs here.

From the Executive Director: Earth Day 2019

I want to wish each of our CAAFI collaborators, a very Happy Earth Day 2019. We are just one year away from the 50th anniversary of the very first Earth Day in 1970, and the need for a concerted effort to improve the global sustainability is even clearer today than it was in 1970. This includes aviation, and, as usual, the industry accepts the challenge.

A key difficulty for the aviation industry is the expected continued growth in demand for aviation transport and the associated risk of increasing total emissions. To overcome this challenge, the aviation industry has been continuously improving the fleet fuel efficiency.

Multiple stakeholders from across the aviation and alternative fuels sectors have also been assisting with development and deployment of a wide range of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) options, and have established tools and models to help with SAF assessments and supply chain developments. We have a need for fuel options other than petroleum-based fuels to address other sector challenges including supply surety, energy security, and price stability.

Commercial aviation will most likely continue to use liquid hydrocarbon fuel as the primary energy source for aircraft for the next 40+ years, but hopefully from more and more renewable sources. We do expect to see greatly improved aircraft and operational efficiency to achieve the ICAO Carbon Neutral Growth target from 2020. Leveraging efficiency improvements and SAF, we hope to see the aviation industry start on a downward trend toward the ICAO 50% emissions reduction goal by 2050. We’re working towards a more sustainable aviation future with the tools we have at hand. Through R&D of all aspects of the SAF supply chain, and the methodical continuous deployment of commercial-scale biorefineries, we can and will reduce our carbon emissions.

We believe we will see an increase of initial commercial successes that validate our overall SAF approach in the coming two years. And, there is a lot more to follow. On this Earth Day 2019, we appreciate your assistance in helping the industry meet its goals.

-Steve Csonka, CAAFI Executive Director

Gulfstream Announces First Sale of SAF

19 March 2019 – Earlier this year, Gulfstream announced that it would begin to offer SAF to customers at their Long Beach facility and, last week, Gulfstream announced it had made its first sale of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The customer purchased approximately 3,000 gallons of SAF produced by World Energy to be used in their Gulfstream G550. Gulfstream has used SAF intermittently in demonstration activities since 2012, and regularly for operations from its Savannah, GA headquarters since 2016, and will start using it on large-cabin aircraft completions flights departing Long Beach Airport. Gulfstream’s promotion of SAF is aligned with the industry goals and directly supports the goals of the business aviation industry.

Read Gulfstream’s press release here.

Boeing Offering Alternative Fuel for New Plane Deliveries

19 March 2019 – In support of the industry’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Boeing will offer customers the option of fueling the delivery of new commercial jets with alternative jet fuel. Alaska Airlines will be the first customer to take advantage of the opportunity by using alternative jet fuel produced by World Energy when it takes delivery of three new commercial airplanes this year. EPIC Fuels will ship World Energy’s fuel from Paramount, CA to Boeing’s delivery center in Seattle and Everett, WA. CAAFI welcomes the initiative as further encouragement for the widespread adoption and use of sustainable aviation fuels.

Read Boeing’s press release here.

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