June 1, 2020 — Over the last few weeks, several announcements were made concerning the increased domestic production of renewable diesel fuel, adding to the already significant number of announced plans. The CAAFI community looks forward to engaging with these entities from the following perspectives that are likely to assist in the development of more SAF capacity:
• Will result in developing more sophisticated and comprehensive supply chains for all available waste fats, oils and greases.
• Will result in continued focus on purpose-grown, sustainable oil crops (e.g. carinata, pennycress, pongamia).
• Renewable diesel continues to be evaluated for use as a blending agent to lower the lifecycle carbon production of conventional jet.
• Any facility producing renewable diesel also has the potential to alternately produce SAF (as the lipid conversion technology is the same for both jet or diesel), either directly or via subsequent processing.
The project announcements include:
1) The City of Newton, Illinois along with Jasper County and St. Joseph Renewable Fuels, LLC announced plans to build a $400 million renewable diesel plant in southern Illinois. The facility will convert waste fats, oils, and greases from 100 miles around the Newton area into 90 million gallons of fuel components, and seven million gallons of technical grade glycerin, annually.
2) Global Clean Energy Holdings, Inc. (GCEH) recently purchased the Bakersfield, CA refinery from Alon. GCEH will immediately begin converting the refinery to produce renewable fuels from biological feedstocks such as vegetable oils and GCEH’s proprietary fallow land crop varieties of camelina. The renewable fuels will meet the California Low Carbon Fuels Standard.
3) CVR Energy announced they are exploring ways to convert units in its existing petroleum refineries to enable renewable diesel production. The company sees the investment in renewable diesel production as a way to reduce the costs to purchase Renewable Identification Numbers (RINs) in the future.