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LanzaTech and Velocys Among Seven Successful Grantees for UK Government Grants Supporting Advanced Fuels Production Plants

10 July 2018 - On the heels of LanzaTech’s announcement in June that they have commenced commercial production at the world’s first commercial facility converting industrial emissions to sustainable ethanol in China, news comes of LanzaTech’s successful bid to secure a £410,000 grant from the UK government to partially fund building a commercial Alcohol-to-Jet facility in the UK.

Velocys was also among the awardees and will receive £434,000 for a plant of their own in the UK.

The grants are part of the UK governments drive to reduce carbon emissions as part of the Future Fuels for Flight and Freight Competition. The goals of the competition are to increase UK domestic production of low carbon fuels and to stimulate the economy.

CAAFI continues to collaborate with LanzaTech in multiple areas associated with feedstock development and ATJ conversion concepts in the U.S. CAAFI has also engaged with Velocys on potential supply chain development opportunities in various regions of the U.S.

See the rest of the awardees here, LanzaTech’s press release here, and Velocys’ press release here.

SAS and Preem Sign Letter of Intent to Produce Sustainable Alternative Jet Fuel (SAJF)

10 July 2018 – SAS, a Scandinavian airline, and Preem, the largest fuel company in Sweden, have agreed to collaborate to produce sustainable alternative jet fuel (SAJF) at Preem’s refinery in Gothenburg, Sweden. Production is estimated to begin in 2022. In September 2018, the companies will enter into a binding and more detailed cooperation agreement with the intention of also agreeing on future long-term supply contracts for SAJF. This collaboration helps each company progress toward reaching their respective sustainability goals. SAS intends to replace 100% of today’s domestic aviation fuel volume with SAJF by 2030, and Preem aims to produce nearly 800 million gallons of biofuel in the same timeframe.

Read SAS’ press release here.

The Business Aviation Community Releases “Business Aviation Guide to the Use of Sustainable Alternative Jet Fuels” at European Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (EBACE2018)

9 July 2018 – The business aviation community, including the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) and the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), CAAFI’s partners in the Farm 2 Fly 2.0 Initiative, have released a “Business Aviation Guide to the Use of Sustainable Alternative Jet Fuels.” The guide will facilitate the business aviation community’s use of sustainable alternative jet fuels (SAJF) to help meet the industry’s commitment to carbon neutral growth starting in 2020 and 50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2050 relative to 2005 levels.

Steve Csonka, CAAFI’s Executive Director, says, “CAAFI has been fortunate to partner with GAMA and NBAA on alternative fuels opportunities for the aviation sector. This guide will be a great tool to further the success of alternative aviation fuels to meet our operational and environmental performance goals across the sector. Congratulations to the business aviation community on developing this important resource.”

For more information, see the press release here.

Gevo and Avfuel Agree to Long Term Supply Agreement

5 July 2018 – Gevo and Avfuel have announced that they have entered into a long term supply agreement effective July 1, 2018. This agreement makes Avfuel Gevo’s exclusive aviation fuel distributor of their alcohol-to-jet fuel (ATJ) to business aviation and its entire portfolio of customers. Avfuel is a leading global supplier of aviation fuel and services servicing more than 3,000 locations worldwide. This is Gevo’s first long-term commercial supply agreement for its ATJ.

The agreement is an important step for Gevo in their efforts to develop a large-scale facility that is expected to have production capacity of 10-12 million gallons per year. The agreement consists of two phases. Gevo will supply Avfuel from their small-scale facility in Silsbee, Texas that has the capacity to produce approximately 35,000 gallons of neat ATJ per year while constructing a larger-scale facility at its existing ethanol and isobutanol production facility located in Luverne, MN. Upon completion of the facility in Luverne, the second phase of the agreement would commence where Gevo would provide larger volumes of ATJ to Avfuel up to 1 million gallons of the concentrated SAJF per year, which would equate to 10 million gallons of blended jet fuel over a five year term with the option to extend the agreement beyond those initial 5 years.

Avfuel played a significant role in the development of the Business Aviation Guide: To the Use of Sustainable Alternative Jet Fuel (SAJF)—released in May of this year at EBACE. This agreement between Avfuel and Gevo puts that guidance into actionable commercial activity.

U.S. Dept. of Energy seeks nominees by June 30 for Biomass Research & Development Technical Advisory Committee

15 June 2018 – The U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) has announced that it is seeking nominations to the Biomass Research and Development Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), due by 30 June 2018. The TAC, a body of approximately 30 volunteer members, advises the Secretaries of Energy, Agriculture, and others on Biomass Research and Development Initiative (BRDI) requests for proposals, facilitates partnerships among stakeholders, and participates in strategic planning and program evaluation. TAC members come from industry, academia, non-governmental organizations and government. TAC members serve for three years, with the new members anticipated to start in early 2019. The TAC holds quarterly public meetings.

DOE is particularly looking for expertise in biofuel/biobased product economics, agricultural economics, and energy and environmental analyses.

CAAFI Leadership actively participates in the TAC and encourages CAAFI stakeholders to apply.

The Federal Register notice provides more information on the TAC member role and how to nominate a candidate.

Cathay Pacific will bring new Airbus aircraft to Hong Kong using 10% SIP fuel from Total

15 June 2018 – Cathay Pacific has announced a plan to fly all of its new Airbus aircraft home to Hong Kong using a 10% alternative jet fuel blend, using ASTM-qualified hydroprocessed fermented sugars to synthetic isoparaffins (HFS-SIP) produced by Total. This will include the delivery of 20 A350-1000s over the next four years, with the first departing Airbus headquarters on June 19, 2018.

Airbus and Total collaborated to develop a logistics facility at Airbus’ Toulouse Delivery Center to store, blend and uplift AJF as part of deliveries, and has already used the Total bio-based HFS-SIP fuel for the delivery of 24 A350-900 aircraft.
This latest news complements Cathay Pacific’s investment in Fulcrum BIoenergies, which makes jet fuel from municipal solid waste. Cathay Pacific will be one of the first airlines to fly on Fulcrum’s fuel when the recently initiated Sierra Biofuels Facility begins commercial production.

Both Cathay Pacific and Airbus representatives indicated that this agreement is part of their respective company’s ongoing commitments to reduce aviation’s carbon footprint.

CAAFI applauds this new commitment.

Read Cathay Pacific’s press release here.

LanzaTech’s First Commercial Ethanol Facility Begins Operations

8 June 2018 – LanzaTech’s 16 million gallon per year ethanol production facility in China began operations on May 3rd. This is the world’s first commercial facility that converts waste steel mill gases to ethanol. Ethanol can be converted to jet fuel and CAAFI is looking forward to continued collaboration with LanzaTech on the Alcohol-to-Jet (ATJ) pathway and opportunities to support the aviation sector.

Read LanzaTech’s press release here.

Shell Aviation and SkyNRG Announce Long-term Collaboration on SAJF Deployment

8 June 2018 – On May 30, 2018, Shell Aviation and SkyNRG announced that they will commit resources to a joint business development fund to support a multi-year strategic collaboration to promote the use of sustainable alternative jet fuel, with a particular focus on low-carbon solutions.

The official press release can be found here.

Fulcrum Sierra Biorefinery Groundbreaking

On May 16, 2018, I was privileged to personally witness the Fulcrum Sierra Biorefinery Groundbreaking in Storey County, NV. For over six years, the tri-agency team from the Departments of Navy, Energy, and Agriculture has been working through the detailed steps of the Defense Production Act process to get to this stage. It has been a long road for my counterparts and myself, but it was well worth the effort. I could not have been prouder to see those shovels in the ground!

More than 200 guests and stakeholders from up and down the supply chain witnessed the groundbreaking event of this first-in-the-U.S. commercial scale biorefinery utilizing municipal solid waste as a feedstock. The State of Nevada Governor, Brian Sandoval, was the keynote speaker and enthusiastically welcomed this milestone project to the state.

The Sierra Project is in the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center east of Reno and will utilize Fulcrum's proprietary thermochemical process to convert waste into low-carbon transportation fuels. Fulcrum's process can extend the life of landfills and reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions compared to the use of traditional petroleum transportation fuel and traditional landfilling practices.

When the plant begins commercial operations in the first quarter of 2020, Sierra will convert approximately 175,000 tons of household garbage into more than 10.5 million gallons of fuel each year (their commercial-reference-size facility).

Fulcrum is developing future projects that follow a similar approach as Sierra with fixed feedstock costs, fuel offtake prices hedged against oil, plant performance guarantees and a low anticipated cost of production, with subsequent facilities sized at integer multiples of the reference size facility, to match local feedstock availability. As construction proceeds on Sierra, engineering, siting and permitting activities are underway for the company's next several projects. Fulcrum is looking at the Chicago area for its second commercial facility, and at the west coast for its third. Collectively, the Sierra facility and the next several plants are expected to deliver on Fulcrum’s current offtake agreements of more than 300 million gallons of jet fuel annually. For more information on the Fulcrum groundbreaking event, see Fulcrum’s website.

- Chris Tindal, Assistant Director of CAAFI

Consortium to Determine Feasibility of Using Waste Biomass to Produce SAJF in South Africa

24 May 2018 – It’s been announced that a consortium made up of Fetola, the World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa, and SkyNRG will launch a Waste to Wing project that will determine the feasibility of using waste biomass to produce sustainable alternative jet fuel (SAJF) in South Africa. The consortium will work with small and medium-sized suppliers of the feedstock to demonstrate the pre-treatment process and conversion into SAJF that conforms to the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials’ sustainability standard. The project is supported with approximately $1.4 million from the European Union’s Switch Africa Green Program. The project will leverage lessons learned and share best practices with other African nations.

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