• 2019 November 16 14:23

    BTG and GoodFuels preparing for major investment in bio-refinery to support shipping’s low carbon fuels demands

    More of the world’s international shipping fleet will soon be able to power their engines using 100% sustainable biofuel. Biomass technology group BTG says it will set up a new high-tech technology company that can convert crude pyrolysis oil into diesel fuel suitable for the shipping sector. It will be the first refinery in the world for an advanced marine biofuel based on pyrolysis oil.

    The new facility will be operated by a new company named BTG-neXt. In the first phase, BTG-neXt will focus on building a pilot refinery for converting pyrolysis oil into 100% sustainable marine biodiesel for ships, in order to demonstrate that continuous production is feasible. Pyrolysis oil is made from biomass-based residues such as sawdust and roadside grass cuttings and is a sustainable alternative for replacing fossil fuels. Crucially, the new fuels will not make any concessions in terms of the sustainability of feedstocks.

    The new demonstration facility has a planned production capacity of a modest 1,000 tons of advanced marine fuel per year, with plans, if deemed successful, to scale up, in order to support the industry in meeting International Maritime Organisation (IMO) targets of a 50% reduction in Greenhouse Gas emissions by 2050, equivalent to an 85% reduction per vessel.

    René Venendaal, CEO of BTG, commented: “This initial capacity is sufficient to demonstrate that the technology works and will serve as a basis for further scaling up our operations”.

    According to Venendaal, the pilot will require a six-figure investment: “We are now working on a more precise estimate of that figure”. The goal is to use the pre-commercial facility as a reference for rolling out commercial refineries with a capacity of possibly hundreds of thousands of tons per year of an advanced sustainable marine biofuel for ships.

    BTG previously adopted a similar strategy for the production of pyrolysis oil in 2008, when it established a new company called BTG-BTL. Under the responsibility of BTG-BTL, the Empyro production facility in Hengelo, the Netherlands, was built, which demonstrated that it was not only technically feasible to produce oil from sawdust but that it was also a commercially viable proposition. In 2019, Empyro was acquired by the waste processing company Twence. In 2019, BTG-BTL received its first orders for almost identical copies of the Empyro plant for delivery to companies in Sweden and Finland, where sawmill waste such as sawdust will be used for producing pyrolysis oil.

    Partnership with GoodFuels
    The plans drafted by BTG for the next decade have been welcomed with enthusiasm by the shipping market. GoodFuels, a Dutch-based pioneer and market leader in sustainable biofuels for shipping, sees sufficient potential in BTG’s plans to explore the possibility of a collective investment in the demonstration plant.

    CEO of GoodFuels, Dirk Kronemijer, added: “Over the last five years, GoodFuels has laid out a clear pathway for the use of biofuels in the shipping sector. Together with partners such as Boskalis Loodswezen, Port of Rotterdam, Norden, Jan De Nul and its portfolio of GoodShipping A-Brand clients we have shown that these fuels will play an essential role in making shipping more sustainable. Crucially, the next step is to scale up the processes without making any concessions in terms of the sustainability of the feedstocks used. BTG’s initiative meets all the success criteria, and we are very proud to work together with BTG to introduce this highly significant innovative technology in the Netherlands.”

    The intended location for the new pilot plant is “as close to home as possible”, explains Venendaal. “As was the case with BTG-BTL and Empyro, we need to have short lines of communication and be able to provide the services needed as efficiently as possible.”

    GoodFuels intends to market the pilot volumes produced to further strengthen the commercial business case.

    Venendaal added: “At present, most ships, in particular seagoing vessels, use low-quality fuel oil that is almost tar-like in nature, or marine gasoil, or diesel oil, all containing high levels of carbon. The potential for growth in terms of sustainability – driven by the IMO’s Greenhouse Gas targets for 2030 and 2050 – is therefore extremely high for this sector”.

    The low-sulphur diesel fuel for the shipping sector made from pyrolysis oil will also ensure compliance with soon-to-be introduced global low sulphur fuel regulations.

    The ports of Rotterdam and Eemshaven are the locations being considered for the first commercial processing plant.

    Kronemeijer said: “Rotterdam would be our preferred location as most of our shipping clients are active here. In addition, Rotterdam offers a great many opportunities for further integration due to the significant existing infrastructure already in place there.”

    The technology for producing oil via pyrolysis from plant-based residual waste streams such as wood residues and roadside grass was developed 30 years ago at the University of Twente.It is actually a similar process by which fossil oil is produced in the earth. The main difference is that it takes millions of years for it to happen in the earth’s crust, whereas the pyrolysis technology accomplishes this in only a few seconds.

    About BTG
    Biomass Technology Group (BTG) is an independent privately-owned company whose roots go back to the Faculty of Chemical Technology at the University of Twente. BTG contributes to the sustainable energy transition by developing new technologies that make it possible to replace fossil fuels by using biomass to produce advanced biofuels. The goal is to increase the global share of bioenergy, advanced biofuels, and green raw materials by developing and realising a variety of projects and initiatives all over the world. BTG-BioLiquids (BTG-BTL), a sister company of BTG, is working with TechnipFMC to roll out the innovative pyrolysis technology for the production of bio-oil from wood waste.

    About GoodFuels
    GoodFuels is a Dutch based sustainable fuel pioneer and energy transition partner for the shipping sector and heavy land-based transport. All of GoodFuels’ biofuels can be used to replace fossil fuels in these sectors without any motor or engine modifications (drop-in). They reduce the CO2 footprint by up to 90% (Well-to-Wheel) and comply with the most stringent sustainability standards.




2020 December 1

18:51 Kongsberg Digital announces release of first cloud-based simulation service for maritime radar training
18:32 Oil shipments via CPC Marine Terminal in 11M’20 fell by 5.8% YoY
18:16 ABP appoints new Divisional Port Manager for Wales & South West
17:59 Onezhsky Shipyard lays down second serial crab catching ship for Russian Crab Group
17:40 Rosmorport took part in discussion dedicated to Russia’s digital transport and logistics
17:26 Wilhelmsen's Additive Manufacturing service delivered CE-Certified 3D printed lifting tool for Wärtsilä
17:14 Stena Line takes delivery of third new ferry to join Irish Sea fleet in 2020
17:05 Diana Shipping announces time charter contract for m/v Artemis with Glencore
16:43 Bunker prices rise in the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
16:24 Sea Terminal “Tuloma” obtaines status of Arctic Capital PDA resident
16:18 NYK concludes long-term charter agreement for two methanol-fueled chemical tankers
16:05 Samskip ramps up presence in Central Eastern Europe
15:39 Ships of RF Navy’s Black Sea Fleet begin new training year in the Mediterranean
15:07 Georgia Ports Authority reaches a major milestone on its Mason Mega Rail Terminal
14:58 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from North Europe to Canada, Mexico East Coast and USEC, USGULF & USWC
14:52 Zvezda Shipyard lays down yet another Aframax tanker for Sovcomflot
14:13 Small missile ship Ingushetia of RF Navy’s Black Sea Fleet returns from Mediterranean Sea
13:48 Astrol-2, second dry cargo carrier of Project RSD59, put into operation
13:27 Record number of 15 winners for MPA’s International Safety at Sea Awards
13:21 Turbine installation at Belgium’s largest offshore wind farm crosses the finish line
13:06 RS introduces requirements for additive manufacturing products
12:50 ICTSI Iraq delivers record performance
12:32 NOVATEK commenced LNG sales of ISO containers to China
12:30 Finnlines orders Wärtsilä engines and hybrid systems for its two new eco-friendly ferries
12:09 SITC International signs newbuilding contracts with Yangzijiang Shipbuilding
11:51 MOL completes new research and development center in Százhalombatta
11:30 Russian Railways' network loading fell by 3% in 11M’ 2020
11:07 Port of Mackay maintenance dredging set to begin
10:55 Damen supports 4th International Congress “Hydraulic Engineering Structures and Dredging” as its General Sponsor
10:38 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Dec. 1
10:22 Admiral Gennady Nevelskoy ferry completes its commissioning trials
10:04 Wan Hai Lines to launch China – East India V (CI5) Service
09:46 Minerva Bunkering introduces the Advanced Delivery Platform
09:40 Oil prices continue decreasing
09:23 Baltic Dry Index as of November 30
09:15 Five-year cooperation agreement signed between the ports of Marseille and Montreal
08:34 Traffic dues for Kiel Canal will be suspended until the end of 2021

2020 November 30

18:36 Mina Rashid retains its title as the world’s leading cruise port at the World Travel Awards 2020
18:07 Seagoing vessels will pay a single tariff at North Sea Port from 1 January 2021
17:55 DP World’s Jebel Ali Port joins International Association of Ports and Harbours
17:36 Brittany Ferries’ new ship sets sail online
17:13 IAPH climate and energy working groups meet
16:48 Gasum continues to expand bunkering services
16:40 RWE and DEME Offshore install collars on offshore foundations
16:25 Fair treatment of seafarers and the COVID-19 pandemic on IMO Legal Committee's agenda
16:01 Report on maritime automation legislation commissioned by Finland’s Ministry of Transport and Communications pays attention to ensuring safety
15:37 Rosmorport conducted pilotage and docking of LNG tankers to temporary LNG Offshore Transshipment Complex in Barents Sea
15:14 "Wind Hunter Project" starts zero-emission project with wind propulsion and hydrogen
14:52 Port of Gdansk expects its tonnage to exceed 48 million tonnes in 2020
14:39 ABS and DSME sign JDP to explore using solid oxide fuel cells on-board VLCCs
14:30 Gazprom posts RUB 202.21 billion loss in 9M’2020
14:04 Uralhimmash shipped new equipment for NOVATEK’s facility in Ust-Luga
13:41 Average spot market price for Russian M100 product climbed to RUB 14,029 pmt
13:20 Diana Shipping announces time charter contract for m/v Polymnia with CLdN Cobelfret
12:56 Collaboration and digitalisation highlighted for Singapore’s maritime safety efforts at MPA’s International Safety@Sea Event
12:33 RF Government expands Vladivostok seaport territory
12:10 Abu Dhabi Ports supports the fight against COVID-19 with capacity to store and distribute 70M vaccines
11:49 LNG bunker fleet could increase fivefold by 2030
11:48 NIBULON launches a 90-m non-self-propelled vessel
11:27 RS optimizes Rules for Classification and Construction of Sea-Going Ships