2.3 Advanced biofuel production trends

With ethanol production of around 83 billion litres and biodiesel production of around 26 billion litres in 2012, conventional biofuels dominate total biofuels production. By the beginning of 2013, global advanced biofuel production capacity had reached an estimated 230 million litres/year (Ml/year) (F.O. Licht, 2013). Advanced biofuel production of 76 000 litres was recorded in the United States in 2012 (U.S. EIA, 2013a), which was the location for almost 120 million litres of the global advanced biofuels capacity. In the United States, the KiOR company's fast pyrolysis biomass-to-liquids first commercial facility has a production capacity of around 50 Ml/year. Ineos' Florida facility has production capacity of around 30 Ml/year, with the balance of the 120 million litre/year in total coming from several smaller plants. In Europe, around 70 Ml/year of production capacity is divided between Borregrad's cellulosic ethanol plant (20 Ml/year) in Norway and Beta Renewables Italian plant (50 Ml/year). Additional cellulosic capacity is also onstream in Canada and China. China could become a significant player in the short-to medium-term, with as much as 90 Ml/year of production capacity to be added in 2013 (F.O. Licht, 2013).

By 2015 global advanced cellulosic biofuels capacity could reach 1.3 billion litres/year (F.O. Licht, 2013), with around two thirds of this capacity located in the United States. Although this represents dramatic growth from today's level, it will still mean that advanced biofuels contribute just 1-2% of total biofuels production in 2015 and a smaller contribution to total energy demand in the road transport sector.