Page 58 - European Energy Innovation - Summer 2016 publication
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58  Summer 2016 European Energy Innovation


Cellulosic ethanol – biofuel of the future
The transport sector has one of the       into ethanol by highly optimized yeast.
highest growth rates worldwide            The process converts the difficult to       commercial maturity of the sunliquid®
implying a significant impact on the fuel  access C5 and C6 sugars contained in       process by building and operating a
demand and level of CO2 emissions.        the plant material almost entirely into    first-of-its kind, large scale cellulosic
The EU has set targets to reduce          ethanol. The product, cellulosic ethanol,  ethanol production plant. The project
greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by         is a high quality biofuel with high        will contribute to achieve a more
40% compared to 1990 levels by 2030.      GHG emission savings of up to 95%          sustainable energy system in Europe
As transport alone is responsible for     compared with fossil fuels. It does not    that is less dependent on imported
25% of GHG emissions in the European      compete with food or feed production       fossil fuels and creates new, green jobs.
Union, the use of already available       and does not need any additional
and cost-effective technologies,          arable land. Recently, sunliquid® has      In order to trigger investments in
such as advanced biofuels, has to be      been awarded the “2015 German              cellulosic ethanol production capacity
encouraged as quickly as possible.        Innovation Prize for Climate and           in the EU, a predictable and long-term
                                          Environment” from the German Federal       policy has to be adopted. At the heart of
Advanced biofuels based on                Ministry for the Environment, Nature       such a framework stands a binding and
agricultural residues such as cellulosic  Conservation, Building and Nuclear         ambitious target for advanced biofuels. ●
ethanol have the potential to play        Safety.
a key role in making mobility more                                                     CONTACT DETAILS:
sustainable. By 2030, these advanced      A successfully conducted fleet test           Dr. Markus Rarbach
biofuels could cover about 16% of         with Mercedes-Benz series vehicles           Head of Biofuels & Derivatives
the total fuel demand in Europe.          using sunliquid® 20, a premium-grade         Clariant Produkte (Deutschland) GmbH
This could create 300,000 new jobs        E20 blend containing 20% cellulosic          T: +49 (0)89 710 661 0
– predominantly in rural areas – and      ethanol, has shown that cellulosic           E:
generate additional revenues of EUR 15    ethanol E20 is technically feasible. 20%
billion in Europe alone.                  cellulosic ethanol led to a significant
                                          increase in sustainability as it reduced
SUNLIQUID® – COMPETITIVE AND              particle emissions by 50% compared
SUSTAINABLE CELLULOSIC ETHANOL            to the EU reference fuel E5 and saved
                                          around 95% GHG emissions. Clariant
The production of cellulosic ethanol      supplied the cellulosic ethanol from
is technologically mature. Clariant’s     its demonstration plant in Straubing
sunliquid® technology is an innovative,   (Germany) where up to 1000 tons
efficient, sustainable, energy-neutral     of cellulosic ethanol are produced
and economic process for the              annually using the sunliquid® process.
production of cellulosic ethanol from     The plant has already received the
agricultural residues such as straw,      International Sustainability & Carbon
corn stover or sugarcane bagasse.         Certification (ISCC).
Highly optimized enzymes ensure
effective conversion of the feedstock     Currently, the EU-funded project
into sugars, which are then fermented     SUNLIQUID aims to confirm the

sunliquid© demonstration plant in Straubing, Germany

                                                                                     This project receives funding from
                                                                                     the European Union’s Seventh
                                                                                     Framework Programme (FP7/2007-
                                                                                     2013) under grant agreement no.

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