The Queensland State Government has demonstrated support and generated a lot of interest for the Biofuels industry over the last six months including:
- A Biofutures 10 year road map and action plan focused on establishing a $1 billion industry by 2026.
- A $19.7 million Biofutures fund has been established to support Biofutures Industry development, acceleration and commercialisation.
- Under the Biofutures Acceleration program, the Queensland Government recently sought expressions of interest to build commercial-scale bio-refineries in Queensland with 26 proposals received. Proposals were received from established companies based in the USA, Asia and Europe as well as Australia, with many potential proponents identifying specific biorefinery development locations and projected job and investment opportunities. The Queensland Government is now assessing each proposal.
- There is also strong interest in Biofuels from the US Navy who are seeking to source 50% of their fuel requirements as Biofuels. TfA attended the invitation only Biofutures Industry Forum in December 2016 co-hosted by the Queensland Department of State Development and the US Navy with 158 international and local delegates from across the Biofutures supply chain to workshop and develop Biofutures development strategies.
A biofuels mandate, critical to establishing a market for biofuels and new investment was implemented on January 1, 2017. Key components include:
- 3% of the total volume of regular unleaded petrol sales and ethanol blended fuel sales by liable retailers must be bio-based petrol (ethanol). For example, if 3 out of every 10 litres of regular petrol sold by a petrol station were E10, which contains 10% ethanol, that station would have met the mandate.
- From 1 July 2018, the bio-based petrol mandate will increase to 4%.
- The bio-based diesel mandate requires 0.5% of all diesel fuel sold to be bio-based diesel.
- A fuel retailer must meet the mandated sales amount if they own or operate 10 or more sites or sell more than 500,000 litres of all grades of petrol at a site in a calendar quarter.
Federal Biofuels Support
A recent report from the Productivity Commission recommended the removal of ethanol mandates as part of the Government’s inquiry into burdens on farm businesses. However, on a positive note there are ongoing positive Federal support mechanisms
- The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has been very proactive in supporting the financing of bioenergy projects, currently providing $46M in funding to 20 bioenergy projects nationally of which 6 bioenergy projects are based in Queensland.
- A national project has also been established to share geographical biomass feedstock availability and infrastructure information with the renewable energy industry. The information is being overlayed on the Australian Renewable Energy Mapping Infrastructure (AREMI) project and is being managed by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation with biomass data supplied by each State and analytical tools under development by QUT and USC. AREMI is funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency.
TfA and Biofuels
TfA Project Group have over 15 years’ experience in the Biofuels industry and are the only engineering design consultant to implement a greenfield ethanol bio-refinery plant in Australia. We can assist with Biofuels project feasibility and planning through to design and construction management.
We will provide Biofuels updates throughout the year. To discuss any of the above, or for a discussion on any projects you may be considering, please contact:
Queensland Office: 07 3854 2900