USA BioEnergy has announced it will develop an advanced biorefinery in Bon Wier, Texas. The facility will convert 1 million green tonnes of wood waste into 34 million gallons of transportation fuel.
The transportation fuel includes sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), renewable diesel and renewable naphtha developed through its subsidiary, Texas Renewable Fuels (TRF). Plans to expand in the future will double the plant’s production capacity to 68 million gallons annually. Although the company will announce the names of its partners and suppliers in the coming months, it has stated that fuel offtake agreements with a major trading and logistics company as well as one of the world’s premier airlines are secured.
The biorefinery’s demand for thinnings and wood waste will also create a stable long-term revenue for the forestry industry in the south-east Texas region. It is estimated that the plant will additionally capture and sequester approximately 50 million metric tonnes of CO2 over the life of the biorefinery. This gives Texas Renewable Fuels one of the lowest Carbon Intensity (CI) scores in the industry.
Dr Robert Freerks, vice president of product development, USA BioEnergy, said: “Biomass gasification is a well-established method of converting any waste stream into synthesis gas which can readily be converted into hydrocarbon fuels by the Fischer-Tropsch process and upgrading technologies.
“This approach is being used by a number of projects as it is more feedstock efficient than processes such as cellulosic ethanol production which cannot use all the carbon in wood and waste feedstocks. The gasification/F-T process is also easily adaptable to Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) as removal of CO2 from the process stream is inherent to the basic technology set. Thus, using biomass feedstocks with CCS, USA Bioenergy can produce deeply negative CI fuels which meet all customer requirements. The fuels produced using CCS will have at least 3 times greater reduction in GHG emissions than fuels produced using other types of feedstock. And there is vastly more feedstock available for expansion of this technology than there is for other renewable fuel production processes.”
“USA BioEnergy performed an extensive site search and analysis to identify the best location for our project. State and local incentives then became the key component of our decision and we’re proud to select Bon Wier,” added CEO Nick Andrews. “Our investment in Newton County will exceed $3.4 billion (€3 billion) and will provide significant opportunities for employment.”