UK government releases new biofuel statistics

By Erin Voegele | August 09, 2013

The U.K. Department for Transport has published statistics on its renewable transport fuel obligation (RTFO) for the most recent compliance year, which spanned from April 15, 202 through April 14, 2013. According to the report, 1.337 billion liters (353.198 million gallons) of renewable fuel was supplied in the country, with 77 percent of that amount demonstrated to meet sustainability requirements.

Ethanol accounted for 56 percent of the 1.031 billion liters of fuel that meet those requirements. Biodiesel accounted for 39 percent, with methanol and methyl tertiary butyl ether accounting for a combined 5 percent. The statics also note that small volumes of biogas and pure vegetable oil were also used to meet the obligation.

The report demonstrates that 1.465 trillion renewable transport fuel credits (RTFCs) have been issued to fuel meeting the sustainability requirements, with 868 million issued to double counting feedstocks. Overall, 42 percent of the biofuels used for compliance were made from waste or non-agricultural residues, which are feedstocks eligible for double counting.

The most widely reported source of ethanol for which RTFCs were issued was corn ethanol from the U.S., which accounted for 203 million liters. This is 36 percent of the ethanol supply. Only 22 percent of the biofuel that RTFCs were generated for was made with U.K. feedstocks.

According to the report, an aggregate greenhouse gas (GHG) savings of 67 percent was achieved during the compliance year. That estimate excludes emissions from indirect land use change.

Overall, 77 percent of the fuels for which RTFCs have been issued were sourced from a voluntary scheme. The most common voluntary scheme was ISCC, which accounted for 60 percent. Abengoa RED Bioenergy Sustainability Assurance scheme accounted for 11 percent.

Additional information on the statistics is available in the U.K. Department for Transport website.