DONG Energy and Neste Oil join forces to develop renewable fuels

DONG Energy and Neste Oil have entered into a collaboration to develop a cost-effective technology for producing renewable diesel and aviation fuel from agricultural residues.
DONG Energy's Inbicon demonstration plant in Kalundborg (Denmark). Photo: DONG Energy

Facts

About Neste Oil:
Neste Oil Corporation is a refining and marketing company concentrating on low-emission, high-quality traffic fuels. The company produces a comprehensive range of major petroleum products and is the world's leading supplier of renewable diesel. Neste Oil had net sales of EUR 17.5 billion in 2013 and employs around 5,000 people, and is listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki.
 
Neste Oil is included in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and the Ethibel Pioneer Investment Register, and has featured in The Global 100 list of the world's most sustainable corporations for many years. Forest Footprint Disclosure (FFD) has ranked Neste Oil as one of the best performers in the oil & gas sector. Further information: www.nesteoil.com
 
About Inbicon:
Inbicon A/S develops technology for conversion and refining of soft ligno-cellulosic biomass into fuel, feed, and biochemical. The company has operated a pilot plant since 2003, and in December 2009 the first Inbicon Biomass Refinery was inaugurated in Kalundborg, Denmark, to demonstrate the technology. The plant converts wheat straw into fuel grade ethanol, animal feed, and lignin pellets for energy production. Inbicon is a subsidiary of DONG Energy. 
 
What are 1G and 2G?
1. First-generation bioethanol (1G) is made from starch and sugary commodities such as grain, eg wheat and maize, sugar beet and sugar cane. These are commodities which initially need to be grown in fields and, therefore, require energy consumption. CO2 emissions are reduced by between 35 and 90%. The greatest reductions are to be gained when ethanol is extracted from sugar cane in South America. 
 
2. Second-generation bioethanol (2G) is made from commodities with dry matter content, such as straw, wood and organic waste from agriculture, industry and households. The advantage of 2G compared to 1G bioethanol is that no energy is required to produce these waste and bi-products and they are not potential foodstuffs. CO2 emissions are reduced by between 70 and 90%.
 
DONG Energy only participates in the production of second-generation bioethanol.
Neste Oil, the world’s largest producer of premium-quality renewable fuels, has joined forces with DONG Energy, one of the leading energy groups in Northern Europe, to develop an integrated process to produce renewable diesel and aviation fuel based on agricultural residues. 

"We are continuously developing our Inbicon technology in order to expand the use of agricultural residues. We are now able to produce high-quality cellulosic sugars that can be used in various applications, and we see Neste Oil as the obvious partner when developing a technology where we use these cellulosic sugars for renewable fuel production," says Henrik Maimann, Vice President at DONG Energy. 

"Neste Oil is currently the world's only biofuel producer capable of producing premium-quality renewable fuel on an industrial scale from more than 10 different feedstocks. Increasing the use of waste- and residue-based feedstocks is one of our most important goals, and microbial oil produced from forest industry and agricultural residues, such as straw, is one of our potential future feedstocks,” says Lars Peter Lindfors, Neste Oil's Senior Vice President, Technology. 

"Our cooperation with DONG Energy is a continuation of Neste Oil’s ongoing microbial oil research, and  joint technology development will support our efforts aimed at developing technology capable of producing microbial oil on an industrial scale."

DONG Energy’s Inbicon technology will be used in the first part of the process to pre-treat biomass and produce cellulosic sugars that can be converted into microbial oil with Neste Oil's technology. Microbial oil can be used as a feedstock for premium-quality renewable fuels such as renewable diesel and renewable aviation fuel. 

Joint technology development

Neste Oil and Dong Energy have already passed the laboratory and pilot phase, and the technologies must now be optimized and verified on a larger scale. DONG Energy will use Inbicon’s demonstration facility in Kalundborg, Denmark to optimize the yield and performance of the biomass pre-treatment to perfectly match Neste Oil's microbial oil process. Neste Oil has been running a microbial oil pilot plant in Porvoo, Finland since 2012. 

"With this collaboration we have a partner for the further development of our technology, and at the same time Neste Oil is able to develop their own technology by using our product," says Henrik Maimann. 

“DONG Energy’s technology is promising and we believe that joint technology development is the best way to find a cost-effective solution for producing renewable fuels from agricultural residues,” says Lars Peter Lindfors.

Both parties will receive funding from the ERA-Net Plus BESTF program in connection with the collaboration.

For additional information, please contact Sustainability

Ulrik Frøhlke +45 9955 9560