The Renewable Fuels Association reports that the US produced approximately 15.3 billion gallons of ethanol in 2016. Much of the ethanol infrastructure was developed from 2004 to 2010 during the ethanol 'Boom'. The market factors and the economy essentially ceased the development of new corn to ethanol facilities in 2010. In 2014, the ethanol market started to recover.
The Energy Information Administration reported that the US produced approximately 1.5 billion gallons of biodiesel in 2016. Similar to ethanol, much of the biodiesel infrastructure was built between 2004 and 2010.
The biofuels market has been flat for the last 4-5 years. So where to now? This is the big question. Will biofuels return to a growth mode to offset oil use ... the answer is probably not. With oil prices fluctuating between $40-$60 per barrel, it is unlikely that biodiesel and ethanol development will recover anytime soon. However, there is still room for growth. We anticipate that the biofuels markets will be focusing on cellulosic technologies as well as other production improvements.
PF Engineers has been the independent engineering for numerous biofuels projects. Some of the technologies that we have reviewed include:
Whether you are a developer, sponsor, or a lender, PF Engineers can help you evaluate your biofuels project(s) and make sure that a thorough due diligence effort is completed. We understand that with a such a challenging market, we will provide quick and decisive advice on the viability of your project and the possibility of getting financing to move forward.