MOL Begins Biofuel Production At Danube Facility

March 17, 2021
MOL aims to gradually increase the share of waste and residue raw materials in the process.

Following several years of research and development, MOL becomes a biofuel producer through investment in the Danube Refinery. Bio-feedstock will be co-processed together with fossil materials, increasing the renewable share of fuels and reducing up to 200,000 tons/year CO2 emission without negatively affecting fuel quality, according to the company.

“MOL Group has been a biofuel user by purchasing more than 500.000 tons of biofuels (bioethanol and biodiesel) for blending. With this investment, we have started to produce sustainable diesel for the first time within MOL Group and we became biofuel producers,” says Gabriel Szabó, executive vice president of MOL Group Downstream. “The benefits are numerous, as we produce more sustainable fuel, we will also help the circular economy by recycling waste. In line with our recently updated strategy, “Shape Tomorrow,” we are planning to produce 100.000+ tons of biofuel by 2030.”

During co-processing at the Danube Refinery, bio-feedstock is processed with the fossil material to produce diesel fuel. Vegetable oils, used cooking oils and animal fats can also be used. As a result, the produced gasoil is partly renewable, without any quality changes compared to diesel produced entirely from crude oil, according to the company. The main advantage of the method is that the resultant biodiesel can still be blended with a maximum 7% of bio-feedstock based fuel, in line with diesel standards, allowing the bio-share of the gasoil to be higher.

MOL started co-processing as an R&D project in 2012 based on research from Pannon University. Types and quality requirements of processable raw materials were determined and the investment was launched in 2018, including the necessary infrastructure development for storing and processing the new biomaterials. The trial operation started in March 2020 and has been operating regularly since May, according to the company. The bio-component produced using this process reportedly has significantly higher CO2 saving potential than other types of biofuels produced from the same feedstock. The target is to further expand the type of waste that can be used as feedstocks in the processing to achieve even better CO2 savings from the product.

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