Cellulosic ethanol the US dream and reality

This graph, produced with data from the Des Moines Register, and another good article from Phil Brasher shows the current gap between US cellulosic ethanol production next year and the curent legislative requirement for it.

 It looks as if the US will be forced to reduce the volumes that it is legislating for in the next couple of years. Because it currently is not economic to make cellulosic ethanol.That’s the message from Al Mannato, a fuels issues manager at the American Petroleum Institute. He expects only just 1 million to 5 million gallons of cellulosic ethanol to be on the market in 2010.

2US cellulosic biofuel dream and reality 2009.png

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One Response to Cellulosic ethanol the US dream and reality

  1. Pradeep 25 March, 2009 at 6:45 pm #

    It is interesting to get an alternative assessment of cellulosic ethanol. Unless the price differential between oil & cellulosic ethanol goes down, it would be difficult to justify investments, despite the federal tax credits. May be the US government should also encourage other fuel-uses of biomass as well..?
    [Ex: The UOP & Ensyn RTP process converts biomass to pyrolysis oil, which could be refined to produce transportation fuels..]

    As for the long-term prospects, McKinsey report (2007, pre-recession crude oil prices of 70-80 $/barrel) estimated the production of 4 billion gallons of cellulosic ethanol by 2030, as compared to a federal mandate of 60 billion gallons (all types of biofuels).

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