EU recognition and EUR 39 million for Danish biorefinery

Date: 12 August 2014

Maabjerg Energy Concept’s ambition to construct a 2G bioethanol (2G) plant has come a big step closer after receiving EU recognition and EUR 39 million in EU support.

 

Maabjerg Energy Concept has received EUR 39 million from EU’s NER300-programme to proceed with the planned 2G bioethanol facility.

Behind Maabjerg Energy Concept is a consortium of companies: Energy company DONG Energy, enzyme producer Novozymes and local utilities Vestforsyning, Struer Forsyning and waste management company Nomi.

Chairman of the board for the consortium Jørgen Udby is very pleased about the EU’s decision to award funding, but says he will wait a bit longer before uncorking the champagne bottle: “The NER300 award decision is fantastic news and an important recognition of the project. It’s a big pat on the back for everybody who has been working hard to optimise the technical and financial details since the project launched in August 2011. This will energise us and motivate us to cross the finish line,” he says and continues:

“EU funding is a crucial step. But we also need to be sure we can sell the 80 million liters of 2G bioethanol that we plan to make, before we give the go-ahead for construction of our bioethanol plant. To ensure that, we need a political and legal framework setting a minimum level of 2nd generation biofuel additives in gasoline,” Jørgen Udby explains, adding that the EU’s decision to set a minimum level of 0.5% 2G additives by 2020 is a good start – with possibilities for member states to raise the bar.

Today, most of the 1G bioethanol additives used in European gasoline are imported – often made by US corn or South American sugar canes.

“We have information that a number of EU member states are very close to decide higher national levels for 2G biofuel additives,” says Jørgen Udby.

The partners behind the Maabjerg Energy Concept consortium are currently working on the third and final version of the project business plan. Once again the finances have improved.

“It looks like we won’t need further funding, apart from the NER300 award, so all we need now is for EU member states to set ambitious goals for 2G biofuel additives and a Danish legal framework for large scale production of bioethanol,” Jørgen Udby concludes.

Source: State of Green / Maaberg Energy Concept