31 October 2014
- Project Advancing Marine Microalgae Biofuel to Commercialisation
ARENA CFO Ian Kay joined SA Regional Development Minister Geoff Brock to open Muradel’s $10.7 million demonstration plant at Whyalla today.
Constructed by Muradel, it is Australia’s first integrated demonstration scale plant to sustainably convert microalgae into green crude. The plant will produce 30,000 litres of green crude a year using Muradel’s Green2Black™ technology for the continuous production of a renewable fossil crude equivalent.
ARENA has committed $4.4 million funding for the plant to encourage a viable, sustainable alternative to fossil oil and to biofuels currently produced from food crops such as corn-based ethanol and biodiesel from palm oil. Muradel plans to scale up the demonstration plant to a commercial plant that could eventually produce 500,000 barrels of green crude annually.
ARENA CFO Ian Kay said that as Australia’s domestic liquid refinery capacity declines, there is an opportunity to find and secure cost effective alternative transport fuels.
“Muradel has successfully taken this technology through to demonstration scale and is poised to offer it commercially with the ambition of making it available as a renewable alternative at the pump,” Mr Kay said.
“While there are great opportunities on the biofuels horizon, there are also significant technical and commercial challenges to overcome.
“That’s why ARENA is supporting a range of biofuel projects such as this one that will help bring this niche industry a step closer to maturity.”