Shell has claimed the first commercial delivery of cellulosic ethanol at a service station in Ottawa, Canada. For the next month, the station is pumping a mixture of gasoline and ethanol made from wheat straw by biofuel company Iogen.
While cellulosic ethanol is much better than corn ethanol and far less polluting than gasoline, the blend that the Shell station is offering is only 10 percent cellulosic ethanol and 90 percent gasoline. So while it's a step forward for cellulosic ethanol to have made it to a commercial pump, it's still a small step when it comes to its application and emission reductions.
Shell has a 50 percent stake in Iogen's biofuel development. The biofuel maker has been producing 5,000 liters of the fuel a day at their demonstration plant, but plans to upgrade to a plant that would allow them to produce 70 million liters a year in Saskatchewan.
Shell hopes this demonstration leads to more government funding for cellolusic ethanol production, but sees advanced, large-scale production as still being five to ten years away.
written by David perron, June 11, 2009
written by Fred, July 07, 2009
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