Cargill invests US$150m in an advanced biodiesel plant in Belgium

BELGIUM —Cargill has invested US$150 million in its first advanced biodiesel plant in Ghent, Belgium, in a move aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and promoting circular fuel possibilities.

The plant converts waste oils and residues into renewable fuel which will be used by the maritime and trucking sectors, enabling customers to lower the carbon footprint associated with these activities.

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The groundbreaking project is one of the largest waste-to-biofuel facilities in Europe and Cargill’s first. The plant will use very latest technology of BDI-BioEnergy International GmbH that enables the processing of all types of liquid waste oils and fats.

In doing so, Cargill said it supports the circular economy, giving new purpose to products that previously were disposed of, or consigned to low-value applications.

“By leveraging advanced waste-processing technology, we are providing an innovative solution that meets global renewable energy demands, respects environmental needs and helps customers realize greenhouse gas commitments,” said Alexis Cazin, managing director for Cargill Biodiesel & Carbon EMEA.

“But the benefits are much broader, especially when considered alongside our global portfolio of alternative fuels, as they offer a bridge toward a future, decarbonized transportation system.”

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In Europe, which aims to be the first climate neutral continent in the world, Cargill’s advanced biodiesel helps solve a key challenge.

Historically, developing low-carbon renewable fuels solutions for heavy-duty trucks and maritime shipping was difficult, yet transportation represents almost a quarter of Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Advanced biodiesel produced from oil waste and residues offers a concrete, cost-effective approach to address this need, bringing major benefits to citizens, communities and the environment.

As such it is a rapidly growing sector. According to Grandviewresearch the global biodiesel market size was valued at US$32.09 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.0% from 2022 to 2030.

Philippa Purser, president of Cargill’s Agriculture Supply Chain business in EMEA said, “There is no single solution that will address the world’s current energy challenge. That’s why we continue to invest and support a range of solutions and will continue to innovate greener technologies.”

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Using only waste oils and residues as raw materials, the new facility will produce up to 115,000 tonnes of biodiesel per year and add 20 new direct jobs and an additional 60 indirect jobs to the local community.

Cargill’s investment follows the new directions for biofuels stated in the new Renewable Energy Directive (REDII) of the EU which promotes the shift to new advanced biofuels based on waste and residues to reach the renewable energy targets.

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