INEOS' new technology will produce bioethanol in large quantities from municipal solid waste, organic commercial waste and agricultural residues.
'In North America and Europe we will see around 10% or more of petrol being replaced with bioethanol,' Peter Williams, INEOS Bio CEO, comments. 'Our technology will make a major contribution to reducing greenhouse gases and the world's need for fossil fuels.'
INEOS bioethanol releases up to 90% less net greenhouse gases than petrol. For instance, 1 tonne of dry waste can be converted into approximately 400 litres (100 gallons) of ethanol, which can either be blended with traditional fuels or replace them altogether, to substantially reduce vehicle emissions.
The technology, already proven at pilot plant scale, uses a simple three-stage process. The waste is first superheated to produce gases. Then, through a patented process, the gases are fed to naturally occurring bacteria, which efficiently produce ethanol. Finally, the ethanol is purified to make the fuel ready to be blended for use in cars.
'We expect to announce the location of the first commercial plant fairly shortly and we will aim to quickly roll out our technology around the world,' Williams adds.