The US Department of Energy is providing $59 million to accelerate biofuels production for the transport sector, expected to fund between four and 20 projects.

The Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries funding opportunity announcement is intended to advance biorefinery development, as well as projects to improve feedstocks for biofuels. Projects will support the production of renewable diesel and aviation, marine and rail fuel.

“Energy harnessed from plants and waste presents a huge opportunity to reduce emissions from hard-to-decarbonise sectors such as aviation, rail and shipping, while supporting high-quality jobs across rural America,” US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm said.

“DoE’s investment in biofuels is a key component of the Biden Administration’s effort to support clean-energy technologies that increase our energy independence and move us closer to a net-zero carbon economy.”

The department said biofuel is helpful in hard-to-decarbonise sectors in which electrification is not effective. Biofuel can be used in higher energy densities for marine and aviation sectors.

The funding opportunity, which aims to reduce costs and technical risks of biofuels, also supports the DoE’s Sustainable Aviation Fuel Grand Challenge goal to enable the production of three billion gallons of SAF annually by 2030, and 35 billion gallons annually by 2050. This would meet 100% of US aviation fuel demand.

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