Issue: Dec 2009


Study: Canadian Renewable Fuels Significantly Reduce GHGs



Ethanol reduces GHGs by 62%, Biodiesel by 99%

by Jon Knox

A new independent third party analysis of Canadian renewable fuel production conclusively confirms that Canadian produced ethanol and biodiesel significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Cheminfo Services Inc., a specialized environment, energy, transportation, and chemicals consulting firm was hired by the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association to analyze a sample of eight ethanol plants and three biodiesel plants in Canada. The analysis was conducted using the most recent version of the Natural Resources Canada GHGenius lifecycle assessment model for transportation fuels.

The analysis of the Canadian renewable fuel plants found:


1. "On an energy basis, the results show that the reduction in fuelcycle
GHG emissions from one megajoule (MJ) of ethanol (when used in an E10
fuel blend) is 62% of the fuelcycle GHG emissions for one megajoule (MJ)
of gasoline."

2. "On an energy basis, the results show that the reduction in fuelcycle
GHG emissions from one megajoule (MJ) of tallow biodiesel (when used in
an D95/TD5 fuel blend) is 99% of the fuelcycle GHG emissions of one
megajoule (MJ) of petroleum diesel."


"This study confirms that homegrown ethanol and biodiesel deliver real and substantial greenhouse gas reductions," says Gordon Quaiattini, President of the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association. "This is good news for the environment, this is also good news for farmers and the economy, and good news for Canadian drivers."

The Cheminfo study is the first of its kind in Canada to draw exclusively upon Canadian renewable fuel facilities. The full study entitled, "Life Cycle Assessment of Renewable Fuel Production from Canadian Biofuel Plants for 2008-2009," can be downloaded at http://www.greenfuels.org.

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