Biofuel is a collective term for a range of energy carriers produced by converting primary biomass or biomass residues into liquid or gaseous fuels. While the number of vessels running on biofuels today is relatively small, DNV has identified sustainable biofuels as one of few options available for deep-sea shipping, especially for existing vessels, to achieve the IMO targets.
Benefits of using biofuels
- Biofuels from advanced processes derived from sustainable feedstocks can achieve substantial GHG reductions while minimizing other effects.
- Biofuels can be blended with conventional fuels or used as drop-in fuels as substitutes for conventional fossil fuels.
- A drop-in fuel can directly be used in existing installations without major technical modifications, making them very attractive for existing tonnage.
Because biofuels are derived from organic materials, fuel quality can be compromised by microbial growth and oxygen degradation. Also, some liquid biofuels can have poor flow properties in low temperatures. Biofuels are also solvents, so during conversions, operators must flush the fuel system when switching from diesel to biofuel to avoid deposits or clogged filters. Managing these challenges is important to ensure trouble-free operations.