Renewable energies

Pioneer in biofuels

As a pioneer in biofuels, the Avril Group is making further R&D investments with Diester® biodiesel to improve both its production techniques and its environmental footprint, from the field to the vehicle. The aim is a 50% reduction in biodiesel greenhouse gas emissions compared with fossil fuel by 2017, through a strong commitment to the Démarche de Progrès (progress project) launched in 2007.

At the same time, Avril's RID* is preparing the future of biomass-based renewable energies by exploring several avenues of research in new generation biofuels. The group is thus committed to the technological perfection and development of biodiesel and biokerosene products based on either agricultural residues (see the BioTfueL project below), or microbial lipids (with the Probio3 project developed by Toulouse White Biotechnology).

Another avenue for research concerns the pyrolysis of oleaginous lignocellulosic materials, for pinpointing and designing a process to produce new molecules with applications as biofuels or chemical intermediaries (the CATAPULT project financed by the ANR, France's National Research Agency).

BioTfueL, a breakthrough technology

The BioTfueL project is designed to develop, by 2019, a chain of industrial thermochemical conversion procedures able to process a wide range of biomass resources (agricultural residues, forest waste) and produce high quality, advanced biodiesel and biokerosene. Their environmental footprint will be particularly positive, with a reduction in greenhouse gas emission of over 90% compared with conventional fuel. This project is supported by leading European partners in their sectors. After three years of initial research,  BioTfueL is now approaching a key stage, with the construction of two pre-industrial demonstration units at the Avril site in Venette (Picardie) and the Total site in Dunkerque. The Venette site will house a biomass pre-treatment facility. This project is supported by the ADEME as an investment for the future, and by the Picardie Region.