Renewable energies

A pioneer in biofuels

A pioneer in biofuels, the Avril Group continues to invest in R&D on Diester® biodiesel in order to improve both its production techniques and environmental footprint, from the field to the wheel. The aim is to achieve a 50% reduction by the end of 2017 in the greenhouse gas emissions of biodiesel by comparison with fossil diesel, under a strong commitment through the Progress Initiative launched in 2007.

In parallel, Avril’s RID* is preparing the future of biomass-based renewable energies by exploring several research areas in new generation biofuels. The Group is thus involved in technological developments on the production of biodiesel and biokerosene using either agricultural waste (see BioTfueL project, below). 

Another avenue for research concerns the pyrolysis of oilseed lignocellulosic materials in order to identify and design a process that will enable the production of new molecules for applications such as biofuels or chemical intermediates.

BioTfueL, a breakthrough technology

Between now and 2019, the BioTfueL project aims to develop a chain of industrial thermochemical conversion processes that can deal with a broad range of biomass resources (agricultural and forest wastes) to produce high quality and advanced biodiesel and biokerosene. Their environmental balance will be particularly favorable, with a reduction of more than 90% in greenhouse gas emissions when compared with conventional fuels. This project is being driven by six European partners who are leaders in their respective sectors; it is receiving support from the French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) which retained it in the context of the French government’s investments for the Future (PIA) program, and from the Hauts-de-France Regional Council and the FEDER Fund. After several years of engineering work, BioTfueL has now reached a key stage with the construction of two preindustrial demonstrators at the Avril site in Venette (Oise) and the Total site in Dunkirk (Nord-Pas-de-Calais). The Venette site will also be home to a plant for the pretreatment of biomass by roasting.