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Queensland builds biofuels laboratory

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Southern Oil and JJ Richards & Sons, joint venture partners in the Northern Oil Refinery at Yarwun, near Gladstone, have announced a multi-million dollar biocrude and biofuel laboratory is to be constructed over the next few months. It will be constructed in central Queensland on the site of the Northern Oil Advanced Biofuels Pilot Plant.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) announced this week it would provide AUS$2.37 million in funding to help develop and construct the laboratory. Southern Oil will contribute the balance of the cost.

The laboratory will be part of the pilot plant and help to determine whether a compelling business case can be made to build a commercial scale biorefinery to produce renewable diesel and jet fuels.

Southern Oil Managing Director, Tim Rose, said the laboratory would help develop Australia’s biofuel industry.

“A few weeks ago, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visited our Gladstone waste lube oil re-refinery to announce that, with the State Government’s assistance, Southern Oil would develop a AUS$16 million biofuels pilot plant on site,” Mr Rose said.

“The Northern Oil Advanced Biofuels Pilot Plant is scheduled to open in late 2016 and is the next step towards a AUS$150 million, commercial-scale biofuel plant.

“Together with this new world-class laboratory, which is being built with the support of the Federal Government’s Australian Renewable Energy Agency, we take another critical step towards the development of a new renewables fuels industry for Queensland and Australia.”

Mr Rose said that the Northern Oil Advanced Biofuels Pilot Plant aims to have produced 1 million litres of fuel for use in field trials by the US navy as part of its Great Green Fleet initiative, by the Australian Defence Force for the navy, by Australian heavy road transport operators and possibly for the aviation sector.

Edited from press release by

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