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Aemetis India biodiesel plant completes capacity expansion

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Aemetis Inc. has announced that its Universal Biofuels subsidiary has completed a two-year upgrade of the Kakinada, India biodiesel and glycerin plant.

The upgrades to the Kakinada plant included installation of a pre-treatment unit to process lower-cost and waste feedstock into oil; expansion of boiler and other utility capacities; and implementation of environmental systems to enable full production of 50 million gal./yr of biodiesel and bio-oil while simultaneously operating the biodiesel, pretreatment and glycerin refining units.

The 2018 India National Policy on Biofuels issued by the Indian Government increased the target for domestic biodiesel consumption to 5% of the approximately 25 billion gal./yr of petroleum diesel consumed in India from currently less than a 1% biodiesel blend. In mid-2018, the Goods & Services Tax on biodiesel was reduced from 18% to 12% to support expansion of biodiesel. In late 2018, the India Supreme Court determined that biodiesel may be sold at retail fuelling stations, significantly expanding the market for biodiesel in India. The India government has recently issued a purchase requisition for approximately 260 million gal. of biodiesel for year 2019 to be supplied by domestic India biodiesel producers.

In the first three quarters of 2018, the India biodiesel plant produced about 15 200 t of biodiesel during the plant upgrade construction. After the expansion, current Kakinada plant capacity is approximately 50 million gal./yr (about 165 000 tpy) of biodiesel and bio-oil production capacity, and approximately 5 million gal./yr (18 000 tpy) of glycerin refining capacity. The average price of biodiesel sold at the India plant in year 2018 was about US$3.00/gal. (US$900/t) and glycerin was about $1000/t.

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