As cellulosic biofuels technologies start to deploy — critics and friends ask, 36 billion gallons by 2022, can it still be done? Yep, there's a pathway.
In Washington, the US Energy Information Administration released a map and commentary on its website this week — indicating the spread of commercial-scale cellulosic biofuels, while cautioning that "EIA's forecasts and projections to date have proven to be too optimistic, as volumes have been below expectations."
EIA went on to state: “Looking forward, important challenges remain for cellulosic biofuel production. Total production costs for many of these first-of-a-kind projects remain higher than the cost of petroleum-based fuels on both a volumetric and energy-content basis. Cellulosic ethanol also faces the same market and regulatory challenges to increasing its share of the fuel market that is faced by other types of ethanol.”
At the same time, the EIA map detailed the growth of the cellulosic biofuels sector from 20,000 of production in 2012, to 5 million gallons in 2013 and an expected 250 million gallons in nameplate capacity by 2015.