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New ePURE data confirms European ethanol’s vital dual "fuel and feed" role

The latest statistics from members of the European Renewable Ethanol Association (ePURE) show record-high greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction compared to petrol, and major domestic production of animal feed.

European Renewable Ethanol Association (ePURE) members have around 50 plants in 16 EU Member States. With 6.51 billion litres of production capacities in 2018, these companies accounted for 73 percent of the EU’s installed production capacity2018 (graphic courtesy ePURE).

According to new audited data released by the European Renewable Ethanol Association (ePURE), its members produced 5.81 billion litres of ethanol and 5.55 million tonnes of beneficial co-products in 2018.

The figures confirm the importance of ethanol biorefineries to the EU’s efforts to fight climate change and offset its animal-feed protein deficit.

European feedstock for EU biofuel and animal feed

Of the total ethanol output in 2018, 82 percent was for fuel use, with an average of more than 71 percent greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction compared to petrol in 2018. Ethanol’s GHG-reducing performance increased for the seventh year in a row as the sustainability of European renewable ethanol continues to improve annually.

Of the remaining ethanol production in 2018, 9 percent was for industrial use and 9 percent for food and beverages.

Along with the fuel, ePURE members’ ethanol refineries also produced 5.55 million tonnes of co-products, including 4.20 million tonnes of GM0-free animal feed and 0.77 million tonnes of captured carbon dioxide (CO2).

A load of feed wheat being delivered to ePURE member Lantmännen Agroetanol’s facility in Norrköping, Sweden.

More than 99 percent of the feedstock used to produce renewable ethanol by ePURE members – including cereals, sugars, wastes, and residues – was grown or sourced in Europe.

The emissions-reduction performance of EU ethanol continues to improve at a time when transport decarbonisation is of critical importance. As Europe’s leaders work to respond to voters’ concerns about climate change and the EU Member States struggle to meet their renewables targets, they should not overlook a homegrown solution that delivers results right now. Ethanol reduces emissions from today’s car fleet and will be important for decarbonising the vehicles that will continue to be prevalent on Europe’s roads for a long time, said Emmanuel Desplechin, Secretary-General of ePURE.

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