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UPM Biofuels gains the world’s first RSB certification for wood-based liquid biofuels

UPM Biofuels has announced that it has received the world's first Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) certificate for wood-based liquid biofuels.

UPM Biofuels, a business unit of Finland-headed forest industry major UPM has announced that it has received a Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) certificate for both its BioVerno renewable diesel and naphtha, as well as production sidestreams turpentine and pitch. RSB verifies the sustainability and reliability of feedstock sourcing and production.

In RSB certification, the sustainability of biofuels is evaluated against twelve principles which have been approved by many stakeholders, including NGOs and UN agencies. In addition to the greenhouse gas (GHG) savings compared to fossil fuels, the RSB principles cover biodiversity, human rights and environmental and social responsibility throughout the value chain.

RSB is one of the European Commission’s approved voluntary schemes, which can be used to show compliance with the EU Renewable Energy Directive’s sustainability criteria. RSB certification can also be used to verify the sustainability of biomaterials for non-energy applications.

UPM Biofuels Lappeenranta Biorefinery (photo courtesy UPM Biofuels).
UPM Biofuels Lappeenranta Biorefinery, which started production in January 2015, has an annual production capacity of 120 million litres of renewable fuels (photo courtesy UPM Biofuels). UPM Biofuels Lappeenranta Biorefinery (photo courtesy UPM Biofuels).

UPM Biofuels uses crude tall oil, a residue from pulp production, to produce both biofuels and biomaterials in its Biorefinery in Lappeenranta, Finland.

The RSB is proud to count UPM among the visionary biofuel producers that are RSB certified. Using residues, like those from pulp and paper production, to produce energy helps to build a new world free of fossil fuels with minimal impact on nature and food production. This is the first certification of biofuel produced from wood-based feedstocks and RSB looks forward to working with UPM to promote this innovative solution for the bioeconomy, commented Rolf Hogan, Executive Director of RSB in a statement.

UPM Biofuels has previously received sustainability certificates under the Finnish National Sustainability Scheme, as well as the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) schemes ISCC EU and ISCC PLUS.

RSB certification is a valuable addition to our current sustainability certifications and we see that it can lead to great new collaborations with RSB certified end users. RSB and ISCC are both considered strong sustainability certification schemes and both have their own strengths. We are the only biofuel producer able to show compliance with both voluntary schemes together with a national scheme. This is very strong evidence of sustainability in all UPM Biofuel operations, said Maiju Helin, Head of Safety, Sustainability and Quality at UPM Biofuels.

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