Bio-fuels innovator ramps up commercialisation

Australian-based company Licella has seen increased interest in its innovative technology to turn plant waste into bio-fuel.

The Licella process has been running at its pilot plant at Somersby, north of Sydney, for more than three years and claims to be quicker, cleaner and more cost-effective than alternatives.

The company’s commercialisation demonstration plant (CDP) was opened by the Federal Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson AM MP, late last year. It will enable the company to scale its production up to 100 times.

In January, Minister Ferguson was in the US raising the profile of Australia’s clean energy capabilities and looking for ways to develop advanced biofuel projects.

Licella also has a joint venture with Norske Skog called Licella Fibre Fuels to commercialise the technology, and MOUs with Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand to develop aviation fuels from its bio-oil.

Licella was highlighted as part of last year’s Clean Technology Showcase at Parliament House.

“We had the opportunity to discuss our technology with the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, and network with other innovative businesses,” Licella CEO Steve Rogers said.

Licella was also recognised in Accenture’s publication, Betting on Science: Disruptive Technologies in Transport Fuels. Accenture describes Licella’s technology as “potentially revolutionary”, due to its ability to produce fungible or ‘drop in’ fuels that overcome the issues of having to develop a new distribution infrastructure.

Licella is focused on bringing its product to market and commercialising globally within three to five years.