KiOR renewable gasoline will fuel cars this year

By Luke Geiver | July 24, 2012

The U.S. EPA has granted KiOR Inc. the necessary permit to sell renewable cellulosic gasoline in the U.S. According to Fred Cannon, the EPA’s acceptance of KiOR’s advanced biofuel blendstock “is a landmark” for the company and for the renewables sector. “KiOR’s gasoline is the first renewable cellulosic gasoline that the EPA has registered for sale in the United States,” he said, adding that his company “will be fueling cars of American consumers this year.”

Under Section 211 of the Clean Air Act, the EPA requires importers and refiners of gasoline and diesel fuel to register all fuel set for sale before that fuel can be sold. Manufacturers of that fuel are required, according to the EPA, to analyze the combustion and evaporative emissions generated by their fuel and fuel additive products, survey existing scientific information for each product, and in some cases, conduct tests to screen for potential adverse health effects from a fuel’s emissions.

The advanced biofuels company will now be able to sell any fuel produced later this year from its production facility in Columbus, Miss.. Cannon said that facility will create over 150 new jobs and yield enough fuel to meet the transportation needs of roughly 20,000 families. The facility, he also said, “demonstrated how the Renewable Fuels Standard and forward-thinking states like Mississippi can combine to make a positive impact on both domestic energy policy and local rural economies.”

KiOR has already gone public, and currently trades at roughly $8.30. The company has developed a fluid-based catalytic cracking process that includes a catalyst regeneration step before a biocrude is hydrotreated into a drop-in blendstock advanced biofuel, much like conventional oil refineries operate today. Fuel produced at the company’s Mississippi facility requires no alterations before entering existing infrastructure used for storage, handling or, transportation.