Peer-Reviewed Life Cycle Analysis Shows Camelina-based Renewable Jet Fuel Reduces Emissions by 75 percent

Bozeman, Mont (December 1, 2010) – A life cycle analysis of the carbon footprint of camelina-based biojet fuel concludes that the renewable fuel reduces CO2 emissions by 75 percent compared to traditional petroleum-based jet fuel, according to a peer-reviewed paper published in the journal Environmental Progress & Sustainable Energy.  The study also found that “green” diesel made through the same process reduces CO2 emissions by 80 percent.

“This peer-reviewed analysis proves what we’ve known for a long time – that camelina is an ideal feedstock for renewable jet fuel,” said Scott Johnson, President of Sustainable Oils. “The peer-review process demonstrates without a doubt the significant CO2 reductions that camelina based jet fuel offers. Our airline and military partners can be even more confident about the benefits of using camelina-based fuels.”

The research, in collaboration with UOP, a Honeywell company, was conducted at Michigan Tech University, a leading research university. The study was based on camelina grown in Montana and processed into biojet fuel using UOP hydroprocessing technology.  

Camelina-based biojet fuel is well positioned to be the renewable fuel of choice for airlines and the U.S. military once the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) approves a specification for renewable jet fuel, known as Hydrotreated Renewable Jet (HRJ). The standard is expected to be fully approved in 2011.

In addition to camelina’s low carbon footprint, a range of other factors make it an attractive choice as a feedstock for renewable, domestically-produced advanced biofuels. Camelina grows in rotation with wheat and/or on marginal land, so it does not compete for agricultural land. Camelina “meal” has been approved for use as livestock and poultry feed, so growing camelina actually contributes to overall food supply.

Camelina-based jet fuel has been among the most, if not the most, heavily tested of any renewable jet fuel, with successful tests by the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Navy, and Japan Airlines. These groups have conducted multiple tests of the fuel on different aircraft types, engines, and at different speeds. Camelina-based fuels have passed every test.

In November 2010, Sustainable Oils’ camelina-based biofuel met another key performance milestone with the Navy’s successful test of the camelina in a MH-60S helicopter. The test represented another step toward the certification of camelina-based fuels for use in all Navy and Marine aircraft.
Lastly, camelina does not require additional research and development or pilot scale programs. It can be planted and harvested with existing equipment, and refined into HRJ with technology that is widely available today.

In 2009, the U.S. Navy and the Air Force contracted with Sustainable Oils for more than 140,000 gallons of camelina biojet fuel. Just recently, both groups exercised contract options for additional camelina biojet fuel, bringing the total to nearly 500,000 gallons to be delivered in 2010 and early 2011.

About Sustainable Oils
A subsidiary of Seattle-based Targeted Growth, Inc., Sustainable Oils, Inc. is a producer and marketer of renewable, environmentally clean, and high-value camelina-based fuel.  The company is focused on the continued research and development of dedicated energy crops. Sustainable Oils solidly supports both agricultural and green energy initiatives with camelina, which is efficiently and economically grown even on marginal lands, harvested with traditional equipment, and requires minimal water.

About Sustainable Oils

What happens when you marry some of the best minds in ag biotech with one of the leading biodiesel producers in North America? Farmers get better profit opportunities. Consumers get clean, renewable, domestic fuel. And Sustainable Oils is born.

Sustainable Oils was formed in November 2007 as a joint venture between agricultural bioscience company Targeted Growth, Inc. and Houston-based biofuel producer Green Earth Fuels, LLC.

Through Targeted Growth’s research support, we developed a select version of the unique oilseed crop, camelina, which is used to produce a high-quality, efficient biodiesel. With the ability to thrive on little water, camelina offers growers the exciting option of producing a profitable crop with minimal inputs Camelina is not intended for human consumption, so it doesn’t compete with food industry demands. Camelina biodiesel has the potential to become one of the most popular green fuels on the market by meeting our increasing need for alternative energy with value-added agriculture.

And Sustainable Oils is just the company to make this possible. Learn more about our parents to see why sometimes two heads are better than one.

High oil content, low fertilizer requirements and co-product use combine for low carbon footprint

Our Parents

Sustainable Oils was born when Targeted Growth, Inc. and Green Earth Fuels joined forces.

Targeted Growth, Inc.
Targeted Growth, Inc. (TGI) is a Seattle-based biotechnology corporation focused on developing crops with improved yield and superior quality for agriculture and energy industries. The company has worked since 1998 to improve yield in oilseeds with demonstrated, predictable annual increases of 20-40%. By integrating biotechnology and modern molecular breeding methods, TGI has developed a complete approach to making the most of food and fuel crops. In 2001, TGI established its Canadian subsidiary, Targeted Growth Canada, in Saskatoon. Since 2006, TGI’s camelina program has identified improved varieties of camelina.


Green Earth Fuels
Green Earth Fuels (GEF) is one of the largest producers of biodiesel in the United States. It is led by a team of energy industry specialists operating production and distribution sites that manufacture environmentally clean, quality biodiesel. By promoting feedstock sustainability and maximizing processing benefits, Green Earth Fuels works to advance both agricultural and energy efforts. Growers can be confident their camelina will be used because Sustainable Oils has an exclusive supply contract with GEF for camelina oil.

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