Aemetis expands biodiesel production in India ahead of schedule
Photo courtesy of Aemetis

Aemetis expands biodiesel production in India ahead of schedule

Aemetis, Inc., a leader in renewable natural gas and fuels, announced its Universal Biofuels subsidiary in India has successfully expanded its biodiesel production capacity to 60 million gallons annually, surpassing its target by more than a year. This move is in response to the growing demand from India’s government-owned Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs).

The company’s five-year plan outlines a growth from 50 million gallons per year to 100 million gallons by 2025. Further projects are underway to boost the Kakinada, India plant’s capacity to 80 million gallons, with completion expected in early 2024.

Sanjeev Gupta, president of Aemetis International, commented on the rising biodiesel market in India. He noted the Kakinada plant’s expansion and the upcoming phase that will further increase its capacity. Gupta projected that once the facility reaches a production capacity of 100 million gallons annually, it could generate revenues exceeding USD500 million.

Eric McAfee, chairman and CEO of Aemetis, emphasised the company’s dedication to enhancing renewable fuel production facilities. He highlighted the company’s focus on reducing carbon intensity as a competitive edge over traditional petroleum fuels.

Located near Kakinada’s eastern port in Andhra Pradesh, India, the Universal Biofuels facility stands as India’s largest biodiesel production site. This expansion aligns with the Indian government’s 2022 National Biofuels Policy, aiming for a 5% biodiesel blend, equivalent to around 1.25 billion gallons annually.

India, consuming roughly 25 billion gallons of diesel yearly, relies heavily on imported crude oil. The government’s 5% biodiesel blend goal is anticipated to decrease petroleum imports, support domestic agriculture, and enhance air quality.

Air pollution, significantly from diesel emissions, poses severe health risks in India. The Public Health Foundation of India reports that air pollution incurs more than USD36 billion in economic losses annually and contributes to a significant number of deaths.

Biodiesel, especially in heavy transportation, can reduce emissions by more than 90% compared to petroleum diesel. It also promotes domestic demand for agricultural feedstocks and waste byproducts.