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Keywords:

  • life cycle assessment;
  • hydrotreated renewable jet fuel

Abstract

Recently, an isoparaffin-rich jet fuel derived from camelina, a low-input nonfood oilseed crop, was flight-tested by a commercial airline. To date, all test results indicate that this hydrotreated renewable jet fuel (HRJ) not only meets stringent engine fuel and performance specifications but also reduces environmental emissions. Several scenarios are now being considered for camelina as a sustainable feedstock for advanced biofuel production. For example, growth of camelina in the Northern Plains of the United States on either marginal lands or as a rotation crop during fallow periods on existing lands already in food crop production can avoid the conflict with food cultivation and concerns with indirect land use change impacts. Updated estimates of camelina cultivation requirements and commercial scale oil recovery and refining were used to calculate life cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy demand for both HRJ and renewable diesel (green diesel, GD). GHG life cycle emissions for GD and HRJ are 18.0 and 22.4 g CO2 equiv/MJ fuel, which represent savings relative to petroleum counterparts of 80% and 75%, respectively. Scenario analyses were conducted to determine response to model assumptions and data uncertainty, including allocation methodology, N fertilizer application rate, N2O emission factor, source of H2, and farm diesel consumption. © 2010 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Environ Prog, 2010