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Biodiesel derived from used cooking oils gets boost from new Quality Protocol

The Environment Agency has published a new Quality Protocol designed to boost customer confidence in biodiesel derived from used cooking oil and rendered animal fats.

A Quality Protocol sets out end of waste criteria for the production of a product from a specific waste type. It safeguards the quality of outputs from compliant producers, making it easier for industry to divert waste from lower value uses or disposal and into the production of quality biodiesel.

Biodiesel from waste cooking oil and rendered animal fats was previously considered to be waste until the point it was burned in an engine.

However, the new Quality Protocol moves this point of recovery up the up the supply chain to the point where the fuel meets the requirements of an approved standard for use as an automotive or heating fuel.

It is anticipated the Quality Protocol will benefit both producers and end users by increasing the amount of biodiesel produced. The protocol may also lead to an increase in the amount of waste cooking oil collected for biodiesel production, helping industry to meet the Governments Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation, which sets staggered targets for the uptake of biofuels over the coming years.

WRAP market development director Marcus Gover said: The Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation is a significant driver for the expansion of the biodiesel market and represents opportunity for growth among reprocessors of waste cooking oil.

The Government has agreed that at least five per cent of fuel consumed in the UK must be biofuels by 2010/11. In light of this target, the Quality Protocol has an important role to play in increasing both the quantity and quality of fuel available to vehicle owners and assuring them of the materials quality.

Environment Agency environment and business partnerships head Martin Brocklehurst said:
The production of biodiesel yields both environmental and financial benefits. The Quality Protocol end of waste programme removes commercial barriers to the reuse of discarded raw materials, which leads to carbon savings and reduces the burden of regulation whilst maintaining protection for our environment. Im confident this Quality Protocol will be welcomed by businesses operating across the biodiesel production and distribution supply chain.

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