Valero Energy Corporation and Darling Ingredients Inc. announced today that in anticipation of growing demand for renewable diesel due to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and global low carbon markets, the companies will initiate an engineering and construction cost review to analyze an additional project that would grow annual production capacity to 550 million gallons at the Diamond Green Diesel (DGD) facility in Norco, Louisiana. (Earlier post.)
The Diamond Green Diesel facility converts inedible oils and other waste feedstocks to produce Honeywell Green Diesel, a high-quality renewable fuel. Renewable diesel produced using the Ecofining process is chemically identical to petroleum-based diesel; it can be blended in any proportion with EN590 or ASTM 975 diesel. It also features up to an 80% lifecycle reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared with diesel from petroleum. Diamond Green Diesel started production in 2013 using Ecofining technology to produce Honeywell Green Diesel.
The DGD facility is currently undergoing an expansion that will increase annual production capacity from 160 million gallons of renewable diesel to 275 million gallons. This project is targeted for completion in the second quarter of 2018.
A final decision on the incremental 275 million gallons of annual production capacity is expected in 2018 and will be dependent on further engineering and cost estimates, as well as the status of government regulations. The proposed expansion would utilize existing DGD infrastructure and be built on property owned by Valero.
If a decision is made to proceed with the proposed expansion, the new capacity would be available in the first half of 2021. Current DGD operations are not expected to be impacted if the proposed expansion is built.