Neste has started up the world’s first large-scale renewable propane production facility in Rotterdam in the Netherlands. The first cargo of renewable propane has been delivered to SHV Energy, which will market and sell the product to its customers across Europe as BioLPG. Neste’s new facility has a production capacity of 40,000 tonnes per year; SHV Energy will be the exclusive distributor, supplying 160,000 tonnes over four years. (Earlier post.)
BioLPG will enable users of existing fossil fuels to reduce their carbon footprint, without any modifications to existing gas applications technology. BioLPG can be used within a full range of existing LPG applications, from transport and commercial heating to retail leisure cylinders.
SHV Energy is proud to be part of this unique renewable energy project and congratulates Neste on a fantastic engineering achievement. In use, BioLPG will be very low carbon and extremely clean. The biggest environmental contribution that it can make is when it replaces existing high carbon solid and liquid fuels in homes and businesses located beyond the natural gas grid. The mission of all SHV Energy companies is, Advancing Energy Together and this is exactly what BioLPG will mean for the thousands of customers over seven European countries who will start to enjoy the benefits of this new product very soon.—Fulco van Lede, Management Board Member of SHV Energy
Neste’s Rotterdam refinery primarily produces premium-quality Neste MY Renewable Diesel from various waste and residues as well as vegetable oils. The new unit will purify and separate renewable propane from the sidestream gases produced by the refinery.
Propane-rich off-gas is produced during the NExBTL renewable diesel process; the gas is usually recovered during the Stabilization and Recycle stages of the process.
Usually, the propane off-gas from the Recycle section is used in the steam methane reformer (SMR) plant for the production of hydrogen and the propane off-gas from the Stabilization section is used in a natural gas boiler to raise process steam.
The bio-propane production process increases the added value of this sidestream significantly.