The Department of Energy Resources and Tourism, has launched a Government backed $15 million Second Generation Biofuels Program. The objective of the Second Generation Biofuels Research and Development Program (Gen 2 Grant Program) is to provide support to the research, development and demonstration of new biofuel technologies which address the sustainable development of the biofuels industry in Australia.
Current biofuel production methods (first generation biofuels) may derive fuel from agricultural crops that compete with food for their feedstock, water and/or fertile land. As a result, these biofuels are limited in their ability to sustainably supplement fossil fuel supplies.
It is widely recognised that second generation biofuel technologies provide unique opportunities to supplement existing fuel supplies.
The Second Generation Biofuels Program provides matching grants, ranging from $1 to $5 million, for eligible projects involving the production of second generation biofuels in a sustainable manner.
The $15 million Second Generation Biofuels Program will be delivered over four years, from 2008-09 to 2011-12. The Second Generation Biofuels Program is funded through the Australian Government’s $500 million Renewable Energy Fund, which supports the adoption of renewable energy technologies in Australia.
Second Generation Biofuels Program activities must be carried out in Australia and have strong early-stage commercialisation and emissions-reduction potential. The types of project activities which the Program will fund involve:
- Research and development activities.
- Demonstration and early-stage commercialisation activities.
Second Generation Biofuels Program primarily involves:
- Capital equipment excluding land and buildings.
- Salary costs for research and development, demonstration and proof of concept activities.
- Administrative on costs associated with salary costs.
Gen 2 Definition
Second generation biofuels are produced from biogenic feedstocks which:
- Do not impact negatively on food supplies and/or
- Utilise feedstocks that are not fit for human or animal consumption. Examples include: algae, waste from biological sources, cellulosics, crop residues, forestry surplus and residues etc.
Second Generation Biofuels Program assessment criteria listed below.
Criterion 1: Contribution to Second Generation Biofuels Development
The ability of the project to contribute to the development of second generation biofuels in Australia, as defined by the Program Guidelines.
Criterion 2: Sustainability and Environmental Benefits
The ability of the project to develop second generation biofuel feedstocks, technologies and processes that will lead to significantly greater sustainability and emissions benefits compared with fossil fuel technologies.
Criterion 3: Commercial Potential
The long term cost competitiveness and commercial viability and potential of the project.
Criterion 4: Stakeholder Support
The level of stakeholder support for the project, including the amount and nature of matching funds including eligible ‘in-kind’ contributions.
Criterion 5: Project Management Skills
The ability of the applicant to manage the project and willingness to disseminate the outcomes of the project.
Applications for the Second Generation Biofuels Program close at 5pm Friday, 30 January 2009.