ABFA Video Series Continues: Viesel Fuels Utilize Enzymes and Resins to Create Fuels for the Future
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
The latest installment of ABFA’s ongoing video series continues to tell the stories of innovation of the burgeoning advanced biofuels industry through the companies producing renewable gallons and breaking ground on new facilities – our members. Today we profile Viesel Fuel, which operates the only facility in the world using a combination of enzymes and resins to produce up to 11 million gallons of biodiesel a year.
We spoke with Stu Lamb, President & CEO of Viesel Fuels, about their technology and the role of public policy on the growing advanced biofuels industry. “Viesel is a small refinery in Stuart, Florida that manufactures biodiesel, and we manufacture with a very unique process whereby we use resins and we use enzymes and we’re the only people in the world that use that combination,” said Lamb.
In the summer of 2013 Viesel Fuel completed the upgrade of their biofuel refinery to a novel biodiesel production facility. Viesel Fuel’s process uses an exclusive enzyme catalyzed reaction, developed in collaboration with Novozymes of Denmark, followed by a unique resin system for crude biodiesel refining. With the use of their proprietary process, Viesel Fuel has pioneered the production of enzymatic biodiesel on a commercial scale and is on track to produce about ten million gallons of biodiesel this year made utilizing used frying or cooking oil collected from hundreds of businesses across America. “It’s a very cost-effective, low-capital process that allows us to make biodiesel to certification and we’re probably the lowest cost producer in the United States,” continued Lamb.
Viesel’s unique process has helped to demonstrate the use of enzyme catalysts coupled with resin technologies in the production of biodiesel economically feasible on a commercial scale. Further demonstrating the economic benefit of enzymes is their ability to handle a variety of inexpensive feedstocks making enzymes a new financially prudent option for biodiesel producers.
Viesel’s refinery is fully compliant and has obtained approvals from the Environmental Protection Agency both as an approved biomass based diesel under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and as a fuel additive under the Clean Air Act. Currently, their biodiesel is being used in the transportation market, the marine market, and the agriculture market throughout Florida.
So, what message does Lamb believe the industry needs from Washington to succeed? “If the policies the government has are inconsistent then we can’t go to the marketplace to get strong financial institutions to back our innovations and our growth,” continued Lamb. “We need the government as our partner.”
You can watch the interview video above or check out ABFA’s video center for previous member profiles. Make sure to stay tuned to this blog for additional perspectives from the companies leading America’s transition to a renewable fuels future.