Objections to using HVO fuel focus mainly on the provenance of its supply and whether this has a negative effect on changes to land use, like deforestation, in favour of energy-crop cultivation leading to a net-gain in emissions. This is known as ILUC – indirect land-use change. BAM’s research indicates that this issue isn’t proven for HVO since the vast majority is produced from waste products – primarily used cooking oil (UCO).
100% of biofuel in the UK is from waste, with UCO representing 93% of that, according to Government statistics, and current Government and European policy is for increased use of biofuels as part of the UK fuel mix.
Certification is hugely important when it comes to providing assurance that HVO is indeed from sustainable sources. BAM ensures all HVO supplied to its projects is certified by the ISCC (International Sustainability and Carbon Certification) and ZEMO’s Renewable Fuels Assurance Scheme. These schemes provide a reliable and transparent certification. The Department for Transport (DfT) also produces quarterly reports concerning biofuel use in the context of the transport sector.
These certification requirements are being further strengthened in 2023 with the introduction of the ‘Bioledger’, led by the European Waste-based & Advanced Biofuels Association (EWABA), an independent not-for-profit body, regarded as offering the most stringent assurances.
BAM recognises that certification is crucial in the debate around the sustainable use of HVO.