Australian biofuel plant holds key to BP's renewable energy future

A new biofuel factory in Australia was at the forefront of BP’s efforts to go green under former boss Bernard Looney.

Indeed, BP Australia’s boss Frederic Baudry describes the country as the ‘poster child’ of the FTSE 100 giant’s highly ambitious global energy transition strategy.

For 65 years, the site provided a steady source of employment, and fuel, to generations living in this small industrial offshoot in Western Australia. 

But with planes grounded and cars sitting idle in driveways during the Covid-19 pandemic, demand for fuel collapsed, further squeezing profit margins.

BP shut the plant, laying off 600 workers, and converted the site into an import terminal to ship in cheaper fuel from overseas.

Two years on, the site is on the cusp of being repurposed again to spearhead the oil major’s pivot from hydrocarbons to renewable energy. 

It has been earmarked for a new generation of fuel refinery, one which makes sustainable aviation fuel with raw materials such as used cooking oil or household waste, and renewable diesel using vegetable oils, animal fats and other biowaste products.

With construction expected to get under way next year, BP hopes it will be its first global biofuel project off the blocks, powering planes, trucks and cars.

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Source of data and images: dailymail

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