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Lignin-based fuels the aim for Maersk

Denmark-based conglomerate Maersk is working on two new projects to develop biomass-based marine fuels.

Each project involves work using lignin taken from plants and from the production of paper and bioethanol.

‘Lignin has a variety of industrial uses already because of its chemical characteristics, energy content and its abundance,’ says Peter Normark Sørensen of Maersk Oil Trading, the Maersk Group's oil buying arm. ‘Yet its potential as a marine diesel fuel is a relatively uncharted area.’

One project see Maersk partnering with Progression Industry while the other sees it working with the likes of Dong Energy under the umbrella of a committee called Biomass for the 21st Century, co-funded by the Danish National Advanced Technology foundation.

It has been reported that, if Profression Industry can make lignin-based fuel that meets Maersk’s requirements, it will commit to buying 50,000 tonnes of it in the future.