- The energy company and the Spanish association of cooperatives representing more than 1 million farmers and ranchers will promote the production of biofuels from agricultural and livestock waste
- Cepsa's Research Center will analyze waste from the olive, olive oil, wine and livestock industries to determine the feasibility of transforming these raw materials into biofuels
- 2G biofuels contribute to the circular economy, have up to 90% lower CO2 emissions than traditional fuels and are a driving force behind the decarbonization of air, sea and land transportation
Cepsa, through its Research Center, will analyze whether the residual biomass generated by different industries, such as the olive, olive oil, wine and livestock industries, can be transformed into raw material to produce second-generation biofuels in its industrial centers. Meanwhile, Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias de España will coordinate the contact between the company and the different cooperatives within the association.
Second-generation biofuels, whose raw material does not compete with food, contribute to the circular economy because they are produced from waste that would otherwise end up in landfills. Furthermore, as their CO2 emissions are up to 90% lower than those of traditional fuels, they are a key element for the decarbonization of sectors that are difficult to electrify, such as heavy road, maritime and air transport.
Javier Antúnez, Cepsa’s Biofuels Manager, said: "At Cepsa, we are convinced that moving forward with the energy transition requires collaboration and establishing synergies along the entire value chain. That is why we have reached this agreement with Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias de España, which represents more than 1 million farmers and ranchers across the country, with the aim of identifying new sources of circular raw materials for the production of second-generation biofuels, while forming new partnerships that generate revenue and economic development in rural areas."
Gabriel Trenzado, managing director of Cooperativas Agro-alimentarias de España, said: "We have fostered the creation of new value chains for agricultural raw materials, from bioenergy to new biomaterials for decarbonization, through our participation in various projects within the Horizon 2020 program, such as COOPID. Cooperatives are specialized in rural production and logistics, from crops to by-product and waste management, but they need strong partnerships with energy sector leaders to develop the full potential of the bioeconomy. This promising agreement with Cepsa will be fulfilled when it materializes in specific projects with our cooperative companies," he added.
The agreement also aims to facilitate partnerships with cooperatives interested in biomass production using cover crops. Cepsa, through its study with the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), will be able to identify the most suitable areas and crops for planting. These crops, which do not compete with food, generate feedstock to produce 2G biofuels while improving soil quality and increasing its rainwater retention capacity.
Cepsa thus continues working to diversify its sources of raw materials to produce these types of biofuels, one of the industry’s main challenges, while also promoting Spain’s greater autonomy in terms of energy supply and independence. The company's objective is to lead 2G biofuels manufacturing in Spain and Portugal by 2030.
Driving rural development
Agri-food cooperatives directly employ 123,000 people in Spain, most of them in rural areas, which makes them an important economic and social driving force in the least populated parts of our country, known as "empty Spain." The possibility of using residual biomass will also contribute to the cooperatives’ development, adding value to the activity of farmers and ranchers by diversifying their sources of income.
Since 2023, the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has been rewarding farmers and ranchers who carry out at least one voluntary sustainable practice, including the development of cover crops among woody crops, such as olive groves or fruit tree plantations.