A review of North American biofel production, policies and research

The following report provides a brief overview of the development, production, policies and trends promoting biofuels in Canada and the U.S. in addition to some key contacts for collaboration with the f3.


This report is the result of a collaborative project within the Swedish Knowledge Centre for Renewable Transportation Fuels (f3). Information for the report was collected through literature reviews and interviews with leading researchers in Canada and the US during a research trip to attend the Advanced Biofuels Symposium in Montreal.

The production of biofuels has increased dramatically in North America in recent years. The United States (U.S.) is leading this development and has promoted biofuels through a number of policies and mandates through the Renewable Fuels Standard to drive production, research and innovation in the area. Canada has also intensified the promotion of biofuels in recent years through the Renewable Fuels Regulation, in addition to a number of provincial policies and mandates to promote biofuels. Ethanol is currently the dominant fuel in both countries, with blend rates in petrol between 5-10 percent, but with even higher blends in some areas in development, depending upon the region. The promotion and policies for ethanol fuels help to drastically increase their production and use in the past 10 years. The U.S. is currently the largest producer of ethanol in the world, with nearly 55 billion liters of ethanol produced in 2014. Canada has also seen a large increase in biofuel production during the last 10 years, with production increasing by a factor of 10. Currently Canada produces roughly 1.7 billion liters of ethanol per year. Other biofuels, such as biodiesel, have only marginal volumes in comparison, although roughly 300 million liters of biodiesel were produced in 2014 in Canada and 6 billion liters in the U.S.

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