Editor's Note

Renewable diesel permeates fall conference circuit
By Tom Bryan | October 16, 2007
The perceived rivalry between biodiesel and renewable diesel will intensify this fall if, as expected, event organizers pit these related renewable fuels against each other in various conference agendas. That's likely to happen-justifiably so, perhaps-at one or more U.S. conferences taking place in October and November.

The dialogue will start Oct. 15 in Washington, D.C., where the International Fuel Quality Center (IFQC) will host a one-day briefing titled, "Can Biodiesel and Renewable Diesel Co-Exist?" If nothing else, the IFQC's guileless event label will get people talking-and probably fill seats, too. The centerpiece of this event is a roundtable discussion featuring a representative of the National Biodiesel Board, an executive from Neste Oil and an analyst from Hart Energy. Later, attendees may choose to stick around for the World Refining Fuels Conference, which will feature speakers from Tyson Foods Inc., Archer Daniels Midland Co. and the U.S. EPA, each presumably weighing in on the relationship between biodiesel and renewable diesel.

The chatter will resume later in the month when conference-goers hit Las Vegas for the Oil Price and Information Service National Supply Summit on Oct. 29-30. While getting the scoop on North America's increasingly delicate transportation fuels supply and demand situation, attendees of this event will also hear from executives representing Tyson Foods, ConocoPhillips and BP. These experts will provide commentary on how marrying refining and renewable fuels provides a potentially lucrative opportunity to create "green" fuel with attractive refining economics.

The faceoff will continue at the Soya & Oilseed Summit on Nov. 11-13 in Chicago, where an executive from the Energy Management Institute will discuss the current relationship between the biofuels and petroleum industries-and what traditional oil companies are looking for in biofuels partnerships.

Finally, Platts will host an event titled, "Renewable Diesel: Clean Fuels for a Growing North American Market" on Nov. 15-16 in Houston, Texas, where the previously mentioned players are expected to weigh in. Along with ConocoPhillips, Tyson Foods and BP, other renewable diesel stakeholders such as Syntroleum Corp. and UOP LLC and will be represented at this event.

The biodiesel industry will no doubt stay attuned to this dialogue as 2008 approaches and the NBB sets the stage for the National Biodiesel Conference & Expo in Orlando, Fla., on Feb 3-6. Meanwhile, we'll do our best to keep you in the loop.

Tom Bryan
Editorial Director
[email protected]
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