IRENA’s Renewable Energy Innovation Outlook series analyses the emerging developments making renewable energy technologies (RETs) increasingly competitive in the world’s energy markets and systems. Renewable mini-grids, offshore wind technologies, advanced liquid biofuels, and ocean energy technologies open the series, with other key technologies, infrastructure, applications and products to follow. The series as a whole examines ways to further enhance the competiveness of RETs. Each Innovation Outlook identifies technology-, industry- and policy-related challenges to be overcome and assesses the potential breakthroughs and research needed to scale-up the deployment of renewable-based solutions.
Innovation Outlook: Advanced Liquid Biofuels shows how new breakthroughs can move the development of this key renewable energy technology forward. Success will depend on reliable performance and acceptable costs. Further innovation is also needed in relation to feedstocks and how biofuels are used. Technologies for the production of alcohols like ethanol and methanol could be poised for rapid growth, the report finds, while the search for diesel and jet fuels substitutes continues through efforts to commercialise Fischer-Tropsch (FT) or other processes, or by developing biological routes to hydrocarbons.