First Commercial Biodiesel Shipment Through a Pipeline

John Davis

kindermorganAfter a successful test earlier this year (see my post from February 4, 2009), Kinder Morgan today made the first commercial shipment of biodiesel through a pipeline in the U.S. through the Southeastern United States’ Plantation duct.

This Reuters story
has details:

Kinder sent a 15,000-barrel batch of B5 — fuel that was 5 percent biodiesel and 95 percent diesel — from Collins, Mississippi, to Athens, Georgia, and Roanoke, Virginia. The product passed quality tests.

The volume of further shipments will be “driven by customers,” Kinder spokeswoman Emily Mir Thompson said by telephone.

Demand for the fuel has risen as federal mandates call for increasing levels of biofuels like biodiesel to be blended into petroleum fuels over time.

Kinder said it was optimistic it would be able to ship biodiesel on Plantation’s lateral Tennessee line serving both Chattanooga and Knoxville.

Company officials say they will be sending biodiesel only through the parts of the pipeline that move only gasoline and diesel while they work out issues of possible “trailback” of biodiesel into subsequent jet fuel batches.