THE Global Renewable Fuels Alliance (GRFA), in cooperation with F.O. Licht, recently released its "Global Annual Ethanol Production Forecast," which predicts that fuel ethanol production will surpass 90 billion liters in 2014.
Despite a fragile global economy, GRFA is predicting nearly 2.7% growth in global ethanol output this year to 90.38 billion liters, up from 88 billion liters produced in 2013.
"While forecasts of global economic growth remain sluggish, the global ethanol industry continues to increase its production and contribution to the global economy," GRFA spokesperson Bliss Baker said.
The latest forecast from F.O. Licht shows significant growth in most major ethanol-producing regions in 2014. Output in the world's two largest producers, Brazil and the U.S., is projected to, respectively, be steady and increase almost 2.5%.
The European Union, another major producing region, is forecasted to see an 8% jump in ethanol production this year. Africa, an emerging region with huge biofuel production potential, is projected to have ethanol production growth of more than 136% in 2014.
"Although total volumes of ethanol produced in emerging regions like Africa are lower in comparison to more established producers, a production increase of over 130% is incredible because we know that these production increases will drive new investment in agricultural and job creation while reducing Africa's reliance on imported oil," Baker said.
A recent study by ABF Economics, titled "Contribution of the Ethanol Industry to the Economy of the United States," examined the impact of the U.S. ethanol industry on job creation, the economy, household income and foreign oil displacement in 2013.
It found that the 50.4 billion liters of ethanol produced in 2013 created 86,503 jobs, sustained an additional 300,277 indirect and induced jobs, contributed $44 billion to the nation's gross domestic product and added $30.7 billion to household incomes.
"This latest study ... confirms that a biofuel industry is a significant contributor to domestic economies and reinforces a 2012 GRFA report which found that 2010's global ethanol production supported nearly 1.4 million jobs in all sectors worldwide and contributed over $273 million to the global economy," Baker said.
"With increases in production in most ethanol-producing regions and countries, 2014 looks to be another year where the global ethanol industry will continue to make a positive economic contribution globally and again be a bright light in an otherwise dim global economy," Baker concluded.