Projet Biohec LIFE

Used cooking oils for biofuel production - Project BIOHEC-LIFE

European project
December 2016 to November 2019

The European project « BIOHEC-LIFE - Advanced Biodiesel in circular economy for low carbon public transports » aims at exploiting used cooking oils (UCO) for the production of environmentally-friendly biofuel while promoting the social economy sector.

Petroleum products still constitute about 95% of the total amount of fuel used for road transport in Europe and represent 21% of European greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Price fluctuations on the petroleum market pose an increasing threat to this sector. All this justifies all the more the use of renewable energies.

In order to meet its climate and energy targets, the European Union aims at a 10% share of renewables in the transport sector for 2020. This decision triggered a boom in the biofuel industry. 

Used cooking oils - waste originating from the food-processing and catering industries - play an important role in the emergence of biofuels. Their valorisation is encouraged by regulation, but less than 40% of UCO are currently collected and advanced biofuels (made from vegetable waste) still generate negative impacts on the environment and climate.

The current industries of biofuels rely heavily on importations and on long-distance transports towards processing units of high capacity: freight represents up to 20% of the total greenhouse gas emissions produced in the entire product life cycle.

BIOHEC-LIFE pursues five strategic objectives

  • Releasing an environmentally compatible prototype that is compact and adjustable and allows for the generation of biofuel;
  • Being able to supply transport fleets at local level with biofuel;
  • Validating the economic, social and environmental model of the sector;
  • Preparing the replication of this model on the European territory;
  • Developing methods that contribute to an increased rate of valorisation of UCO.

Biohec-LIFE is being co-financed by the European Commission within the scope of the LIFE program, which supports environmental, nature conservation and climate action projects throughout the EU.

The cooperation BIOHEC-LIFE

BIOHEC-LIFE in short

  • Opening conference, Brussels, March 2017
  • Prototype production and test, 2017
  • Validation of the economic, social and environmental model of the sector, November 2018
  • Market analysis and preparing the replication of this model on European territory, 2019
  • General report, October 2019
  • Closing conference, Brussels, October 2019


Alexis Willemot