Sustainability criteria for biofuels

Biobased petrol and biobased diesel sold under the biofuels mandate must meet the sustainability criteria for biofuels.

About the sustainability criteria

The sustainability criteria for biofuels help mitigate any unintended environmental impacts as a result of the biofuels mandates.

The criteria are prescribed and outlined in the Liquid Fuel Supply Regulation 2016 and the Liquid Fuels Supply Act 1984.

The sustainability criteria are:

  • a greenhouse gas assessment that requires unblended biofuels, regardless of the feedstock, to deliver greenhouse gas savings of at least 20% when compared to regular petrol or diesel
  • a certification under the relevant environmental sustainability standard specific to the relevant feedstock.

Obligations for fuel sellers

Liable fuel sellers (i.e. retailers and/or wholesalers) may be required to show that the biofuels sold through their fuel facilities meet the sustainability criteria.

To check if a producer is accredited under one of the required sustainability standards, you should contact your fuel supplier or biofuels producer.

Contractual arrangements with fuel suppliers or biofuels producers are one way of ensuring you are sourcing sustainable biofuels.

If requested by the department you may be required to provide evidence such as a copy of the producer's sustainability certification or a copy of relevant supplier contracting provisions.

Refer to certified biofuels producers (see below) for a list of producers in Queensland who meet the relevant sustainability standards.

Read more about the responsibilities of fuel sellers to comply with the biofuels mandates.

Obligations for biofuels producers

Greenhouse gas assessment

Biofuel producers must demonstrate that they meet the greenhouse gas benefit criterion, regardless of the type of feedstock used. The greenhouse gas savings required are at least 20% when compared to regular petrol or diesel.

To do this, you can either:

  • commission your own greenhouse gas assessment
  • or
  • obtain approval from the Department of Environment, Science and Innovation that your production process is covered.

Email for further information.

Waste feedstocks

Biofuels produced from waste streams need to meet the greenhouse gas criterion only. No other sustainability standards apply. This encourages the production of sustainable biofuels from legally obtained waste streams.

Check the Waste feedstocks under the Liquid Fuel Supply Regulation 2016: Guideline (PDF, 312KB) for information and examples of feedstocks that are considered to be 'wastes' under the biofuels mandate and sustainability criteria for biofuels. Email for more information.

Sustainability standards

The Regulation provides industry with commonly used standards to demonstrate compliance with the general sustainability criteria. Refer to Liquid Fuel Supply Regulation 2016 Schedule 1 Sustainability criteria for biofuels for more information.

If you hold a valid certification for an alternative sustainability standard that manages environmental risks, you may apply for approval of the nominated standard as 'equivalent to' the relevant standard in the Regulation. Biofuels producers can contact for information on applications for approval.

A nominated standard may only be approved if it provides sustainability measures that are at least equivalent to the sustainability standard.

The sustainability criteria set environmental performance standards that must be satisfied by the relevant entities within the biofuels supply chain, in order for the biofuel to be eligible under the Queensland biofuels mandates.

Certified biofuels producers

Biofuels producers can be certified against different environmental sustainability standards.

There are currently 2 commercial biorefineries in Queensland who produce biofuels and meet the relevant sustainability standards.

  • Wilmar BioEthanol (Wilmar Sugar Australia), Sarina
    Australia's largest producer of sugar-based ethanol with capacity to produce 60 million litres of ethanol each year.
  • Ecotech Biodiesel, Narangba
    Able to produce 30 million litres of bio-based diesel from used cooking oil and tallow.

Contact us

  • If you are a fuel seller and require further information about the sustainability criteria and fuel seller requirements, email
  • If you are an existing or prospective biofuels producer and have questions about the sustainability criteria, email

Also consider…