terutalk
 

April 2012 News and Matters of Interest

PREV Main Next

CH4 and Synergy Dairy Introduce New York's Largest Biogas Facility

CH4 BiogasThe Florida-based green energy development firm CH4 Biogas has announced the May 1, 2012 grand opening of New York State's first co-digestion manure/food processor waste project, which is also the largest anaerobic digestion (AD) installation in the state. The plant is located at the 2,000-head Synergy Dairy in Covington, Wyoming County in western New York state. CH4 Biogas LLC built, owns, and operates the plant, as Synergy Biogas LLC. Bigadan A/S of Denmark is a partner in CH4 Biogas and has been specializing in practical biogas technology for more than 25 years. The company's co-digestion technology mixes and pasteurizes food-grade waste and manure to be processed in the AD vessel; biomethane exiting the chamber can be fed directly to a 1.4 megawatt generation capacity J420 Jenbacher engine supplied by GE, or cleaned and compressed as renewable natural gas. Solids are processed for recovery of a fiber product, while a liquid fertilizer is produced after lagoon storage. The grand opening follows months of uncertainty, settled when the New York State Energy Research Development Association (NYSERDA) provided a $1 million grant and the regional electric utility National Grid agreed to the interconnection. Synergy Biogas met end-of-year timelines for gas production, electricity generation and grid interconnection and thus garnered around $2.8 million in renewable energy tax credit grants to help defray construction costs. The project has been championed by Senator Charles Shumer who will be on-hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony along with Kenneth Daly, President of National Grid, Frank Murray, president and CEO of NYSERDA and other leaders in government and industry. The ceremony is open to the public but requires registration in advance. 04/30/2012

ENER-G Generates 2.4 MWe from Landfill Gas for Nissan Plant in Mexico

ENER-GUnited Kingdom based ENER-G Holdings plc has announced that ENER-G Natural Power and its sister company Biogas Technology Limited are now generating power from landfill gas under a long-term supply contract to Nissan's car manufacturing facility in Aguascalientes, Mexico. The £4.4 million investment by the ENER-G group will reduce carbon dioxide emissions at the 42 hectare (104 acre) landfill site owned by the Municipality of Aquascalientes by approximately 90,000 tons per year. The 10-year old landfill accepts 3.9 million tons of waste annually. In a two-stage program, Biogas Technology was appointed by the Municipality to initially collect and destroy the biogas emissions by flaring, and now has installed two 1.6 megawatt electric (MWe) generator sets fueled by the cleaned landfill gas. Power is transmitted nearly 20 kilometers to the Nissan Mexicana plant via a supply contract with the Federal Commission of Electricity. Aguascalientes lies at an elevation of 1800 meters above sea level; the thin air of the high elevation required that the gensets be de-rated from nameplate capacity of 3.2 MWE to generation capacity of 2.5 MWe. The long-term supply contract guarantees delivery of 2.475 MWe from the landfill generation facility to the Nissan manufacturing plant. Nissan is the first automotive plant in Mexico to use electricity from biogas, and it is the first project of its kind for any Nissan manufacturing plant in the world. Armando Avila, Vice President of Manufacturing of Nissan Mexicana, said: "At Nissan we are proud to work with the city of Aguascalientes and ENER-G Natural Power to improve the environment. This project allows us four years to advance the environmental challenges of our program Nissan Green Program 2016 to reduce CO2 emissions." 04/30/2012

University of Florida Team Will Lead US-India Advanced Biofuels Project

University of FloridaThe University of Florida (UF) last week clarified its role in the broadly collaborative Joint Energy Research and Development Center (JCERDC), a US-India clean energy advancement program announced earlier this month. The overall goals of the project are to reduce energy consumption, cut dependence on petroleum products and increase the use of renewable fuels. The UF-led team is charged with development of second generation biofuels from inedible plant materials. The team will begin by optimizing several non-food crops as biofuel feedstock, and then expand to utilizing waste streams in the cellulosic ethanol conversion process.The biofuels project funding is about $21 million, which includes about $2.7 million in federal funding for the UF. The UF biofuels project team includes researchers from the University of Missouri, Virginia Tech, Montclair State University, Texas A&M University, Show Me Energy Cooperative, and Green Technologies, that working with a counterpart team based in India and led by the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology-Hyderabad. “This award highlights many of the attributes that make the University of Florida a world-class research institution,” said David Norton, UF vice president for research. “It illustrates our commitment to building interdisciplinary partnerships, both domestically and internationally, to achieve important scientific goals such as developing renewable clean-energy solutions.” The overall funding for the five year JCERDC project totals over $125 million. Of that, the US Department of Energy is providing $25 million, the Indian government is committed to $25 million, and the research team members from both countries have pledged over $75 million. The other two teams are led by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, focused on solar energy, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, targeting building efficiency. 04/28/2012

Novozymes Joins Danish Green Energy Consortium

NovozymesNovozymes has announced its new seat on the board as it joins a Danish green energy consortium advancing the multi-technologic Måbjerg Energy Concept, co-founded by DONG Energy in August of last year. The consortium has been assessing potential construction of a second generation bioethanol plant as an expansion to the existing Måbjerg BioEnergy biogas plant. The expansion would add a hydrogen generation plant, convert the existing biomass-fired CHP plant to handle waste products from the bioethanol plant and construct a waste treatment plant that will use enzymes to separate waste fractions for use in biogas production. Novozymes now joins other participants in Måbjerg Energy Concept, co-founding utility Vestforsyning, Struer Forsyning and the waste company Nomi. Jørgen Udby, Vestforsyning's CEO, is the chairman of the consortium. The new complex would thus integrate a number of different technologies for conversion of waste products and biomass, producing an annual 94 million cubic meters of biogas and 73 million liters (19 million gallons) of bioethanol, as well as district heating for 20,000 households and electricity for several thousand homes. “We invited Novozymes to join the consortium because we’re keen to have the company participate in the phase of the project leading up to the decision to press ahead with the plant,” says Jørgen Udby, CEO of Maabjerg Energy Concept. “Novozymes’ enzymes and biotech expertise are crucial for stable and profitable production of biogas and bioethanol from household waste and straw.” 04/28/2012

Arisdyne Cavitation Pretreatment Installed at HERO BX Biodiesel Facility

ArisdyneThe Ohio-based biomass pre-treatment specialist Arisdyne Systems Inc. has announced adoption of its patented Controlled Flow CavitationTM (CFC) technology by HERO BX after two months of successful testing. HERO BX is a dba of Lake Erie Biofuels, LLC. The plant started operations in 2007 and is Pennsylvania’s first large-scale biodiesel production facility. The on-site testing proved that the hydrodynamic cavitation system decreased enzyme consumption by more than 25% while also reducing unwanted generation of monoglyceride bi-products. The kinetic sheer force energy developed by cavitation shatters biomass feedstock to nano-scale particles, increasing surface area dramatically enhancing enzymatic reaction capacity. Optimized mass transfer allows near-instantaneous transesterification and leads to greater catalyst savings. Installation of Arisdyne’s CFC system does not require production shut down, saving about three weeks of production output. Arisdyne's commercialization progress has been rapid: in February, the company's systems were licensed by United Ethanol after testing, and earlier this month, the US Patent and Trade Office granted the company a second patent for low energy yield improvement of ethanol fermentation. “In today’s weak economic conditions, margin improvement is everything,” said Dr. Peter Reimers, president and CEO of Arisdyne. “CFC can be applied to the entire value chain for Oleochemical processes starting with yield enhancement in the refining/degumming step and now as well in biodiesel catalyst savings. Biodiesel producers are faced with uncertain industry policy. Having catalyst savings and yield improvements in degumming, neutralization of crude oils is crucial to the oils and fat processing industries.” 04/28/2012 

DECC Publishes 2012 UK Bioenergy Strategy

United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced publication of the UK Bioenergy Strategy, together with a series of supporting documents. The new Strategy is in response to a formal Bioenergy Review issued last December by the government's Committee on Climate Change, and was developed in collaboration with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (defra) and the Department for Transportation (DfT). The Strategy provides a framework of four key Principles to guide UK bioenergy policy toward sustainability while minimizing risks. The Principles are examined in context of applications to ensure that bioenergy resource supplies are acquired in a sustainable manner, then assesses risk minimization of a number of bioenergy deployment pathways and from this perspective, sets future goals for national support for bioenergy development. Principle 1: Deliver genuine carbon reductions while looking at system wide carbon impacts, including indirect land use change (ILUC); Principle 2: Must be cost effective, providing equivalent or lower carbon emissions compared to alternatives; Principle 3: Should seek to maximize benefits and minimize costs of impacts and unintended consequences across the UK economy; Principle 4: Establish regular monitoring of impacts that will accrue from increased bioenergy deployment and ensure timely response and remediation. To support pubic understanding and application of the Principles, the DECC has also developed the 2050 Web Tool that allows users to outline their own pathway for bioenergy development and emissions reduction, and see the resulting impact using real UK data. 04/27/2012 

Neste Oil Enters US Advanced Biofuels Market with NExBTL Biodiesel  

Neste OilFinland's Neste Oil has announced its first successful bulk sale and delivery of its NExBTL renewable biodiesel in the US advanced biofuels market. Neste has been closely focused on production of its renewable biofuels from waste oils and residues. The biodiesel was produced in Neste's Porvoo biorefinery in Finland from waste fats. In February, results were presented of a long-standing collaboration between Neste and Finnish agricultural giant Raisio highlighting use of the residuals from animal feed and grocery food production for conversion to the advanced biofuel. "We are very pleased to see that legislation on renewable fuels and our ability to meet the import regulations for these types of fuels are progressing in various markets. This enables us to participate and contribute to the greenhouse gas reduction efforts around the world," says Matti Lehmus, Neste Oil's Executive Vice President, Oil Products and Renewables. "Our entry into the US renewable fuel market is an important milestone for us, as the US represents a major market for premium-quality biofuels. We are also proud of our contribution to the US Renewable Fuel Standard. The RFS regulation enables and encourages the reduction of greenhouse gases and diversification of the US fuel supply. NExBTL renewable diesel is an ideal low-carbon fuel for the US market as it is completely fungible with the existing extensive infrastructure - and is accepted within the existing refinery and pipeline distribution system. In addition to the US, we have also expanded our customer base in Europe as well, opening up new opportunities for NExBTL sales as we go forward."  04/26/2012 

Covanta Completes CLEERGAS Energy from Waste Demonstration Testing 

Covanta EnergyNew Jersey based Covanta Energy Corporation has announced successful completion of commercial demonstration testing of its starved-air energy from waste (EfW) system. The unit has demonstrated up-time reliability over 95% after months of processing up to 350 tons per day of unprocessed post-recycled municipal solid waste (MSW). The EfW system brings waste residuals to gasification temperatures in a reduced air retort; synthetic fuel gas (syngas) produced is combusted in industry-standard equipment for energy recovery, coupled to high-end emissions control technology. The company has learned to effectively integrate community-based MSW recycling with EfW processing, benefiting both and generally resulting in an increase in the overall recycling rate. Covanta will now be able to offer a relatively small, 300 ton per day modular EfW unit to aid communities with what it defines as the three critical challenges of municipal solid waste: sustainable waste management, renewable energy generation, and climate change. According to Anthony J. Orlando, Covanta’s president and chief executive officer: “We are always working to stay on the cutting edge of technology to convert waste into clean energy. This new gasification technology is truly exciting. Communities interested in emerging technologies can now partner with Covanta’s industry leading team to assure successful project execution.” Covanta filed a federal trademark application for COVANTA CLEERGAS (Covanta Low Emissions Energy Recovery Gasification) on March 20, 2012 for the technology, and now awaits registration. 04/26/2012 

Chemrec Black Liquor Waste Gasification Plants Will be Offered in China 

ChemrecThe Swedish firm Chemrec has announced an agreement with China Tianchen Engineering Corporation Co Ltd (TCC) that will bring the company's turn-key waste gasification plants into China. Chemrec's technology is used to convert pulp and paper mill "black liquor" wastes into synthetic fuel gas (syngas). Black liquor waste is a thick liquid form of biomass available in large quantities at essentially all paper mills globally that Chemrec can gasify in a single pass through the retort with minimal non-product emissions. The high-quality syngas can then be reformed into a wide variety of refined commodities including advanced biofuels and foundation bio-sourced chemicals. The company has commercialized and is operating a variety of pressurized gasification formats including both air- and oxygen-blown gasification, with units now processing from 100 to over 4000 tons of waste per day. The agreement with TCC was completed in Stockholm with the prime ministers of both Sweden and China in attendance; Chemrec and TCC will collaborate to provide industry standard design, engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services, overall performance guarantees to support project financing for black liquor gasification plants. TCC will also assist in procuring plant financing. Max Jönsson, Chemrec CEO, said: "TCC has extensive experience in engineering and construction of gasification, gas processing and synthesis plants. This agreement will bring solid and cost-efficient design, procurement and construction to our projects and will give us the ability to provide complete system solutions on an industrial scale." 04/26/2012 

Appeals Court Lifts Injunction on California's LCFS

California Low Carbon Fuel StandardThe California Air Resources Board (ARB) has announced that the Ninth Circuit of the U.S Court of Appeals has overturned a December 2011 district court injunction blocking the ARB's implementation and enforcement of the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). The injunction was one of several rulings in federal lawsuits challenging the LCFS. One of the district court’s rulings preliminarily enjoined the ARB from enforcing the regulation. The ARB appealed the decision in January 2012 to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Ninth Circuit), and then moved to stay the injunction pending resolution of the appeal. Yesterday’s decision allows the ARB to continue implementation and resume enforcement of the LCFS. ARB Executive Officer James Goldstene issued the following statement: “Today’s decision allows the Air Resources Board to continue implementation and resume enforcement of this important program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Low Carbon Fuel Standard drives investment and innovation, creates new jobs and provides the next generation of clean fuels to all Californians.” 04/25/2012

Trillium FiberFuels Receives STTR Award for Lignin Enzyme RD&D

Trillium FiberFuelsOregon basedTrillium FiberFuels LLC, in collaboration with Researchers at Oregon State University, has been awarded a Phase I Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) 2012 grant from the US Department of Energy, under the Catalysis topic. Trillium is developing naturally occurring enzymatic pathways for conversion of woody biomass into fermentable sugars; the STTR work on "Advanced Recombinant Manganese Peroxidase for Synthesis of Lignin Bioproducts" supports additional development of a unique enzyme called manganese peroxidase, which is capable of breaking down lignin – the “glue” that binds plant fiber together. Lignin interferes with ethanol production from biomass sugars, but holds great potential to create bio-based products such as adhesives. The company has been successful in receiving a progression of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards, most recently in September 2011. The current award will bring about $150,000 through 2012, and qualifies the Trillium / OSU research team for a larger Phase II award in 2013. “A low cost source of this enzyme will dramatically improve our ability to replace petroleum with biofuels and bio-based products” said Chris Beatty, President of Trillium FiberFuels. 04/25/2012 

Newport Biodiesel Plans to Triple Production of WVO Sourced Biodiesel

Newport BiodieselThe Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Office of Waste Management (OWM) has scheduled a public hearingat the facilities of Newport Biodiesel, LLCon April 25, 2012 at 7:00pm to receive public comment regarding the company's revised Beneficial Use Determination application. The application dated February 21, 2012 seeks approval to dramatically increase production of biodiesel from waste vegetable oil (WVO). Newport Biodiesel collects WVO from regional restaurants and converts the feedstock to biofuel for sale and distribution to New England homes and businesses. Since opening in January 2008, the company reports production of over one million gallons. The company started the "Fueling a Greener New England" marketing campaign, and has now partnered with over eight hundred restaurants and other facilities; partners receive no-cost WVO containers and collection service. Local pressreports that the company isn't expecting any opposition to their increased production plans. The company website quotes Providence Mayor David Cicilline: I encourage all Providence restaurateurs to take part in this program." Questions about the hearing should be addressed to OWM project lead Chris Shafer at    or (401) 222-4700, extension 7511. 04/25/2012 

Xebec Secures First Chinese LFG Upgrade Order, Distribution Agreement

Xebec Adsorption IncQuebec's biogas upgrading firm Xebec Adsorption Inc announced its first landfill gas upgrading system order and has entered into an exclusive distribution agreement in mainland China with the Chinese client and partner. Xebec's patented BGX advanced kinetic landfill gas separation system will be installed in early 2013 at a landfill in northern China's Liaoning province. The environmental engineering firm client, Beijing Golden Green Environmental Engineering & Technical Co. Ltd., can take delivery of up to 14 additional systems over the next two years; systems will be designed, manufactured and cost optimized at Xebec's Shanghai facility. Golden Green Environmental, who already hold a broad distribution agreement with Capstone Turbine Corporation, vetted gas upgrading approaches for over a year, selecting Xebec's systems for the ability to separate higher levels of nitrogen (N2) and oxygen (O2) from landfill gas than competing systems, while maintaining 90% recovery rates. The upgraded landfill gas will be compressed and used as renewable fuel in the transportation sector. Xebec partnered with Southern California Gas early in 2011 for a 12 month demonstration project in the Southern California city of Escondido, upgrading wastewater treatment biomethane. The Canadian firm's intellectual property was recently acquired by Air Products in a transaction that provides working capital and allows Xebec to continue business under a back-licensing agreement. 04/24/2012

SmallWood 2012 Will Focus on Forest Restoration for New Economy

SmallWood 2012The US Forest Service, Kaibab National Forest, has announced a conference to gather natural resource professionals and industry leaders to explore new advances in forest restoration and wood utilization. The SmallWood 2012: Forest Restoration for a New Economy, co-sponsored by the Forest Products Society, the USDA Forest Service and the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition will take place in Flagstaff, Arizona, May 1 - 3, 2012. Arizona State Forester and Chair of the conference steering committee Scott Hunt notes: "Last summer’s catastrophic wildfires that burned over one million acres in our great state bluntly demonstrate the need to accelerate forest restoration activities to increase our forests’ resiliency to such events. However, the value of the small, woody material generated from many of these restoration projects does not cover the treatment costs, which often approach $1,000 per acre, and government agency budgets simply cannot sustain large projects under this model. Enormous quantities of woody biomass are continually generated from our forests through normal vegetative growth, forest treatment operations, and catastrophic events such as wildfires and insect infestations. These issues drive the need to create solutions for utilizing low-value and waste wood that will play a critical role in offsetting costs of fuels reduction and forest restoration treatments. The conference will provide information needed to adapt to changes and be successful in our current dynamic economy and industry. By focusing on our forest resources as well as the forest products industry, we begin to understand key interactions and how to build a true forest restoration for a new economy." Register through the Forest Products Society Online Store web page. 04/24/2012

Weltec Starts Construction on 526 kW Biogas CHP Plant for French Pig Farm

Weltec BiopowerWeltec Biopower of Vechta, Germany is constructing an anaerobic digestion (AD) to biogas facility for generation of 526 kilowatt (kW) on a pig farm in the French region of Saint-Nicolas-du-Tertre, Brittany, about 60 miles northwest of Nantes. The anaerobic digester feedstock will include pig manure, waste from the food industry and crop residues. Weltec's modular AD plant designs are customized for each client. The French pig farm facility includes a fermenter and separator, solids dosing feeder, two storage tanks, digestate storage unit, pump station, control, and drying apparatus. Engine exhaust heat will be used for digestate drying and to heat the operator‘s co-located pigsty about 60 meters from the conversion and generation system. Combined heat and power (CHP) facilities receive a EUR 0.04/kilowatt hour surcharge; at just over 500 kW, the installation will receive about ERU 0.17 from the feed-in tariff. French law ensures the tariff will subsidize the CHP plant for 15 years. Last month, Weltec started construction of another facility in Arneburg UK; the company notes that it is currently under development for a range of AD to biogas plants ranging from about 200 kW through 1 megawatt, with many small plants designed for conversion of less than 30 tons of feedstock per day. Regarding biogas plant implementation for resource utilization potential in Europe, Weltec reports that the Netherlands converts about 68% of available feedstock, Germany about 25%, Poland around 19%, while France lags with only about 5% utilization. 04/24/2012

Virdia Opens Tech Center and Biomass-to-Sugar Pilot Plant in Virginia

VirdiaCalifornia-based Virdia has announced opening of its demonstration facility and testing center in Danville, Virginia, on the campus of the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR) at Virginia Tech. IALR's Sustainable Energy and Technology Center (SENTEC), where the Virdia facility is located, is a research and development center on the Institute campus that includes 25,000 square feet of research laboratories, spaces and offices founded to develop bio-based fuels and materials. The pilot site will demonstrate Virdia's CASETM process and prepare samples of cellulosic sugars and lignin for further industrial process assessment and commercialization. The Virdia technology platform incorporates pre-treatment, hydrochloric acid extraction and separation and refining, to produce a pure blend of fermentable liquid hexose and pentose sugars, and a clean dry lignin flake. Recent partnering with Virent has shown success in conversion of the sugar stream to drop-in jet fuel. The company completed a successful funding round last month and changed its name from HCL Clean Tech, coupling a $9 million DOE award with $30 million in investments and another $75 million in incentives and low-interest loans. A public ribbon-cutting event and tours will be held on April 25, 2012. “Virdia is making huge strides in the emerging bioeconomy, and I am pleased the company has decided to site its new technology center in Virginia,” said Bob McDonnell, Governor of Virginia. “The development of sustainable and clean sources of energy is a necessary component of our all the above energy strategy, and Virginia is proud to welcome Virdia to the state in pursuance of cleaner energy, scientific innovation and economic stimulus.” 04/24/2012 

WRG Secures Planning Approval for Energy from Waste Plant

Waste Recycling GroupUnited Kingdom based Waste Recycling Group (WRG) has announced that the Buckinghamshire County Council’s independent Development Control Committee has approved its planning application for the Greatmoor Energy Recovery Facility, a 22 megawatt energy from waste facility to be fueled by 300,000 tonnes per year of the region's post-recycling solid waste. The operation is expected to save Buckinghamshire about £100 million during the life of the 30-year contract. WRG is part of the international environmental services, infrastructure and energy group FCC (www.fcc.es), which in the UK comprises WRG and Focsa Services (UK) Limited. John Plant, Director of FCC Projects, said: “I am very pleased that the Development Control Committee has decided to give approval to the Greatmoor Energy Recovery facility. This state-of-the-art residual waste treatment infrastructure will end Buckinghamshire’s reliance on unsustainable and costly landfill. Importantly the plant will support the recovery of secondary resources from the waste that we all create. The new plant will generate valuable, low-carbon energy from the waste that is left over after recycling, and ash that will be used as an aggregate replacement." Earlier this month, the Swedish company Skanska AB announced that it was selected as preferred bidder in a 50/50% joint venture with AECOM for engineering, procurement and construction on the Bradford and Calderdale Waste Partnership's solid waste management, recycling and energy from waste facility; once completed, WRG will operate the plant on a 25 year contract. 04/23/2012

 

Aquaflow Formalizes Agreement with CRI and Seeks Investment Funding

AquaflowNew Zealand's Aquaflow Bionomic Corporation has announced that it has executed a technology cooperative agreement with CRI Catalyst Company, which positions the company to commercialize its multi-biomass based biofuels within three years.  Aquaflow has been collaborating with CRI, the global catalysis technology unit of the Shell Group, since last August. CRI has a sublicense through Shell to use Gas Technology Institute (GTI) developed IH2 catalytic biofuels conversion technology. Aquaflow's technology platform begins with a broad collection of algae from the world's wastewater treatment ponds, utilizing the algal ability to convert nutrients in the sewage to bio-oil, which can then be harvested and refined to drop-in biofuels. Initial plans for a 100 ton per day conversion process have now been up-scaled to incorporate five 200 ton per day units, for a total processing capacity of 1000 tons per day. Aquaflow director Nick Gerritsen believes the next step is to secure substantial investment for full commercial development, and explains “Aquaflow believes it now has a world-leading multi-biomass to biofuels capability and technology offering. This is a robust and highly integrated technology package which can leapfrog other biomass to biofuel technologies because it goes straight to blended fuel stock and avoids intermediate pathways. We should be able to produce renewable hydrocarbon fuel that is equivalent to fossil fuel at a cost that is highly competitive with the current per barrel price of crude oil.” 04/23/2012

 

Due 07/18/2012: Comments on Kaibab National Forest Draft Forest Plan and EIS

US Forest ServiceThe US Forest Service has published a Notice of Availability for the draft Kaibab National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan and accompanying draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS No. 20120111), initiating a 90-day public comment period. Both the Draft Plan and the EIS are available on-line for review, along with considerable background material. Work on this Forest Plan and the EIS pre-date the recent national changes to the Forest Management Act, and is compliant with the 1982 Rules while written under transition implementation policies. The Kaibab is also one of the forests within the massive Four Forest Restoration Initiative (4FRI), and with this coordination is well positioned for accelerated implementation of forest-wide restoration activity resulting in substantial residual biomass extraction. From the Plan: "The most apparent need for change is to reduce the risk of uncharacteristic fires and restore the structure, species composition, and function of forested ecosystems. This emerged as the highest need for change in the ecological sustainability report and as a very high need in the socioeconomic sustainability analysis. The concordant socioeconomic and ecological benefits of restoring the reference conditions for forest structure include improving scenic integrity, providing for commercial and personal use wood products, protecting cultural resources, protecting against undesired fire effects, improving public and firefighter safety, increasing understory diversity, and improving soil condition." Comments may be submitted to  . For additional information, please contact Ariel Leonard, Kaibab National Forest planner, (928) 635-8283,  . 04/23/2012

 

First Biomass Gasification Plant In Philippines Converts Ag Waste to Energy

Eco Market SolutionsEco Market Solutions (EMS) has opened the first biomass gasification plant in the Philippinesin Dinalungan, Aurora, providing "renewable energy for rural electrification." The small (8 ton per day) plant is fueled with waste biomass purchased from local farmers. It is initially running on dry woody branches, coconut fronds and coconut shells, but beginning in May will be fed briquetted biomass made from rice straw, rice, coconut husks, corn cobs and dried grasses. By converting biomass to briquettes, owner/operator EMS can purchase a much broader array of waste agricultural feedstock. The oxygen-starved biomass gasification produces a synthetic fuel gas (syngas) that once cleaned, fuels a rotary engine for power generation. The Dinalungan region surrounding Aurora is not connected to the Luzon Philippines electrical grid, and always relies on diesel generators for power. EMS is planning a second larger facility in Casiguran to produce 1MW of power, and a smaller one in Dilasag to power both Dilasag and Dinapigue in Isabela. Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Freeport’s (APECO) CEO Robbie Mathay: "This system is widely used in India and has been instrumental in rural development around the world. We are excited to have built this plant despite the two typhoons that hit the area last year. This is proof that biomass power is an appropriate renewable technology for the Philippines and offers great promise not only for energy development but for boosting agriculture in the country." 04/21/2012

 

ProSelect Launches GC6 Carbon Capture and ReUse System for Greenhouses

ProSelectCanadian firm ProSelect Gas Treatment Inc. launched its GC6 Carbon Capture System yesterday with a facility tour and ribbon cutting ceremony at the SunSelect Produce greenhouse complex demonstration installation in Delta, British Columbia. ProSelect is a joint venture between SunSelect Produce and Procede BV, a Dutch engineering firm specializing in innovative green technologies. The GC6 carbon capture module is designed to work as part of an integrated system with Vyncke's fuel-flexible combustion systems commonly used to provide combined heat and power to industrial greenhouse complexes. Belgian-based, global biomass combustion systems developer Vyncke entered a joint venture with Ohio-based Ebner Furnaces to provide systems for the North American market, called Ebner-Vyncke. Carbon dioxide-laden emissions from the biomass combustion are cooled and enter an absorber tower containing a ProSelect's patented organic solvent, where CO2 is stripped and stored in the solvent. Cleaned emissions are released; the solvent is transferred to a desorbing tower from which purified CO2 can then be reintroduced directly into the greenhouse for plant absorption. An automated gas quality and greenhouse condition monitoring system ensures purity and determines timing and rate of CO2 return. With a 14 megawatt electric capacity Vyncke boiler and a continuous biomass feed, the GC6 system can return 5 tons per hour pure CO2 back to the plants. The $5 million project was funded in part by the British Columbian government through the Innovative Clean Energy Fund ($2.24 million) and the Government of Canada through Sustainable Development Technology Canada and IDTC Fund ($1.72 million). 04/21/2012

 

EERC Unveils Mobile Waste Biomass Gasification to Methanol Unit

University of North Dakota Energy and Environmental Research CenterUniversity of North Dakota's Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC) has announced successful demonstration of a unique trailer-mounted wood gasification to methanol system designed for remote conversion of woody biomass to liquid fuel.The methanol produced can then be reformed into hydrogen to power fuel cells for electricity. The new highly-automated mobile system close-couples the thermal conversion of wood to synthetic fuel gas (syngas) with cleaning, compression and catalytic reforming of the syngas to one of the simplest of alcohols, methanol. As a liquid energy carrier, the system allows methanol to be produced and exported from remote wood source locations, such as deep in the woods or on islands where electrical infrastructure is inadequate or lacking. The system was designed to handle web wood waste with up to 40% moisture, eliminating the need to separately dry the wood. "Using power generation in off-grid sites eliminates the need to build transmission lines in remote areas, which ultimately saves utility ratepayers money," said EERC Senior Research Advisor, John Hurley. "The wood-to-fuel technology provides a renewable, nearly carbon dioxide neutral method to fuel distributed power generators." The UND Technology Commercialization program can assist parties interested in further system application; contact Tom Erickson, Associate Director, (701) 777-5153 or. Funding for EERC's development is provided by Xcel utility customers of Minnesota, and the US Department of Energy. 04/20/2012

 

Enel Green Power to Integrate Concentrating Solar with Biomass Gasification

EnelThe Italian utility Enel has announced that its publicly traded renewables company Enel Green Power (EGP) has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for pilot assessment, construction and operation of an integrated concentrating solar power (CSP) and biomass gasification renewable power plant. EGP's co-signers in the agreement are the Italian National Agency for New Technology, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA) and the city of Rome's special comune Roma Capitale, The Trebios (trigeneration using renewable energy sources: biomass and solar thermodynamics) project links small-scale (1 to 5 megawatt electric) CPS trigeneration: cooling, heating and electricity) modular assembly with bioenergy. Steam produced from the CSP unit will hydrothermally pre-treat the biomass feedstock to start decomposition and separate lignin form cellulose and hemicellulose. The lignin will fuel a molten salt hydrolysis unit for electric production when the solar collection system is off-line, expected to be about 40% of total site generation. The biomass residuals will then be gasified then fermented to produce fuel-grade ethanol. Support for the highly-integrated renewable energy project results from Roma Capitale's participation in the Aalborg Charter, driving commitments and practical actions at a local level for the sustainable development of urban areas, and the Covenant of Mayors launched by the EU Commission, with the aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. 04/20/2012

 

Conifex Receives BCUC Approval for BioEnergy Purchase Agreement

Conifex Timber IncCanadian timber harvest and milling company Conifex Timber Inc. has announced approval by the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) of its Electricity Purchase Agreement with BC Hydro. The 20-year agreement will provide base-load renewable bioenergy to the utility to be generated in a facility proposed for construction adjacent to one of Conifex's two existing Mackenzie sawmills. Conifex completed requisite agreement negotiations with BC Hydro in June 2011, first for the electricity purchase and second, a Load Displacement Agreement (LDA). Under this LDA, 30 Gigawatt hours (GWh) of electrical energy will be provided annually to provide for Conifex’s two Mackenzie sawmills over the term of the agreement. In exchange, BC Hydro will provide incentive funding to be utilized towards the completion of the Mackenzie Bioenergy Facility. Ken Shields, Conifex President and Chairman, commented: “We are pleased to have received approval from the BCUC. With this important milestone in place, we can now settle our budget, construction and financing plans for the Bioenergy Facility on a priority basis and work towards the re-start of our Site I Mackenzie sawmill in 2013.” The proposed plant will create approximately 80 jobs during the 15-month construction period and over 20 new jobs upon completion. The expected energy generation of approximately 230 GWh of net energy per year is enough to power 24,000 BC homes annually. 04/19/2012

 

Gevo Receives 8th Isobutanol Pathway Patent in Eight Months

GevoColorado-based all-sugar to biofuels specialists Gevo announced receipt of its eighth US patent in only the past eight months, dramatically accelerating the company's progress toward commercialization. Gevo's new patent is aimed at eliminating one more road-block to enzymatic degradation of biomass, once again streamlining the processing of carbohydrates by their proprietary yeast strains. Gevo’s Integrated Fermentation Technology (GIFT®) technologic pathway uses biotechnology to replace the metabolic pathways in a robust yeast biocatalyst, so that instead of making ethanol, the biocatalyst makes isobutanol. The company's business model promotes a "bolt-on" retrofit approach, where its system can be directly integrate with and existing ethanol plant, either replacing ethanol production with that of isobutanol, or simply broadening the facility product line to include the advanced biofuel. Since the process works for all forms of sugar isobutanol production is not restricted to use of food plants for conversion to biofuel; converted ethanol plants can thus dramatically increase feedstock sourced beyond traditional corn input. "Our development strategy is becoming publicly apparent with each new patent," said Gevo's EVP and General Counsel Brett Lund. "The naturally occurring pathway in yeast doesn't produce commercially viable amounts of isobutanol. Realizing this pathway had been metabolically engineered many times, yet failed to produce isobutanol at meaningful yields, we modified the pathway to increase its efficiency and eliminated side reactions. Metabolically engineering yeast is difficult because yeast are complex organisms. Our success can be attributed to our talented team of scientists and our technology." 04/19/2012

 

Intertek Awards ISCC for Biofuels to Raizen North America

RaizenGlobal auditing, certification, and safety services provider Intertek has announced the award of an International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) for biofuels to Raizen North America, Inc. The certification indicates that Raízen meets the European Union"s Renewable Energy Directive (EU RED) (2009/28/EC) requirements. Intertek provides third-party biofuel sustainability auditing services, necessary for compliance with a growing number of global certification programs including those now approved under the EU RED. ISCC was among seven certification schemes recognized by the European Commission as compliant with EU RED in mid-2011. To access European biofuels markets, sustainability requirements must be met by the companies all along the supply chain. The Royal Vopak Terminal biofuels distribution hub in Deer Park, Texas is the bulk storage supply-chain services provider for Raízen, and played a key role in the award of the ISCC certificate. Vopak is a global leader in development and operation of independent tank storage, handling and distribution facilities development, and is currently leading an initiative to gain ISCC certification for its major biofuel hub terminals. Dan van Zijll, Commercial Director for Raízen North America, said, “We are very pleased to have a partner on board with such an extensive knowledge of sustainable biofuel certification and related topics. Intertek’s technical know-how, expertise, and their ability to provide quick results with respect to compliance verification do help us ensure a level playing field for all competitors. We take our responsibilities with respect to sustainable biofuels seriously, and promote the use of biofuels certified as sustainable with the well-known ISCC standard worldwide.” Raízen is a Joint Venture between Royal Dutch Shell and Cosan S.A. in April 2011. 04/19/2012

 

Due 05/02/2012: Comments to CEC on Draft RPS Guidebook Changes

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has issued a Notice that it will consider approval of Lead Commissioner Draft changes to the Overall Program Guidebook for the Renewable Energy Program (REP) and the Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) Eligibility Guidebook at its May 9, 2012 Business Meeting. A Summary of Major Revisions to the Guidebooks has been provided as an attachment to the formal meeting notice. Many topics will be addressed; among the more controversial will be Pipeline Biomethane, with reference to Resolution No. 12-0328-3 adopted by the CEC on March 28, 2012, that suspends RPS eligibility guidelines related to biomethane. The suspension allows power plants that are RPS-certified to continue using biomethane under the contracts with fuel sources identified in their applications for certification, and allows precertified facilities to remain precertified. Consideration of the status of pending applications for RPS certification and precertification submitted to the Energy Commission before the March 28, 2012, suspension date was deferred until a future Energy Commission Business Meeting. The suspension took effect March 28, 2012 with revisions posted April 4, 2012 and will remain in effect until the CEC takes subsequent action to lift the suspension. The Lead Commissioner's Draft proposed changes to the RPS Guidebook clarify eligibility requirements and the certification process and incorporate changes in law applicable to the RPS, in a process of periodic RPS implementation re-evaluation and updating mandated by Public Resources Code (PRC § 25747). The CEC seeks public comment to the proposed revisions prior to the Business Meeting; interested parties should submit electronic documents via email to the Dockets Office at   by May 2, 2012. For technical questions contact Kate Zocchetti, RPS Technical Director, at   or (916) 653-4710. 04/19/2012

 

ORNL Uses Light to Boost Enzyme Activity for Biomass to Biofuels Production

Oakridge National LaboratoryThe US Department of Energy's  (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has announced a research breakthrough in the use of specific wavelengths of light to dramatically increase enzyme function. The team utilized the massive computational capabilities of the DOE's Jaguar supercomputer to run thousands of simulations of enzyme activity, initially studying how light entering the eye translates to electrical signals in the brain. The simulations led to recognition of chain reaction mechanisms underlying the exchange of energy from light to chemical change. Team lead Pratul Agarwal: "When light enters the eye and hits the pigment known as rhodopsin, it causes a complex chemical reaction to occur, including a conformational change. This change is detected by the associated protein and through a rather involved chain of reactions is converted into an electrical signal for the brain." The research "... suggested that such a technique of introducing a compound that undergoes a light-inducible conformational change onto the surface of the protein could be used to manipulate enzyme reaction." The researchers believe this will facilitate improvements in enzyme efficiency, especially as it relates to cost effectiveness in enzymatic degradation of biomass for production of biofuels. The work has been published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters. 04/18/2012

 

MagneGas Will Furnish Syngas for 300-acre Steel Structure Demolition

MagneGasFlorida's producer of hydrogen-based renewable metal cutting gas, MagneGas, has announced its selection by Marathon Construction and Demolition,  LLC to provide the metal cutting gas for dismantling 300 acres of steel structures in a former automotive manufacturing plant in Alabama. MagneGas uses plasma-based technology to convert liquid waste such as sewage sludge into a clean-burning synthetic fuel gas, or syngas. The firm has been steadily expanding its customer and financial base; between November 2011 and March 2012, MagneGas has secured nearly $7 million in private equity placement support. Marathon trialed MagneGasTM cutting gas this past February on a project, and based on that success will use the product exclusively for steel demolition and salvage work on the Tanner, Alabama project. "We used MagneGas™ fuel for the demolition of a large oil tank in Florida and found the gas to have superior metal cutting properties," commented Robert Trafford, President of Marathon. "As a result of our success in Florida, we determined MagneGas™ was the best fit for this new project in Alabama.  We found MagneGas™ to have a faster cutting speed than other metal cutting fuels, while also providing cleaner emissions and overall cost savings." 04/18/2012

 

Xergi Secures Danish Support for NiX Manure Pretreatment Technology

XergiDanish anaerobic digestion (AD) specialists Xergi announced that its patented NiX® "pressure cooker" nitrogen extraction technology has now passed assessment and secured funding support by the Danish government. The subsystem pretreats feedstock in front of Xergi's ManuPower ® configuration, its main AD system for manure conversion. NiX pre-treatment removes a substantial amount of the nitrogen present in the manure prior to digestion and converts this into a high-quality, farm-ready ammonia fertilizer. The Danish government is supporting refinement of the approach with DKK 3.6 million of the total DKK 9 million optimization project cost with funds from the Energy Technology Development and Demonstration Programme (EUDP). Xergi has been successful in expanding both existing developments and new markets recently; the United Kingdom company Staples Vegetable has decided after a year's operation to double its Xergi food waste AD installation, while Xergi's French market development efforts have secured an agreement with TIPER Méthanisation to develop an EU 15 million biogas plant near the town of Thouars in western France for conversion of up to 60,000 tonnes of liquid manure admixed with 20,000 tonnes of meat and vegetable waste. "We are proud of having won the contract for a project that is currently among the largest in France. It is also satisfactory that we have defined an international strategy that is now starting to bear fruit in terms of new orders," says Xergi's Managing Director Jørgen Ballermann. 04/18/2012

 

OriginOil Successfully Treats Hydraulic Fracturing Flowback Wastewater

OriginOilLos Angeles-based algae-to-biocrude company OriginOil has announced success in clarifying hydrocarbon-laden water produced in oil well water flooding and hydraulic fracturing or "fracing". Using a lab prototype of the technology, OriginOil researchers have been able to clarify samples of flowback water from a Texas oil well carrying heavy concentrations of dissolved organics, known as frac flowback water. OiriginOil's technology platform of Quantum Fracturing, Helix Bioreactor, and Single Step Extraction aids companies growing and harvesting algae to refine the biomass into biofuels, foods, pharma and foundation chemicals. Expansion into the arena of oilfield producer water treatment could dramatically increase the company's available global market. “Our research team has learned that extracting petroleum and contaminants from water is very much like extracting algae,” said Riggs Eckelberry, OriginOil CEO. “They are both very hard to remove without using chemicals and heavy machinery. Our innovative chemical-free, high flow and low-energy process holds promise for the billions of gallons of water used daily in the oil and gas industry worldwide. It seems that in addition to helping create the renewable energy market of the future, we may add value to a massive existing energy market,” said Riggs Eckelberry, OriginOil’s CEO. “We will continue to investigate and report on this promising new application of our technology.” 04/18/2012

 

WM Opens 3.2 MWe Landfill Gas-to-Energy Facility at Lockwood Landfill

Waste ManagementWaste Management (WM) recently celebrated northern Nevada's first landfill gas to energy plant with a ribbon-cutting ceremony featuring Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval. The plant is located at Lockwood Regional Landfill in Story County and will create enough renewable energy for over 1,800 homes. Methane-rich gas generated by decomposition of organic wastes disposed within the landfill is extracted via a network of wells and piped to fuel two engines for generation of 3.2 megawatts of electricity (MWe). Regulatory oversight of the disposal facility is the responsibility of the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Waste Management (NDEP/BWM). The landfill currently operates under NDEP/BWM permit SW214R01 and a Special Use Permit (SUP) issued by Storey County. The landfill's unlined disposal area covers 350 acres of the 2,673 acre parcel and has an authorized capacity of 64.8 million cubic yards (CY). The disposal area is proposed to be increased to 302.5 million CY with an increase in coverage to 856.5 acres with the expansion area fully lined. Landfill methane extraction and energy generation projects are a national priority of the US Environmental Protection Agency's landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP). The Lockwood facility is one of 131 landfill gas-to-energy facilities owned by Waste Management in the US. "The Gas-To-Energy Facility at the Lockwood Landfill ensures that not even garbage will go to waste," said Justin Caporusso, Waste Management spokesperson. "By investing in landfill gas-to-energy, we are powering homes using the same waste that is left at the curb." 04/17/2012

 

RES £250MM North Blyth Biomass Project Application Accepted

RESThe United Kingdom based renewable energy firm RES has announced that the planning application for its proposed biomass to energy plant has been accepted by the national government's Planning Inspectorate. RES proposes to build a £250 million biomass-fueled renewable energy power station at Battleship Wharf in the Port of Blyth on England's northeastern coast. Feedstock will be derived from sustainable sources including managed forests and timber mill by-products, mostly delivered to the site by ship using existing port facilities rather than road transport. The North Blyth biomass power station will have the capacity to generate up to 750GWh (gigawatt hours) of renewable electricity per year. The region's Northumberland County Council and the Port of Blyth established the Blyth Estuary Renewable Energy Zone (BEREZ), now the base of the UK’s National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec), and cooperated to establish the bi-annual Blyth Renewable Energy Festival to highlight the importance of renewable energy to the wider community and showcase the growing cluster of renewable energy-related organizations around the estuary. Martin Lawlor, Chief Executive of the Port of Blyth, explains: “There is a real sense of continuity here – we can trace the use of the estuary as a port right back to Norman times. The natural deep water harbour is what attracted people to settle here in the first place and over time we have improved the port and developed a skills base which most recently has been based on heavy engineering and traditional energy generation such as coal. We’re really proud of this heritage, but we also have to move with the times and capitalise on our strengths. Renewable energy generation is a prime example of the sort of business we need to encourage in order to replace declining industry sectors, create jobs and secure a long term future for the communities that rely on the port for employment.” 04/17/2012

 

Due 05/14/2012: Comments to RSB on Indirect Impacts of Biofuels

Roundtable on Sustainable BiofuelsThe Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB) has posted details on opening the Public Consultation seeking comment regarding the potential indirect impacts associated with biofuel production. RSB's indirect Impact Expert Group (IIEG) has been researching potential indirect impacts for the last three years to determine if and how such impact assessment and monitoring should be included within the RSB Standard. The organization now hopes to broaden that discussion: "The objective of the public consultation is to ask you, the interested public, whether the RSB Standard should try to address indirect impacts of biofuels, and if so, which option(s) you would recommend as a credible and practical way forward. All members of the public are invited to participate in the consultation." A concise and intentionally neutral background paper has been developed entitled, Indirect Impacts of biofuel production and the RSB Standard. The Public Consultation runs until May 15, 2012, after which time the RSB Chambers will begin formal discussions leading to a Steering Board decision, mid-June. A Feedback Form has been provided; send all comments to RSB via email to by May 14, 2012. 04/17/2012 Update: See Teru's 05/05/2012 comments.

 

Florida Energy Bill HB 7117 Passes Without Governor's Signature

State of FloridaLast Friday evening, Florida Governor Rick Scott allowed a controversial energy bill to become law without his signature, ushering in a new era for Florida renewable energy and energy efficiency development. The provisions of the new law (HB 7117) take effect on July 1, 2012. It will shift considerable oversight authority to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS) for reassessment and revision of the Florida Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act. It appropriates funds from the Public Service Commission Regulatory Trust Fund to contract for a third-party evaluation to determine if the Act remains in the public's best interest. The Senate's official Bill Summary outlines provisions. Among the new mandates, the law creates sales tax exemptions and investment tax credits broadly supporting renewable fuels development and distribution. A renewable energy production credit against corporate income tax is established, based on $0.01 per kilowatt hour of renewable energy produced. The cap is $1 million per corporation and $5 million for state fiscal year 2012-2013, which is increased to $10 million for 2013-2014 through 2016-2017, with provisions for prorating credits if claims exceed the annual cap. The new law also requires the DACS to conduct a forest inventory to help determine what forest-sourced biomass can be made available for biofuels production. Links to the full text of the bill as promulgated and a thorough Staff Analysis are available. 04/16/2012

 

Clean World Partners Debuts Food Waste to Energy Plant in Sacramento

Clean World PartnersSacramento-based Clean World Partners has scheduled a public unveiling at its North Natomas anaerobic digestion (AD) facility for April 19, 2012 that began operations just last month. The new facility is accepting about 7.5 tons per day of food waste from regional sources, including organics from the Campbell's Soup plant, unrecyclable cardboard from American River Packaging, and organic waste from other local processing plants. The small-scale commercial Anaerobic Phased Digestion (APS) facility was first developed and tested at a pilot plant co-located with the University of California, Davis, wastewater treatment plant. The two-stage design is based on research work by Dr. Ruihong Zhang, where following the natural digestive pattern of a cow's stomach, the acid-producing bacteria and the methane producing bacteria are keep in optimal growth conditions in separate digester tanks. The efficient configuration allows conversion of up to 90% of the high-solids feedstock into biomethane. The initial $2 to $3 million Natomas facility is the first of two Clean World Partners will develop in the region; a second plant at Sacramento County's South area transfer station is scheduled to begin operations in June. Clean World Partners is part of Synergex Ventures, a wholly owned subsidiary of Synergex International Corporation. 04/15/2012

 

Aston University Funded for Biomass & Waste Conversion to Biofuels Research

Aston UniversityThe United Kingdom's (UK) Aston University has announced that its Bioenergy Research Group (BERG) has been awarded €510,000 as part of a €10.84m biofuels research project under the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The European Union's (EU) four-year Biofuels Research Infrastructure for Sharing Knowledge (BRISK) program will fund researchers from eligible countries to conduct biofuels research in any of the 26 partnering laboratory facilities. The collaborative efforts are coordinated by KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden, and include partners from Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the UK. In March of 2011, Aston began development of a £16.5m renewable low carbon technology laboratory, equipped with a small scale biopower plant integrated with algae photo bioreactors. The BERG team, part of Aston’s European Bioenergy Research Institute (EBRI), is also involved in a £1.4m project funded in part by the Research Council of Norway to investigate producing biofuel derived from spruce and pine trees by 2020 following the development of new bio-oil refining technologies. Earlier this April, Aston also announced its funded participation as lead partner in BioenNW, an INTERREG IVB Initiative focused on conversion of landfill-destined waste to biofuels and energy. BioenNW is focused on promoting the use of green bioenergy power facilities fuelled by waste materials across five regions of North West Europe. Waste materials such as straw, wood, algae and sewage sludge will be explored as sources of biofuel, to reduce or remove reliance on use of food crops for biofuels and bioenergy. 04/14/2012

 

Greenleaf Power Secures 10-year 45 MWe PPA with Imperial Irrigation District

Greenleaf PowerThe Imperial Irrigation District (IID) in southern California has announced approval of a ten year power purchase agreement with Greenleaf Power, the new owners of Desert View Power, California's largest biomass plant. Greenleaf finalized the purchase of the 47 megawatt capacity biopower facility from Colmac Energy in February 2011, as the third biomass power plant the Sacramento-based firm has recently acquired. "With the addition of the Colmac facility, Greenleaf Power has more than 100 megawatts of capacity, and is using its multiple facilities to maximize efficiencies," said Hugh Smith, president of Greenleaf Power. "As the nation moves to a greener economy, Greenleaf Power will continue to invest and develop green energy." For IID, this provides 45 megawatts of renewable baseload energy and raises the utility's renewable energy portfolio from 12% to 18%; California's AB 32 now law requires utilities to serve 20 percent green energy by 2013, 25 percent by 2016 and 33 percent by 2020. The plant is located in Riverside County about 40 miles north of Palm Springs near the town of Mecca, and started operation in 1992, making it one of California's newest biopower plants. The plant is fueled with forest residue, clean urban-sourced wood waste, and agricultural residue. “Our contract with Desert View Power represents our due diligence in not only working to meet California’s aggressive green energy goals, but doing so in a way that is cost competitive and supports a proven renewable energy leader in our own backyard,” said John Pierre Menvielle, IID board President. 04/14/2012

 

NASA Invites Journalists to OMEGA Project Show & Tell in San Francisco

National Aeronautic and Space AdministrationThe National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA), Ames Research Center is staging a one-hour guided tour of its Offshore Membrane Enclosure for Growing Algae (OMEGA) project demonstration on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. The OMEGA project is located in California at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission's (SFPUC) Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant. The NASA is testing algal cultivation in a series of floating plastic bags or "photo-bioreactors" to determine technical feasibility of the OMEGA platform. Algae cultivated in the floating membrane are fed wastewater and carbon dioxide (CO2); the algae decontaminate the water by consuming the nutrients and the CO2, leaving much cleaner water and releasing oxygen tot eh atmosphere. The microalgal biomass can then be harvested for its bio-oil for further refining to biofuel and other commodities without competing with agriculture for land, water and nutrients. An OMEGA project Fact Sheet notes: "Research by scientists and engineers has demonstrated that OMEGA is an effective way to grow microalgae and treat wastewater on a small scale. The next step is for other organizations to deploy larger-scale systems offshore in protected bays to determine if OMEGA can be used commercially for biofuels production, environmental remediation, wastewater treatment or carbon sequestration." SFPUC's partnership with the Ames Research Center is part of the Commission's multi-billion dollar Sewer System Improvement Program, and is intended to explore alternatives for stormwater and wastewater resource management that can recover energy and ensure environmental benefits. Reporters interested in attending must contact Huong Nguyen ator (650) 604-4789 by 4 p.m. PDT on Monday, April 16, 2012 for logistical information. 04/14/2012

 

Harvest Power Raises $110MM in Series C Financing Round

Harvest PowerMassachusetts based dry fermentation specialist Harvest Power has announced a successful Series C financing round, raising $110 million out of a total offering of $125 million. New investments were led by True North Venture Partners, joined by American Refining and Biochemical, Inc. and prior investors. Harvest will use the funding to further its expansion across North America. Harvest Power's core anaerobic digestion (AD) technology is the German-based BEKON patented method of static dry fermentation, converting high-solids organic wastes and residues in digestions chambers with production of biomethane and a digestate that is then 'finished" with aerobic composting. Harvest also employs low-solid AD in more standard digesters, for organic feedstock liquids and slurries containing less than 20% solids. The company operates facilities in the Mid-Atlantic and West Coast of the US, and in Ontario and British Columbia, Canada. “The significant investor interest Harvest has received is the result of our dynamic partnerships, innovative approaches, and proven ability to build the first nationwide organics management company,” said Paul Sellew, CEO of Harvest. “By integrating organics recycling, renewable energy and the production of soils, mulches and natural fertilizers, Harvest has shown that we are a leader in a new kind of cleantech – one that lowers costs. We are proud to partner with True North and other investors that want to be part of this disruptive model.” 04/14/2012

 

CalRecycle Schedules Urban Organics Residuals Digestion Forum

CalRecycleCalifornia's Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) has announced an all-day forum, "Digesting Urban Organics Residuals: A Forum on Technology, Economics & Permitting", for May 30, 2012 in the Byron Sher Auditorium, CalEPA building, Sacramento. The forum will focus on anaerobic digestion (AD) project implementation, with case studies, permitting pathways, technology options and financing, and is a collaborative effort between CalRecycle, the California Biomass Collaborative, the California Organic Recycling Council, and the City of San Jose. The draft agenda so far notes presentations on the dry fermentation facility being developed by Zero Waste Energy LLC for the City of San Jose, an AECOM presentation of an AD facility being developed for the City of Toronto, and municipal solid waste post-recycling residuals conversion using Organic Waste Systems DRANCO technology at CR&R's materials recovery facility in Perris, California. The event is free, but requires advance registration on-line. For further information, contact Jacques Franco at CalRecycle. 04/13/2012

 

Cyclone Power's Chinese Licensee Completes Prototype Engine, Starts Testing

Cyclone Power TechnologiesFlorida based Cyclone Power Technologies has announced> that its Chinese licensee, Great Wall Alternative Power Systems Ltd., has completed fabrication of its first prototype engine, based on Cyclone’s WHE-25 design external-sourced waste heat driven rankine-cycle engine. Great Wall's engines are intended for biomass to combined heat and power (CHP) applications and as power sources for biochar production for environmental remediation. Hot air and then steam driven engine testing will now begin; and once proven, the Chinese models will be manufactured and sold only in China. The licensee firm Great Wall's Chairman Zhan Shan, a PRC national, has founded several new energy ventures including China's first private municipal gas company, and was China's first technology developer of large-format lithium-ion batteries. Managing Director Robert Devine has over a decade of experience investing in China's consumer goods, technology, media and real estate sectors: "We see a multi-billion dollar market for distributed power in China's rural areas. With the Cyclone Engine, we can deliver viable, low cost biomass-based power solutions integrated with a bio-char process that can help remediate water and soil pollution. Operating within China can sometimes be challenging, and that has admittedly pushed back our production schedule. We are pleased to be back on track and fully committed to seeing this project through to completion." 04/13/2012

 

Due 06/07/2012: Letter of Intent to ETI for UK Energy from Waste Demo Plant

Energy Technologies InstituteThe United Kingdom's Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) has announced release of a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking partners for design and construction of an integrated gasification and gas cleanup Energy from Waste (EfW) demonstration plant. ETI's mission is to "accelerate the development, demonstration and eventual commercial deployment of a focused portfolio of energy technologies, which will increase energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help achieve energy and climate change goals." The EfW project is to commercially demonstrate high-efficiency, clean conversion of waste into energy, with design completed by 2014 and plat operational by 2016. The Institute, located about 100 kilometers north of London in the Leicester region of central England, is an industry/government partnership designed to help the UK meet legally binding 2050 climate change targets. Notifications of intent to submit a proposal need to reach ETI by June 7, 2012; full proposals are due July 2, 2012. For questions about the RFP, contact Lisa Kelvey, ETI Programme Management Office, +44 (0) 1509 202020,. Notifications and full proposal submissions should also be directed to Ms Kelvey at ETI, following the RFP instructions. 04/13/2012

 

IBI Final Biochar Guidelines Are Available for Review

International Biochar InitiativeThe International Biochar Initiative (IBI) has made available its final version of the "Standardized Product Definition and Product Testing Guidelines for Biochar That Is Used in Soil", incorporating all received comments (including Teru's) and legal vetting. Accompanying the Guidelines are Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Excerpted from the final version: " … the use and promotion of these Guidelines will build consumer and regulatory confidence about biochar, through the provision of consistent and reliable information regarding biochar properties. Biochar can be made from a variety of biomass feedstocks, using a variety of different production processes, and can possess many different attributes. The consistent reporting of biochar properties will ensure that pertinent information about biochars for use in soil applications is systematically communicated, regardless of feedstock type, production process, or final properties." The organization has now scheduled an informational webinar, "Overview of the Biochar Guidelines Final Document" that is free and open to the public but requires prior registration.  Identical presentations will be offered on April 19 and April 30, 2012. Registration links, detailed status summary and all background documents are accessible through the IBI's Characterization Standard webpage, along with the webinar presentations once the first session is completed. Beginning April 23, 2012 and running through May 6, 2012 IBI will open balloting to dues-paying members to approve or reject the Guidelines. If you have questions that are not answered by the FAQ or the webinar, please address them to. 04/12/2012

 

Arisdyne Receives Approval of 2nd Key Biomass Pre-treatment Patent

Arisdyne Systems IncOhio-based Arisdyne Systems Inc. has announced approval of a second patent for its methods and equipment used to improve the yield of alcohol that can be produced from a given quantity of feedstock by fermentation. Arisdyne provides retrofit and add-on subsystems designed to optimize production of fuel ethanol, biodiesel and biogas; the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) granted Patent 8,143,460 late last month for Arisdyne's approach to use of cavitation for biomass pre-processing, which strengthened the first patent position of founder and Chief Technology Officer Oleg Kozyuk. Precision hydrodynamic Controlled Flow CavitationTM depends upon the effects of turbulence in liquids, where greatly reduced fluid pressures are created in closely-defined nano-scale (100nm to 3mm) "cavities". Implosion or collapse of those low-pressure pockets creates high temperature and pressure, up to 5000° C and 1000 atmospheres, for extremely short time intervals measured in milliseconds, and intense energy in the form of shockwaves. Arisdyne's precision methods control the nature and use of this energy to deconstruct dense, long-chain biomass molecules to much shorter and simpler forms, greatly decreasing particle size, increasing surface are and improving microbial conversion. This most recent patent is specific to hydrodynamic cavitation methods and equipment optimized for increased yield of ethanol from fermentation of grain. The low-energy use kinetic pre-treatment methods and systems that Arisdyne now has available show promise for a wide array of biomass feedstock for biorefinery conversion to fuels and chemicals. 04/12/2012

 

CRIBE Invests $6MM for Domtar Mill Wood Waste to Bio-Oil Project

Centre for Research and Inovation in the Bio-EconomyOntario, Canada based Centre for Research and Innovation in the Bio-Economy (CRIBE) has announced its investment of $6 million in support of a a new approach to converting waste wood to bio-oil. The Canadian fiber-product industrial giant Domtar will team with Battelle, the largest privately held research and development organization, to develop a "fast pyrolysis" thermal conversion system for conversion of mill residues from Domtar's Dryden Pulp Mill into a raw bio-oil product and synthesis gas, then to refine the crude into "drop-in" biofuel. The mill currently burns the residue on-site; the hope is that the biofuel can be either blended with diesel to fuel Domtar's truck fleet, or to offset a portion of the natural gas usage. In Phase I of the project, Battelle's Energy Sustainability Solutions group will optimize use of the mill's wood waste for conversion to bio-oil; Phase II will construct a 100 ton per day pilot plant on the Dryden mill site. “We’re pleased to be partnering with CRIBE and Domtar on this exciting project,” said Charles Lucius, Battelle’s Vice President for Energy Sustainability Solutions. “This is our first time working on this type of project in Ontario and we are really looking forward to it.” “This project points the way to Ontario’s future as a clean technology and innovation leader,” said Brad Duguid, Minister of Economic Development and Innovation. “This groundbreaking process will turn waste wood into fuel we need. That’s good news for the environment and good news for our economy.” 04/11/2012

 

Humboldt County Starts Food Waste Pilot, Prepares AD Facility RFP

Humboldt Waste Management AuthorityThe Humboldt Waste Management Authority (HWMA) in northern California  is launching a food waste collection pilot program this week, according to a local press interview with HWMA's project manager Juliette Bohn and CalRecycle's Jacques Franco. The HWMA is also preparing a food waste digestion facility Request for Proposals (RFP) for release next month. The HWMA has partnered with the City of Eureka, PG&E, Arcata Garbage, and Recology to keep food waste out of landfills and generate energy by constructing an Anaerobic Food Waste Digester. Planning for the development of anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities to turn food waste into biomethane has proceeded from a detailed Food Waste Diversion and Utilization Study released in May and completion of mandatory California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) assessment and documentation in June of 2010 (available upon request), through site visits and surveys of commercial food-waste producers last fall. In August 2011, HWMA's began working with Humboldt State University (HSU) students and campus administration on the student-run Waste Reduction and Resource Awareness Program (WRRAP), an organic waste separation and collection program targeting 100% diversion by December 2012. “For a long time, the Humboldt Waste Management Authority has wanted something in place that could deal with organic waste locally,” Comet says. “We’re a very large organic waste producer, so when Juliette [Bohn, HWMA and a 2010 HSU alumna] asked me if HSU wanted to be an early adopter, I said ‘Of course.’” For more information, visit HWMA's Food Waste web site. 04/11/2012

 

Elevance, XiMo Advance Bio-sourced Oil to Bio-Product Metathesis

ElevanceThe Illinois-based company Elevance has announced that its partnership with Swiss-based specialty catalyst development firm XiMo AG has resulted in significant advancement of Elevance's biorefinery platform. The new technology platform metathesizes plant and animal sourced oils into multiple biofuel and green chemical product lines using Molybdenum-based catalysts. The platform now can significantly expand commercial conversion of waste residual and virgin natural oils to high-value foundation chemicals and fuel additives. Based on the breakthrough olefin methathesis research of Nobel Laureate Dr. Robert Grubbs of Cal Tech, Elevance employs integrated catalysis, distillation and alcohol transesterification to convert the natural oils to fuel and chemical commodities. The collaboration with XiMo has focused on the Swiss company's advanced molybdenum-based catalysts for optimized, precision biorefinery reaction control; since January 2011, XiMo and Elevance researchers have now completed testing on more than 40 catalysts using several natural oil feedstocks under various conditions to evaluate their efficiency. XiMo was founded in 2010 by MIT Professor Richard Schrock and Boston College Professor Amir Hoveyda, with an aim to establish partnerships and seamlessly integrate its catalysis systems into existing industrial processes. “Elevance is pleased with our XiMo partnership and of our advancements achieved to date,” said K’Lynne Johnson, CEO of Elevance. “The addition of XiMo’s catalysts to our existing portfolio of metathesis catalysts will expand Elevance’s capabilities, providing additional technology for our biorefineries.” 04/11/2012

 

CEC Releases Revised Notice of Awards for Hybrid Generation, DG and CCHP

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has released a revised Notice of Proposed Award (NOPA) for proposals submitted to the Program Opportunity Notice (PON-11-507) for Hybrid Generation and Fuel-flexible Distributed Generation (DG), Combined Heat and Power (CHP), and Combined Cooling, Heat and Power (CCHP). Eligible projects included technology development and/or demonstration projects within California that: (1) advanced the science, technology, and market penetration in California of grid-connected DG, CHP, and/or CCHP systems; and (2) addressed technical and/or economic challenges to the development and market deployment of integrated multiple DG/CHP/CCHP technology, energy storage, and/or fuel flexible systems in diverse market applications. The CEC's initial selection needed to be revised and funds re-apportioned when the proposed award to the University of California Irvine was cancelled. Current proposed awardees as ranked include (1) ZERE Energy and Biofuels Inc., for "Novel Flex Fuel Oxidation for Distributed Generation", converting woody waste to heat and power while capturing liquefied carbon dioxide; (2) Southern California Edison (SCE) to support development and testing of a system for CHP with thermal storage for modern greenhouses, (3) the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) for "Fuel-Flexible, Hybrid CHP at San Bernardino Municipal Water Department", and (4) Altec Technologies Corporation, for "Tri-generation Energy System Technology (TRIEST)". A fifth ranked proposal from Biodico Inc. for "Renewable Cogeneration from Production Byproducts & Sunlight" remains in consideration for at least partial funding. Final decisions will now wait formal approval by the Commission during the May 9 and/or June 13, 2012 Business Meetings. 04/10/2012

 

USDA Grants $5MM to Western Plains Energy for Biogas Plant

Western Plains EnergyAgriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced that the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved a $5 million grant to Western Plains Energy, LLC (WPE) to support construction of an anaerobic digestion (AD) plant at WPE's ethanol facility in Gove County, Kansas. The payment was made under the USDA Rural Development Repowering Assistance Program. WPE was formed on July 10, 2001 to build and operate the ethanol facility, and was organized by a group of local individuals with the intent to promote economic development in northwest Kansas. The initial design and construction of the plant by ICM commenced in April of 2003 and was completed by early January 2004; as of September 30, 2011, was producing about 50,000,000 gallons of denatured ethanol annually. POET Ethanol Products markets all of WPE’s ethanol and United Bio Energy Ingredients markets the distiller’s grain. The new AD processing plant will convert local feedlot manure, grain processing fines, and other industrial and municipal organic wastes into biomethane for generation of up to 100 million Btu of renewable energy per hour to heat and power the ethanol plant, replacing almost 90% of the fossil fuel now used with waste-sourced renewable energy. The digester construction is anticipated to be completed in August 2012 with full operation in 2013. WPE has selected ICM for design and construction of the AD facilities and will now enter into scope of work negotiations. Secretary Vilsack said, “Projects such as this are a key part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above approach to American energy that is supporting the development and usage of renewable energy, revitalizing rural economies and creating an America built to last.” 04/10/2012

 

Due 05/01/2012:  Pre-Application for SBIR/STTR 2012 Funding Opportunity

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) has announced its 2012 Funding Opportunity Notice (DE-FOA-0000715) for Phase I, Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. The FOA addresses eight broad topics and 30 subtopics in areas including advanced manufacturing, energy-efficient buildings, biomass, hydrogen and fuel cells, solar energy, and wind and water power technologies. In the Biomass category, subtopics include (a) Cellulosic and Algal Biofuels, and (b) Biobased Products. Up to $150,000 will be granted to around 50 small businesses to "explore the feasibility of innovative clean energy concepts." Registration with Grants.gov is required. Although this FOA does not require filing of a Letter of Intent (LOI), submission of a pre-application package is required by May 1, 2012. Up to 5 pre-applications may be submitted, but each must specifically identify one topic and subtopic. Pre-applicants will receive feedback on submissions by June 5, 2012 iand those authorized to continue will submit full proposals by July 3, 2012. Award announcements are anticipated for October with the 2012 grant budget period beginning in November, 2012. Additional SBIR/STTR program detail is available on the SBIR website. 04/10/2012

 

USDA, DOE, Navy Will Host Advanced Biofuels Industry Roundtable

US Department of AgricultureUS Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced an Advanced Biofuels Industry Roundtable in Washington D.C. on May 18, 2012 being hosted by the USDA, the Department of Energy, and the Department of Navy. The purpose of the Roundtable is to accelerate the production of bio-based aviation fuels and marine diesel for military and commercial purposes, in furtherance of the Defense Production Act. The meeting is the second in a series of match-making efforts hosted by the USDA to bring industry leaders face to face with administrative and military decision-makers. "Advanced biofuels are a key component of President Obama's 'all-of-the-above' energy strategy to limit the impact that foreign oil has on our economy and take control of our energy future," said Secretary Vilsack. "By bringing together farmers, scientists, and the private sector to produce fuel for the American military, we can help spur an industry producing biofuels from non-food feedstocks all over the nation, strengthen our middle class, and help create an economy built to last." Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy, added: "The Biofuels Industry Roundtable will produce the market and industry expertise necessary to develop a domestic biofuel market capable of producing alternative fuel that is cost-competitive with traditional fuel. The Departments of Navy, Agriculture, and Energy are investing in an existing private industry to spur growth, and each department will closely monitor how that investment is used to achieve the president's objectives." 04/07/2012

 

Oregon DEQ Releases Agenda for April 12th Meeting on CT Rulemaking

State of OregonThe Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is engaged in a Rulemaking to define and establish guidelines for Conversion Technologies, or CTs, and has posted an Agenda and supportive documents in preparation for its April 12, 2012 Advisory Meeting. The meeting is open to public participation in person and on-line. DEQ has developed an initial and detailed set of responses to questions received regarding the Rulemaking, addressing facility permitting, materials tracking, potential regulatory conflicts, formation and current membership of the Advisory Committee, and the likely impact of the Rulemaking on wastewater treatment plant anaerobic digestion. The DEQ's "starter set" of CT related terms and definitions has been augmented and expanded. Notably, the definition for a CT facility has been rewritten, with some surprises:  "Conversion Technology Facility" means a facility that uses primarily chemical or thermal processes to produce fuels, chemicals, or other useful products from solid waste. These chemical or thermal processes include, but are not limited to, distillation, gasification, hydrolysis, pyrolysis, thermal depolymerization, transesterification, and animal rendering, but do not include direct combustion, composting, anaerobic digestion, or mechanical recycling." Instructions for timing and attendance of the April 12, 2012 meeting are provided in the Notice. 04/07/2012

 

Rentricity Receives NYSERDA Funds for Wastewater to Energy Recovery Designs

RentricityNew York City-based renewable energy company Rentricity Inc has announced receipt of funding from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to further develop energy recovery systems for wastewater treatment plants. The work builds on NYSERDA-funded assessments initiated in 2010 to determine the potential for hydrokinetic energy recovery from the city's water conduits. Rentricity will collaborate with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) to optimize the mechanical, electrical, and process control needs for its PowerGateTM and PowerWeirTM modules that convert excess water pressure into electricity. Rentricity's site assessment guide indicates that any water process flow of at least 1.5 million gallons per day (MGD) with a pressure of 30 to 35 pounds per square inch (psi) can provide a reasonable return on investment (ROI). Rentricity will be using the City’s Wards Island, Coney Island, and Owls Head wastewater treatment plants to facilitate the designs. The three treatment plants produce up to 405 million gallons of wastewater flow per day. Rentricity was recognized in November 2011 by the Global Cleantech Cluster Association for recovering energy from wastewater pressure in pipelines. “Rentricity’s promising technology is designed to create power from the water already flowing through pipes – a truly innovative concept that would help reduce power consumption in New York City,” said Francis J. Murray Jr., President and CEO of NYSERDA. “This promising project shows how public and private partnerships can build this high-tech industry.” 04/06/2012

 

Due 06/19/2012: Qualifications for Bay Area Biosolids to Energy Project

Bay Area Biosolids to EnergyThe Bay Area Biosolids to Energy (BAB2E) Coalition has released a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to pre-qualify proposers for one or more design-build-own-operate (DBOO) contracts at Coalition facilities. The Coalition consists of 17 agencies that operate wastewater treatment plants in the San Francisco Bay region. The agencies are collaborating to find common solutions to biosolids management, renewable energy generation and greenhouse gas emissions reduction. Companies that responded to the Coalition's 2010 RFQ have the opportunity to submit updated Statements of Qualifications (SOQ) in response to this solicitation. to Register online signifying your Intent to Submit and to attend the.the Pre-Submittal Conference scheduled for May 10, 2012. Parties must register no later than May 15, 2012 to qualify to participate in the RFQ. Submit questions regarding the RFQ to Caroline Quinn at no later than May 22, 2012. Site visits are yet to be scheduled. Submit SOQs no later than 5:00pm PST on Tuesday, June 19, 2012. A ranking will be established and results will be posted by August 15, 2012. 04/06/2012

 

Due 05/01/2012: LOI to DOE for Bio-Oil Stabilization and Commoditization R&D  

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced the availability of up to $15 million for support of research and development (R&D) of thermochemical liquefaction technologies to produce a bio-oil that can be blended with traditional petroleum fuel products and integrated into existing oil refinery processes. The DOE will select from five to ten projects to fund this year to advance biorefinery prototypes producing bio-oil from a range of feedstocks that could include algae, agricultural residues, dedicated energy crops or woody biomass residues. For this solicitation, the bio-oil will be produced from biomass considered to be a high-impact feedstock or from algal biomass. “High-impact feedstock” is a feedstock that is domestically available and has the sustainable ultimate availability potential of at least 50 million dry metric tonnes of biomass per year.  Project results will help guide efforts to commercialize bio-oil technologies. The funding opportunity, eligibility requirements, and application instructions can be found on the Funding Opportunity Exchange website under Reference Number DE-FOA-0000686. The full Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is available on-line. US industry, universities, and laboratories are all eligible to apply. Letters of Interest (LOI) are due May 1, 2012. Applicants notified that their submittal has been accepted will be eligible to submit a complete proposal by May 29, 2012. A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page is provided for program questions; further program information may be requested by email to; questions regarding application submission procedures should be submitted to. 04/06/2012

 

Viridor Starts Construction Phase for Trident Park WtE Facility in Wales

ViridorThe United Kingdom (UK) waste management and resource recovery firm Viridor has announced signing an agreement with a joint venture between the French waste-to-energy (WtE) specialist firm CNIM and UK/Irish company Lagan Construction for construction of the Trident Park WtE combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Cardiff, Wales. The plant will treat 350,000 tonnes of post-recycling residual annually, generating 30 megawatts electricity. Viridor is working with PMG, landowners for the Trident facility, to deliver thermal energy for low cost district heating to neighboring communities and industries. The plant will utilize CNIM's well established turnkey plant design for resource recovery from waste and Lagan's infrastructure development abilities; the facility is scheduled to be operation in 2014. Stefano Costa, Managing Director, Environment Sector, CNIM stated: “We are delighted to have been selected by Viridor to work on this strategic project. This is the second project that Viridor has entrusted us with and we look forward to supporting the company in providing Wales with its first Energy from Waste facility, thereby contributing to a better environment”. 04/05/2012

 

SITA UK Awarded Long-Term Supply Contract for RWE's Scotland Biomass Plant

SITA UKSITA UK has announced securing a long-term recovered wood supply contract to provide up to 50% of demand to RWE's £200 million biomass combined heat and power (CHP) plant near the town of Markinch, at Fife, Scotland. Plant owner RWE npower renewables, a subsidiary of the German firm RWE Innogy, expects construction of its 49.9 megawatt electric (MWe) biomass fueled power plant to be completed and fully operational by mid-year 2013. RWE's biomass CHP plant will be the largest of its kind in the United Kingdom (UK), providing steam and electricity to the neighboring Tullis Russell paper mill and reducing Scotland's annual CO2 emissions by around 250,000 tonnes. SITA UK maintains a strong waste management network in the UK and expects the wood supply to come from processing and recovery of wood biomass that would otherwise be landfilled. Graham Mayes, Chief Operating Officer for SITA UK: “End of life wood largely comprises manufactured wood which has been processed such as MDF and chipboard. This is extremely difficult to recycle and is commonly disposed at landfill. Recovering this wood to generate energy at Markinch has massive environmental benefits and is a great example of the circular economy in action. Aside from replacing the need to burn fossil fuel, it also avoids CO2 and methane emissions that would be created if the wood was sent to landfill.” SITA UK, a subsidiary of Suez Environment, provides recycling and resource management services throughout the United Kingdom. 04/05/2012

 

WRAP Launches Wood Waste Quality Standards

Waste & Resources Action ProgrammeThe United Kingdom (UK) Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) has announced completion and release of the country's first quality guidance for recovered wood waste) in collaboration with the UK's Wood Recycler's Association (WRA) and many other agencies, industries and associations. WRAP commissioned the British Standards Institution (BSI) to develop PAS 111:2012, Specification for the Requirements and Test Methods for Processing Waste Wood, to provide detailed guidance for recovering and processing post-industrial and post-consumer waste wood into wood products such that potential customers will be assured that they are procuring a material of consistent and verifiable quality. The Standards allow material to be labeled PAS 111 Compliant if the minimum specification is met or exceeded. If the minimum requirements are not met, then the material is non-compliant, even if an end user’s specification is met. Market sectors addressed in the new standard include panelboard manufacture, biomass energy, generation, animal bedding, mulches, equine surfaces, pathways and coverings and Industrial and commercial applications. Marcus Gover, Director of Closed Loop Economy at WRAP, said: “We are delighted to see this commitment to quality from the wood recycling industry.  WRAP has worked with and supported the industry for many years and hopes that PAS 111 will help it continue to make the best use of this important resource, which is good news for both the environment and the economy”. 04/05/2012

 

Technip and CIMV Sign Collaboration Agreement for Biomass to Chemicals

TechnipFrance's engineering and construction global giant Technip has signed an agreement with the Compagnie Industrielle de la Matière Végétale (CIMV) to collaborate on commercialization of CIMV's non- food biomass-sourced green chemistry process. The agreement builds on a five-year developmental relationship where Technip's expertise in engineering and construction have enabled CIMV's disruptive green chemistry technology platform to progress rapidly from pilot to industrial stage. CIMV's "Vegetal Refining" methods produce bio-sourced analogues to petroleum feedstock, ready for further refining. Technip has now established a sales team focused on promoting CIMV's process outside of France. "We are delighted with this partnership with CIMV, which will enable us to take our development further in a market which has undeniable potential for growth and is of strategically importance for many of our clients. It will also allow us to better respond to future project bids for biorefineries across the world,” explains Stéphane His, Technip’s Vice President of Biofuels and Renewable Energies. "This agreement will allow our start-up to launch its industrial program. With Technip’s support, CIMV is now able to offer a coherent and solid range of products and services to all industrial companies wanting to develop new bio-sourced applications and anticipate future regulations,” concludes Thiery Scholastique, Chairman of the Board of Directors with CIMV. 04/05/2012

  

Some Questions Answered on CEC Suspension of RPS Eligibility of Biomethane

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has published the final version of Resolution No. 12-0328-3 (See update below) documenting the March 28, 2012 suspension of Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) eligibility of biomethane. The CEC also provided detailed clarification on nine Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the suspension: (1) Applications for RPS certification/ precertification submitted after March 28, 2012 for plants using biomethane will not be processed. (2) The suspension applies to power plants that are currently RPS certified or precertified to use biomethane. (3) An application to amend the current RPS certification of a power plant cannot be submitted after the March 28, 2012, deadline. (4) Suspension only affects biomethane injected into the natural gas pipeline. (5) Pending applications for certification/ precertification will be reviewed per Renewables Portfolio Standard Eligibility Guidebook, Fourth Edition, but decisions will wait. (6) Although facilities that were already precertified before the suspension will remain precertified, the CEC will not accept any new applications for certification after March 28, 2012 deadline. (7) Future applications for RPS certification will be subject to the RPS eligibility requirements in place when the suspension is lifted. (8) Facilities that are already certified will remain certified and may continue to use biomethane procured under contract(s) with biomethane sources that were specifically identified in their approved application for RPS certification, subject to the limitations identified in Resolution No. 12-0328-3. (9) The CEC deferred consideration and directed staff to gather additional information on an issue raised during the meeting regarding pending applications and whether the facility’s biomethane supply was already being produced and injected into the pipeline system. 04/04/2012

04/06/2012 Update: The CEC has issued a Notice of Correction to Resolution on Suspension of the RPS Eligibility Guidelines Related to Biomethane. The Corrected Resolution has been posted to the CEC's website.

 

Lakeside Energy Makes Strategic Equity Investment in InEnTec

InEnTec, IncOregon based InEnTec, Inc has announced that Lakeside Energy LLC of Chicago has made a strategic equity investment in the company, and is now a significant shareholder in InEnTec. InEnTec Chemical LLC was formed as a joint venture between InEnTec and Lakeside Energy in 2008; this transaction places InEnTec Chemical LLC as a wholly owned subsidiary of InEnTec. Lakeside is a portfolio company of American Securities, who has consolidated its holdings with this direct investment. The rearrangement is similar to a recent restructuring with investor Waste Management Inc. and InEnTec subsidiary S4 Energy Solutions LLC. InEnTec Inc is a privately-held corporation and the developer of the proprietary Plasma Enhanced Melter® (PEM) gasification system that converts a wide variety of waste into heat, clean-burning syngas and inert residues. "We believe the PEM technology has the potential to shape the future of how the world transforms waste into valuable resources,” said Matthew LeBaron, a managing director of American Securities. “We continue to be impressed by the progress the InEnTec management team is making in commercializing and deploying this technology.” 04/04/2012

 

Cereplast Bioplastic Receives 3rd Party LCA Validation of Low Impact

CereplastCalifornia based Cereplast has announced that a third-party Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of its Hybrid 101 Bioplastic finds the environmental impact of energy and materials used, wastes generated and emissions released to be substantially less than for all petroleum-sourced "conventional" plastics. The LCA completed by Sustainmetrics considered all aspects from raw material extraction to production of the finished product from Cereplast's bio-sourced resins. The SimaPro LCA assessment tool used by Sustainmetrics generates a single cumulative impact score that can be related to an equivalent amount of carbon dioxide removed from the atmosphere (CO2 eq). Cereplast's Hybrid 101 bioplastic resin scores an 80% reduction when compared to conventional polypropylene (PP). Making plastic from biomass-sourced sugars instead of petroleum clearly reduces the overall impact. Sustainmetrics' report is now undergoing outside peer review and should be available on Cereplast's website within a few weeks. Cereplast's technology platform blends Ingeo® brand bio-sourced polylactic acid (PLA) from Cargill subsidiary NatureWorks with various plant starches and proteins, in recipes optimized for a variety of bio-resin market applications. Cereplast also has just announced expansion of its product line with the introduction of Hybrid 106D, "a high starch, high melt flow polypropylene (PP) starch compound … that offers a unique combination of mechanical properties, ease of processing, and a highly aesthetic surface." 04/03/2012

 

Wheelabrator, SSE form JV for Waste to Combined Heat and Power Plant

SSEUnited Kingdom energy company Scottish Southern Energy plc (SSE) has announced formation of Multifuel Energy Ltd (MFE), a 50/50% joint venture (JV) with US-based Wheelabrator Technologies Inc. to develop a £300m, 68 megawatt electric (MWe) waste to combined heat and power (CHP) plant. The new facility will be developed at SSE's Ferrybridge 1,000 MWe coal-fueled power station in West Yorkshire, with Hitachi Zosen Inova selected for plant construction. Permits were secured last fall; construction is scheduled for later this year. MFE has entered into a long-term feedstock supply agreement with 3SE (SSE’s joint venture with Shanks Plc), with the refuse derived fuel to come from a new mechanical biological treatment (MBT) and anaerobic digestion (AD) facility proposed for development at Bolton Road, Manvers to be operational by 2015. SSE’s Managing Director of Generation, Paul Smith, said: “Multifuel technology is a tried and tested way of generating clean, base-load power. This new multifuel plant will provide additional diversity to SSE’s generation portfolio and make a useful contribution to ensuring we have reliable energy supplies for the future. The transactions that make up this project represent a strong partnership between four major players in the multifuel sector, who are committed to making a serious level of investment in this technology. Between them the companies involved have extensive experience in sourcing and processing waste, constructing and commissioning multifuel technologies, and operating generation plant. This partnership creates a great platform to develop multi-fuel technology in future.” 04/03/2012

 

Viridor Starts Construction on £10 million Food Waste Plant

ViridorUnited Kingdom waste management and recycling company Viridor has announced start of construction on a food waste processing and anaerobic digestion (AD) conversion facility at the company's Walpole landfill site near Bridgewater. Viridor will work with the regional Somerset Waste Partnership to collect and process around 20,000 tonnes of food waste annually, while absorbing food waste from businesses and residents in communities immediately surrounding the facility. The biogas from the digesters will be cleaned and used to fuel a combined heat and power (CHP) plant on-site, with the renewable energy fed into the national grid. Digestate will be used by regional agriculture as a soil amendment. Somerset Waste Board chair Cllr Derek Yeomans said: “Somerset residents are working hard with us to maximise the weekly food collections and keep this valuable resource out of landfill. The next step, working with our partner Viridor, is to create clean, green renewable power right here in Somerset for the local grid. The new AD facility will also save taxpayers around £1million over the next five years so it's a genuine win on both environmental and economic grounds. We'd like to encourage all residents to use the scheme if they are not already, as the more we can process the bigger the benefits." 04/02/2012

 

Sapphire Energy Raises $144MM in Series C Funding Round

Sapphire EnergySan Diego-based algae-to-biofuel company Sapphire Energy, Inc has announced it has secured the final tranche of a $144 million Series C funding from investors including Arrowpoint Partners, Monsanto, and all of its major Series B investors. This investment round brings Sapphire Energy’s total funding over $300 million. The funds are being used to advance Sapphire's commercial demonstration "Green Crude Farm" in Luna County, New Mexico. The company's open-pond, "transgenic" strain integrated algae biorefinery converts CO2 and sunlight into renewable crude oil ready for further refining. The algae can consume industrial power plant CO2 and produce transportation fuel, resulting in a net reduction of CO2 emitted per MJ of energy used when compared to fossil fuel. In May 2011, Sapphire announced a multi-year agreement with The Linde Group to co-develop a low-cost system to deliver CO2 to the open-pond, algae-to-fuel cultivation systems, now underway at the Green Crude Farm. Sapphire also was awarded a $50 million grant from the Department of Energy and a $54.4 million dollar loan guarantee from the Department of Agriculture, providing security for a privately funded loan. “It’s amazing to see that what started from an idea scribbled on the back of napkin is now a leading force in support of the goal to improve energy security for the country,” explains Jason Pyle, CEO of Sapphire Energy. “Today, Sapphire Energy has a widely admired technology platform, outstanding leadership team, and significant ongoing support from the investment community, making it well positioned to achieve the goal of bringing domestically produced Green Crude oil to commercial scale.” 04/02/2012

 

Due 06/19/2012: IIP-SBIR Proposals to NSF for Bioenergy, Biomaterials

National Science FoundationThe National Science Foundation (NSF) issued Request for Proposals 12-548 on March 22, 2012 under the Industrial Innovations and Partnerships (IIP), Small Business Innovative Research program (SBIR). Within this massive solicitation, certain divisions within the RFP's four broad topics are pertinent to waste and biomass conversion. NSF's Directorate of Engineering oversees the Biological and Chemical Technologies (BC) program; within this, there are four subsections embracing Biological Technologies (BT1 through 6), Biomedical Technologies (BM1 through 6), Environmental Technologies (ET1 through 3), and Chemical Technologies (CT1 through five). Examples: BT5 addresses Fermentation and Cell Culture Technologies; ET1 focuses on Environmental Pollution Mitigation and Waste Treatment, while ET2 and ET3 address Bioenergy, and Renewable Fuels and Energy, respectively. Within Chemical Technologies, aspects cover energy storage, bio-based chemicals, separation technologies, polymeric materials and catalytic processes. The first step if you are considering submitting a proposal is to contact the assigned BC Program Officer by email with a two-part project summary. Proposals must be submitted between May 19, 2012 and June 19, 2012. 04/02/2012

 

Enviroparks Selects Costain for Waste to Energy Park in South Wales

Costain LtdThe United Kingdom infrastructure engineering company Costain Ltd has been awarded a contract by Enviroparks Ltd to oversee development of an integrated gasification waste to energy facility in Hirwaun, South Wales. The agreement is expected to total up to £0.75 million in fees, and may be extended to include a professional services contract once the complex is operational. The Enviroparks sorting, separating, and conversion design would accept about 240,000 tonnes of mixed residential, municipal and industrial waste per year, remove recyclable materials and convert residuals into a waste-derived fuel for high temperature (>700°C) controlled oxygen gasification. Produced synthetic fuel gas or syngas would be cleaned and used to power on site electricity generation, and/or be injected into the national grid. Design capacity is around 20 megawatts electric (MWe). Costain has been working with the developer to assess potential waste conversion subsystems. The contract work now starts with the design, logistics and planning necessary to finalize the project funding, followed by engineering, procurement and construction. Costain's Business Development Director for Waste, Mark Huddart: “We started work with Enviroparks last year. Everybody has huge ambitions to do this as quickly as possible, but we have to ensure that the concept is correct. Enviroparks are ‘technology-agnostic’, so they’ve asked us to work with them in a fully integrated and highly collaborative manner to choose a technology that’s both fundable and will provide an economic solution for the long-term future of the project." 04/01/2012

 

 PREV Main Next 

 
 

Follow TeruTalk on TwitterLike Teru Talk on Facebook!

  
Share This Page
Twitter Facebook
Teru Talk 
 
 

Teru Talk

This site is intended to Incite Dialogue about all matters related to Waste Conversion for Resource Recovery.
Please join me.
 
Michael Theroux 
 

Teru Talk

 

Recommended Reading:

 

CHAGALL: The Recycling Dragon
CHAGALL: The Recycling Dragon by Marty Strauss

 

 Teru's Bookshelf

 

Out of the Wasteland: Stories from the Environmental Frontier by Paul Relis
Out of the Wasteland: Stories from the Environmental Frontier by Paul Relis

 
 Teru Talk
 

 What People are Saying about Teru Talk:

 

"Teru Talk has become invaluable to me in keeping up with waste conversion issues. You are absolutely current and that is so important to explain and to understand this industry."
David Roberti - President
BioEnergy Producers Association

"I enjoy your e-newsletters – I read them religiously! Thank you for doing such a good job of helping spread the word about anaerobic digesters."
Melissa VanOrnum
- Marketing Manager
DVO, Inc

"I have been having a look at your web page and I believe you are carrying out an incredible task in the field."
Dr. Frédéric Ratel -Responsable de Propietat Industrial
Institut Català d’Investigació Química (ICIQ)

"I've been impressed with the growth of Teru Talk as a resource for information regarding conversion technologies. It's a needed resource given the current pace of conversion technology development and interest."
Coby Skye - Civil Engineer
Los Angeles County DPW

"Thanks for all the good things you're doing at Teru Talk! Your blog presents a spot-on analysis, and is helping to shed a bright light on the folks who have crossed the line one too many times."
Dr. Kay Martin - Vice President
Bioenergy Producers Association

"I just wanted to take a minute to say how very much I appreciate the tenacity with which you keep us all updated and watching along the horizon with you."
Tim o'Shea - CEO
CleanFish, Inc

"I've looked through your site, Terutalk - What a great resource. Your action items and due dates are particularly helpful."
Su Anne Huang - Market Manager, Landfills
FlexEnergy, Inc

"Thanks for putting it in writing…. excellent blog and website my friend. Thanks for doing what you are doing."
Chuck Collins - CEO
Cascade Power Group LLC

"Teru Talk is really terrific. I read it assiduously, learning something every time."
Paul Relis - Senior VP
CR&R Waste & Recycling Services

more.....

 

 

 
 
  Search Teru Talk:
Tip: Use your browser's "Find" or "Find on Page" to drill down.
 
 
Teru Talk
 

Founding Sponsor:

 

JDMT, Inc

 
Teru Talk
  

Featured Events:

 
 

 

See your event here!

 
Teru Talk
 
Sponsored Links:
 

300% green