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December 2012 News and Matters of Interest

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U of Virginia School of Medicine Maps Out 3-D Enzyme that Produces Cellulose

University of Virginia - School of MedicineResearchers at the University of Virginia, School of Medicine have published a paper in this month's edition of the journal "Nature" about a three-dimensional (3-D) enzyme that produces cellulose. The paper is entitled "Crystallographic snapshot of cellulose synthesis and membrane translocation" and provides the three-dimensional architecture of a primary enzyme that produces the long-chain molecular polymer cellulose. The study found that the enzyme creates the polymers and causes them to be extruded from microbial and plant cell walls much as a spider spins its silk. Although the end product, cellulose, is relatively well understood, this is the first time that the mechanism that creates the cellulose has been identified and described. The research team's medical interest stems from the bacterial production of cellulose into clinging "biofilms" that coat wounds and surgical instruments; the same cellulose microfibril activity complicates efficient production of biofuels. Understanding this first step should provide keys to optimizing cellular production of biofuel, and to breaking down the cellulose forming structures themselves. Jochen Zimmer, an assistant professor in the School of Medicine, leads a research lab currently focused on extra-cellular polysaccharides and the bacterial cellulose synthase complex. 12/31/2012

Green Fuel Nordic Secures Major Backing for Biorefinery in Finland

Green Fuel NordicThe biorefinery development firm Green Fuel Nordic (GFN) has announced that the Olvi Foundation has committed to invest in the company's initial biorefinery project slated for the Iisalmi Soinlahti region of Finland. GFN also plans to construct a second biorefinery in Savonlinna Pääskylahti. the company utilizes the Rapid Thermal Processing (RTP) technology developed by the Canadian firm Ensyn to convert biomass into bio-oil. The non-profit Olvi Foundation was founded in 1955 to support youth and the elderly, to assist low income community members. and to promote the regional agriculture and fishing industries. GFN's CEO Timo Saarelainen: "Our work has been successful; we have now established our position as a significant expert and player in the sector. We are influencing Finland’s future bio-economy strategy. We will now continue with the next planning phase for the biorefineries; this phase will include, e.g., strengthening the project organization, recruiting key people, and other permit processes. We are currently experiencing a great industrial revolution, and our journey to the future bio-economy society will continue to be at least as interesting as it has been so far." 12/31/2012

Amyris Secures $42MM Financing, Starts Biofene Production in Brazil Facility

AmyrisCalifornia based renewable products company Amyris has announced completion of a private common stock placement totaling $42.25 million, concurrent with the successful initiation of production of Biofene in its Paraiso, Brazil facility. Amyris Brasil Ltda., a subsidiary of Amyris, oversees the establishment and expansion of Amyris' production in Brazil. Amyris' industrial synthetic biology platform converts plant sugars into bio-sourced alternatives to petroleum products. Biofene® is the company's renewable brand of the long-chain hydrocarbon farnesene, as the core of its No Compromise® line of renewable ingredients in cosmetics, flavors and fragrances, polymers, lubricants and consumer products, as well as renewable diesel and jet fuel. In August, Amyris welcomed a strategic partnership with the French-based integrated fuels and chemicals company Total for development of Amyris' renewable diesel and jet fuels, a deal worth up to $82 million over the next three years. John Melo, Amyris President & CEO: "We are encouraged by the continued, strong commitment from our major investors, particularly as we start up our new industrial fermentation facility for the production of our renewable hydrocarbons in Brazil. Our own farnesene plant at Paraiso has been successfully commissioned, with initial farnesene production underway. We anticipate sales from this facility during the first quarter of 2013." 12/27/2012

Covanta Secures New 20-Year Waste Agreement with Bristol Municipalities

Covanta EnergyNew Jersey's integrated waste conversion and disposal company Covanta Energy Corporation has announced successful negotiations resulting in a new 20 year agreement with municipalities in the Bristol, Connecticut region. Covanta will combine waste to energy conversion at the Covanta Bristol Resource Recovery Facility with services extending to recycling, organics handling and composting, bulky waste and electronic waste management. The Bristol agreement extends a long-standing relationship with the Bristol Resource Recovery Facility Operating Committee (BRRFOC) that began with the development and construction of the Bristol Resource Recovery Facility in 1988, which currently processes about 650 tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) per day into 16 megawatts of clean, renewable electricity. Berlin Town Manager Denise McNair: "The last 25 years have been an excellent example of various and diverse communities working together for the betterment of their towns. The fact that most people are completely unaware of what happens to their trash once it leaves their front yard is a testament to how well things are run by Covanta. It makes our jobs that much easier to have a large issue like waste management handled so well." Just last month, Covanta opened a tax-exempt bond placement valued at $335 million to refinance debt for a series of eastern resource recovery facilities. 12/27/2012

Veolia Environnement Raises $153MM in "Dutch Auction" Debt Tender Offer

Veolia EnvironnementVeolia Environnement has announced a final results in its modified "Dutch Auction" cash tender offer at 6% on Senior Notes due in 2018. At the close of the auction, the company had received tenders amounting to $153,170,000 aggregate principal on the notes. Payment on the Notes is expected to be received by December 28, 2012. United Kingdom (UK) based Veolia Environmental Services is part of the French-based Veolia Environnement Group, providing a range of services for handling hazardous and non-hazardous solid and liquid waste, with waste management and logistics services as well as materials recovery and recycling. Veolia Environmental Services generated revenue of €9.05 billion in 2009 and continues to expand, most recently securing a new waste management contract with the UK city of Leeds. The company recently launched "The Cities of Tomorrow" initiative to promote advanced city management of materials and resources, focusing for waste management on collection, recovery and valorization of the resources that can be reclaimed from a municipality's waste streams. The Cities initiative parallels with its Veolia Innovation Accelerator (VIA) program designed to encourage and support the development and deployment of clean technologies. Antoine Frérot, CEO of Veolia Environment: "The Veolia Innovation Accelerator stems from the belief that the speed with which innovation can be developed and deployed on a global scale will depend on our ability to move forward together as one, by way of networks and partnerships. In creating the Veolia Innovation Accelerator, the company has leveraged its position as a technology integrator to contribute to collective innovation and make it available to as many people as possible." 12/27/2012

United Kingdom DECC Publishes Renewable Energy Roadmap

United Kingdom Department of Energy and ClimateThe United Kingdom (UK) Department of Energy and Climate (DECC) announced publication of the current update to the Renewable Energy Roadmap. The Roadmap is intended to "set out a comprehensive action plan to accelerate the UK’s deployment and use of renewable energy, and put us on the path to achieve our 2020 target, while driving down the cost of renewable energy over time." The formal Roadmap Program is led by DECC's Office of Renewable Energy Deployment, and includes a series of elements to promote a range of eight technologies; the office published the Solar and Biomass Support Packages earlier this month. Energy from wind, biomass, and heat pumps are the "leading contributors" to the UK's renewable energy development. The Roadmap shows that the UK is on track to meeting its first interim target on the way to the ambitious European target to source 15% of all energy from renewable sources by 2020. Edward Davey, Energy and Climate Change Secretary: “Renewable energy is increasingly powering the UK’s grid, and the economy too. It’s a fantastic achievement that more than ten percent of our power now comes from renewables, given the point from which we started. Right now, getting new infrastructure investment into the economy is crucial to driving growth and supporting jobs across the country. I am determined that we get ahead in the global race on renewables and build on the big-money investments we’ve seen this year”. 12/27/2012

DOE Posts Webinar Presentation on Upgrading Carbohydrates for Biofuels

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy's Biomass Program regularly hosts detailed webinar presentations designed to highlight "hot topics" in biomass management and conversion to heat, power, fuels and chemicals. The December 12, 2012 presentation entitled "Upgrading Renewable and Sustainable Carbohydrates For the Production of High Energy Density Fuels" is now available on the program website. Presenters from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) highlighted the development of hydrocarbon fuels as renewable alternatives to petrochemical feedstocks. Lignocellulose is a promising carbon-neutral source of energy derived from wood, agricultural waste, and woody grasses. The carbohydrates D-glucose (C6), L-arabinose (C5), and D-xylose (C5) are readily obtained from the hydrolysis of lignocellulose and constitute the most abundant renewable organic carbon source on the planet. Because they are naturally produced on such a large scale, these sugars have the greatest potential to displace petrochemical-derived transportation fuel. Researchers discussed investigations into a potentially transformational strategy aimed at obtaining high energy density hydrocarbon fuels from non-food-based carbohydrate sources. Email John Gordon () and Pete Silks () with additional questions regarding the topic. Email () for questions regarding the Biomass Program. 12/27/2012

European Commission Names 23 Projects for €1.2 billion in NER300 Funding

European CommissionThe European Commission (EC) has announced over €1.2 billion funding to 23 "highly innovative" renewable energy projects selected from the first call for proposals to be financed by the New Entrant's Reserve (NER) of the European Union Emissions Trading System. The NER300 funding programme is implemented by the EC with the collaboration of the European Investment Bank (EIB) both in the project selection, the sale of 300 million carbon allowances from the EU Emissions Trading System, and the management of revenues. The projects cover a wide range of renewable technologies - bioenergy (including advanced biofuels), concentrated solar power, geothermal power, wind, ocean energy, and distributed renewable management (smart grids). The Draft Award Decision includes an index of awardees with amounts and fund release timing. Many bioenergy and biofuels projects are represented among the award winners, including a €199 million grant to the Woodspirit initiative, efforts of a Dutch advanced biofuels collaborative that includes Siemens, BioMCN, Linde and others. The Woodspirit biorefinery will produce biobased chemicals and biofuels from gasified biomass that consists of residues from the forestry and the wood processing industries. Phase 2 of Goteborg Energi's GoBiGas project was awarded over €58 million; Vereinigte BioEnergie AG's "Verbiostraw" agricultural residue to biomethane vehicle fuel gas and fertilizer project garnered over €22 million. UPM-Kymmene will receive about €170 million to advance its Strasbourg, Germany wood to liquid fuel "Stracel" biorefinery project. The Commission will proceed swiftly with the implementation of the second call for proposals, covering unused funds from the first call as well as the revenues of the remaining 100 million allowances in the new entrants' reserve. 12/22/2012

AEC Releases Cellulosic Biofuels Industry Progress 2012-2013 Report

Advanced Ethanol CouncilThe Advanced Ethanol Council (AEC) has announced the release of a report on active cellulosic ethanol projects in the United States, the Cellulosic Biofuels Industry Progress Report 2012-2013. The free report provides a detailed look at the progress made towards the commercial deployment of advanced biofuels. It profiles production facilities and projects across the country and producing nations around the world, profiling facilities and projects in about 20 states in the US, various provinces in Canada, and facilities in China, Denmark, Italy, Germany and Spain. Each colorful, well-constructed profile give ownership and partners, status of development with estimated completion date, scale and location, feedstock and intended products and includes clear photos of the development. All profiles also provide a "Path to Commercial Deployment" timeline with milestones, easing comparison between efforts. From the introduction, "The Challenge: the cellulosic biofuels industry has reached the commercial deployment phase. However, high capital risk from OPEC-induced price distortions, constrained blending markets and policy uncertainty continues to slow the rate of deployment. The federal policies that put the United States at the global forefront of the deployment of the cellulosic biofuels industry are at risk. How U.S. policymakers address these challenges will determine whether the country leads or falls behind in the global race to produce next generation bio-base fuels and products." 12/22/2012

VTT Wins EARTO Innovation Award for Processing Biomass to Bio-Oil + CHP

VTT Technical Research Centre of FinlandThe European Association for Research and Technology Organisations (EARTO) has presented an innovation award to the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland for its breakthrough in processing biomass to both Bio-Oil and Combined Heat and Power (CHP). VTT has successfully coupled pyrolysis with a fluidized bed to boiler power generation module, making commercial production of bio-oil financially viable. VTT collaborated with the energy company Fortum, technology specialist Metso Power and forestry firm UPM to connect a pyrolysis reactor to a conventional fluidized bed boiler for the co-generation of electricity and heat. The bio-oil production process can use heat recovered from the power plant that would otherwise be wasted and uncondensed gases and char from the pyrolysis process are fed into the boiler for combustion alongside the plant’s primary fuel. Fortum plans to use the configuration in development of a new commercial integrated 50,000 tonnes bio-oil production and heating plant in the city of Joensuu in Finland. The plant is designed to produce. Jouni Haikarainen, of Fortum: "The use of bio-oil has a significant positive environmental impact because energy produced with bio-oil reduces greenhouse emissions by more than 70% compared to fossil fuels. Also, when Nordic biomass is used as the raw material for bio-oil, we can be ensured that it has been produced sustainably. This is a key element of Fortum’s strategy for sustainable development." 12/20/2012

Fortum, City of Stockholm to Develop Biomass Combined Heat and Power Plant

FortumFinland's diversified energy company Fortum has announced that its wholly owned subsidiary Fortum Värme will partner with the City of Stockholm to develop a new EUR 500 million biomass combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Värtan, Stockholm, upgrading Värme's existing facilities. Fortum Värme supplies Stockholm with heat and electricity, approximately 8,300 gigawatt-hours (GWh) heat, 400 GWh district cooling and 1,500 GWh electricity. The new CHP plant will have a production capacity of 130 MW electricity and 280 megawatts (MW) heat, interconnected with Stockholm's Southern-central district heating network. Anders Egelrud, Managing Director of Fortum Värme: "District heating has a strong position in Stockholm. With the new investment, we will strenghten the energy production of the area. The investment is also in line with Fortum's strategy, where CHP-production plays a central role. CHP technology improves resource efficiency since it enables as much as 90% of the energy content of the fuel to be utilised. The direct and indirect environmental benefits of the new biofuel-based plant will be significant. The global CO2 emissions will decrease by 650,000 tons annually." Fortum's goal is to achieve climate neutral production of district heating in Stockholm. In addition to Värtan's new plant, Fortum is currently constructing a new waste-fired unit at the Brista CHP-plant in northern Stockholm, Sweden. The new Brista unit is scheduled to be commissioned in 2013. 12/20/2012

Due 02/15/2013: Comments on Massachusetts Draft Solid Waste Master Plan

Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (Mass DEP) is seeking public comment on the state administration's draft Solid Waste Master Plan, specifically regarding modifications to the current moratorium on municipal solid waste incineration. The draft modifications are intended to increase resource recovery and  recycling toward a zero-waste future, and would encourage the development of alternative technologies such as pyrolysis and gasification for conversion of post-recycling residuals into energy or fuel on a closely limited basis. Total additional capacity for gasification or pyrolysis of solid waste would be limited statewide to 350,000 tons per year, which is half of the projected in-state capacity shortfall of 700,000 tons if the master plan's disposal reduction goals are met. Commissioner Kenneth Kimmell of the MassDEP: "Keeping recyclable materials out of landfills and incinerators benefits Massachusetts environmentally and economically. Allowing the development of innovative and cleaner technologies will help us deal with the portion of the waste stream for which recycling isn't currently feasible to manage these materials in an environmentally responsible way." The public comment period solicits response on only that portion of the draft that deals with solid waste incinerator moratorium. Comments will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Friday, February 15, 2013, and should be sent to: John Fischer () or by mail to: John Fischer, MassDEP, One Winter Street, Boston, MA 02108. 12/20/2012

European Biofuels Technology Platform Schedules 5th Plenary Meeting

European BiofuelsTechnology PlatformThe European Biofuels Technology Platform (EBTP) has announced its 5th Stakeholder Plenary Meeting (SPM5), to be held at the Diamante Conference Centre in Brussels on February 6-7, 2013. The meeting is free, but space is limited to 200 participants and pre-registration is required. The preliminary conference program includes experts in developing sustainable advanced biofuels from Europe, the United States, Brazil, and China to give a global perspective on sustainability and financing. Presentations will be made by Chairs of the EBTP Working Groups and representatives of the Steering Committee, updating the activities of the EBTP in key areas. Among the topics to be explored: the October 2012 European Commission proposal to minimize the climate impacts of biofuels by amending current regulation through the Renewable Energy and the Fuel Quality Directives. The ETBP is part of Knowledge Based Bio-Economy (KBBE) initiatives, and works closely with related European Technology Platforms (ETPs) involved in Sustainable Chemistry, Plant Biotechnology, Agriculture and Transport to identify gaps and synergies in biorefinery R&DD. Specifically, the EBTP participates in the BeCoTeps and STAR-Colibri projects, as well as liaising with ERA-NET Bioenergy and ESFRI EWG. It also contributes extensively to consultations on the availability and certification of sustainable bioenergy feedstocks, including lignocellulosic materials and novel biomass resources. 12/19/2012

Neste Oil to Produce Renewable Aviation Fuel for EU Funded ITAKA Project

Neste OilFinland based Neste Oil has announced its participation in the 36-month European Union (EU) funded "Initiative Towards Sustainable Kerosene for Aviation" (ITAKA) project. As a member, Neste will produce the renewable fuel for the consortium, which has granted approximately EUR 10 million of funding under the EU's Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Development. Neste Oil will produce a total of 4,000 tons of NExBTL renewable aviation fuel as part of the project, primarily from sustainably produced Spanish camelina oil, and possibly also used cooking oil. Neste Oil has already carried out trials on the use of NExBTL renewable aviation fuel in commercial service, and has initiated sales within the United States. During a recent six-month trial, Lufthansa flew a total of 1,187 flights between Frankfurt and Hamburg using NExBTL renewable aviation fuel, as well as one intercontinental flight between Frankfurt and Washington D.C. The ITAKA project link supply and demand by establishing a relationship under specific conditions between feedstock grower, biofuel producer, distributor and final user (airlines). The project works with the European Commission's bio fuel sustainability program and will be assessed against the RSB EU RED Standard. 12/19/2012

NYSERDA $1MM Incentive Helps Launch Matt Brewing Biogas-to-Power Project

New York State Energy Research and Development AuthorityThe New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has announced a partnership with F.X. Matt Brewing Company and the National Grid designed to commission an anaerobic digestion (AD) combined heat and power (CHP) system. The installation will convert the brewery's wastewater to biogas to fuel 400 kilowatts of electricity (kWe) providing about 35 to 40% of the brewery's power demand, while recovering the engine heat to maintain the digestion system at optimal temperature. An anticipated five year payback is based on savings of about $350,000 annually in the brewery's energy costs. Located in the foothills of the Adirondacks, F.X. Matt Brewing Company, known for the Saranac line of beverages, started in 1888 is New York’s oldest brewery and the second oldest family-owned brewery in the United States. Matt produces about 330,000 barrels of beer and soda. Selecting Media, PA based Environmental Management Group International, Inc. as the lead system design engineers, construction on the digester system began in early 2012, with installation of a 200,000-gallon wastewater equalization tank, five 40,000-gallon Anaerobic Fluidized Bed Digester (AFBD) tanks and the power-generation equipment. Nick Matt, Chairman and CEO: "This anaerobic digestion facility is a fascinating project. We’re creating energy from waste, and our company is benefiting from it. We are very thankful to NYSERDA and National Grid for providing the funding to make this clean-energy project possible." 12/19/2012

MagneGas and Sustainable Green Sign $1MM Fuel Distribution Agreement

MagneGasFlorida based plasma waste to fuel specialist MagneGas has announced a two-year cutting fuel gas pre-purchase agreement with Washington based Sustainable Green Corporation (SGC), who will become the exclusive distributor of the hydrogen-rich gas in the Pacific Northwest. MagneGas will install a waste gasification fuel production facility within Sustainable Green's existing Seattle facility. SGC is an energy development company committed to the advancement of environmentally responsible alternatives that provide competitive advantages to traditional industrial methodologies. MagneGas technology utilizes plasma arc reduction of waste liquids to produce MagneGas™ fuel syngas for metal cutting operations, and listed on the NASDAQ in August of this year. The Company's patented Plasma Arc Flow™ process gasifies liquid waste, creating a clean burning hydrogen based fuel that is essentially interchangeable with natural gas. MagneGas™ can be used for metal working, cooking, heating, powering bi fuel automobiles and more. Ermanno Santilli, CEO of MagneGas: "We are very pleased to enter into this partnership with Sustainable Green and expand our market presence in the Pacific Northwest. "Today's announcement shows that our sales efforts are paying off and that there is a strong demand for our fuel. More importantly, it demonstrates our viable business model that will generate significant revenue growth and drive shareholder value." 12/19/2012

UK Solidifies Renewable Obligation for Biomass and Solar Energy

United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom (UK) Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced finalization of rates for biomass and solar generated renewable energy, under the Renewables Obligation (RO) for utilities power purchase agreements. The government's decisions follow a lengthy formal consultation on proposals to ensure the sustainability and affordability of biomass power; the consultation web page provides all background materials and environmental assessments. Including as supplement to the impact assessment is a note considering Biomass Power and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Sensitivity. The decisions The DECC noted that the governmental support will ensure that the RO brings forward new biomass projects that are both cost and carbon effective, and unlock investment decisions worth £600m, creating around 1,000 construction jobs. Edward Davey, Energy and Climate Change Secretary: "Biomass will make a significant contribution as we seek to increase the amount of cost-effective, low carbon renewable power in our energy mix. The support we are setting out today will bring new investment into the economy and create new jobs." 12/18/2012

USDA Awards $349,695 to MSU for Next Generation Biofuels Research

United States Department of AgricultureMichigan State University's (MSU) Agriculture Technology program has received an award of $349,695 from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop next generation biofuels. The grant was part of $10 million in research grants "designed to spur production of bioenergy and biobased products that will lead to the development of sustainable regional systems and help create jobs," according to the USDA's announcement. Secretary Tom Vilsack visited the University for the award: "The research conducted at Michigan State will help give us the scientific information needed to support biofuel production and create co-products that will enhance the overall value of a biobased economy." U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing, chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, lauded the development in a media release Friday. "When we make things here and grow things here, we create jobs here in Michigan. This award will help Michigan State remain at the forefront of innovative agricultural research and next-generation biofuel research," she said. "It is critical that we support advanced biofuels and biobased manufacturing, so we can produce more Michigan-grown fuel and Michigan-made products." 12/18/2012

GCS to Operate Pinellas Energy from Waste Plant in Tampa Florida

Green Conversion SystemsBased in New York, Green Conversion Systems (GCS) has announced the acquisition of an Operating Agreement for the Pinellas Energy from Waste (EfW) Facility in Tampa, Florida. The Pinellas facility is the largest mass burn incinerator operating in the US, converting about 3,150 tons per day (tpd) of municipal solid waste (MSW) into the generation of around 75 megawatts of electricity on power contract to a Duke Energy subsidiary, Progress Energy. GCS was founded in 2008 and is the exclusive North American technology partner of Fisia Babcock Environment GmbH (FBE) headquartered in Germany and part of the Italian global Impreglio Group. GCS calls its technologic approach Advanced Thermal Recycling (ATR), an integration of pre-processing recyclable goods recovery, tightly monitored direct combustion, and post-process residuals management. GCS is a privately owned developer and now operator of energy from waste facilities in North America and the Caribbean. The City of Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation recently selected GCS from among thirteen competing proposers to build a commercial-scale 1,000 tpd MSW conversion facility. CEO Marc McMenamin foresees GCS pursuing numerous EfW development opportunities and operating contracts becoming available in the next few years. 12/17/2012

Ottawa City Council and Mayor Approve Plasco Waste to Energy Project

Plasco Energy GroupPlasma waste conversion company Plasco Energy Group reports that the City Council of Ottawa, Canada "overwhelmingly endorses" plasma gasification of the city's waste, after signing a 20 year contract with provisions for extensions. The gasification process will convert an initial 300 tons per day or about half of the city's post-recycling municipal solid waste (MSW) into high-energy synthetic fuel gas (syngas) to be used for power generation. The city's fee will be $83.25 per ton processed, increasing to match inflation. The Plasco Process first stage uses recycled system heat to gasify the waste, passing that gas through a plasma field to refine the crude syngas into primarily hydrogen and carbon monoxide. Particulates are separated, and the cleaned syngas is further upgraded and cooled for heat recovery, power generation and reclamation of water for reuse. Voting for the contract, Major Jim Watson made his support for the Plasco project quite clear in his daily blog post: "… now is the time to say “YES” to this opportunity. We cannot be a bystander on this opportunity. Given the opportunity to be the first municipality in the world to conclude an agreement with PLASCO, a homegrown company that is poised to become very successful, I am in complete support. This is a business deal from which the City will benefit as Plasco successfully moves to large scale commercialization. The City will benefit by sharing in Plasco revenue, it will benefit by increasing the life of our landfill, and it will benefit directly through increased economic diversification. And let me tell you I have seen my share of divisive and never-ending debates about where to locate “the next landfill” in our community." 12/17/2012

ADB Will Loan $74MM for Community Scale Biogas Plants in Vietnam

Asian Development BankThe Asian Development Bank (ADB) has announced that it will provide a loan of $74 million to fund installation of thousands of domestic biogas plants across Vietnam to turn rural waste, a growing source of environmental damage, into energy and fertilizer. As part of the ADB-sponsored Low Carbon Agricultural Support Project, the developments will process agricultural and rural household waste into biogas and bio-slurry, a clean organic fertilizer. Data from a similar ADB project in the People’s Republic of China shows that biogas plant investments lower energy costs, raise organic fertilizer use, and boost household incomes annually by about 15%. More than 36,000 small, medium, and large-sized biogas plants are expected to be built and the project will also raise awareness about environmentally-safe, climate-friendly waste management practices using commune pilot demonstrations, short training courses, study tours, radio and television programs, and information materials. The project will run for six years with an expected completion date of December 2018. ADB’s loan is from its concessional Asian Development Fund, with the Government of Vietnam and state-owned financial firms contributing a combined $10 million. Agustina Musa, Financial Management Specialist in ADB’s Southeast Asia Department: “A boom in livestock production has seen a sharp rise in the discharge of untreated waste, which has serious consequences for health and the environment. Converting this waste into biogas and fertilizer will help prevent disease outbreaks, cut harmful gas emissions, lower costs for farmers and provide new supplies of clean energy.” 12/17/2012

Australian Clean Tech Program Grants $6.2MM for Animal Waste Biogas Project

AustraliaThe Australian office of the Minister for Industry and Innovation, Climate Change and Energy Efficiency has announced an award of $6.2 million from the Government's Clean Technology Food and Foundries Investment Program to AJ Bush & Sons for its rendering plant in the Bromelton State Development Area. AJ Bush & Sons will use the funds to (1) upgrade or replace inefficient coal-fired boilers with high efficiency boilers, and (2) cover its anaerobic ponds to capture the methane gas currently emitted and use this as a renewable fuel source to power a new biogas boiler for steam production. The project will reduce the carbon emissions intensity of steam production by 64 per cent and cut energy cost by 46 per cent. The company will match the Government grant on a dollar-for-dollar basis. Funded by carbon price revenue, the Gillard Government's $200 million Clean Technology Food and Foundries Investment Program has provided a total of $9.3 million in support to date to 12 meat processors, renderers and manufacturers of small goods around the country. The program is open to eligible manufacturers with funding provided over six years from 2011-12. Minister Combet: "The Gillard Government's Clean Technology Investment Programs provide valuable support to manufacturers looking to improve their operations and competitiveness around Australia. They are an important part of our plan for a clean energy future. I encourage manufacturers who are looking to make investments in energy efficient capital equipment to take a look at the guidelines and consider applying." 12/17/2012

Due 01/13/2013: Concept Paper to DOE to Improve Bio-Oil Conversion

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced the release of a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to address challenges identified during the December 2011 workshop, “Conversion Technologies for Advanced Biofuels” (CTAB) and from a prior Request for Information (RFI) in November 2012. Specifically, DOE-FOA-0000812: Carbon, Hydrogen, and Separation Efficiencies in Bio-Oil Conversion Pathways (CHASE Bio-Oil Pathways) will focus on three barriers repeatedly identified at CTAB and in the RFI. The three barriers are: 1) carbon efficiency: developing selective fractionation and separation systems in bio-oil processing; 2) hydrogen efficiency: improving H2 production, use, and transfer in biomass liquefaction and bio-oil upgrading; and 3) separations efficiency: developing technologies for use and mitigation of the aqueous fraction of bio-oil. The research work should improve yield and economic feasibility of producing biofuels via thermochemical, direct liquefaction pathways (i.e. fast pyrolysis, ex situ and in situ catalytic fast pyrolysis, hydropyrolysis, hydrothermal liquefaction, and solvent liquefaction). Up to $12 million is available, with five project awards anticipated for awards to universities, national laboratories, industrial entities, and nonprofit organizations. A concept paper must be submitted by January 13, 2013; the full proposal is due February 13, 2013. Submission is through the DOE's Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Exchange (). 12/17/2012

Oregon Approves Materials Management and Clean Fuels Programs

State of OregonThe Oregon Environmental Quality Commission (EQC) under the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) voted on two key clean tech issues during this month's meeting, unanimously approving the Materials Management for Oregon: 2050 Vision and Framework for Action upon acceptance of the Staff Report, and the following day approved implementation of Oregon's Clean Fuel Program, Phase 1. The reports and the all attachments can be downloaded from the December 6 and 7, 2012 meeting agenda. The 2050 Vision is a revision to and replacement of the Oregon State Integrated Resource and Solid Waste Management Plan. The DEQ policy analyst for the program's development Abby Boudouris commented: "Shifting from managing wastes to managing materials through the full life cycle of design, production and use is essential to achieving the 2050 Vision. Developing the partnerships and competencies necessary for success will take time and will require engaging persons not traditionally involved in DEQ’s work." Phase 1 of the Clean Fuels Program would require Oregon fuel producers and importers to register, keep records, and report to the DEQ the volumes and carbon intensities of the fuels they provide in Oregon. Phase II would require regulated parties to reduce the average carbon intensity of fuels they provide in Oregon each year, with the ultimate goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 10 percent from the 2010 levels. The DEQ will ask the 2013 Oregon Legislature to remove the December 31, 2015 sunset date from HB 2186, and provide authority to establish a fee on regulated parties that will pay for implementation of the first phase of the program and development of the next phase of the program. 12/15/2012

MaRS Cleantech Fund Invests in Woodland Biofuels for Biomass to Ethanol

Woodland BiofuelsThe MaRS Cleantech Fund of Toronto, Ontario, Canada has announced the completion of an investment of an undisclosed amount in Mississauga based Woodland Biofuels, which has a demonstration plant in the commissioning phase in Sarnia. Woodland's demonstration plant will be an integrated end-to-end biomass-to-ethanol refinery, operated to collect data confirming the targeted operating metrics, test various forms of feedstock, and optimize the plant configuration for the purposes of commercial plant operations. Woodland is working alongside engineering and construction partner Zeton Inc. Woodland's "Catalyzed Pressure Reduction" (CPR) technology platform first gasifies biomass, then catalyzes the syngas and finally distills the resulting ethanol. Woodland's focus in on conversion of low-grade biomass, since the process efficiency is not significantly affected by the form of the woody feedstock. A potential source of wood waste is the slash piles that are left after logging operations. This includes unsuitable species as well as the tops and branches of trees logged for the pulp or lumber industries, and extends to urban wood waste, the cellulose-rich fractions of municipal solid waste, and non-food agricultural residuals. MaRS is a charitable organization dedicated to capture the commercial potential of Toronto's $1 billion in annual science and technology research spending. MaRS Discovery District, manager of the Cleantech Fund, is a "mission-driven innovation centre" developed to "catalyze, accelerate and amplify innovation." Tom Rand, co-manager of the Fund: "The MaRS Cleantech fund seeks technologies with the potential to revolutionize the energy sector. Woodland Biofuels is on track to become the first company to profitably make renewable fuels from non-food sources without requiring any form of subsidy. That’s the kind of game-changer we target." 12/15/2012

Due 01/22/2013: Comments on Oregon's Conversion Technology Standards

State of OregonThe Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has announced release for public review and comment of new performance standards and solid waste permit requirements for certain conversion technology facilities in Oregon. The changes would come in the form of new state rules primarily governing conversion technology facilities, which use chemical or thermal processes to convert solid waste into a variety of byproducts. Conversion technologies consist of a variety of biological, chemical, and thermal (excluding incineration) processes that convert solid waste into chemicals, fuels and other products. Examples of conversion technologies include: anaerobic digestion, gasification, hydrolysis, and pyrolysis. The DEQ has developed a rule proposal that would define conversion technology, establish performance standards and solid waste permit requirements for conversion technology facilities. If adopted, the proposed rules would establish regulatory clarity through performance standards and solid waste permit requirements for conversion technology facilities. This would assure environmental protection, establish an appropriate fee schedule for this new permit category and provide regulatory certainty for emerging technology providers and DEQ staff. The proposed Conversion Technology rules also would cover anaerobic digestion facilities, which use biological processes to digest solid waste and create methane, which can be used to create electricity or transportation fuels. Background documents are available on the Conversion Technology Rulemaking program web page and in a separate proposal review briefing. A public hearing is scheduled for January 16, 2013 in Portland, Oregon and is accessible by webcast. Public comment is due before 5:00pm, January 22, 2013, mailed to Oregon DEQ, attention Christie Nuttall, 811 SW 6th Ave, Portland OR 97204, or by email (). 12/15/2012

Oregon BEST Grant Advances ShelterWorks' Waste Wood Filled Cement Blocks

ShelterWorksOregon based green building materials company ShelterWorks owns rights to formation of Faswall® waste wood filled cement construction block, a lightweight "green" building material. With the aid of a $74,000 commercialization grant from the Oregon Built Environment & Sustainable Technologies Center (Oregon BEST), ShelterWorks will engage the seismic research expertise and testing tools at Portland State University’s  infraStructure Testing & Applied Research (iSTAR) Lab to test and document the block's structural stability. Oregon BEST researcher and Portland State University professor Peter Dusicka: "I’m interested in new structural systems, especially in the area of green building applications. And I’m most intrigued by companies using non-conventional and recycled materials." Faswall® insulated concrete form (ICF) building blocks are made of 85 percent chipped pallet wood and 15 percent cement, adding structural integrity not common to ICF blocks while eliminating volatile off-gassing from the more typical ICF use of Styrofoam and other insulating materials. Although Faswall blocks have been used in a number of commercial buildings, the data generated from the PSU research should simplify and speed the engineering process, helping expand the market for the product. Tom Van Denend, CEO of Shelterworks: “Currently, engineers on commercial projects who look at our product don’t have a lot of third-party test data to consult, so they must over-engineer their plans, or go with a different product. After testing in the iSTAR Lab, we’ll have third-party structural design guidelines we can hand to engineers to make their jobs easier and allow Faswall to be much more seriously considered for commercial projects.” 12/14/2012

Cyclone Power Forming JV with Precision CNC for Production Center

Cyclone PowerFlorida based heat driven engine developer Cyclone Power has announced signing a Letter of Understanding with manufacturing company Precision CNC to establish a production center for Cyclone Engines. Under the terms of the proposed joint venture (JV), Cyclone will establish a wholly-owned subsidiary, Cyclone Precision LLC, which will be co-located at Precision CNC's Carroll, Ohio facility. Precision CNC is an ISO 9001-2008 certified manufacturing facility with the capabilities to handle prototyping to full production for technology, medical, military and other customers requiring precision machine work. Precision CNC will provide oversight and administrative functions for the JV Company, and will add their expertise to the production designs of Cyclone Engines, an all-fuel, clean-tech engine that can run everything from waste energy electric generators and solar thermal systems to cars, trucks and locomotives. The patented Cyclone Engine uses a compact heat-regenerative process with external combustion, otherwise known as a “Schoell Cycle” engine. Cyclone teamed with Enginuity Energy LLC this past spring, and secured a new financing agreement in October with GEM Global Yield. James C. Landon, Cyclone's CEO, stated: "This partnership represents a huge step forward for Cyclone, as it will provide us with a solid foundation to transition our engines from prototype to production, most notably, a very strong manufacturing partner that will enhance our engineering capacity and machining turn-around time and costs. We have a focused plan to bring our engines to market in 2013 starting with our smaller WHE-25 model. With the support and expertise of Precision CNC and their top-notch management, we're confident that we can achieve these goals." 12/14/2012

CEC Awards over $2.5MM for Clean Fuel Transportation Projects

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has announced release of more than $2.5 million in awards to support clean transportation projects, including over $1.2 million for pre-processing solid food waste as feedstock for two existing but underutilized anaerobic digesters. Funding comes from the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, with about $100 million set aside annually by Assembly Bill 118. The largest award of $1,211,370 goes to Environ Consulting, Inc. of Orange County to design and install the pre-processing at a solid waste facility in Chino. The digesters will use the waste to produce biomethane to be converted into renewable compressed natural gas fuel. In this pilot project, enough compressed natural gas will be generated to displace 750 to 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel, and to power heavy-duty garbage collection trucks and an on-site generator producing renewable electricity for the facility. This fuel has 88 percent lower carbon intensity than ultra-low-sulfur diesel. The project will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by diverting food waste from landfills that release methane gas directly into the atmosphere. Energy Commissioner Carla Peterman: "These awards will put more clean energy vehicles on the road, and provide support for an innovative project that turns food waste into renewable fuel. These investments are crucial to transforming the state's transportation sector, while creating jobs and improving air quality for all Californians." 12/13/2012

DPS Secures Global License for Ethos Pyrolysis Gasification Technology

DPS GlobalUnited Kingdom UK) based engineering group DPS Global has announced acquisition of a global license from Ethos Energy for a modular thermal waste processing technology. The multi-stage pyrolysis to gasification processing train is based on technology initially developed by the UK firm Compact Power earlier this decade and tested extensively by the UK Department for Energy, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) under the agency's New Technologies Demonstrator Programme. Compact Power was purchased by Ethos in 2008, and partnered with DPS to explore military applications in 2011. The global licensing agreement now secures DPS' portfolio expansion for modular conversion of a wide variety of waste types into energy, ranging from the destruction of clinical or hazardous waste to drill cuttings. DPS' Environmental division group leader Nick Palmer comments: "This is a fantastic technology with a tremendous amount of potential across a variety of market sectors. It extends DPS's product portfolio and has the ability to integrate with other technologies under development, or act as a standalone unit". "We are extremely proud to be involved with something so exciting with origins in the Bristol (UK) area and hope to contribute to the region's growing environmental technology reputation." 12/13/2012

Sierra Energy SacPort Project Part of GO-Biz Investment Forum in Beijing

Sierra EnergyCalifornia based Sierra Energy has announced that its SacPort waste-to-sustainable fuels project has been included in the GO-Biz Investment Forum kicked off last week in Beijing, China by US Ambassador Gary Locke. Sierra Energy is a waste gasification and renewable energy company commercializing its revolutionary FastOx gasifier, a derivative of the steel-making blast furnace. The SacPort project, partially funded by a $5 million investment from the California Energy Commission and strongly supported by the City of West Sacramento, would convert locally-generated, non-recyclable waste into clean renewable fuels. The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) was created by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. to serve as California’s single point of contact for economic development and job creation efforts. GO-Biz offers a range of services to business owners including: attraction, retention and expansion services, site selection, permit streamlining, clearing of regulatory hurdles, small business assistance, international trade development, assistance with state government, and much more. Sierra Energy Mike Hart: There’s a definite synergy between our technology and the CO2 and waste reduction efforts of both China and California. The commercialization of our conversion technology will prove the economic viability, environmental sustainability, and create a path for the global implementation of waste conversion." 12/13/2012

Nova Scotia Buys Bowater Paper Mill for Conversion to Biofuels Center

Providence of Nova Scotia, CanadaThe Province of Nova Scotia has announced a partnership with early stage venture capital firm Innovacorp, energy services company Emera, and advanced cellulosic biofuels company Cellufuel to advance cellulosic biomass to energy and fuels. The Province has just purchased the idle Bowater Mersey Paper Mill from Resolute Forest Products, and now intends to turn the mill site into "a new centre that will drive opportunities through innovation." The centre will offer companies a research, development, and demonstration site, and provide support for businesses of all sizes to make the most of the province's forestry resources. Establishing this centre follows recommendations from the Bowater Transition Advisory Team and other regional economic development organizations. Innovacorp will provide advice and planning support, and use up to $500,000 in provincial funding to cover start-up costs such as developing a business plan, establishing key partnerships for research and technology development, and identifying partnership opportunities for public and private funding. Nova Scotia Lands, a Crown corporation, will oversee the industrial site. Premier Darrell Dexter commenting regarding the transformation: "The former Bowater mill could be left to sit empty, with the equipment gathering dust. I know there is plenty of life left in this mill, plenty of opportunity to develop new products not yet imagined, and to test and demonstrate technologies that will help bring those products to new and existing markets. This centre will breathe new life and innovation into Nova Scotia's changing forestry industry, and create opportunities for the good jobs Nova Scotia families rely on." 12/13/2012

OEC Receives Patent for MaxDiverter Advanced Mechanized MRF Design

Organic Energy Corporation Organic Energy Corporation (OEC) of Sugar Land, Texas has received a patent for "Mechanized Separation of Mixed Solid Waste and Recovery of Recyclable Products" (US 8,322,639 B2). OEC's "MaxDiverter" method and systems efficiently extract recyclable materials from a mixed solid waste stream, relying on sizing, density and dimensional separation to produce intermediate waste streams of particular recyclable materials. The recyclable materials can then be efficiently sorted from the individual intermediate streams using mechanized sorting equipment. OEC's design is focused on providing a "one bin" solution for material recovery facilities (MRFs), replacing inefficient and often erroneous source segregation with highly mechanized multi-step recovery. With this level of municipal solid waste (MSW) separation, OEC's concept of a modern MRF then can incorporate waste conversion technologies, such as on-site anaerobic digestion of the segregated organics. In February of this year, OEC's subsidiary OEC-Lancaster (Ecolution) entered into an exclusive negotiating agreement with the City of Lancaster, California to develop an advanced MRF and Conversion Facility. In comments to the City Council, Ecolution's president Tim Fuller explained: “Implementing a system to maximize waste stream flow and recovery is crucial in meeting the future economic needs and energy demands of this community. Ecolution seeks to employ its experience and know how in the area of recycling and waste stream management to yield the highest percent of return to the city.” 12/12/2012

Global Clean Energy Forms JV with MicroEnergies for Pyrolysis Projects

Global Clean Energy IncTexas headquartered Global Clean Energy Inc (GCEI) has announced a joint venture with MicroEnergies, LLC to develop pyrolysis projects utilizing thermal technologies and feedstock agreements acquired by Nevada based MicroEnergies, LLC. Additionally, MicroEnergies, LLC will oversee current and future projects in the Project Development division of GCEI. The objective of the Joint Venture is to develop profitable waste to energy projects utilizing pyrolysis gasification to deconstruct waste tires and waste plastics into high value carbon and fuel in an environmentally safe process. Global Clean Energy, Inc. is a waste-to-energy conversion solutions company, focusing on using available and developing technologies to convert waste into commercially viable energy, a process the company refers to as Reforming Environmental Salvage into Clean Usable Energy (R.E.S.C.U.E.). MicroEnergies, LLC is an alternative energy development company specializing in gasification and plasma technologies. "This joint venture with GCEI permits MicroEnergies, LLC to start pyrolysis operations in 2013," said Steven Mann, president of MicroEnergies, LLC. "We are excited to be teaming up with MicroEnergies, LLC, which will enable GCEI to capitalize on its pipeline of projects and those of MicroEnergies LLC," stated Brian Levine, COO of GCEI. 12/12/2012

Pond Biofuels, ETIC, US Steel Canada Launch Emissions to Biofuel Pilot Project

Pond BiofuelsToronto based Pond Biofuels has announced launch of its second pilot project designed to capture carbon from industrial emissions in algae grown for biofuels. This pilot is in collaboration with US Steel Canada and the Canadian Gas Association's "Energy Technology and Innovation Canada" (ETIC) research initiative. Pond's technology develops a production facility to grow selected strains of algae for conversion and recycling of carbon in the steel plant's industrial emissions in a project located at US Steel Canada’s Lake Erie Works facility in Nanticoke, Ontario. Pond’s technology is designed as an “end-of-pipe” solution for the capture of carbon dioxide which in turn supports the growth of algae in a controlled environment. The pilot project will test the suitability of emissions from U. S. Steel Canada’s Lake Erie Works Central Power Station for use with Pond’s algae technology. The objective of the pilot is to assess the full-scale technical and economic viability of the process within an integrated steel manufacturing operation. The work will be conducted over the next eighteen months. Pond's first pilot project feeds algae the carbon-laden emissions from the St. Mary's Cement plant and converts it to oxygen and biofuels, with plans to scale that plant up in 2014. 12/12/2012

Due 01/04/2013: Comments to CEC on Draft Renewable Energy Planning Grants

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has released a Request for Comments toward the development of a grant solicitation that would support County-level renewable energy (RE) planning efforts. The competitive grant would provide up to $7 million in funding for the development or revision of rules and policies that facilitate the development of eligible renewable energy resources, and their associated electric transmission facilities, and the processing of permits for eligible renewable energy resources. This solicitation is being developed pursuant to Public Resources Code Section 25619 with passage of Assembly Bill x1 13 (Perez, Chapter 10, Statutes of 2011). The law identifies only 15 eligible counties: Fresno, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Los Angeles, Madera, Merced, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, Stanislaus, and Tulare. Other conditions apply to counties within the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) area. Comments should be submitted to the Dockets Unit by 5 p.m. on December 21, 2012. The CEC encourages comments by e-mail. Please include your name and any organization name. Comments should be in a downloadable, searchable format such as Microsoft® Word (.doc) or Adobe® Acrobat (.pdf). Please include the docket number 12-GREP-1 and include Renewable Energy Planning Grants in the subject line. Send comments by email () and copy the technical lead staff (). 12/12/2012. Update: Due date for comments has been extended to January 4, 2013. 12/20/2012

Due 02/05/2013: Proposals to CEC's Energy Innovation Small Grants Program

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission's (CEC) Public Interest Energy Research, Energy Innovations Small Grants program (PEIR / EISG) released the last Program Solicitation Notices for this year. The EISG program Grants Application Manual contains all current guidelines for the solicitations; proposals must advance science or technology not adequately addressed by competitive and regulated markets, involve an original innovative solution to a significant energy problem, be in the proof-of-concept phase, address a California market need, provide a clear potential benefit to California ratepayers and target one of seven specified PIER Research and development (R&D) areas. Solicitation 12-02 addresses non-transportation electricity grants, while Solicitation 12-02G is specific to non-transportation natural gas grants. Grants directed toward the transportation sector are identified as 12-02T-Electricity and 12-02T-Natural Gas. The EISG Program funds projects that determine the feasibility of energy research and development concepts relating to the Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) Program. The maximum project duration for this solicitation is nine months. Optional pre-proposal abstracts will be accepted through January 8, 2013. The CEC is offering EISG funding through its program administrator, the San Diego State University Foundation. All submissions and any questions should be directed to the EISG Program Administrator (), San Diego State University Research Foundation, 5250 Campanile Drive, MC 1858, San Diego, CA 92182-1858 at (619) 594-1049. Proposals are due February 5, 2013 no later than 5:00 PM. 12/12/2012

Methes Energies Is CRFA New Producer of the Year for Renewable Fuels

Methes EnergiesNevada based Methes Energies International Ltd. has announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Methes Energies Canada Inc., has received the New Producer of the Year award from The Canadian Renewable Fuels Association (CRFA). The award was presented to Methes Energies by Mr. Tim Haig, Chairman of the Board of the CRFA, at the 9th Annual Canadian Renewable Fuels Summit. Methes operates a 5 million litre per year waste yellow grease to biodiesel plant in Mississauga, Ontario; the facility is also the company's systems showcase and base for remote monitoring, research and development. This past July, Methes commissioned a 50 million litre per year (13 million gallon) multi-feedstock plant under construction in Sombra, Ontario, having received a production incentive from the Government of Canada in 2010. Methes develops and sells packages ASTM-standard biodiesel plants and processors based around the Denami 600 and Denami 3000 conversion modules. The company has also developed a novel continuous flow pre-treatment module, a single pass fourstage bank of filters/absorbers that sequentially remove those compounds likely to cause filter plugging. The pre-treatment allows a greater range of waste oils and greases to be effectively converted to biofuel. CRFA President W. Scott Thurlow commented: "These awards celebrate the hard work and dedication of those working in our Canadian renewable fuels industry. As a new producer of biodiesel in Canada, Methes is helping provide Canadians with the best fuel choices for their transportation needs. After all, the transportation sector accounts for almost a quarter of Greenhouse gas emissions. Any strategy to address emissions in Canada needs to speak to vehicle emissions -- and biodiesel producers like Methes certainly have a vital role to play." 12/10/2012

US Army Completes Successful Field Tests of Hybrid Waste to Energy Module

US Army Research, Development and Engineering CommandThe US Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM) reports that an advanced prototype of the Trash Gasification to Energy Refinery (TGER) technology has now been returned to the manufacturer following successfully completed field trials. Purdue University's LORRE Integrated Center for Biotechnology and Engineering collaborated with Defense Life Sciences, LLC and Community Power Corporation to design a hybrid gasification and fermentation biorefinery that converts food, paper, cardboard, and plastics into biofuel and power. Two of the prototypes were deployed for 90 days to Camp Victory in Iraq in 2008. Wet organics are fermented, while dry wastes are gasified; the raw ethanol is mixed with produced synthetic gas (syngas) and used to fuel a diesel generator for about 60 kilowatts of electricity. The modules used about a third of this to operate; the rest was available for base camp usage. James Valdes, Ph.D., a senior technologist for Biotechnology at the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC) at the Edgewood Area of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland: “We picked a forward operating base in Iraq because we wanted to really stress the system. All other energy systems had been tested in laboratories or under ideal conditions and temperature climates. What we really wanted to do was stress it with heat, sand and real world trash in a low infrastructure environment." The returned systems were then reevaluated at ECBC, where Valdes’ team developed a horizontal gasifier with an auger device that rotates the trash, eliminating the mechanical step of pelletizing the trash. The TGER 2.0 prototype also enables steam to be injected into the gasifier, which allows a larger conversion of output gas to become energetic. According to Valdes, the old system produced 155 BTUs (British Thermal Unit)/cubic foot of gas, whereas the new TGER 2.0 prototype produces 550, more than tripling the amount of usable energy. ECBC and the firm Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) recently entered into a cooperative research and development agreement to speed the commercialization of the technology, working with the TGER Technologies, Inc (TTI) Defense Life Sciences LLC and Purdue University. 12/10/2012

NCF Uses Sunlight to Convert Industrial CO2 to Gas and Liquid Fuels

NewCO2FuelThe newly formed company NewCO2Fuel Ltd (NCF), a spin-off from the Weizmann Institute of Science, is finding success with a new approach to producing liquid fuel from carbon dioxide laden industrial emissions, according to non-profit news service Israel21c. The Institute's Professor Jacob Karni formed NCF last year as a subsidiary of the Australian diversified renewable energy company GreenEarth Energy Limited, relying on the GreenEarth's business acumen to develop to commercialize a viable CO2-to-fuel reactor using solar thermal energy based on his successful trials at the Institute. NCF technology utilizes concentrated solar energy to dissociate carbon dioxide (CO2) into carbon monoxide (CO) and oxygen (O2), while simultaneously using the same concentrated energy to dissociate waster into pure hydrogen (H2) and oxygen (O2). Mixing the CO and the H2 forms a synthetic fuel gas (syngas) that can then be directly used as a gaseous fuel or catalytically converted to liquid fuel. The excess oxygen can then be used to augment and improve fuel combustion efficiency, increasing the power output while decreasing emissions. Australia uses a lot of surface-mined "brown coal," which Professor Karni recognizes is a good source of energy with less associated environmental damage than deep-mined coal. "Our plan is to make the coal burning less polluting in every sense, in terms of greenhouse gas, and our technology can also scrub the other pollutants from the emissions," says Karni. "In our process, we take the carbon dioxide created in the burning of the coal and make it into fuel and oxygen. The oxygen is used to burn the coal more efficiently and simplify the process of retrieving the CO2 from the plant’s exhaust." To date, about $6.5 million has gone into financing the project. NCF will be ready for further investment in about one year, and Karni expects to see sales in about four years. 12/08/2012

Solena Secures British Airways 10-yr Off-Take Agreement for GreenSky London

Solena FuelsWashington, DC headquartered Solena Fuels Corporation has announced that British Airways has signed an off-take agreement to purchase all of Solena's aviation fuels produced from the GreenSky London project over the next 10 years. The GreenSky London flagship project is a joint venture between the two companies to convert about 500,000 tons of municipal solid waste per year first into synthetic fuel gas (syngas) utilizing Solena's high temperature gasification process, and then into 50,000 tonnes of sustainable low carbon jet fuel, 50,000 tonnes of biodiesel, bionaphtha, and renewable power. The project consortium includes Oxford Catalysts Group/Velocys to supply the Fisher-Tropsch (FT) reactors and catalyst which will convert the cleaned synthesis gas into liquid hydrocarbons, and the Fluor Corporation to provide the pre-front end engineering and design (Pre-FEED) for the project. GreenSky London has signed an exclusive option on a site for the facility and consent work for the site has begun. More than 150 jobs will be created to operate the facility, as well as 1000 construction positions. Robert Do, President and CEO of Solena, said: “Our GreenSky London project will provide clean, sustainable fuels at market competitive prices that will help address British Airways’ sustainability goals. The British Airways off-take agreement represents the largest advanced biofuel commitment ever made by an airline and clearly demonstrates the airline’s leadership and vision in achieving its carbon emission reduction targets. We are proud to have created a consortium of world class companies with expertise in the synthetic fuels sector to support our project.” The partners aim to have the site operational by 2015; British Airways’ goal is to reduce its net carbon emissions by 50 per cent by 2050. 12/08/2012

Global Energy Crops Acquires Global License to AGT's Enzymatic Technology

BioPower Operations CorporationFlorida based BioPower Operations Corporation has announced that its subsidiary Global Energy Crops Corporation (GECC) has secured a global license to technology for conversion of farm waste to liquid fuel, fertilizer and animal feed amendments. The proprietary process licensed from patent-holder Alternative Green Today, LLC. (AGT) uses non-thermal enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation without requisite pre-treatment to convert animal manure into ethanol, Class A fertilizer, animal feed, and various derivative bio-based products. During the fermentation process the bacteria within the wastes are inactivated by injection of proprietary microbes that also hydrolyze natural biopolymers and simultaneously convert the hydrolyzed fermentable sugars into ethanol. The process should prove effective for conversion of human sewage and other wastes to fuels and commodities; water utilized in the fermentation stage is recycled back into the process minimizing waste streams from the process. GECC intends to focus on the use of this patented technology with (1) poultry operations, (2) manufacturers producing sugar wastes and (3) municipalities. Randall Padgett, Managing Member of AGT: "We have been working closely with BioPower's experienced management team for several months and believe the execution of this license will greatly benefit both organizations. BioPower has significant contacts with major corporations and municipalities that will help to develop projects quickly and rapidly and accelerate the roll out of the technology which will begin to immediately reduce waste going to landfills with each project." 12/07/2012

Dioxide Materials Secures $4MM ARPA-E Grant for CO2 Recycling

Dioxide MaterialsIllinois-based Dioxide Materials has announced receipt of an award of $4 million from the US Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy division (ARPA-E). The funds will advance the firm's research and development of electrochemical conversion of carbon dioxide laden industrial emissions into liquid fuels and other foundation commodities. Dioxide Materials is in collaboration with the 3M Corporation on the grant-funded research. Dioxide Materials converts carbon dioxide waste using "artificial photosynthesis" of their patent pending Dual-Electrocat (DuElCat) process, with solar energy as an input. The synthesis gas is then fed into a Fischer-Tropsch unit to create gasoline. Although electrochemical recycling of carbon dioxide is not a new technology, Dioxide Materials has patented a catalyst that makes carbon dioxide recycling energy efficient. The technology’s scientific principles have been demonstrated, but the risks need to be lowered before the technology can attract the funding needed to move into the marketplace. ARPA-E funding will allow Dioxide Materials to create the first industrially relevant prototype and lower the risks so that substantial development funding can be obtained. Rich Masel, CEO of Dioxide Materials: "We are thankful to ARPA-E for having confidence in our technology and our partnership with 3M. Government investments like this play a huge role in the fight against global warming. We are excited and grateful for the opportunity to play a part in making America’s future a sustainable one." 12/07/2012

Bio-Economy Network Formed to Support Bio-Based Product Development

Forest Products Association of CanadaThe Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) has announced the broad-based formation of the Bio-Economy Network (BEN) in support of expanded development and global marketing of the bio-sourced products economy. Catherine Cobden, chair of the new association and Executive Director of FPAC, made the announcement during this week's 9th annual Canadian Renewable Fuels Summit in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: "Canada has an abundance of renewable resources that can feed a wide range of bio-products. Developing our bio-potential will help unleash our national resources potential to spur future economic growth and job creation in Canada." The new organization is calling on government to work with its industries so they can take advantage of these promising opportunities. Areas for government-industry collaboration include the investment climate, the regulatory environment, innovation, and market diversification. BEN will also work on collaborative partnerships and value added production. BEN represents key companies employing around 800 members that support more than two million jobs in areas such as the auto parts, biotech, chemical, agriculture and forest products industries. So far, nine industry associations have joined and other associations are invited to sign up as well to explore new business modes and partnerships across sectors. The current signatory members include Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association, BIOTECanada, Canadian Bioenergy Association (CanBio), Canadian Renewable Fuels Association, Chemistry Industry Association of Canada, CropLife Canada, Forest Products Association of Canada, FPInnovations, and Bioindustrial Innovation Canada /Sustainable Chemistry Alliance. 12/07/2012

LanzaTech and Baosteel Succeed with 100K gpa Emissions to Fuel Trials

LanzatechNew Zealand base LanzaTech and the Chinese steel mill company Baosteel have jointly announced success in production of low-carbon liquid fuels form conversion of Baosteel's carbon-laden industrial emissions. The companies entered into a joint venture partnering agreement in 2011. The new 100,000 gallon per year (300 tons) pre-commercial plant is located at one of Baosteel’s steel mills outside Shanghai, China; it is at a significantly larger scale than LanzaTech’s pilot facility and test results have shown that the scaling of the technology has been successful. The LanzaTech Process converts carbon monoxide containing gases produced by industries such as steel manufacturing, oil refining and chemical production, as well as gases generated by gasification of forestry and agricultural residues, municipal waste, and coal into valuable fuel and chemical products. Jennifer Holmgren, LanzaTech CEO: "This has been an exciting ride. Scaling new technologies can be a daunting process but our teams have worked well together and we have made great progress. With the successful completion of this demonstration milestone we are now ready to scale to commercial production facilities." 12/07/2012

Due 01/31/2013: Bids for Renewable Energy and/or RECs to PNM - New Mexico

Public Service Company of New MexicoThe Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) has announced issuance of a Request for Proposals (RFP) for renewable energy and/or accompanying renewable energy certificates (RECs). PNM is seeking to purchase renewable energy and associated RECs or RECs only from one or more qualified respondents equivalent to a maximum 375,000 megawatt hours (MWhs) per year (about 43 megawatts) that were or will be generated after January 1, 2013. RECs can be from any source of renewable energy, as defined in the RFP. PNM will consider offers for asset purchases, purchase power agreements, or joint ownership projects. In addition to wind and solar energy project proposals, PNM seeks renewable energy from conversion of biomass resources, such as agriculture or animal waste, small diameter timber, salt cedar, and other phreatophyte or woody vegetation removed from river basins or watersheds in New Mexico, landfill gas and anaerobic digestion biogas. A pre-bid conference by webinar is scheduled for December 10, 2012; a Letter of Intent to Bid is due December 12, 2012. Final proposals are due January 31, 2013. All inquiries and other communications relating in any manner to this RFP will be hosted on the PNM 2012-13 Renewable Energy RFP website, administered by Power Advocate, Inc., which requires a no-charge on-line registration. 12/07/2012

Global Bioenergies-Synthos Partnership Finds Pathway to Bio-Butadiene

Global BioenergiesHeadquartered in France, bio-sourced foundation chemical company Global Bioenergies has announced their successful completion of the process discovery phase in partnership with international rubber company Synthos for production of the light olefin foundation chemical gas butadiene. Global Bioenergies' technologic approach develops new metabolic pathways for microbial fermentation where no natural biological mechanisms are known, to produce foundation chemicals from a wide variety of residual and purpose-grown biomass. The partnership was formed last year; the team has now experimentally proven a direct biological route to production of butadiene. Several patents have been filed to protect the biological assets. The success of this first phase triggered a €1.5million milestone payment to Global Bioenergies. The butadiene program now enters the development phase, for which Synthos will contribute several million euros in total through yearly fees. Marc Delcourt, CEO of Global Bioenergies, commented: "After isobutene in 2010, and more recently propylene, butadiene is now the third molecule for which we obtained an experimental validation. We are resolutely building a pipeline of direct, gaseous fermentation processes to convert renewable feedstock into various light olefins. This success, validated by Synthos, a leader of industrial chemistry, strengthens the industrial position of Global Bioenergies." 12/06/2012

Placer County Releases Final EIR for Cabin Creek Biomass to Energy Facility

Placer County, CaliforniaThe Placer County Community Development Resource Agency has announced release of the Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Cabin Creek Biomass Facility in California, and is seeking public comment prior to the public hearing. Hearing schedules will be announced at a date to follow the mandatory 45 day minimum review period. The Notice of Availability for the Final EIR (PCPJ 20110376, State Clearinghouse# 2011122032) describes the 3.7-acre Project location at the Eastern Regional Materials Recovery Facility and Transfer Station, 900 Cabin Creek Road, Placer County, California, about two miles south of Interstate 80 (I-80) at 0.30 miles west of State Route (SR) 89. Placer County is proposing to construct a biomass to energy facility that would gasify about 14,000 and 17,000 bone dry tons (BDT) annually of pre-processed, regionally sourced biomass residuals, producing a synthetic fuel (syngas) for about 2 megawatts of renewable electric power generation and a "bio-char" material beneficial as a soil amendment. Interested persons are invited to submit written comments prior to the public hearing (to be scheduled at a later date). Written comments on the Final EIR should be forwarded to the following address: Environmental Coordination Services, Placer County Community Development Resource Agency, 3091 County Center Drive, Suite 190, Auburn, CA 95603, by email (), or by fax (530) 745-3080. 12/06/2012

Britain's 1st Food Waste Recycling Plant Opens at Bristol Sewage Facility

GENecoWessex Water, parent company of the food waste digestion specialist firm GENeco, has announced the opening of the United Kingdom's first food waste anaerobic digestion (AD) plant co-located with a sewer treatment facility. Wessex has operated the sewage works for many years, generating about 3.4 megawatts of renewable electricity and producing 250,000 tonnes of high-value fertilizer for regional agriculture. The new investment in integrated food waste digestion will increase the electrical generation and allow export sale to the national grid. GENeco accepted the first deliveries of food waste as feedstock in mid-November. The opening was officiated by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) minister David Heath, who commented: "We see here the ideal balance between good business sense and environmental protection. The GENeco plant is unique by being the first food waste anaerobic plant in Britain to be built in a sewage treatment works. Water companies using their expertise in treating sewage can provide a significant boost to the expansion of waste food anaerobic digestion in this country. This could potentially create thousands of new jobs, generate significant amounts of renewable energy, while solving a major environmental issue in the disposal of waste food." 12/04/2012

Fulcrum Bioenergy Secures $175MM Financing Commitment

Fulcrum BioenergyCalifornia's waste-to-fuels company Fulcrum Bioenergy, Inc reports success in securing around $175 million in commitments to finance its Sierra Biofuels Plant construction in Nevada, and to fund further commercialization of the firm's advanced gasification methodology. Fulcrum's platform includes both gasification and alcohol synthesis technologies. Fulcrum uses InEnTec's proprietary Plasma Enhanced Melter (PEM™) that transforms wastes into synthetic gas; proprietary catalytic processes then convert the syngas to clean renewable fuels. Fulcrum’s engineering and technology teams have recently made numerous enhancements to the design of Sierra and to its proprietary MSW to ethanol process. Fulcrum recently was selected to receive a $105 million loan guarantee from the US Department of Agriculture, and decided against issuing an initial public offering (IPO). The Company expects these improvements will reduce its cost to produce renewable fuel to less than $0.75 per gallon at Sierra. Fulcrum President and Chief Executive Officer E. James Macias stated, “With our recent success in securing attractive sources of capital, we are proceeding with our planned development program. The current IPO market environment remains challenging, especially for development stage companies like Fulcrum. Because of this we have secured commitments from alternative capital resources to advance our MSW to renewable fuel program and we have withdrawn our registration statement. We intend to pursue an initial public offering in the future when market conditions are more favorable.” 12/04/2012

DECC Awards £3MM to 38 UK Communities for Residential Renewable Heating

Department of Energy and Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom (UK) Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced the Phase 2 release of offers to 38 communities for the award of around £3 million to fund development of household-scale renewable energy heating systems. The Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) funding program launched in July of this year is open until the end of March 2013 and is intended to help transform the way residences are heated in England, Scotland and Wales. Funds are administered by the Energy Saving Trust (EST) to cover part of the cost of installation of biomass boilers, solar thermal systems, and heat pumps. Proposals may be submitted by non-profit organizations established for community benefit. The RHPP scheme is targeted at making renewable heating affordable for middle to low income households and aims to maximize carbon reduction by reaching homes with high carbon, expensive to run heating systems (especially those off the gas network) and ensuring that heating systems are installed after or alongside energy efficiency measures. RHPP is designed to increase residential renewable heating awareness and market penetration until the broader Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is expanded for the current industrial target to the domestic customers around the summer of 2013. For further information on successful projects and contact details, please contact the EST () by email or at 02920 467 015. 12/03/2012

Household Biogas Program Achieves Gold Standard Certification

SNVThe Netherlands based philanthropic organization SNV has announced that the Vietnam Biogas Programe has achieved full Gold Standard registration as a key project for reducing carbon emissions. The Biogas Program is a joint initiative of SNV and the Biogas Project Division of the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, conceived to tackle two problems faced by Vietnamese farmers: costly and unhealthy cooking practices and untreated animal waste. The program is the first Vietnamese project to meet the stringent voluntary registration criteria established by the Swiss Gold Standard Foundation and is the second largest household program registered globally. A recent partnership with Nexus-Carbon for Development has enabled the programme to develop and commercialize Gold Standard certified carbon credits. Gold Standard Foundation regional manager for Southeast Asia, Ellen May Zanoria, said the Vietnam Biogas Programme was a great example of how carbon finance could be used to deliver and maximize economic, health, and environmental co-benefits for local communities. In an effort to evaluate the performance of national domestic biogas programs, SNV, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Ministry of Agriculture in China organized a well-attended three-day International Workshop on Domestic Biogas from November 20-22 in Chengdu, China. This year’s biogas event led the participants through the Biogas Institute of Ministry of Agriculture (BIOMA), a biogas village, a biogas service network, the largest producer of fiberglass domes and biogas plants worldwide and provided an update on the Energy for All Partnership (E4ALL) initiated by the ADB, whose objective is the construction of one million domestic biogas plants across fifteen Asian countries by 2016. 12/03/2012

Due 12/14/2012: Comments to CEC PIER Natural Gas Initiative

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission's (CEC) Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program has released a survey seeking ideas for 2013 natural gas focused grant solicitations. The CEC estimates that a total of $24 million will be available for natural gas Research, Development and Demonstration (RD&D). Opportunities will be focused on natural gas research initiatives in the following areas: energy efficiency, renewable energy, natural gas infrastructure, natural gas related environmental research, and natural gas related transportation research. The two-page survey template has been developed requests comment on the issues/barriers expected for 2013 research under consideration, asking as well for a description of the initiative, stakeholders, background and justification. Complete one template per initiative. The annual funding level of $24 million defined public interest natural gas research as efforts that “are directed towards developing science or technology, with 1) the benefits of which accrue to California citizens and 2) are not adequately addressed by competitive or regulated entities.” The natural gas RD&D projects must meet the following criteria: Focus on energy efficiency, renewable technologies, conservation, and environmental issues; Support state energy policy; Offer a reasonable probability of providing benefits to the general public; and Consider opportunities for collaboration and co funding opportunities with other entities. Using the template as a guide, email suggested initiatives by December 14, 2012, to Jessie Rosales (). A public workshop will be scheduled and announced in the near future to discuss proposed concepts. 12/03/2012

Resolute Forest Products to Build Industrial Wood Pellet Plant

resolute Forest ProductsQuebec based Resolute Forest Products has announced plans to develop an industrial wood pellet manufacturing facility to use residual wood wastes from its Thunder Bay, Ontario sawmill. The company has signed a ten-year agreement to supply Ontario Power Generation (OPG) with 45,000 metric tons of pellets annually. Resolute will invest approximately C$10 million in the construction of the plant that is expected to begin shortly, and is scheduled for completion in 2014.This adds to the investments of approximately C$120 million Resolute has announced for its Ontario operations since 2011. In June of this year, Resolute became the largest Forest Sustainability Certification (FSC) certified forest land manager in world. OPG concurrently announced that a second award went to the local company Atikokan Renewable Fuels to supply OPG's Atikokan Generating Station, each contract for 45,000 tonnes of wood pellets annually. OPG will now issue a Request for Indicative Pricing (RFIP) for transportation of the wood pellets by truck from the fuel suppliers to the Atikokan GS. OPG notes that with over 200 MW of generating capacity, Atikokan GS will be the largest capacity 100 per cent biomass fuelled plant in North America and will generate renewable, dispatchable, peak capacity power. The conversion of the station from coal to biomass wood pellets, announced in July of this year, will create about 200 construction jobs and help to protect existing jobs at the plant. Richard Garneau, President and Chief Executive Officer: "Wood pellets are a clean, renewable energy source, and together with other biofuel opportunities, a natural diversification target for Resolute. This project provides the opportunity to enhance the use of our existing asset base to produce biofuel for a strategic, committed consumer and allows the Company to gain valuable manufacturing experience in commercial biomass production." 12/02/2012

Due 01/22/2013: Comments on WAPA-DOE Draft Recommendations

Western Area Power AdministrationThe Western Area Power Administration (WAPA or Western) has released a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register of draft recommendations of the WAPA/DOE Joint Outreach Team (JOT) for review and comment by WAPA’s customers, Tribes, stakeholders, and the public at large. The agency's "Defining the Future" project website has also announced the publication The recommendations are in response to a memorandum issued by Energy Secretary Chu earlier this year: "Western has taken a leadership role in transitioning to a more resilient and flexible electric grid and to achieving much greater coordination among system operators. If we can take greater advantage of clean energy resources, while at the same time reducing costs to customers, we can bring the benefits of increased connectivity and enhanced reliability to more Americans." The Recommendations address three key technical issues: Increasing Operational Efficiencies (OE), Transmission Products and Service Opportunities (T&D), and Variable Energy Integration (VEI). Opportunities for and regulation of future project in WAPA's service area proposing interconnection of generated energy from conversion of waste and/or biomass are directly impacted by a number of specific recommendations, in particular an area-wide T&D infrastructure investment study (pg. 16) and VEI proactive plans "to facilitate and encourage the interconnection and integration of renewable energy projects into the Federal transmission system." (pg.26). Written comments should be received by WAPA on or before 4 p.m. MST January 22, 2013. Email comments to the Joint Outreach Team () by email or by mail to Anita J. Decker, Acting Administrator, Western Area Power Administration, P.O. Box 281213, Lakewood, CO 80228–8213. For further information contact Ronald Moulton or Jennifer DeCesaro at  . 12/02/2012

Weltec Biopower Contracts to Build 500 kWe Biogas Plant in France

Weltech BiopowerGerman company Weltech Biopower has announced signing a contract for a "cooperative agricultural biogas plant" with the French company Methaneo to develop a 500 kilowatt electric (kWe) anaerobic digestion (AD) facility in Saint-Varent, western France. This will be Weltech's sixth anaerobic digestion (AD) plant in France, the last being a combined heat and power facility converting wastes from a French pig farm. Construction work on the Saint-Varent facility is expected to being in January 2013, with power being sold into the French electric grid by July. Feedstock for the 4,900 cubic meter stainless steel digester will consist of a mixture of cattle manure, sheep manure, chicken manure, and grain residue. Contact signing for the "Cap'Ter Methanisation SAS" project occurred in Weltech's booth at the Hanover, Germany "EuroTier" industrial showcase. Paris-based Methaneo develops, finances, and erects the plants in cooperation with local partners who have detailed knowledge of the regional circumstances. Jens Albartus, CEO of Weltech Biopower: "The investment mood in France is positive in our segment. In 2012, the French Environment and Energy Management Agency for the development of regenerative energies (ADEME) received twice as many project enquiries than in the prior year, and counting." 12/01/2012

Vision Plasma, WTEC in Teaming Discussions on Sludge Conversion

Vision Plasma SystemsNevada based Vision Plasma Systems, Inc has provided details of teaming discussions with Waste to Energy Canada (WTEC), integrating Vision Plasma's Arc Master I energy production systems with WTEC's modular waste conversion capabilities. WTEC is considering acquisition between 2014 and 2018 of up to 24 of the Arc Master I systems valued at $102 million to increase the company's proficiency in wastewater sludge treatment and conversion to energy. The Arc Master I was designed to cleanly convert up to 5 tons per day of waste into syngas for electricity generation. Built inside two (2) ISO 40' metal containers, The Arc Master I mobile unit is entirely self-powering, creating its own energy from the waste that it processes, and creating up to 240KW of usable electricity at the site. Vision Plasma is concurrently in discussions with the municipality of Londrina, Brazil to establish a systems manufacturing site. The WTEC project development company utilizes various technologies to develop modular combined heat and power generation plants using locally-sourced opportunity fuels such as biomass and municipal solid waste, including stand-alone installations in very remote locations. Timothy P. Volk, CEO of Vision Plasma: "The positive environmental impact of bringing clean water, eliminating hazardous waste, and generating your own electricity all in the same cycle is almost immeasurable. Once the first combination of our technology, coupled with the advances already in place by WTEC is recognized by the environmental community, the potential options will be limitless." 12/01/2012

OriginOil Licenses Technology for Canadian Oil Sands Waste Conversion

OriginOilLos Angeles based algae production and waste conversion systems developer OriginOil has announced the second key licensing agreement for its Clean Frac systems, this time targeting waste treatment and resource recovery in the Canadian oil sands market. OriginOil’s Solids Out of Solution™ (SOS) system is a continuous process to efficiently remove oils, suspended solids, insoluble organics, and bacteria from very large quantities of water. Solids Out of Solution integrates two proprietary technologies: Single Step Extraction™ and Hydrogen Flotation™. The approach was initially developed to cost-effectively harvest algae for biofuel production. When applied to the oil and gas industry, OriginOil’s SOS system is used continuously to clean produced or ‘frack flowback’ water, reducing total organics as measured by Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) by over 98% in minutes. The latest agreement with privately-held investor group LH Opportunity Group will bring in Calgary-based specialty fabricator Ensteel Industries to design an end to end system featuring OriginOil’s technology for potential applications in the enhanced oil recovery and tailing pond water treatment markets. Under the terms of the OEM agreement, OriginOil has granted a non-exclusive license to LH Opportunity Group to bundle OriginOil’s high-speed and chemical-free CLEAN-FRAC technology with systems that LH and Ensteel plan to develop. OriginOil will receive royalty payments based on a percentage of system sales revenue. Riggs Eckelberry, OriginOil CEO: "Major oil sands producers in the region are expected to commit hundreds of millions of new dollars to water management and tailing pond treatment over the next few years. Based on its track record, we have concluded that LH is an aggressive early adopter that is expected to quickly attack this new opportunity. We welcome LH and its partner Ensteel to our growing family of OEMs." 12/01/2012

Carbon Sciences to Develop Small-Scale Waste Gas-to-Liquid Fuel Plants

Carbon SciencesCalifornia based Carbon Sciences, Inc has announced its decision to develop "mini-GTL" plants, modular units that can convert relatively small volume streams of waste / stranded natural gas into liquid (GTL) fuels. Flared and stranded natural gas is abundant and available. To avoid flaring, trillions of cubic feet are re-injected back into wells every year at a cost. Further, vast shale gas reserves have been discovered in North America and the majority of gas reserves worldwide are not big enough to make conventional GTL, LNG and CNG economical. Carbon Science's GTL solution integrates proven technologies, including the ExxonMobil methanol-to-gasoline (MTG) process to produce ready to use gasoline. The company is also developing a proprietary second-generation GTL solution that will produce even cleaner gasoline by using captured CO2 or low value, high CO2 content natural gas as part of the process. The technology can also be used to convert natural gas into other valuable large volume products such as hydrogen, methanol, ammonia, solvents and plastics. Byron Elton, CEO of Carbon Sciences: "In its recent natural gas analysis, the World Bank declared that ‘small is beautiful’ and listed Carbon Sciences as one of the players in the miniGTL field. Large producers, such as Shell and Sasol, have built and operate world scale gas-to-liquids (GTL) plants for large natural gas fields. However, the prospects for miniGTL plants in the U.S. are strong and getting stronger, providing a significant financial opportunity." 12/01/2012 

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