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Teru TalkDecember 2014 News and Matters of Interest

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CARB Schedules Hearings on Re-Adoption of LCFS, Alternative Diesel Regs

California Air Resources BoardThe California Air Resources Board (CARB) has announced public hearings before the Board for the proposed adoption of an updated Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) and the proposed adoption of a regulation governing the commercialization of motor vehicle alternative diesel fuels (ADF). Staff reports detailing the initial Statement of Reasons (ISOR) for both proposed actions have been posted with all supporting appendices. Both hearings are scheduled for February 19, 2015 starting beginning at 9:00am, in the Byron Sher Auditorium of the CalEPA building in Sacramento. Public comments identifying the proposal being addressed may be submitted after January 2, 2015 and no later than February 17, 2015, at 5:00 p.m. to the Clerk of the Air Resources Board, or at the Public Hearing on February 19, 2015. 12/31/2014

Due 02/06/2015: Proposals to DOE START for Strategic Energy Plans in Alaska

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Indian Energy is currently accepting applications for the third round of the Alaska Strategic Technical Assistance Response Team (START) Program to assist Alaska Native corporations and federally recognized Alaska Native governments with accelerating clean energy projects. Through Alaska START, DOE, and the Denali Commission, along with the DOE’s National Laboratories and other local and national experts, will assist rural Alaska Native communities in developing strategic energy plans to help mitigate climate change, conducting energy awareness and training programs, and pursuing new renewable energy and energy efficiency opportunities. It is anticipated that up to five (5) Alaska Native communities will be selected from the applicant pool to receive START technical assistance. Applications are due by February 6, 2015 (midnight Eastern Time). 12/31/2014  

Carbon Cycle Power Locks Down Spokane Site for Waste-to-Value Demo Unit

Carbon Cycle PowerMPM Technologies, Inc subsidiary Carbon Cycle Power (CCP) has signed a lease agreement with an affiliate of Spokane Valley manufacturer Wheeler Industries, Inc to house the demonstration unit of CCP’s waste-to-value demonstration unit. The solution is a patent-pending photon-induced, electric-arc gasification technology that will process biomass (such as lumber mill waste and agricultural residue) and municipal solid waste for the cogeneration of heat and power. CCP also announced that its website www.carboncyclepower.com is now live. Carbon Cycle Investments (CCI), which acquired a controlling interest in MPM following a stock purchase agreement in April 2013, has an agreement with Wheeler as the manufacturer of the reaction chamber of its gasification technology. Brian Burrow, interim CFO for CCI/MPM: "After reviewing several viable options, the one that made the most fiscal sense was to manufacture and demonstrate in the same location. We're literally building the unit on one side of the street and deploying the demo on the other side of the street. It really is an ideal scenario." Manufacturing will begin immediately now that the lease agreement has been signed. 12/29/2014 

Envoland Launches Mobile Waste Plastics Pyrolysis Plant

EnvolandTaiwan based Envoland Co., Ltd has launched a truck-mounted mobile pyrolysis platform for conversion of waste plastic to alternative fuels. The system integrates an automatic feed module, catalytic cracking and pyrolysis, heat exchange / cooling, and all controls. The mobile plant fits into one 40 ft container and has a capacity of 2.3 tons per day. The plant uses continuous reacting bed pyrolysis technology in which the shredded recycled waste plastic is fed continuously into the cracking furnace to increase thermal efficiency and maximize processing power. In the preheating stage, the pyrolysis plant process purifies the mixed waste plastic and removes corrosive HCL gas. Inside the pyrolysis plant the gas is fed into catalytic converter then cracked, fractionation, cooled and separated. The non-condensable gas is purified and supplied for the heating process and production use, the generated flue gas purified to meet emission standard. Configurations include production of gasoline with an octane rating from 90 to 93, and production of "super-diesel" (sulfur 50ppm, Hexadecane (cetane) 2%, Distillation 95% volatile point 340 ); fuels and residues can be used to generate power for operations. 12/27/2014

DOE Awards $3MM to SUNY College for Feedstock Logistics Research

SUNY College of Environmental Science and ForestryThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded up to $3 million to the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) in New York to to reduce the cost of delivering woody bioenergy feedstocks to biorefineries. The grant will be used to develop and demonstrate ways to lower the delivered cost of short-rotation woody crops; quickly and accurately assess feedstock quality; and improve harvest and preprocessing operations to produce feedstocks that meet key biorefinery specifications. ESF will work with partners including Case New Holland Industrial (CNHi), GreenWood Resources, University of West Virginia, Applied Biorefinery Sciences, Idaho National Lab and others to complete the project. Dr. Timothy Volk, a research scientist who leads the willow project for ESF, said that the ultimate goal is to make renewable biomass feedstocks more affordable. 12/27/2014

B&W Vølund Will Build Waste-to-Energy Plant in East Lothian, Scotland

Babcock & WilcoxThe Babcock & Wilcox Company (B&W) has announced that a consortium that includes its Denmark-based subsidiary, B&W Vølund, has been awarded a $230 million (£147 million) contract to engineer, procure, and construct a waste-to-energy (WTE) power plant in East Lothian near Dunbar, Scotland. Viridor UK received final approval last month for a £177 million energy recovery facility (ERF) at its existing rail linked Oxwellmains waste treatment hub in East Lothian. Viridor selected B&W Vølund and its construction partner, Interserve, to design and build the WTE plant. B&W Vølund's scope includes two WTE boilers, advanced DynaGrate® dynamic fuel combustion system, steam turbine and a dry flue gas cleaning system. The consortium also will test and commission the plant. The Dunbar plant will be able to process up to 38 tons of municipal waste per hour and will help the Scottish government meet an ambitious target of landfilling zero biodegradable municipal waste by 2021. 12/23/2014

WM Completes Divestiture of Wheelabrator to Energy Capital Partners

Waste Management, IncWaste Management, Inc (WM) has announced completion of the previously announced sale of Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc to an affiliate of Energy Capital Partners (ECP) for a cash sales price of approximately $1.94 billion. Wheelabrator creates clean, renewable energy from residential and business wastes, and will operate as a stand-alone company. Wheelabrator has a current platform of 15 energy-from-waste facilities, four independent power-producing facilities, four ash monofills and three waste transfer stations. WM will continue to be a core Wheelabrator customer under long-term waste supply agreements. Energy Capital Partners is an energy-focused private equity firm with over $13 billion in capital commitments, and offices in Short Hills, New Jersey, Houston and San Diego. 12/23/2014

Neste Oil and REG Enter into Settlement and NEXBTL License Agreement

Neste OilNeste Oil Corporation of Finland and Renewable Energy Group, Inc (REG), headquartered in Ames, Iowa, USA have entered into a Settlement Agreement in which the parties have settled Neste Oil's US patent infringement lawsuits against REG and REG's Singapore patent infringement lawsuits against Neste Oil. In addition, REG has licensed certain Neste Oil NEXBTL technology and intellectual property rights for use at REG Geismar. REG became the owner of the former Dynamic Fuels facility in Geismar, Louisiana in June, 2014. REG inherited the US and Singapore patent lawsuits that are now settled as part of the acquisitions of Syntroleum Corporation and Dynamic Fuels. 12/23/2014

Corn Stover Harvest Trials Run in Iowa for Cellulosic Ethanol Refineries

LeifmarkIn two Iowa cornfields in early November, Leifmark, LLC and New Holland Agriculture teamed up to test equipment and methods used to gather, bale, and store the corn stover left behind after the grain harvest. Paul Kamp, Leifmark's Chicago-based partner, coordinated the 520-bale collection. "Using local specialists and best practices, we showed stover harvesting on area farms is very practical. That's good news for three ethanol producers now considering new businesses making cellulosic ethanol from biomass. Developing more efficient methods and equipment brings down the overall cost of stover." 12/23/2014 

Shanks Selected for Surrey Organics Biofuel Processing Facility in Canada

ShanksShanks Group plc has announced that Iris Solutions, a consortium led by Orgaworld Canada, part of Shanks' Organics Division, has been selected as the preferred proponent for the Surrey Biofuels Processing Facility project in Canada. Shanks will build the biofuel processing facility, which will process 115,000 tonnes of residual kitchen and garden waste from Surrey each year. The process will create a renewable natural gas which can then be used to power the city's natural gas waste collection trucks. The facility will also produce a compost product that will be suitable for landscaping and agricultural applications. Iris Solutions, led by Orgaworld Canada, was one of three businesses shortlisted for the contract, which originally comprised eleven different bidding companies. The final contracts are expected to be signed early next year, with design-build activities getting underway shortly thereafter. The facility is expected to become fully operational by late 2016. 12/19/2014

Renmatix Acquires REAC Fuel's Intellectual Property

RenmatixPennsylvania based Renmatix, Inc has announced its acquisition of the intellectual property rights and know-how of Swedish company REAC Fuel. Based in Sweden, REAC has developed intellectual property that complements Renmatix's expertise and its existing portfolio of supercritical technology patents and applications. The acquisition expands Renmatix's value proposition for licensing their Plantrose™ Process to produce cost-competitive cellulosic sugars. The REAC IP portfolio will expand Renmatix's current cellulosic technology holdings and rights on supercritical hydrolysis. The company acquired REAC's 68 applications, which include 54 national filings. Mike Hamilton, CEO of Renmatix: "REAC's technology package is complementary to Renmatix's already substantial intellectual property investments and expands the footprint of our lowest-cost biomass hydrolysis technology." 12/19/2014

WERF Funds Research for Recovery of Commodities from Wastewater

Water Environment Research FoundationThe Water Environment Research Foundation (WERF) has awarded contracts for three new projects that examine wastewater as a resource. Two of the projects seek to show that materials in wastewater can be commoditized. The third project explores a new method of reducing phosphorus in wastewater. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln will explore the "Production of Bioisoprene from Wastewater" (WERF project # NTRY6R14). Greeley and Hansen is conducting research on "A Multi-Platform Approach to Recovering High Value Carbon Products from Wastestreams" (WERF project # NTRY4R14). Northeastern University will investigate a promising new sidestream enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process. 12/19/2014

Bioenergy Association of California Applauds CPUC Decision on Bioenergy

Bioenergy Association of CaliforniaThe Bioenergy Association of California (BAC) applauds the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for its December 18, 2014 decision to advance community scale bioenergy development. The decision launches a 250 megawatt feed-in tariff program for small-scale bioenergy projects, which convert organic waste to energy. The decision, which is required by Senate Bill (SB) 1122 (Rubio, 2012), will help California to meet its clean energy, greenhouse gas reduction, and landfill diversion goals. SB 1122 requires 250 MW of electricity generated from organic waste, including: 110 MW generated from organic waste that would otherwise be landfilled; 90 MW from dairy and agricultural waste; and 50 MW from forestry waste from high wildfire hazard zones. 12/19/2014

Iogen and Raizen Start Commercial Production of Cellulosic Ethanol in Brazil

Iogen CorporationIogen Corporation and Raízen have announced that they have begun production of cellulosic ethanol on schedule at Raízen's newly expanded Costa Pinto sugar cane mill in Piracicaba, São Paulo, Brazil. Raízen broke ground on the $US100 million "biomass-to-ethanol" expansion just over one year ago, and it is the first large-scale commercial implementation of Iogen Energy's cellulosic ethanol technology. The new facility will convert cellulosic biomass such as sugar cane bagasse and straw into 40 million litres per year of advanced, second generation biofuel. Pedro Mizutani, Raízen's Executive Vice President: "Continuous commercial production will commence with the upcoming 2015 harvest season. We plan to be producing up to 1 billion liters of cellulosic biofuel from bagasse and cane straw by 2024." Raízen has already announced that, given a success at Costa Pinto, it intends to deploy Iogen Energy's technology in seven more Raízen sugar cane mills. 12/18/2014

Vega Biofuels Contracts with Vencor to Meet Bio-Coal Demand

Vega BiofuelsNorcross, Georgia based Vega Biofuels, Inc has entered into a five year Agreement with Colorado company Vencor International, Inc that will provide Vega with sufficient Bio-Coal to meet its current demand. Vega Biofuels announced last month that it was testing Vencor's Bio-Coal product to determine if it would meet Vega's specification requirements. The Bio-Coal is produced through torrefaction, a partial carbonization process that takes place at temperatures between 475 - 575º in a low oxygen environment that makes the physical and energetic properties of the biomass much more comparable to traditional coal. The biomass is then compressed into briquettes called Bio-Coal to be sold to the end user. Existing coal-fired power plants do not need to retrofit their existing plants to accommodate the torrefied Bio-Coal. The Agreement will allow Vega to begin filling orders prior to the completion of its Allendale facility. The Agreement will continue to supplement the production capacity of the Allendale plant for the next five years. 12/18/2014

International Study Reports 5 Trillion Plastic Pieces Afloat in World's Oceans

Five Gyres InstituteOpen access journal PLOS One has published an internationally collaborative study led by Marcus Eriksen of the Los Angeles based Five Gyres Institute entitled, Plastic Pollution in the World's Oceans: More than 5 Trillion Plastic Pieces Weighing over 250,000 Tons Afloat at Sea. The report collates and analyzes data from 24 marine expeditions between 2007 and 2013 to provide the most detailed and accurate estimation of mariner plastics pollution yet available. Five Gyres Institute and the Canadian Plastics Industry Association supported Upcycle the Gyres Society are two active examples of global efforts underway to categorize, estimate amounts, create collection methods, and consider waste to resource conversion alternatives. 12/18/2014

Guelph Researchers Have Recipe for Wet Farm Waste: Cook into Energy

University of GuelphUniversity of Guelph (UofG) researchers are studying how to make biofuels from farm waste, especially “wet” waste that is typically difficult to use. They have developed a fairly simple procedure to transport waste and produce energy from it. Scientists have struggled to find uses for wet and green waste, including corn husks, tomato vines and manure. Dry farm waste, such as wood chips or sawdust, is easier to use for generating power. Often, wet farm waste materials break down before reaching their destination. Researchers led by engineering professor Animesh Dutta, director of the Bio-Renewable Innovation Lab (BRIL) at UofG, have found a solution: pressure cooking. Cooking farm waste yields compact, easily transportable material that will not degrade and can be used in energy-producing plants. Dutta said the research, which is published this week in the journal Applied Energy, shows that in a lab setting, biofuels can produce the same amount of energy as coal. 12/18/2014 

ATS Pilots Recyllose Recovery Process at Scottish Wastewater Treatment Plant

Applied CleanTechCalifornia based Applied CleanTech (ACT) has announced that its pilot project to test its SRS sewage recycling technology for wastewater being conducted with Scottish Water is showing promising results. The pilot is being conducted at Dunbar and Aviemore Waste Water Treatment Works in Scotland, and is the first installation of ACT's Sewage Recycling System (SRS) in the United Kingdom (UK). Scottish Water has been testing whether value can be recovered from sewage while reducing maintenance and power costs. George Ponton, Head of Innovation at Scottish Water: "In a nutshell, ACT's SRS technology is a very fine filter that captures all the cellulose and some of the fats, oils and grease coming into the waste water treatment works. The solids are then pasteurized producing a pellet material called Recyllose™. These pellets could then be used as a raw material in paper, plastic, construction, energy and other industries." 12/17/2014

BioNitrogen Contracts With Saipem for EPC Services to Furnish Urea Plants

BioNitrogenFlorida company BioNitrogen Holdings Corp has announced that it has signed an agreement with Italy based Saipem to provide BioNitrogen with engineering, procurement, project management and construction services (EPC) for its urea manufacturing facilities. Under the terms of the agreement, Saipem will carry out the engineering design of BioNitrogen's plants, procure all the equipment and materials necessary, and construct the facilities. Carlos Contreras, Sr., CEO of BioNitrogen: "After completion of the FEL 2 feasibility study, we have selected Saipem to be the lead EPC contractor. We look forward to Saipem working with our best in class technology providers and with AMEC who has performed the engineering on our plants to date." 12/17/2014

Pacific Ag Seeking Growers for Residue Management Pilot Program

Pacific AgOregon based Pacific Ag, LLC has announced that it is seeking High Plains corn growers within a 100-mile radius of Hugoton, Kansas, to participate in a residue management pilot program. Growers will need to provide soil samples before and after 2015 planting and harvest, and also allow Pacific Ag to collect treatment data including fertility treatments, moisture data, location, and tillage practices. The goal of the pilot is to understand the benefits and challenges with residue management as the company is preparing to launch a balanced residue management research program that studies the impact of various tilling and removal techniques on soil health. Pacific Ag was contracted by Abengoa to provide ag residual for the start up of Abengoa's biomass-to-ethanol biorefinery in Hugoton, which was scheduled to be in production by the end of 2014. Growers interested in participating in the residue management pilot program should contact Kari Bryant at (806) 632-0787 or kari.<>. 12/17/2014  

MagneGas Deploys Manure Sterilization System to Major US Hog Farm

MagneGasMagneGas Corporation has announced that it has completed construction of its Venturi™ sterilization system at a major hog farm in Indiana that raises over 40,000 pigs per year. The farm has a minimum of 18,000 pigs on hand at any given time, making it one of the largest in Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio. The sterilization system is expected to process hog manure, converting it into a high quality, low-odor fertilizer. In addition, MagneGas® fuel will be produced as a byproduct that can be co-fired with propane or natural gas to reduce other fuel needs. In July 2014, MagneGas confirmed that the fertilizer meets EPA 503.32 by sterilizing hog manures taking coliform bacteria counts to "Undetectable Levels". The company believes meeting this rule transforms this Class B Manure into Class A suitable for land application and in some cases fertilization. Following a successful demonstration, the Indiana farm owner plans to purchase the system to use for his manure sterilization needs and partner with MagneGas to launch the market for the use of MagneGas systems in the agricultural industry world-wide. 12/15/2014

US EPA Releases "Definition of Solid Waste" 2014 Final Rulemaking

US Environmental Protection AgencyThe US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released a Final Rulemaking on the Definition of Solid Waste (DSW) as part of the national Resource Conservation and Recycling Act (RCRA), together with an Environmental Justice (EJ) analysis. The EPA issued the DSW rulemaking in 2008, revising RCRA to encourage the safe recycling of hazardous secondary materials, whether converted on-site or transported to off-site recycling and resource recovery facilities. Petitions filed by the Sierra Club and others subsequently sought to overturn the new rulemaking; years of negotiations brought about the EJ analysis. The rulemaking thus addresses the "Potential Adverse Impacts Under the Definition of Solid Waste Exclusions (Including Potential Disproportionate Adverse Impacts to minority and Low-Income Populations)". The Executive Summary provides the five key Findings contained in the DSW Rulemaking. Finding 1: Hazardous Secondary Material Recycling Does Pose Significant Potential Hazards. Finding 2: Possibility of Hazards from Hazardous Secondary Materials Recycling Adversely Impacting Human Health and the Environment is Increased under the 2008 DSW Exclusions. Finding 3: Many of the Communities Potentially Impacted by this Increase in Risk of Adverse Impacts are Minority and Low-Income Communities, and in Some Cases the Populations Potentially Impacted are Disproportionately Minority and/or Low Income. Finding 4: Underlying Vulnerabilities Traditionally Associated with Minority and Low-Income Communities Pose the Potential to Exacerbate Potential Adverse Impacts of the DSW Rule. Finding 5: The 2014 DSW Final Rule Includes Preventative and Mitigative Steps to Address the Potential Adverse Impacts to Minority and Low-Income Communities. The final DSW Rulemaking has been released in a pre-publication version. The docket for this rulemaking is EPA-HQ-RCRA-2010-0742 and can be accessed at Regulations.gov. Documents supporting the final rule will be available after the final rule Federal Register Notice is published. 12/15/2014

WM Releases 2014 Sustainability Report: Creating a Circular Economy

Waste ManagementHouston, Texas based Waste Management, Inc has released its 2014 Sustainability Report titled “Creating a Circular Economy,” which documents the company’s progress on recycling, energy production, transforming waste into valuable resources, and helping businesses move toward zero waste. David Steiner, Waste Management president and CEO: "We believe we can reuse materials in a ‘circular economy’ that operates as a true closed-loop system, where little is wasted. There’s a lot of work ahead to make this vision a reality, but we’re committed for the long run because we see the potential to radically transform the way we all define — and interact with — waste." WM's Sustainability Report covers five key topics: (1) Reducing waste; (2) Growing recycling; (3) Extracting value from organics; (4) Lowering emissions; and (5) Harnessing energy at the landfill. Also included in the report are a number of statistics on the company’s environmental performance, from fleet emissions to wildlife habitat protection to the variety of materials managed each year. 12/15/2014 

Rivertop Renewables Begins Construction of Commercial Manufacturing Plant

Rivertop RenewablesMontana based Rivertop Renewables has begun construction of its first commercial plant, located at DanChem Technologies, Inc's (DTI) facility in Danville, Virginia. DTI is expected to begin production of Rivertop’s sustainable glucaric acid-derived products beginning in the summer of 2015. At full capacity, the plant will produce up to 10 million pounds of product per year. Among the products to be produced will be Rivertop's Riose® detergent builder and Headwaters® corrosion inhibitor, both of which are based on salts of glucaric acid. The US Department of Energy has recognized glucaric acid as one of the top 12 "biobased building block chemicals." Traditional pathways of producing glucaric, other sugar acids, and their salts have been costly, energy intensive, and environmentally challenging, relegating their use to pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications. By applying proven science to renewable resources, Rivertop is creating an abundant and far more economical supply of glucaric acid and other green chemicals and bioproducts. Mike Knauf, Rivertop's CEO: "Partnering with DTI for contract manufacturing both lowers the cost and speeds time-to-market for our novel performance chemicals." DTI began manufacturing for Rivertop under contract in 2012. 10/12/2014

Florida County Selects Covanta to Operate Resource Recovery Facility

CovantaNew Jersey based Covanta has announced that it has assumed operations of the Pinellas County Resource Recovery Facility located in St. Petersburg, Florida. The company was selected to operate the facility for a 10-year term after a competitive procurement process. The contract was approved by the Board of County Commissioners on November 3, 2014. In addition to operations, Covanta has also commenced a number of capital projects to improve operations of the facility. The Pinellas County Resource Recovery Facility provides sustainable waste management services to residents of Pinellas County by processing approximately 3,150 tons of solid waste per day into enough clean renewable energy to power approximately 40,000 homes. The facility also recovers approximately 26,000 tons of metal annually for recycling. 10/12/2014

Due 02/06/2015: Applications to CEC for Advanced Clean Energy from Biogas

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has released Program Opportunity Notice PON-14-505, "Advanced Clean Energy from Biogas, Biomethane and Natural Gas. The purpose of this solicitation is to fund research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) projects that address the barriers to increased market penetration of renewable energy. Up to $5.5 million is available for PON-14-505 grants, and will be divided between three topic areas: Topic A: Development and demonstration of affordable technologies and strategies for biogas cleanup and upgrading to biomethane or renewable natural gas for clean power generation. Topic B addresses demonstration of bottoming cycle solutions as supplemental power generation for highly efficient use of natural gas, while Topic C explores development and demonstration of micro-scale and other novel systems for small -scale combined cooling, heating and power applications. Match funding of at least 20% will be required. A pre-application workshop is scheduled for December 22, 2014, and will be webcast. The deadline to submit applications is February 6, 2015 by 3:00 pm. 12/12/2014

Due 02/13/2015: EOI for UK Advanced Biofuels Demonstration Competition

UK Department for TransportThe United Kingdom (UK) Department for Transport, Ricardo-AEA, and E4tech have announced launch of a £25 million advanced biofuels demonstration competition to support the development of a domestic advanced biofuel industry. The launch was accompanied by publication of the independent feasibility study documents exploring various aspects of into the project and the opportunities available for UK industry. According to the feasibility study, gains from the domestic supply of converting low value waste to high value transport fuel could be worth up to £130 million gross value added to the UK by 2030, and potentially up to £500 million per year including exports. Alongside the competition, the Department for Transport has also established a Transport Energy Taskforce to consider options for supporting advanced biofuels through policy mechanisms. We are also supporting a sub target at EU level. Expressions of Interest (EOI) are now being sought from potential bidders until February 13, 2015; shortlisted projects will then be invited to submit full proposals. 12/12/2014

UK DECC Publishes Review of RHI Biomethane Injection to Grid TariffUK Department of Energy & Climate Change

The United Kingdom's (UK) Non-domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) was introduced in 2011 to incentivize the uptake of renewable heat in industry, businesses and public sector organizations. The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has released the Government Response to review of the biomethane injection to grid tariff earlier this year. This summary sets out DECC decisions adjusting the biomethane injection to grid tariff to implement a three tiered tariff structure subject to parliamentary approval of the regulations. The tariffs have been modeled based on a feedstock mix of 70% unpackaged food waste and 30% energy crop. Feedback from the responses have indicated that it is necessary to include some energy crop in the feedstock mix to hedge against the risk inherent in short term waste contracts. The tariffs have been based on gate fees of £15 per tonne for unpackaged food waste and assumed crop feedstock costs of £35 per tonne are reasonable. These new tariffs will apply to all installations that are registered on or after the regulations have come into force. 12/10/2014

REG Invests in German Firm Petrotec Biodiesel for Expansion into Europe

Renewable Energy GroupRenewable Energy Group, Inc. (REG) and IC Green Energy Ltd. (ICG) have announced that REG, through a wholly-owned subsidiary, will acquire ICG’s majority equity ownership position in German biodiesel producer Petrotec AG will supply. Closing of the transaction is expected before year end. ICG, Israel Corporation’s vehicle for investing in the alternative energy market, today formally accepted an offer from REG European Holdings B.V. to purchase ICG’s 69 percent equity ownership in Petrotec AG for US $20.9 million, or US $1.235 per share, to be paid in newly issued REG shares valued at the 30 trading day volume-weighted average for the day prior to signing. Daniel J. Oh, REG President and CEO: "REG’s investment in Petrotec is a natural extension of our business strategy which should enable us to better capture value from international trade flows and to participate in European biofuel markets." 12/10/2014

Stora Enso Will Open New Biomaterials Innovation Centre in Sweden

Stora EnsoStora Enso has announced that it will concentrate its new biomaterials business development in an Innovation Centre to be located in the Stockholm area in Sweden. The mission of Stora Enso Biomaterials is to find new, innovative ways to maximize the extractable value from wood, as well as other forms of ligno-cellulosic biomass. The centre, which will open during the second quarter of 2015, will host research, application, business development, and strategic marketing. The centre will boost innovation by identifying business opportunities in the renewable materials market and linking them with leading innovation and research centres in business and academia. The centre will be staffed with Stora Enso employees currently working in Sweden, Finland and Germany. It will initially employ slightly less than 60 people and is estimated to employ around 75 people by year end 2015. 12/09/2014

Total Energy Ventures Invests in Solidia CO2 Cement Technology

Total Energy VenturesTotal Energy Ventures, the corporate venture investment arm of the French energy company Total S.A., has announced investment in Solidia Technologies cement manufacturing platform. The new method uses carbon dioxide (CO2) to cure the cement, dramatically reducing water consumption and chemically binding the CO2 within the cement. Solidia has been working since 2008 to develop new cement chemistry, using technology based on research conducted by Richard Riman at Rutgers University in New Jersey. The company, which holds 26 patents, offers a process that reduces the carbon footprint of the end-to-end cement and concrete manufacturing process by 70%, uses carbon dioxide to cure the concrete, and allows 60 to 100% of the water used to be recycled. Last month, Purdue University reported on the Solidia process, validating that the product was "as good or better" than cement cured with water, especially for use in extreme conditions. Total Energy Ventures minority investments support the development of companies with innovative technologies and business models in areas such as renewable and alternative energies, oil and gas, energy efficiency, energy storage, waste recycling and recovery, greenhouse gas reduction, industrial water and sustainable transportation. 12/09/2014

Echogen Power's Waste Heat Recovery System Is Available as Turnkey Solution

EchogenFlorida based Echogen Power Systems has announced the commercial availability of its EPS100 heat engine system as a turnkey solution that satisfies energy demand, environmental requirements, and bottom line cost savings for industrial, power generation, oil & gas, and marine customers. The system is an advanced Rankine Cycle for usable (waste) heat recovery that uses industrial-grade CO2 as the working fluid. Echogen's partner, Dresser-Rand, introduced Echogen's new 8 MW EPS100 waste heat recovery unit at its manufacturing and testing facility in Olean, New York this fall. During the event, Dresser-Rand, a licensee of the technology for the oil & gas industry, and Echogen representatives demonstrated a factory testing milestone of the highest net power produced by any supercritical CO2 power cycle system globally. 12/09/2014  

Valmet to Supply Flue Gas Scrubber to Fortum's Biomass CHP Plant in Finland

ValmetFinnish corporation Valmet will supply a flue-gas cleaning and condensation plant valued at EUR 8 million to Fortum's combined heat and power plant in Joensuu, Finland. The district heating for the city's residents and electricity for the national grid produced by the Joensuu power plant are primarily generated using wood and peat. The plants' heat output is 130 MW and electrical output 50 MW. The improvements will allow Fortum to improve the energy efficiency of its Joensuu power plant and increase its heat production capacity; heat that was earlier released into the atmosphere with flue gases can now be utilized as district heating. The new equipment will also decrease the power plant's flue gas sulfur and dust emissions as specified in the new European Union (EU) directive on industrial emissions (IED) that will go into force on January 1, 2016. The new flue gas scrubber will increase the plant's energy efficiency and district heating production capacity and decrease the power plant's emissions. The plant will be ready for use in the fall of 2015, in time for the start of a new heating season. In 2013, Valmet supplied a bio-oil plant based on integrated pyrolysis solution technology at the Joensuu plant. 12/08/2014

MagneGas Invited to United Nations Ebola Crisis Response Meeting

MagneGasFlorida-based MagneGas Corporation has announced that it has been invited to participate in United Nations (UN) Ebola Crisis Response high-level meetings being held on Thursday, December 11, 2014 at the UN headquarters in New York City. The meetings are being held by the UN Global Compact, the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response ("UNMEER"), and the Ebola Private Sector Mobilization Group.  This assembly consists of a coalition of over 35 companies with major assets and operations in West Africa. The MagneGas plasma arc system converts waste to fuel gas at 12,000 degrees Fahrenheit, sufficient to sterilize medical waste, bio-hazard contaminated sewage, and any other waste generated during emergency medical response to the Ebola crisis. MagneGas believes that the use of its fuel for co-incineration with existing systems will increase heat output and reduce emissions further sterilizing waste as an alternative treatment option. The company also has available a trailer mounted Plasma Arc system that can be deployed quickly and operated on a local diesel generator. 12/08/2014

NYSERDA Supports BioEnergy for Campus Heating at Paul Smith's College

New York Energy Research and Development AuthorityThe four-year Paul Smith's College in Adirondack Park, New York, has announced an agreement with the New York Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to install a highly sustainable, state-of-the-art wood-pellet boiler system to heat its three academic buildings. The project is partially supported by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority through the Cleaner, Greener Communities Program, which encourages local communities across the state to become more sustainable and energy efficient. This project is one of the first uses in New York State of a high-efficiency and low-emission wood pellet boiler heating system to heat multiple buildings, and one of five sites in the North Country planning to install this technology. The containerized wood-pellet boiler system will contribute to Paul Smith’s renewable energy and climate change goals, displacing 28,000 gallons per year of heating oil with renewable wood-pellet fuel. Paul Smith's system also makes use of thermal storage, a technology that increases the efficiency of the boiler. The system will heat a total of 70,000 square feet, saving the college up to $50,000 a year. The total cost of the project is approximately $600,000. 12/08/2014

UPM and WWF Finland Promote Sustainability of Wood-Based Liquid Biofuels

UPMUPM and WWF Finland are working together to present a list of joint measures to be carried out to promote sustainability of wood-based liquid biofuels in Finland. The measures focus on ensuring biodiversity by protecting a sufficient amount of forests and by adhering to the highest possible sustainability standard in the management of commercial forests. The wider impact of using residues in biofuels production should be investigated further. Residue streams of the forest industry, such as tall oil, represent a lower risk wood-based raw material for biofuels. At the European Union (EU) level, both WWF Finland and UPM promote legally binding, robust, and ambitious sustainability criteria for biofuels. UPM and WWF Finland are committed to jointly developing the current practices. Both contribute to the development of the RSB certification for wood-based biofuels. UPM and WWF Finland also commit to further developing the FSC standard and promoting its credibility and use in Finland. 12/08/2014 

FCC Is Preferred Bidder for Zero Waste Recycling and Recovery Facility in UK

FCC EnvironmentUnited Kingdom (UK) Zero Waste: Edinburgh and Midlothian Councils has appointed FCC Medio Ambiente SA as “Preferred Bidder” to build a state-of-the-art recycling and energy recovery facility for processing household waste. The contract is worth over £475 million (€570 million) including revenues from the Authorities, sale of heat and electricity and C&I revenue, over the 25 year contract period. The solution proposed by FCC will process over 135,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste (MSW) per year serving a population of more than 575,000 inhabitants. The Energy Recycling and Recovery Facility will have a treatment capacity of over 150,000 tpa for both municipal and C&I waste and will generate over 13 MW of electricity and potentially provide heat for use in local district heating. The joint Zero Waste partners plan to sign the 25-year contract in 2015, with FCC operating on site by 2018. The facility will be alongside a food waste treatment plant which is currently under construction on the Zero Waste Parc next to the Millerhill Marshalling Yard in Midlothian. 12/06/2014

H2 Energy Signs Contract for 43 Bio-Refineries with 2 Sisters Food Group

H2 EnergyLiverpool based H2 Energy Ltd has signed a waste to energy contract with 2 Sisters Food Group for the design, manufacture, construction, and operation of Bio-Refineries at all 2 Sisters' 43 factory locations in the United Kingdom (UK). The Bio-Refineries will convert organic waste at each location to generate renewable power and heat. The first phase will see commissioning of Bio-Refineries at ten 2 Sisters locations over the next three years. The selected locations will include food manufacturing, poultry, fish, and meat processing sites. Each Bio-Refinery will be designed and built to the specific feedstock at that location. The design will consider criteria such as buffering additives, biochemical pre-processing, cell rupture pressure technology and maceration, pasteurization, sterilization by pressure, aerobic digestion leading to anaerobic digestion, ion exchange, odor control, and digestate conditioning for PAS110 compliance. When all ten projects are fully commissioned, Phase 1 is projected to deliver up to 40,000 MWh of electricity and 70,000 MWhth of thermal energy into 2 Sisters Food Group facilities per year. 12/06/2014

Novozymes' New Enzyme Technology Converts Waste Oils Into Biodiesel

NovozymesDenmark based Novozymes has announced the launch of Novozymes Eversa®, the first commercially available enzymatic solution to make biodiesel from waste oils. The enzymatic process converts used cooking oil or other lower grade oils into biodiesel, enabling biodiesel producers to reduce their raw material costs. The resulting biodiesel is sold to the same trade specification as biodiesel created through traditional chemical processing. Existing biodiesel process designs have difficulty handling oils containing more than 0.5% FFA, meaning that waste oils with high FFAs have not been a viable feedstock option until now. Novozymes says that Eversa can work with a broad range of fatty materials as feedstock, but initial focus has been on used cooking oil, DDGS corn oil and fatty acid distillates. The enzymatic process eliminates the need for sodium methoxide, one of the most hazardous chemicals in traditional biodiesel plants. Making the change from a chemical catalyst to the enzymatic process will require retrofitting in existing plants. 12/05/2014

Hawaiian Electric Contracts with Pacific Biodiesel for Locally Sourced Biofuel

Pacific BiodieselHawaiian Electric and Pacific Biodiesel Technologies have signed a contract for the Maui-based biofuel company to supply biodiesel processed from waste cooking oil and other local feedstocks. The biodiesel will primarily be used at the 110-megawatt Campbell Industrial Park generation facility with the capability for use at other Oahu power plants as needed. The two-year contract is for two to three million gallons per year and will go into effect in November 2015, subject to review and approval by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission. Robert King, president of Pacific Biodiesel: "The new technology installed at Big Island Biodiesel enables us to process the most degraded feedstock into the highest quality biodiesel available in the United States. With this new contract, Hawaiian Electric will be purchasing approximately half our production volume, ensuring the continuous operation of the Keaau facility." Pacific Biodiesel is currently under contract to supply biodiesel for the State of Hawaii-owned Honolulu Airport Emergency Generation Facility scheduled to be in service by mid-2015. That 10-MW facility will provide electricity to Hawaiian Electric’s grid to supply all Oahu customers under normal operations with the ability to isolate itself from the grid to power only the vital needs of the Honolulu International Airport in an emergency. 12/05/2014

Nevada County Fire Safe Council Releases Biopower Feasibility Study

Fire Safe Council of Nevada CountyThe Nevada County Biomass Task Force and the Fire Safe Council of Nevada County, California, have released a Biomass Feasibility Assessment considering the development of a 3 megawatt (MWe) biomass fueled power plant. The Northern California based TSS Consultants completed the detailed analysis, determining that a small-scale gasification plant could cleanly and economically convert locally-sourced excess woody biomass to synthesis fuel gas (syngas) for power generation. The report provides the community and council with siting, scale, technology platform and economic options, recommending that the Council now focus on site selection from among the locations closely assessed. Interested parties can contact the Council at P.O. Box 1112, Grass Valley, CA 95945 or by phone at 530-272-1122. TSS was also instrumental in analyzing the 2 MWe Cabin Creek Biomass Project in neighboring Placer County, addressing waste woody biomass conversion to power for the Lake Tahoe Basin, a project that is now moving through the environmental permitting process. 12/05/2014 

Edeniq and Global Bio-chem Agree to Jointly Develop Sugar from Corn Stover

EdeniqCalifornia based Edeniq, Inc has announced signing a Joint Development Agreement with Asian company Global Bio-chem Technology Group Limited (Global Bio-chem) for the production of low cost sugars from corn stover. Following a letter of intent executed in July, the companies further cement their cooperation on developing the lowest cost process for converting corn stover to cellulosic sugars for use in the production of bio-based chemical products. Edeniq and Global Bio-chem plan to integrate their technologies in a commercial demonstration plant at Global Bio-chem’s facility in the Jilin Province of China. Construction has been initiated on the plant, with a target to produce 50,000 metric tons per year of sugars from corn stover. The two companies not only intend to supply the cellulosic sugars to Global Bio-chem for utilization in its existing sugar-based chemical production facilities, but also plan to forge partnerships with other companies to enable the production of a broad array of biochemicals and biofuels from its sugars. 12/04/2014

Boeing Conducts Test Flight with Neste Oil's Renewable Diesel-Jet Fuel Blend

Neste OilSeattle, Washington based Boeing Commercial Airlines has successfully tested Finnish company Neste Oil's NEXBTL green diesel fuel as a component of aviation fuel in the first test flight, which took place in the US using a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Further testing is being planned. The testing is part of Boeing's ecoDemonstrator program launched in 2012 with the goal of investigating various technologies and materials to reduce fuel consumption and emissions. Neste Oil has been chosen by Boeing as one of its partners for the program. Neste Oil delivered regular winter grade NEXBTL diesel fuel, normally used in road vehicles, to Boeing's fuel supplier EPIC Aviation. EPIC Aviation then used the fuel as a component in their Green diesel supplied to Boeing. Renewable diesel fuel comprised 15% of the fuel used in one of the plane's two engines. Captain Mike Carriker, Chief Pilot Boeing Product Development and 777X: "The airplane performed as designed with the green diesel blend, just as it does with conventional jet fuel. This is exactly what we want to see in flight tests with a new type of fuel." 12/04/2014

US DOE Awards $7MM to Develop Advanced Logistics for Bioenergy Feedstocks

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced up to $7 million for two projects designed to develop and demonstrate ways to reduce the cost of delivering bioenergy feedstocks to biorefineries. Examples of bioenergy feedstocks include corn stover, switchgrass, and woody biomass. By investing in this type of research, development, and demonstration, the DOE is supporting the production of renewable and cost-competitive biofuels. The projects in New York and Tennessee will focus on developing advanced machinery for efficient and low-cost harvesting, collection, and transportation of high-quality bioenergy feedstocks. The State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse will receive up to $3.5 million to lower the delivered cost of short rotation woody crops. The University of Tennessee in Knoxville will receive up to $3.5 million to study how blending feedstocks could play a role in increasing the amount of available feedstock within a given delivery radius. 12/04/2014 

Webinar Scheduled for December 10 on USFS 2015 Wood Innovations Grant

US Forest ServiceThe University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Woody Biomass Utilization Group will conduct an informational webinar on December 10, 2014 to assist in application for the US Forest Service (USFS) 2015 Wood Innovations Grant funding opportunity. Webinar speakers will include Julie Tucker, the National Lead for Renewable Wood Energy and Larry Swan, the Woody Biomass and Utilization Specialist for USFS State and Private Forestry at the Region 5 office in Vallejo. Larry and Julie will be giving short presentations followed by a Q & A session for potential applicants. As originally announced in October 2014, the USFS is requesting proposals to substantially expand and accelerate wood energy and wood products markets throughout the United States to support forest management needs on National Forest System and other forest lands. 12/03/2014

Netherlands Report Released on ACT Sewage Recycling System Trials

Applied CleanTechCalifornia based Applied CleanTech (ACT) has announced the availability of a third-party verification report on trials of the firm's patented Sewage Recycling System (SRS). The SRS economically recovers ACT's Recycllose cellulose product from sewage entering a wastewater treatment plant. The Dutch Waterschap Aa en Maas (WSAM) report highlights the commercial potential of sewage mining, summarizing that application of SRS was able to reduce daily operational costs by approximately $2700 (~ EUR2200), reduce sludge by up to 30 percent and increase plant capacity by 15%. The report also notes that Recyllose™ was suitable for the production of bio-composite materials, biofuels, asphalt, insulation materials, replacement for fiberglass, and more. An English summary of the Dutch report is available, as well as a video of the trials. ACT recently announced a crowdfunding campaign to finance commercialization of the SRS. 12/03/2014 

Rookie Wood Stove Makers Get Highest Score in Design Workshop

MF FireThe Alliance for Green Heat organized the international 2014 Collaborative Wood Stove Design Workshop held last month at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory. The goal of the event was to assess innovative technologies that can help wood stoves reduce real-world emissions that result from poor operation by the consumer and use of unseasoned wood, both of which are widespread problems. In 2013, the Alliance hosted the Wood Stove Decathlon on the National Mall in Washington DC. This year, the event was held at the DOE lab so that stoves could be tested more rigorously and test data could be shared with the participants. Five stoves were assessed by a panel of judges. The highest scoring stove, the Mulciber, adapted emission control techniques that are in automobiles, such as an oxygen sensor that controls the fuel-to-air ratio, a continuously engaged catalyst and an exhaust gas fan. The Mulciber was also tested with unseasoned, 50% moisture content wood and performed quite well. The team, who had never built a stove before the 2013 Wood Stove Decathlon, overhauled their first prototype and have now formed the company MF Fire Benefit, LLC to bring the stove to market. Primary funding for this year's Design Workshop came from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the Osprey Foundation, and the US Forest Service. 12/02/2014

USDA Releases $5.6MM in Grants to Producers of Advanced Biofuels

US Department of AgricultureThe US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced the release of $5.6 million for this year's Advanced Biofuels Producer grants, supporting 220 companies across the US. The full list of grants indicates that Producer grants ranged from less than $500 to almost $600,000. Conversion of waste-sourced feedstock to advanced biofuels was most prevalent, and was shared almost equally for waste vegetable oil conversion to biodiesel, and anaerobic digestion of residual organics to biogas. Additional awards totaling more than $4 million were announced supporting the National Biodiesel Board and the University of Idaho under the Biodiesel fuel Education Program. Sun grant funds were awarded to South Dakota State University in support of collaborative bioenergy and biomass programs, and to Iowa State University of Science and Technology received support under the Critical Agricultural Materials program for their work in conversion of glycerol residuals from biodiesel production into paints, adhesives and coatings. 12/02/2014

 

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