You are receiving this email because you signed up at our web site or have an interest in our content. If you no longer wish to receive our emails, you may unsubscribe by clicking the link at the end of this email.

View  this email in your browser.
If you received it from someone else,
subscribe so you can have your own.
Teru Talk News

Teru Talk Newsletter

Volume III, Issue 49, December 9, 2013 
Teru Talk by Michael Theroux (pronounced "Terú")  

Teru's Trash Talk

Just what is this thing we call "waste" anyway? The concept seems simple enough: waste is stuff you don't need, left-overs, clutter that you throw away. Ah, if only it was that simple. A wise old Botanist once told me that a "Weed was a Plant out of Place." Perhaps we can extend this, to say that a Waste is a Resource out of Place.

EPA says solid waste is "any garbage or refuse, sludge from a wastewater treatment plant, water supply treatment plant, or air pollution control facility and other discarded material, including solid, liquid, semi-solid, or contained gaseous material resulting from industrial, commercial, mining, and agricultural operations, and from community activities." EPA concludes with a Teru-ism: "Nearly everything we do leaves behind some kind of waste."

There are just so many onerous rules, regs, and policies layered on Waste Management, perhaps rightfully so, but good grief: there has to be an end-point. If you throw it away or otherwise discard it, then it is a Waste. I'd contend that we have to figure out where that unwanted stuff, that resource, actually has an appropriate place before it becomes a waste. Otherwise, the challenge becomes removing the Waste label once it is assigned.

If you use your own tail-end cuts from making furniture to fuel a furnace for space heating, those leftover chunks of wood never become a waste because you recycled them instead of tossing them. If your market is paying to have a ton or two of "food waste" carted off to the landfill each day, it can put in a digester and make biogas and fertilizer, and then "food waste" is not a waste at all. It's a resource.

Now, if your Trash is destined to be my Treasure, it makes sense that there should be some rate of exchange. We can tell the agencies that we are accepting the responsibility of Waste-to-Resource conversion by paying for it. If only a buck a ton, but something is warranted to herald the transfer of ownership. A Bill of Sale says, "OK, I agree: safely and cleanly managing this almost-a-waste as a Resource is now my responsibility."

Lemme make this clear; it shouldn't matter what kind of material it was. If you intend to use it as a resource you must accept the duty of safety and cleanliness. If you fail, the stuff does becomes a Waste, with all the attendant rules and regs. Recycling's aim is to get waste-sourced materials ready again for the marketplace, but recycling cuts both ways: it is all too easy to go from waste-sourced materials to resource and back to waste. Truth is, we make waste when we recycle, too: it's all just part of the real Circular Economy.

Hey Rube!

The US is finally starting to see some real progress in thermal waste conversion to fuels and other commodities, although maybe not exactly how folks would have guessed. Syngas to fermentation … who would have thought …I guess "hydrocarbons is where you find 'em."

This Week's Top Story

Concord Blue and LanzaTech Partner to Produce Fuels From Waste Biomass

Los Angeles based Concord Blue USA, Inc and New Zealand company LanzaTech have announced entering into an agreement to integrate their individually proven technologies to demonstrate the production of fuels and chemicals from waste materials. 12/07/2013

The Week's News

NOTE: If you are using IE10 and our website isn't loading as smoothly as you would like or the page jumps when you click on a link to go to a certain news item, just change to "compatibility view" and all will be fine.


GM Invests $24MM in Two Landfill Gas Projects to Generate Over 14 MWe

General Motors (GM) has announced a $24-million investment in electrical generation equipment that will allow the company to use more landfill gas at its Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Orion, Michigan, assembly plants. 12/08/2013

Global Clean Energy Plans Waste to Plastics Plant in Nova Scotia

Texas based Global Clean Energy, Inc (GCE) has announced that Halifax, Nova Scotia, may be the location for the company's first Waste Plastics to Fuel Plant. GCE spent time in Halifax meeting with a number of government representatives and private sector recyclers. 12/08/2013

Fortum Inaugurates New Waste-to-Energy CHP Plant in Sweden

Finland based Fortum Corporation has announced the startup of a new waste-to-energy unit at the Brista combined heat and power (CHP) facility in Sigtuna, Stockholm. 12/07/2013

National Grid Connects First Commercial Biogas Plant to Gas Network

The United Kingdom (UK) energy company National Grid has announced the successful commissioning of its first commercial biogas project, connecting biomass operators Future Biogas to the gas network in Yorkshire. 10/07/2013

Amyris and TOTAL Form Joint Venture to Commercialize 2nd Gen Biofuels

California based Amyris, Inc and French company TOTAL, S.A. have announced the formation of Total Amyris BioSolutions B.V., a 50-50 joint venture that now holds exclusive rights and license to Amyris’ technology platform. 12/06/2013

Cirque, Northrop Grumman Join Forces for Deployable Gasification Unit

Michigan company Cirque Energy, Inc (formerly Green Energy Renewable Solutions) has announced entering into a Joint Development Agreement with Virginia based Northrop Grumman Corporation for the development of a Deployable Gasification Unit (DGU). 12/04/2013

GM Rochester Facility Accomplishes Zero Waste for Landfill-Free Status

General Motors (GM) has announced that its Rochester, New York, manufacturing facility is landfill-free after four years and seven attempts to recycle a challenging oily filter sludge generated from a machining operation. 12/04/2013


Follow TeruTalk on Twitter
Find Teru Talk on Google+ Like Teru Talk on Facebook!
Teru Talk is looking for sponsors to help us continue the fight for waste conversion for resource recovery.

Teru Talk Home

Current News at Teru Talk
Teru Action Items
TERU Focus Reports

Articles at Teru Talk

Featured Events:

Recommended Reading:

Waste to energy conversion technology
Waste to energy conversion technology (Woodhead Publishing Series in Energy 2013)


© Copyright 2013 Teru Talk by JDMT, Inc. All rights reserved.

Teru Talk is an online publication of JDMT, Inc with the goal of opening the dialogue and providing current news and commentary on issues and successes associated with waste conversion to renewable energy, biofuels and other bio-based products for resource recovery.

Please do not reply to this email because the mail box is not monitored and we might miss it. If you wish to contact us, please click here:

The Teru Talk Newsletter is published weekly or more or less frequently, primarily depending on what is going on in the world of waste conversion or ours.