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Teru Talk News

Teru Talk Newsletter

Volume III, Issue 52, December 30, 2013 
Teru Talk by Michael Theroux (pronounced "TerĂº")  

Teru's Trash Talk

The New Year is approaching, and here are four Top Waste Conversion Lessons from 2013:

It's the Rules, not the Tools . We have the clean conversion equipment and methods; functional systems of all kinds are now available. Well-experienced development companies are finding effective waste conversion modules to work with. There is no lack of information regarding the conversion of waste and residuals into energy, fuels, and other commodities; if anything there is far too much detail to sift through. We certainly have the Trash Tsunami to pick apart for recyclates, using the rest as feedstock. And we have examples of functional projects up and running, turning crud liabilities back into goods assets. There remains, however, a distinct lack of political understanding and policy development.

Integration is the Ticket . Making a stand-alone facility is not as economical as plugging these same conversion systems into our existing resource management infrastructure. We do well to work with the haulers, and partner with the cities, counties, and military bases in order to minimize the cost of new construction and maximize use of whatever already is in place. By now, we also have seen that if a crucial element is missing, the site probably isn't right. More often than not, that crucial element is Public Support. When we find natural places that simply beg for us to waltz in and do the Waste Conversion Magic, things go so much better. But this is no time to dilly dally: at the rate things are changing, all the Good Sites will soon be gone.

Close the Economic Circle . Project developers are seeking and finding what isn't being utilized in the existing process flow. This has extended from the moment an item is discarded, past the part of the resource pathway where unwanted stuff usually goes to the dump, all the way back to re-entry of re-constituted materials into the marketplace. Waste cooking oil is a hot commodity. A supermarket's out-dated veggies can light and heat that same market. Even the best Recycling effort makes its own trash; just about every engine makes usable yet wasted heat. If what we are contemplating will make a lot of heat, it makes a whole lot of cents to look around the community and see who needs it. Most manufacturers simply love steam.

Finesse is Financeable . Improvements in efficiency translate into reduced main system cost and impact, and ancillary business is sure to follow. Even when a lot of easily-converted stuff is just lying around, careful pre-treatment will broaden the range of useful crud for almost every conversion project. Shrimp shells dissolve in ionic liquid, whatever that is, and turn into feedstock for further processing; woody waste makes fermentable sugar water, with proper pre-treatment. Then there is the back-end reforming and refining, turning the raw materials recovered from waste conversion into market-ready products. Digester and landfill biomethane can both be upgraded to clean fuel and pipeline injection; it pays to finish the job on-site.

Hey Rube!

If you still have a tree sitting prettily in your home this holiday season, start looking around your community for the chip and grind folks that can turn it back into mulch instead of landfill fill. Compost what you don't eat of all that left-over food. Above all, save the used wrapping paper and bows for next year's gift-wrapping: it's a great way to irritate your relatives.

This Week's Top Story

Anaergia Acquires, Plans Upgrades to California Biosolids and Energy Facility

Canada based Anaergia Inc has announced that it as made a strategic investment in a large-scale biosolids processing facility located in the City of Rialto, California. 12/28/2013

The Week's News

CH4 Receives $2MM from NY Regional Council for Genesee Biogas Plant

New York's Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council has awarded (see page 23) $2 million to Florida based CH4 Biogas LLC's subsidiary Genesee Biogas LLC to design, build, and operate a biogas plant to support the Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park in Batavia, New York. 12/28/2013

New York Green Bank Funded with Initial $210MM for Clean Energy Projects

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced $210 million in initial funding for the NY Green Bank, a new market oriented approach designed to accelerate clean energy deployment, create jobs, and help make communities more resilient and sustainable. 12/28/2013

MWDA Closes 30-Year Waste Resource and Recovery Contract with SITA UK

The Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority (MWDA) has announced that it completed procurement for its 30-year Waste Resource and Recovery Contract on behalf of the Merseyside and Halton Waste Partnership, and signed contracts with a consortium led by SITA UK. 12/27/2013 

PHG Energy and GE Provide Energy from Waste to Covington, Tennessee

PHG Energy (PHGE) of Nashville and the GE Power & Water business of General Electric Company (GE) have announced that their first commercial collaboration is officially online and creating electricity from waste materials at a new Covington, Tennesse, facility. 12/27/2013

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


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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.

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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.