Teru Talk News

Teru Talk Newsletter

Volume IV, Issue 30, July 28, 2014 
Teru Talk by Michael Theroux (pronounced "Terú")  

Teru's Trash Talk

Some cities want to increase Recycling in part by implementing advanced Waste Conversion for resource recovery. That's a tall order: there are LOTS of us humans in big cities, and we make an awful lot of waste. Where to start? It is rather commonly acknowledged that when it comes to planning for City-level waste conversion, "food waste is the low-hanging fruit" (gag). Yet managing that muck is a challenging task bringing problems that the City has not had to cope with before, perhaps haven't even thought of yet. Here's your first clue: when Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) is all mixed together the dry grunge pretty much absorbs the liquid from the wet goo - but separate out that food waste and you have some seriously sloppy soup to serve.

One way to set up food waste collection is to give everyone a bucket with a lid. Residents just need a small bucket; a five gallon pale will do. Restaurants need much more capacity, like a large plastic trash can with a good snap-shut lid, all on rollers. Start talking to the Supermarkets, you find they are pushing over a ton of food waste out the back door every single day. Those 40 cubic yard metal roll-offs already seep slurry onto the back tarmac; for separated food waste, you are going to need something a lot more leak-proof. Then there are the food processing plants - their tossed daily tonnage can be pretty horrifying.

Now let's tackle some of the details. On the negative side: the City's contracted solid waste haulers (a) are not going to be too keen on reducing their tonnage, since they are paid by the ton collected and delivered to the dump, (b) they will need new rigs, set up for wet goo, and (c) the food waste pick-up routes will need to be different than when you are just grabbing every bin along the curb. On the positive side, we see examples of food distribution centers heating and powering their entire complex and making enough biogas to fuel their fleet of trucks. The same economics have to apply to the haulers and their fuel-hungry trucks, and to the materials recovery facilities (MRFs).

The vessels within which one feeds the ground-up slurry of food waste to biogas-making microbes are called appropriately enough "Digesters" and they come in all scales from back-yard barrels to monstrous tank farms. You can put a City-bred Digester right in next to a food distribution center. You can set up a stand-alone system, like the high-solids anaerobic digester units proposed by the City of Napa. You can also amp-up digesters at your local wastewater treatment plant. Poop, after all, is food that has already been digested; not much left for the bugs to make into biogas. The trick is to size the digester to the amount of local food waste so you don't have to truck it very far, and can get that mess into an Anaerobic Digester before it finishes the process on its own - to our great disappointment and disgust.

Hey Rube!

We all watch as companies apply for and sometimes receive grants from state and federal agencies. Yeah! They got $3 million! But what happens after that? It can take months to negotiate the release of funds, and who will remember that grant award by the time the bucks are in the bank? We are trying to track the progress from a grant award to first use of funds, and find this is a relatively unknown process. If you are lucky enough to get a grant, let us know how you fare in the coming stretch, and we'll help carry the tale out to others that need to know.

Welcome our New Sponsor!

Meo & Associates 

Meo & Associates is a turnkey environmental services company with proven environmental project experience and a solid reputation for customer service. Founded in 1990, the company gained its outstanding reputation by providing reliable and efficient industrial services to commercial clients in southern California.

Find out  how you can become a sponsor too!

Vote for Teru Talk!

We have reached the next stage of the competition in the Entrepreneurs Showcase thanks to you! Teru will be at Tee Two at the Serrano Golf Course today, promoting Teru Talk to potential investors as they participate in the 5th Annual Entrepreneurial Drive Golf Tournament. Yes, they will be voting!

We are in this competition to grow and to continue our support of waste conversion. Check out Teru's video, and then Vote for Teru Talk! Ballot box stuffing is encouraged and much appreciated! Voting is tax-deductible and it only costs a dollar per vote.

This Week's Top Story

Carbotech Contracts to Construct Biogas Upgrading Plant in Stockholm

German company Schmack Carbotech GmbH has been awarded a contract to construct a biogas upgrading plant with a processing capacity of 2000 Nm3/h in Sofielund Huddinge, Stockholm, Sweden. 07/24/2014

The Week's News

CEC Proposes $3MM Award for City of Napa Anaerobic Digestion Project

The City of Napa, California, was among 11 proposed awards announced under Round 2 of the California Energy Commission’s (CEC) Grant Solicitation PON-13-609 for Pilot-Scale and Commercial-Scale Advanced Biofuels Production Facilities. 07/27/2014

ElectraTherm's Green Machines Converting Waste Heat to Power in Canada

Nevada based ElectraTherm has announced that two Green Machines are now converting waste heat to power at a natural gas compression station in Cessford, Alberta, Canada. 07/25/2014

Altranex Is Finalist in 5th Annual Defense Energy Technology Challenge

Ontario, Canada based Altranex Corp. has announced that it has been selected as one of the finalists in the 5th Annual Defense Energy Technology Challenge (DETC) program as part of the Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit that will be held in Honolulu, Hawai’i on September 15-17, 2014. 07/25/2014

Sainsbury’s Secures First Commercial Green Loan for Environmental Projects

United Kingdom based J Sainsbury plc has announced that it has agreed to a £200 million corporate ‘green’ loan to invest in on-going carbon reduction and sustainability projects. 07/24/2014

Pöyry Awarded EPCM Contract for Millar Western Bioenergy Pulp Mill Project

Finland based Pöyry has announced that it has been awarded a contract by Millar Western Forest Products Ltd. for engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services for an anaerobic bioenergy project at the Whitecourt pulp mill in Alberta, Canada. 07/24/2014

JPMorgan Chase Investing $30 Million in Entrepreneur Networks

JPMorgan Chase & Co. has launched Small Business Forward , a five-year, $30 million grant program to boost small business support networks that help growing enterprises in specific industries. 07/23/2014

Global Bioenergies Delivers Fermentation Pilot Plant to Pomacle, France

France based Global Bioenergies has announced delivery of its bio-isobutene fermentation unit and associated devices to Pomacle for trials. 07/23/2014

B&W Vølund Signs $80MM Contract to Build Biomass Power Plant in Denmark

The Babcock & Wilcox Company (B&W) has announced that Babcock & Wilcox Vølund A/S (B&W Vølund) has been awarded a contract for more than $80 million to build a 280 megawatt-thermal (MWth) biomass boiler system for the Skærbækværket power plant near Fredericia, Denmark. 07/23/2014

CEC Announces Round 2 Awards for Advanced Biofuels Production Facilities

The California Energy Commission (CEC) has released a Notice of Proposed Award for Round 2 of the grant solicitation for Pilot-Scale and Commercial-Scale Advanced Biofuels Production Facilities (PON-13-609). 07/21/2014

USDA Awards Funds for Development of Rural Wood to Energy Projects

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced the award of more than $2.5 million in grants to develop wood energy teams in 11 states and an additional $1.25 million for nine wood energy projects. 07/21/2014 

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Featured Events:

5th Biomass Pellets Trade & Power
5th Biomass Pellets Trade & Power
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Sep 23-25, 2014


 7th Annual Waste Conversion Technology Conference & Trade Show
7th Annual Waste Conversion Technology Conference & Trade Show, Sep 24-26, 2014


Recommended Reading:

Waste to energy conversion technology
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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