Teru Talk News

Teru Talk Newsletter

Volume V, Issue 31, August 3, 2015 
Teru Talk by Michael Theroux (pronounced "TerĂº") 

Teru's Trash Talk

It's good to do an occasional sanity check, a status report as we push forward. Someone asked recently, "What is the "State of the Art" when it comes to Waste Conversion? Is it a particular technology, a combination of systems, or the way they are deployed? We can envision inter-connected clean conversion of waste into raw materials. Are we there yet?"

We built this cat-bird seat we fondly call Teru Talk to monitor, highlight, inform, and urge along the changes in the Waste Conversion for Resource Recovery world. We have seen more than enough slip-sliding away over the last few years; now, we are starting to see some significant forward progress. In any race there are front-runners that set the pace and mark the progress. What are the leading trends? Where are we surging ahead? We think that globally, the leaders of the pack all show some recognizable common characteristics:

Resource Recovery Parks - Multiple Feedstock, Process, Output

These integrated complexes are not necessarily made to fit within strict municipal boundaries, but rather they are scaled to the functional community in which they operate.

  • They coordinate the gathering and cleaning, and the distribution for re-use where possible. They manage the conversion and they provide raw materials for local remanufacturing.
  • Diverse operations rely on an integrated control with common infrastructure tools, while remaining flexible to changes in available input and required output of their region.
  • The parks manage both core conversion technologies and "bolt-on" ancillary sub-systems necessary for optimal waste conversion, resource recovery, and re-utilization.
  • The best of these regional parks can absorb just about any kind of local discard, sort it, clean and pre-treat it, and send it along to whatever technologies are best at taking that particular kind of crud apart and turning it back into raw resources.
  • And almost without exception, they involve a close collaboration between the community at large, the multiple industries, and the oversight agencies in a true public-private partnership.

And yes, globally we are seeing flagship resource recovery hubs spring up. They start small and slowly grow into their respective communities. Society is making noticeable progress in the mundane hands-on work of intercepting what it has always just thrown away and learning better ways to re-route all that stuff back into the local, regional, and global flow of materials. This goal is called the Circular Economy, and we all are aiming for a world with Zero Waste. Can this be possible? Well, yeah: if all the discards get unmade and returned to the Circle, there really wouldn't be any waste any more. But at the very best we've learned to recover between 40 and maybe 60 percent what gets tossed. That means we're about half way there.

Hey Rube!

Look through the News and think about how the pieces can fit within this larger work-in-progress puzzle. Many companies are working on ancillary subsystems; they need to rely on someone else’s infrastructure to improve the economics. Agencies continue to pick out favorites, but are seeking guidance in forming support for “Advanced Energy Community” concepts. Big, big companies are signing on to use lots of waste-sourced goods. And encouragingly, collaboration between public and private interests is making a good, strong showing. We’re getting there. 

This Week's Top Story

SSE, Wheelabrator's Commercial Ferrybridge Multifuel Power Plant Starts Up

The Ferrybridge Multifuel 1 (FM1) project, a 50:50 joint venture project between SSE and Wheelabrator Technologies Inc., has successfully completed its commissioning phase and has now entered full commercial operation. 07/31/2015

The Week's News

Renewable Energy Group to Acquire Imperium Renewables Assets

Iowa based Renewable Energy Group, Inc (REG) and Imperium Renewables, Inc announced that they have signed an asset purchase agreement where REG would acquire substantially all the assets of Imperium. 08/01/2015

EPA Schedules August 13th Webinar on 2015-2016 SBIR Solicitation

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has scheduled an informational webinar on EPA’s 2015-2016 SBIR Phase I solicitation for August 13 2015, from 2:00 to 3:00pm, Eastern Daylight Time. 08/01/2015

DECC Releases 2014 Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics

The United Kingdom Department for Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has released their annual Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics (DUKES). 07/31/2015

Global Bioenergies' Bio-Isobutene Process Hits 70% of Commercial Yield

French company Global Bioenergies has announced that its Bio-Isobutene process has reached 70% of the commercial yield at R&D scale. 07/30/2015

UPS Announces 3 New Renewable Fuels Agreements for Up to 46M Gallons

United Parcel Service of America, Inc (UPS) has announced agreements for up to 46 million gallons of renewable fuels over the next three years, constituting a 15-fold increase over prior contracts and making UPS one of the largest users of renewable diesel in the world. 07/30/2015

Bank of America Announces $125 Billion Environmental Business Initiative

Bank of America has pledged to increase the company's current environmental business initiative from $50 billion to $125 billion in low-carbon business by 2025 through lending, investing, capital raising, advisory services, and developing financing solutions for clients around the world. 07/30/2015

Greenleaf Finalizes Acquisition of Plainfield's Power Plant in Connecticut

California based Greenleaf Power announced that it has finalized the purchase of the Plainfield Renewable Energy Plant located in Plainfield, Connecticut from Leidos, Inc, which has owned and operated the plant since it became operational. 0729/2015

DOE to Issue Funding Opportunity for Clean Energy Projects on Indian lands

The US Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs (Office of Indian Energy) has announced that it intends to issue a Funding Opportunity Announcement entitled "Deployment of Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Projects on Indian Lands". 07/29/2015

New Holland Partners with State University of New York on Biomass Research

New Holland Agriculture has announced plans to assist State University of New York (SUNY) researchers in a project that seeks to develop ways to reduce the cost of delivering biomass for refinement. 07/27/2015

Xebec's First Chinese Landfill Gas Upgrading Project Has Begun Deliveries

Montreal based Xebec Adsorption Inc has announced that it has commenced operation of its first commercial landfill gas to CNG upgrading system with deliveries to taxi fleets in Anshan, North Eastern China. 07/27/2015

The Week's Action Items

Due 08/14/2015: Comments on CEC RFP for Advanced Energy Communities

The California Energy Commission (CEC) is developing a competitive grant solicitation for the development and deployment of Advanced Energy Communities. 07/29/2015

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Featured Events:
 Waste Conversion Technology Conference & Trade Show, August 17-19, 2015, San Diego
6th Biomass Pellets Trade & Power, Sep 14-16, 2015, Seoul  

Recommended Reading:

Out of the Wasteland: Stories from the Environmental Frontier by Paul Relis  
Out of the Wasteland: Stories from the Environmental Frontier by Paul Relis


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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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