July 2013 News and Matters of Interest

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APL Completes USAID-Sponsored West Africa Biomass Gasification Tour

All Power LabsBerkeley-based All Power Labs (APL) has posted news of the firm's demonstration and installation workshops this month in Liberia, Nigeria and elsewhere in the West African region. ALL Power Labs describes itself as "an incubator for open source energy experiments and distributed manufacturing solutions" and operates a research and training lab focused on small-scale biomass gasification systems integrated with equipment manufacturing, sales and installation services. The company's Gasification Experimenter's Kit (GEK) is the core of APL's program for Do-It-Yourself (DIY) alternative energy innovation and on-line collaboration. Its product line ranges from 10 and 20 kilowatt Power Pallets to containerized 100 kilowatt Powertainer biomass gasifiers for heat and power and includes lower temperature systems for production of biochar. In Liberia, APL is partnered with the USAID funded Liberia Energy Sector Support Project (LESSP) and Winrock International (WI) as part of a program to develop biomass gasification for rural electrification. In Lagos, APL conducted workshops with the local firm Bioenergy and Envirocycles Nigeria Ltd (BEN), demonstrating that distributed heat and power can be achieved simply and economically from gasification of locally available waste wood, agricultural residuals, manure and other organics. BEN is developing alternative financing and supply arrangements based on bank guarantees to overcome initial purchase and installation costs. Tom Price, APL's Director of Strategic Initiatives noted that use of biomass is a key component of the US government's $7 billion Power Africa initiative announced last month: "The Power Africa programme aims to double power access in the sub-Saharan part of the continent, which would not only help residents, but also convince private sector companies to increase in new economic ventures in the region." 07/31/2013

Neste Adds 'Technical Corn Oil' to NExBTL Renewable Diesel Feedstock

Neste OilFinland's Neste Oil has announced addition of another non-food waste / residual feedstock into the production of its NExBTL renewable diesel: technical corn oil (TCO), a residue generated during ethanol production. Trials to confirm the suitability of technical corn oil for producing NExBTL renewable diesel were carried out in the spring of 2013. Following evaluation, Neste Oil has started using technical corn oil on a commercial basis, with input sourced from the US. Neste's NExBTL hydrogenation technology can use over 10 different feedstocks on an industrial scale and the company is continuing research on completely new types of inputs, such as microbial oil and algae oil, for use as future inputs for its renewable fuel. All of the renewable inputs used by Neste Oil comply with the relevant biofuel-related legislation in all the markets in which its renewable fuels are sold, as well as the company's own strict sustainability criteria, and are 100% traced back to their source. Matti Lehmus, Neste Oil's Executive Vice President, Oil Products and Renewables: "Our strategic aim is to constantly extend the range of renewable feedstocks we use to produce renewable fuels, and in particular the volume of waste- and residue-based materials we use. Technical corn oil is an excellent addition to our feedstock base, as it is officially approved for producing renewable fuel intended for the growing North American market." 07/31/2013

Global Clean Energy adds AD through Full Circle Renewables Joint Venture

Global Clean Energy, IncTexas based Global Clean Energy, Inc (GCEI) has announced entry into a joint venture with California's Full Circle Renewables, LLC (FCR) to co-develop waste to fuels projects. The agreement includes utilization of FCR's anaerobic digestion technology, funding support, and methane off-take agreements for multiple GCEI-controlled sites. Additional projects will consist of plastics to fuels projects on sites controlled by FCR. Jim Quan, CEO of FCR said, "FCR is pleased to be working with GCEI's development team to expand and supplement FCR's current developments in North America." GCEI is a waste-to-energy conversion solutions company, focusing on using available and developing technologies to convert waste into commercially viable energy, a process the company refers to as Reforming Environmental Salvage into Clean Usable Energy (R.E.S.C.U.E.) to recover and/or extract from unconventional industrially abandoned, or formerly uneconomic sources to commercially viable Energy Resource Materials. GCEI has two major proprietary assets, a gasification system and a vortex pumping system, both commercially ready, and access to pyrolysis technology through last year's joint venture with MicroEnergies LLC. FCR is a turn-key energy project development company with experience in solar PV, biogas, and other waste to energy projects. 07/30/2013

GIB Backs 15.8MWe Biomass Plant as First Northern Ireland Investment 

Green Investment BankThe United Kingdom's Green Investment Bank plc (GIB) has announced its first investment in Northern Ireland of £20 million in collaboration with the investment management firm the Foresight Group. The funding will support the construction of the Evermore 15.8 megawatts electric (MWe) wood fuelled combined heat and power (CHP) station to be built on a ten acre site in Derry/Londonderry at the Londonderry Port and Harbour Commissioners land at Lisahally in Northern Ireland. Evermore Group and its subsidiary Evermore Renewable Energy are Northern Ireland based companies established in 2009 to initiate, develop and finance strategic infrastructure projects across the UK and Europe. The combined heat and power (CHP) plant is Evermore's first project; the Foresight/GIB investment is part of an overall £81 million project development fund. Foresight manages the UK Waste Resources & Energy Fund (UKWREI) in which GIB is the cornerstone investor, has made the investment. Construction work on the CHP plant will start in the coming weeks and it is expected to become fully operational by summer 2015. Stobart Biomass will supply the plant with over 115,000 tonnes of recycled wood per annum and is contracted to supply fuel for 15 years from the commencement date. Andrew Tinkler, Stobart CEO: "Stobart Biomass is seeing increased demand for its range of products across the UK and is pleased to support Evermore with this key development in Derry/Londonderry. Stobart Biomass has an extensive pipeline of opportunities.  We look forward to helping plant developers and funders to bring those opportunities to fruition and growing our Biomass business." 07/30/2013

Gevo Ships Biobutanol to US Coast Guard for Marine Engine Testing

GevoBased in Colorado, Gevo has announced that it has begun supplying initial quantities of 16.1% renewable isobutanol blended gasoline to the US Coast Guard (USCG). The U.S. Coast Guard R&D Center is using the Gevo-blended fuel as part of a 12-month, long-term operational study on marine engines that began during June, following completion of a 3 month round of testing in Florida earlier this year under the CRADA with Honda engines running on fuel supplied by Gevo. Mike Coleman, Project Manager at the USCG R&D Center: "We are pleased so far with our testing of isobutanol as a potential alternative to ethanol as a blend stock in gasoline for marine applications. All testing so far has been positive, and when the Yorktown tests are completed next year, we expect to have the information available to allow a decision on whether 16.1% Isobutanol fuel blends will be certified for use in the Coast Guard gasoline engine fleet." Gevo's proprietary GIFT butanol fermentation technology is being developed to fit into existing standard ethanol production plants, reducing requite up-front capital expenditures for production expansion. Isobutanol is a biofuel that compared to ethanol, has higher energy density, lower RVP, and does not present phase separation issues seen with ethanol. Gevo has designed a proprietary engineering package through a strategic alliance with ICM to carry out its isobutanol fermentation and recovery process. This equipment has been successfully deployed via the retrofit of a one MGPY corn ethanol demonstration facility in St. Joseph, Missouri. 07/26/2013

Energos Receives Planning OK for Northern Ireland Waste Gasification Plant

EnergosUnited Kingdom (UK) based Energos has announced receipt of planning approval for an 80,000 tonne per year waste gasification facility to be developed in Lisburn, Northern Ireland at the site of the former Burn House Rendering plant. The advanced conversion facility will use non-recyclable, non-hazardous mixed waste to generate 7MW of electricity, and could also provide affordable heat in the form of steam or hot water for local industries and homes. Around 60% of the electricity generated by the Energos' gasification process will be renewable energy generated from biomass and will qualify for double Renewables Obligation Certificates (ROCs) from the UK government. The planning approval was granted by Alex Attwood, Environment Minister for Northern Ireland, who commented: "This facility will provide a boost for the Lisburn area, creating construction jobs in the short term and permanent skilled jobs once completed. I am a firm supporter of energy from waste opportunities and of alternative, more environmentally sustainable energy plans. This facility will deal with our waste, prevent landfill and create renewable energy." The Energos gasification process converts non-recyclable waste into a gas via a finely controlled two-stage thermal treatment process. The gas is then fully combusted to generate heat, which is used to produce steam and green electricity. The process can treat a wide range of waste materials with different compositions such as municipal solid waste (MSW), refuse derived fuel (RDF) and commercial wastes. 07/25/2013

RWE Begins Commissioning of Markinch Biomass CHP Plant in Scotland

RWE npower renewablesThe Fife Council in Scotland has announced a key milestone in bringing the Markinch Biomass CHP plant on-line with RWE npower renewables feeding seven hundred tonnes of wood chip into the plant's feed handling system. The test is part of RWE's "cold commissioning' phase; trials are progressing towards commissioning of the boiler on solid fuel and achieving full operation later this year. The new biomass CHP plant will be fuelled by approximately 90% recovered wood waste and approximately 10% virgin wood, and will be able to supply up to 120 tonnes of industrial steam per hour to paper manufacturer Tullis Russell. To-date, the paper mill has been supplied with energy by a 60-year old coal-fired power station. The plant will be the largest of its type in Scotland and in Great Britain as a whole. The development company is the United Kingdom subsidiary of RWE Innogy. Overall, RWE Innogy is investing some £200 million in the construction of this biomass CHP plant which is due to be operational in 2013. Plans for the Markinch facility received Section 36 approval by the Scottish Government, which means that instead of the plant producing up to 49.9MW (megawatt) output as originally proposed, maximum generation capacity has now been approved for production up to 65MW. Andy Smith, project manager of RWE npower renewables, commented: "This is a really exciting stage of the project and is testament to the great progress the team are making. For the first time, wood will be taken into the silos and through the system for testing purposes. More than a million man hours have been invested in the construction so far and it is satisfying for all concerned to see the early stages of sustainable power generation." 07/25/2013

DOE Awards $11MM to Small Businesses for Clean Energy Technologies

Department of EnergyThe Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) has announced awards of almost $11 million for projects focused on clean energy technologies with a strong potential for commercialization and job creation; a list of the awards is provided. Six of the twelve small businesses receiving awards are engaged in efforts to improve the conversion of waste and biomass into electricity, thermal energy, chemicals, and other commodities. Cerahelix of Orono, Maine received its Phase I SBIR in 2009 to develop its helix-NFM ceramic nano-filtration membrane. The new award of $1 million is funding the development of technology to significantly reduce costs in converting renewable biomass to fuels and chemicals, leading to US manufacturing. New York based Biolite has been awarded $994,179 to advance the firm's Clean Fan Stove Combustion Technology Development, an ultra-clean wood fired cook-stove that reduces smoke by 90%, biomass use by 50%, and employs advanced thermoelectric technology to power itself while providing electricity to off-grid users. Cool Energy of Boulder, Colorado will receive $999,909 to further development of its Low-Temperature Stirling Engine, a novel electric power system powered by low-grade and waste heat from geothermal, oil and gas wells. Maryland-based E3tec Service, Llc was awarded $998,465 for "Process Intensification by Integrated Reaction and Distillation for Synthesis of Bio-Renewable Organic Acid Esters," a crucial element of broadening commercialization of bio-based chemicals. KSE, Inc. of Sunderland, MA will receive $1,000,000 to further their bio-products work focused on furandicarboxylic acid, to provide a commercially viable production route to PVC bio-plasticizers and polyester polymers from biomass feedstocks. Finally, the Berkeley Air Monitoring Group Inc. receives $999,768 to develop a Platform for Integrated Cookstove Assessment (PICA) to create in-field cookstove performance data, update the current sensors for measurement of stove usage, indoor air pollution, and emissions, and integrate these and other sensors into the PICA system. Funded by Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy through the Energy Department's Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR and STTR) programs, these awards are for Phase II projects to further develop Phase I projects and produce a prototype or equivalent within two years. 07/25/2013

Appalachian State Researchers Receive Biofuel / Biochar Research Grant

Appalachian State UniversityAppalachian State University (App State) has announced receipt of a $45,000 grant from the non-profit North Carolina Agricultural Foundation for a project to economically convert biomass to biofuel and biochar. The grant was awarded to two professors in the Department of Technology and Environmental Design, David Domermuth and Ok-Youn Yu. App State researchers have been working to develop an economical method for converting agricultural and forest biomass to useable products and energy. The team is using a pyrolytic conversion process they call "bio volatilization" (BV) to convert biomass into biochar, pyrolysis oil, fuel gas, and heat. The biochar created from the BV process can be used as a soil additive to increase soil fertility and protect against soil-borne diseases, improve water quality, reduce agricultural productivity, and reduce nutrient leaching and soil acidity. The waste energy created from the BV process will be used to heat the university’s bioshelter/ greenhouse at the Watauga County Landfill. The fuel created will be used to run a generator to produce electricity for day lighting in the winter at the bioshelter / greenhouse. Domermuth and Yu believe their research could be used by farm or forest owners and provide potential sources of revenue. 07/24/2013

Biffa Partners with Jewson for Green Energy and Zero Waste to Landfill

BiffaThe United Kingdom (UK) based Biffa has announced entering into a partnership agreement with Jewson Ltd, the construction materials supply and distribution subsidiary of Saint-Gobain. Biffa has maintained a relationship with Jewson to provide waste management services since 2006 with a comprehensive recycling program at all Jewson branches. Inert material, wood, gypsum, and mixed materials such as paper and plastics are all recycled, consistent with Jewson’s commitment to divert all residual waste from landfill by 2014. The expanded agreement will seek to send zero waste to landfill disposal. Jewson's construction site waste will be converted to green energy, and Biffa will then supply 3 megawatt (MWe) of baseload electricity back to Saint-Gobain to power some of its facilities. Rod Leigh, Sustainability Director for Jewson: "This particular initiative will provide protection from rising energy prices, while helping Jewson to meet its renewable energy targets through the sustainable management of waste. It is increasingly important that businesses break out of their linear mind set and look for opportunities to close the loop, particularly between waste and energy. Jewson is proud to be raising the bar for the construction industry both through high levels of recycling and this innovative energy from waste initiative." 07/24/2013

Solarvest Bioenergy Secures Key Canadian Support for Algal Research

Solarvest BioenergyCanadian algal specialists Solarvest Bioenergy have announced receipt of approval for two research support programs through the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). The NSERC supports university students in their advanced studies, promotes and supports discovery research, and fosters innovation by encouraging Canadian companies to participate and invest in postsecondary research projects. Solarvest applied for and received approval for support awards on two projects crucial to the company's research and development of its algal technology platform: (1) study a method of protein expression with the objective of developing a process that will enable the efficient and cost effective purification of recombinant therapeutic proteins, and (2) molecular characterization of the C. reinhardtii microalgal strain, and to identify key molecules that are involved in regulating increased hydrogen production. Efficient hydrogen production is sought due to its value as a totally clean fuel. Hydrogen can be burned or used in a fuel cell and releases heat energy and water as its only byproduct. Solarvest's proprietary technology (a) captures carbon dioxide in algal photo-bioreactors, using Solarvest proprietary microalgae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii to convert industrially produced CO2 and solar energy into algal biomass by photosynthesis; (b) maximizes both the economical and energetic efficiency of the process, using the same algae to convert solar energy into hydrogen (“H2”) with the Solarvest continuous bio-production system, and (c) produces commercial quantities of valuable biomolecules for the nutraceutical and animal health industries. Solarvest's technology enables algal production of hydrogen in a continuous cycle in a single vessel. 07/23/2013

Due 08/19/2013: Proposals to NSF on Advanced Dry Cooling for Power Plants

National Science FoundationThe Directorate of Engineering at the National Science Foundation (NSF) in collaboration with the Electric Power research Institute (EPRI) has announced release of a solicitation seeking solutions to address the critical problem of water usage and consumption at power plants for cooling. Wasting water to make energy, whether at bioenergy, waste-to-energy, or more traditional power generation facilities, is one of the more important issues of the Energy-Water nexus: "The goal of this collaboration is to leverage the complementary missions of applied research and commercialization (EPRI) and fundamental research and education (NSF) to foster enabling research and technology development that will lead to significant reductions or elimination of the use of  water for cooling power plants. Through this joint collaboration, NSF and EPRI jointly solicit proposals from accredited universities in the United States led by one or more principal Investigators (PIs) with transformative ideas that meet the detailed requirements in this solicitation." Five to ten awards are anticipated, with awards ranging from $200,000 to $700,000 maximum per year for up to three years, drawing upon a total available funding amount of $6 million. The PI(s) must be full time faculty determined by the submitting organizational academic institutions. Projects can be collaborative and collaborations with industry and relevant costs for their participation is allowed. However, the primary funds under this award must be directed to the academic institution. The Program Descriptions states: "We seek innovative, "out of the box", and game changing early stage dry cooling ideas and concepts to significantly increase the air-side heat transfer coefficient, to dramatically reduce the steam condensation temperatures of the currently used air cooled condensers and to develop more efficient, cost effective, and compact alternative dry cooling solutions for power plant steam condensation." Proposals toward the NSF/EPRI collaborative solicitation on "Water for Energy: Advanced Dry Cooling for Power Plants" (NSF 13-564) are due no later than 5:00 pm, local time, on August 19, 2013. 07/23/2013

Construction Starts in Alabama on Advanced MRF with BHS Recycling System

Bulk Handling SystemsOregon based Bulk Handling Systems (BHS) has announced the ground-breaking ceremony for a highly-automated and integrated materials recovery facility (MRF) and zero waste conversion complex in Montgomery, Alabama for recycling the region's municipal solid waste (MSW). Infinitus Energy will own and operate the facility, known as the Infinitus Renewable Energy Park at Montgomery (IREP at Montgomery). BHS designed, engineered, and will manufacture and install the MSW recycling system. IREP at Montgomery will feature the latest in screening, air, and optical sorting technology. The $35 million, 81,992-square-foot facility is expected to be operational by June 30, 2014. It will process up to 225,000 tons of waste annually, and recover an estimated 95% of recyclables. In Phase II of the project, BHS subsidiary Zero Waste Energy (ZWE) will install its SmartFerm anaerobic digestion system to convert organic waste into compressed natural gas (CNG) and compost. Once the facility is operational, residents will place all household waste and recyclables into one city-issued bin, which will be collected by the City of Montgomery Sanitation Department. City of Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange: "The beauty of this project is that residents don’t have to do anything differently. All of the separating takes place at the MRF, and the 25-year partnership the city has with Infinitus ensures that materials will be recycled. This is a long-term green investment in our city and state. With this project, Montgomery will be seen as a leader and trendsetter in implementing green technology for the benefit of both our residents and our planet. Diverting tons of material away from landfills and incinerators and turning those materials into valuable resources generates a host of financial, environmental and societal returns." 07/22/2013

UK's ORG Releases Guidance for Land Application of Organics from MSW

Organics Recycling GroupThe United Kingdom (UK) based Organics Recycling Group (ORG) has announced release of a guidance document addressing standards for land restoration with the separated organic materials (SOMs) fraction of municipal solid waste (MSW). The ORG is a division of the UK's Renewable Energy Association (REA); the guidance document is a collaborative work with the BioCompost Alliance and the country's waste management, recycling, and resource recovery industry. The guidance is called "Separated Organic Materials (SOMs) Land Restoration End-Use Standard" and is designed to help land restoration project developers proposing the use of SOMs (also known as compost like outputs or CLOs). With increased volumes of SOMs being generated from Mechanical and Biological Treatment (MBT) facilities, the associations, industrial representatives, and the UK's Environment Agency recognized that the need to find appropriate end markets for this material in the future is essential. The Environment Agency welcomed this industry led initiative and commented "this industry led initiative will be helpful in driving up the quality of SOMs proposed for use in the treatment of land to help improve an existing soil or create a new soil profile. Whilst it does not guarantee that an SOM will be suitable for the proposed use it should help reduce occasions when proposed land treatment activities are not supported by us.” 07/22/2013

Bristol Robotics Lab Scientists Charge Mobile Phone with Urine Power

Bristol Robotics LaboratoryThe Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL), a collaboration between University of West of England (UWE) Bristol and the University of Bristol, has developed a microbial fuel cell (MFC) that can be fueled by urine, and can provide power sufficient to charge a mobile phone and similar small devices. According to Dr. Ioannis Ieropoulos and his lab team, the MFC is an energy converter which turns organic matter directly into electricity via bacterial metabolism. Dr. Ieropoulos comments: "Using the ultimate waste product as a source of power to produce electricity is about as eco as it gets. One product that we can be sure of an unending supply is our own urine. By harnessing this power as urine passes through a cascade of microbial fuel cells (MFCs), we have managed to charge a Samsung mobile phone. The beauty of this fuel source is that we are not relying on the erratic nature of the wind or the sun; we are actually re-using waste to create energy. So far the microbial fuel power stack that we have developed generates enough power to enable SMS messaging, web browsing and to make a brief phone call. Making a call on a mobile phone takes up the most energy but we will get to the place where we can charge a battery for longer periods. The concept has been tested and it works – it's now for us to develop and refine the process so that we can develop MFCs to fully charge a battery." The project has been funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the Gates Foundation and the Technology Strategy Board. The BRL team's work has been published in the Royal Society of Chemistry 'Journal of Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics: "Waste to Real Energy: the first MFC powered mobile phone." 07/20/2013

Ionic Liquid Thermocell Harvests Waste Heat for Power Generation

Monash UniversityMonash University in Australia has announced that a small team of their researchers have developed a highly efficient method for converting waste heat directly into electricity. Led by Monash University researcher and Australian Laureate Fellow Professor Doug MacFarlane and Monash University PhD student Theodore Abraham, the collaborative project developed the thermocell device with the highest power outputs yet reported, and it produces no carbon emissions. Thermocells harvest thermal energy using the difference between temperatures of two adjacent surfaces, converting this into electricity. With one thermocouple placed inside high temperature industrial processes and a second thermocouple exposed to outside air, the existing heat that would otherwise be lost to the surrounding environment can be converted to on-site power. Unlike water-based thermocells, professor MacFarlane's research team has successfully used ionic liquids as the carrier, resulting in systems capable f operating well over 100 degrees Celsius. Dr. MacFarlane: "We have found that it can work at elevated temperatures typical of important heat sources, as opposed to water-based systems, which cannot operate at temperatures above 100 degrees Celsius. The device offers the possibility of a cheap and flexible design suitable for harvesting waste heat in the 100- to 200-degrees Celsius range." The Monash University researchers working under the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES). The research is published in the journal Energy and Environmental Science. 07/20/2013

BDI Starts Producing at Multi-Waste Feedstock Biodiesel Plant in Portugal

BDI - BioEnergy International AGAustrian based BDI-BioEnergy International AG (BDI) has announced that it has successfully begun biodiesel production at its 25,000 ton per year multi-feedstock plant in Sines, Portugal for its customer, Enerfuel S.A. BDI was initially contracted for about EUR 3 million to develop the facility in 2006, but development stalled after only two years. BDI received approval to proceed and finalize development last year, engaging the Portuguese mineral oil company GALP as a new partner with Enerfuel. The proprietary BDI multi-feedstock biodiesel technology accepts difficult to process waste and residual materials such as used cooking oil, animal fats and grease, trap waste of all free fatty acid content, as well as all kinds of vegetable oil feedstock. The Portuguese Minister of Economic Affairs attended the ribbon-cutting, and emphasized the importance of the BDI Sines renewable energy project for Portugal. BDI had numerous modular systems designed for retrofitting existing facilities, in order to increase the range of acceptable feedstock and increase production capacity. In addition to advanced transesterification-based biodiesel production, BDI develops customized, turnkey anaerobic digestion for manure and food waste conversion to biogas, and thermal "bio-cracking" plants for conversion of solid waste biomass feedstock, both at commercial and industrial scales. 07/19/2013

OriginOil Algae Technology Processes Building Sewage at Paris Demo Site

OriginOilLos Angeles Based OriginOil has announced success in treating the liquid sewage effluent generated by a large building complex with its Electro Water Separation (EWS) technology at Ennesys' urban algae demonstration site near Paris. OriginOil shipped its modular "Algae Appliance" growth system to Ennesys last year, and in addition to demonstrating the EWS system, also provided a free upgrade to Ennesys' existing algal installation. The prototype EWS Waste unit (the Waste Appliance™) now processes liquid waste at Ennesys' demonstration site, generating clean, nitrate-rich water to feed algae grown on the building’s roof as an energy source. Located in the iconic La Défense complex near Paris, the permanent Ennesys showcase is demonstrating that algae can help commercial buildings cleanly generate more energy than they consume, and to purify their waste water, as envisioned by France’s ambitious RT 2020 sustainable energy framework. The building's human sewage is first separated into solids and liquids. OriginOil’s EWS Waste process then sanitizes the fluids and converts the urea into nitrates. The clean, fertile water is then fed into the algae tubes on the roof of the building, where algae grows and is harvested daily for energy. 07/19/2013

California Appellate Court Publishes Formal Opinion on LCFS Ruling

California Air Resources BoardThe California Fifth District Court of Appeal issued a formal Opinion on July 15, 2013 detailing its provisional ruling in response to a lawsuit brought by POET LLC and other parties against the California Air Resources Board (ARB). The Opinion explains in detail the court's provisional ruling that was issued last month. POET's initial suit was filed in November 2011, claiming the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) was not properly assessed under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and should be disapproved. The suit resulted in an initial Superior Court ruling in the company's favor and issuance of an injunction against further LCFS implementation. The court lifted that injunction in April 2012; the June 2013 provisional ruling keeps the LCFS intact but established specific actions the ARB must complete to resume full implementation, essentially following the point-for-point objections raised in the POET lawsuit. As detailed in the formal Opinion, the ARB shall: (1) Set aside its approval of the LCFS regulations, including Board Resolution 09-31 (April 23, 2009); Executive Order R-09-014 (November 25, 2009); Executive Order R-10-003 (March 4, 2013); and the ARB's decision to defer the formulation of mitigation measures relating to NOx emission from biodiesel; (2) Select a single "decision maker" with full authority to complete the environmental review and to approve or disapprove the proposed LCFS regulations, but not until after the environmental review has been completed; (3) Address NOx emissions impacts, make findings (supported by substantial evidence), and adopt mitigation measures in the event the environmental effects are found to be significant; (4) Allow public comments; (5) Include specific documents omitted from the prior public record; and (6) "preserve the status quo" of the LCFS regulations by continuing operation and enforcement until the corrective actions are completed. If the ARB cannot complete the corrective actions in a timely manner that suits the court, the court will direct the ARB to suspend operation and enforcement of the LCFS regulations. 07/18/2013

Dominion Converts Altavista Power Station from Coal to Biomass

Dominion Virginia PowerDominion Virginia Power has announced that it placed its Altavista Power Station in Campbell County, Virginia into commercial operation on July 12, 2013 with renewable biomass as its fuel, the first of three stations to be converted from coal to biomass. Dominion announced in April 2011 its plans to spend about $165 million to convert Altavista Power Station and two similar coal-fired stations in Hopewell and Southampton County to use biomass as fuel, primarily tree tops and branches that remain unused from timbering operations. The conversions of the other two stations are on schedule and they should be in commercial operation before the end of 2013. Dominion acquired the three power stations in 2001. They had been in operation since 1992 and used primarily to produce steam for nearby manufacturing plants and intermittently to meet the peak demand for electricity. With the biomass conversions, plans are for the three 51-megawatt power stations to operate continuous. Dominion Virginia Power is a subsidiary of Dominion (NYSE: D), one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy. David A. Christian, CEO of Dominion Generation: "Today marks another achievement guided by Dominion's philosophy that balanced fuel diversity – from coal to natural gas to nuclear to renewables – leads to reasonable rates that best serve the needs and interests of customers and shareholders." 07/18/2013

Quezon City Facility in Philippines Expands Landfill Gas to Energy Plant

Quezon City, PhilippinesQuezon City, Philippines, has announced that the Quezon City Integrated Disposal Facility, Waste to Energy Biogas Plant located in Payatas has been expanded, adding two 320 kW engines to supplement the existing 236 kW engine. The biogas extraction infrastructure has been modified to supply the additional requirements of the new engines. With the capacity expansion, the plant now produces an average of 750 kW of power from methane gas extracted from the landfill, generating power sold to the Manila Electric Company at time-of-use rates approved by the Philippine Energy Regulatory Commission. Streetlights in the periphery of the integrated landfill facility are now powered by the green energy and the local government has also dedicated a portion of the energy for a community special project “Plantsahan ng Bayan,” where local residents use free electricity for their ironing needs. The Renewable Energy Management Bureau of the Department of Energy notes that the government's project partner Pangea is the first biomass company in operation to receive a Certificate of Confirmation of Commerciability and thus is first in line to secure Feed in Tariff rates when the coming rules are in place. Since its inception in 2008, the project's carbon mitigation effects have been able to help reduce the equivalent of more than 400,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. These efforts are in line with the Bautista Administration's commitment to a clean and green city and the country's goal to mitigate and adapt to the adverse effects of climate change. 07/18/2013

Due 08/09/2013: Comments to CEC on Transportation Energy Scenarios

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) has announced a workshop on July 31, 2013 to explore potential growth projections for alternative transportation fuels, vehicles, and infrastructure, and factors related to growth, seeking stakeholder input. The formal Notice indicates an emphasis on the transportation sector to discuss the expected contribution of biofuels, electric transportation, natural gas, hydrogen, and other options to California’s transportation sector from now until 2020, and from 2020 to 2050. The gathered information for use in developing the transportation section of the Integrated Energy Policy report (IEPR; Docket # 13-IEP-1), which includes assessments of the successful introduction of alternative fuels in the context of fuel prices, the availability of advanced transportation technologies, and the future contribution of zero-emission vehicles and clean-burning fuels to achieve climate change and other air quality goals, energy security and other public benefits. Oral and written comment will be accepted during the workshop. Further written comment should be submitted to the CEC Dockets Unit by 4:00pm on August 9, 2013, indicating docket number 13-!EP-1L and including Transportation Sector Scenarios in the subject line, emailed to with a copy to the staff technical lead, Tim Olson at. The workshop will be webcast. 07/18/2013

Due 08/01/2013: Comments to CalRecycle on Source Separation vs Alternatives

CalRecycleThe California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) has conducted the first of two highly detailed workshops addressing one narrow yet complex aspect of implementing AB 341, the Mandatory Commercial Recycling legislation. AB 341 changed Public Resources Code (PRC), adding §42649.2: (b) A Commercial Waste Generator shall take at least one of the following actions: (1) Source separate recyclable materials from solid waste and subscribe to a basic level of recycling service that includes collection, self-hauling, or other arrangements for the pickup of the recyclable materials, (2) Subscribe to a recycling service that may include mixed waste processing that yields diversion results comparable to source separation. CalRecycle staff has concentrated on determining proper definitions, metrics, and methods to ensure that diversion results at mixed waste processing facilities (MWPFs) are "comparable to source separation" and within this topic, focused primarily on the difference in recyclate removal accomplished by a three-bin source separation and a single-bin collection where all materials area then separated at the central facility. An initial hour of staff presentation at the Sacramento workshop on July 16, 2013 was followed by two hours of what became an energetic question and answer session; the same format will be used for the July 18 workshop in Southern California. Staff has requested that written comments be submitted to by August 1, 2013. 07/17/2013

Due 08/09/2013: Proposals to WAPA for Sale of RECs for Federal Agencies

Western Area Power AdministrationThe Western Area Power Administration (WAPA, or Western) has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) for purchase of Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) on behalf of federal agencies. From the RFP: "Generally defined as the electric energy, measured in megawatt hours (MWh), which is generated from solar, wind, biomass, landfill gas, ocean (including tidal, wave, current, and thermal), geothermal, municipal solid waste, or new hydroelectric generation capacity achieved from increased efficiency or additions of new capacity at an existing hydroelectric project, and is physically delivered into the electric grid. A REC represents the environmental, social, and other positive attributes of power generated by renewable resources. These attributes include the tons of GHGs that were avoided by generating electricity from renewable resources instead of fuels, such as coal, nuclear, oil, or gas. For purposes of this solicitation, a qualifying REC is one where none of the environmental attributes have been separately sold, given, or otherwise transferred to another party by a deliberate act of the Certificate owner." In accessing the RFP documents on WAPA's website, the agency notes that should a message box asking for user name and password appears, click cancel until the document opens. Proposals submitted in response to this RFP must be received via MAIL or FAX to Western on or before August 9, 2013, at 4:30 p.m. PDT to be considered for evaluation. E-mail proposals will not be considered. WAPA reserves the right to not consider any proposals received after the prescribed dates and time. For more information, contact WAPA's Sandee Peebles, Customer and Energy Services Representative, Public Utilities Specialist via email only at. 07/17/2013

Chemtex, Murphy Brown Sign Feedstock Supply Agreement for Project Alpha

Chemtex InternationalNorth Carolina based Chemtex International, Inc. has announced entering into a long term agreement for the supply of purpose grown energy crops and residues to be used as cellulosic feedstock with Murphy Brown LLC of Warsaw, North Carolina. The agreement is intended to provide the "backbone of the supply chain for Project Alpha, Chemtex’s Cellulosic Ethanol facility planned for Clinton, North Carolina. Chemtex' PROESA methods of integrated ligno-cellulosic biomass pre-treatment, enzymatic hydrolysis and fermentation to energy and fuels, proven in M&G Group's Rivalta, Italy pilot facility. Project Alpha will produce twenty million gallons of environmentally friendlier cellulosic ethanol annually using Beta Renewables’ market leading PROESA® Technology. Murphy-Brown LLC is the livestock production subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, Inc. Murphy-Brown LLC has hog production facilities in twelve states in the United States, producing approximately 16.5 million market hogs annually. Smithfield Foods, Inc. is the world’s largest producer and processor of hogs. Don Butler, Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs with Murphy Brown commented “We are excited to be working with Chemtex to bring Cellulosic Ethanol to Eastern North Carolina. The production of these feedstocks will be a natural complement to livestock production in the state and will bring new opportunities for farmers large and small. This project will demonstrate to policymakers that their focus should be on encouraging these American-made next-generation biofuels that are produced without consuming foodstuffs.” 07/16/2013

Sapphire Energy and Linde Group to Refine Hydrothermal Treatment Process

Sapphire EnergySan Diego based Sapphire Energy has announced an expansion of its partnership with The Linde Group launched in May 2011. The partnership with Linde has to date been focused on development of an efficient CO2 delivery system to Sapphire's open-pond algal growth process. The expanded agreement now will include refinement and commercialization of Sapphire's hydrothermal biomass pre-treatment methods currently in use for pilot-scale algae to oil processing. Once optimized, Sapphire and Linde will jointly license and market the technology into an expanded list of industries, including algae, municipal solid waste, and farm waste, in order to upgrade other biomass sources into energy. Sapphire's technology platform uses photosynthetic microorganisms to convert sunlight, non-potable water and industrial emissions-sourced carbon dioxide (CO2) into carbon-neutral "Green Crude" alternatives to conventional fossil fuels. Beneficial reuse of waste CO2 results in a net reduction of CO2 emitted per MJ of energy used when compared to today’s fossil fuel consumption practices. The Linde Group is a key supplier of industrial grade CO2 in the US, and has provided CO2 for Sapphire's pilot operations. Professor Dr. Aldo Belloni, Member of the Executive Board of Linde AG: "We have been working with Sapphire Energy for two years to develop a cost-efficient CO2 delivery system for commercial algae production. We have become confident with the company’s expertise and its capability to produce a low carbon and economic energy source from algae. After the positive experience gained, we decided to intensify our cooperation with Sapphire. Based upon our profound engineering expertise, we will contribute to further develop and scale up Sapphire’s algae-to-crude-oil technology." 07/16/2013

Due 08/09/2013: Comments to DEFRA on Waste Management Plan for England

United Kingdom Department for Environment, Food & Rural AffairsThe United Kingdom (UK) Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has announced the publication of a Waste Management Plan for England, and opened a public consultation seeking stakeholder input. The content of the plan is determined by the requirements of Article 28 of the Waste Framework Directive and is a compilation of existing waste management information and policies within perspectives gained since the department's own 2011 review, and that expressed in 2011 by the Department for Communities and Local Government. The waste hierarchy (waste prevention, re-use, recycling, recovery, and finally disposal as a last option) is used as a guide to sustainable waste management. The Department for Communities and Local Government will open its own public consultation regarding its updated planning for sustainable waste management, later this summer. DEFRA's Waste Management Plan is available for download from its Consultation Hub along with numerous background documents; comments may be submitted via an online survey or by submission by August 9, 2013 to the Department, attention Haroona Chughtai (Policy Lead for Waste Infrastructure Policy) by telephone to 0207 238 5143, or email to <>. 07/16/2013

LACSD District 2 Approves Large-Scale Food Waste Co-Digestion Pilot

Lost Angeles County Sanitation DistrictsThe Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts (LACSD) District 2 Board of Directors approved an agreement with USA Waste of California, Inc., a subsidiary of Waste Management (WM) for a large scale pilot to co-digest food waste with District 2 sewage. On July 10, 2013, the Board heard, approved, and authorized execution of documents for Regular Agenda item 5(a: Food Waste Anaerobic Digestion Demonstration Testing Agreement (Agreement) with USA Waste of California, Inc. (WM). The Agreement contains terms and conditions for a two-year demonstration program during which WM will provide 84 tons per day of processed food waste slurry for injection into a digester at the Joint Water Pollution Control Plant (JWPCP). WM will provide receiving and unloading equipment at the JWPCP for the demonstration and pay the Districts a tipping fee of $10.38 per ton of processed food waste accepted during the demonstration period. Results of the demonstration program will be used to determine the feasibility of a full-scale food waste digestion program at our wastewater treatment facilities. The Board agenda item summary noted: "In 2011, Assembly Bill 341 was chaptered, which established a new statewide recycling goal of 75 percent in year 2020. Increased diversion of organic material, mainly food waste and green waste, is one way to achieve this goal. A number of cities and waste collection companies are now implementing separate food waste collection programs for residents and businesses. Districts research and bench-scale testing has shown that processed food waste co-digested with wastewater treatment plant biosolids increases methane gas production and would provide an alternative to landfill disposal." 07/14/2013

ZooShare Cooperative Secures 500 kWe FIT Contract for Zoo Poo to BioPower

ZooShareCanada based ZooShare Biogas Cooperative Inc. (ZooShare) has announced it is one of the community-scale clean energy producers to benefit from the Small Feed-in Tariff (FIT) Program offered by the Ontario Power Authority (OPA). A total of 951 new Small FIT renewable energy contracts were offered by OPA last week, representing 146.5 megawatts (MW) of power, spurring project developers to invest over $750 million in the Ontario economy. Of these, 16 were for support of bioenergy projects. The Small FIT application period ran from December 14, 2012, to January 18, 2013, with OPA authorized to offer up to 200 MW of contracts. The remaining 53.5 MW of capacity that was not contracted in this round will be added to the procurement target for this fall’s Small FIT application period. ZooShare is a Renewable Energy Co-op under Canadian laws with a biogas facility on the grounds of the Toronto Zoo being fueled by animal wastes along with organics and food waste generated in the Zoo's various on-site facilities. The project expects to generate up to 500 kW of combined electrical power and usable heat (CHP), provide a rich organic fertilizer and convert the large quantities of waste the Zoo generates from a liability into an asset. The ZooShare program has also been authorized to issue Community Bonds, available and has developed a flier describing the "ZooShare Investment Poo-tential." 07/14/2013

Sundrop Plans Its First Combination Demo/Commercial Alternative Fuels Plant

Sundrop FuelsColorado based Sundrop Fuels, Inc. has announced selection of the engineering and construction firm IHI E&C International Corporation (IHI E&C) to develop its first combined demonstration / commercial scale advanced alternative fuels facility in Boyce, near Alexandria, Louisiana. IHI E&C is a US subsidiary of Japanese firm IHI Corporation primarily serving the global oil and gas industry. The plant will initially be designed to produce 60 million gallons per year of standard gasoline from natural gas, while providing the platform for Sundrop Fuels to prove its proprietary gasification technology for making renewable "green gasoline" from woody biomass. Sundrop Fuels gasification technology quickly converts biomass into synthesis gas that is then converted into drop-in biobased “green gasoline”, diesel or aviation fuels. The company's Synstream technology platform uses its patented Sundrop Fuels RP Reactor can be powered by natural gas, electricity or even concentrated solar to maintain the high temperatures to drive the endothermic gasification reaction. Sundrop Fuels Chief Executive Officer Wayne Simmons: "With IHI E&C's talent and resources, Sundrop Fuels looks forward to formally breaking ground on the final stepping-stone toward becoming a major producer of affordable, drop-in biofuel. It has extensive experience and a long history of successful project execution in plants with similar configurations and process units." 07/12/2013

REG Completes $21MM Modifications to Minnesota Biodiesel Plant

Renewable Energy GroupIowa based Renewable Energy Group, Inc (REG) has announced completion of modifications to its 30 million gallon per year biodiesel facility in southern Minnesota. The $21 million investment allows REG to broaden the range of acceptable feedstock to include locally-sourced agricultural byproducts such as animal fats, used cooking oils, inedible corn oils, and yellow grease, as well as vegetable oils. REG notes that within days of start-up, all biodiesel produced met the company’s REG-9000 quality specifications, which exceed the industry’s ASTM B100 standard. The multiple-feedstock biodiesel enhances product availability options as the State of Minnesota prepares to increase its diesel blending requirement from B5 to B10. Renewable Energy Group's integrated value chain model is focused on converting natural fats, oils and greases into advanced biofuels and now has more than 225 million gallons of owned/operated annual production capacity at biorefineries across the country. Late last month, REG celebrated production start-up at its newest biodiesel refinery located in New Boston, in northeastern Texas. For the celebration, Daniel Oh, REG's President and CEO commented: "Biodiesel is America’s leading and growing advanced biofuel, which supports agriculture and food production here in the United States. We are proud to purchase raw materials like poultry fats and used cooking oils from this region, and use them to produce high quality, clean burning fuels to help power our transportation industry." 07/12/2013

Innoventé Will Develop 7.2MWe Bioenergy Plant in Matane, Quebec

InnoventéQuebec based renewable energy company Innoventé has announced its intent to develop an advanced bioenergy generation complex within the RockTenn board mill, shuttered more than a year ago. Innoventé made the announcement concurrent with entering into its third power supply contract with Hydro-Quebec, a 25 year term agreement for sale at 10.6 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) of up to 7.2 megawatts of renewable energy (MWe) to the utility that brings the company's total contracts to over 20 MWe. The power delivery will be provided starting in fall 2015. The conversion project of the facilities, estimated at $20 million, will begin in the upcoming months. The Mayor of the City of Matane, Claude Canuel: "I want to emphasize the determination of the President of Innoventé, Mr. Richard Painchaud, without which the revival of the RockTenn plant would have been impossible." Innoventé utilizes a novel "bio-drying" technology platform to generate combined heat and power (CHP). Wet biomass degrades in carefully-controlled regime of oxygen and temperature known as SHOC™ (Système d’Hygiénisation par Oxygénation contrôlée or “sanitization by controlled oxidation”). Biofuels from bio-dryers are combusted in order to generate vapor to drive a turbogenerator, producing electricity and district heating, while supplying carbon dioxide to greenhouse complex to sequester the carbon and enhance plant growth. 07/12/2013

Global Bioenergies Secures €23MM for Advanced Biofuels and Biochemicals

Global BioenergiesWith offices in both France and Ames, Iowa, Global Bioenergies (GBE) has announced a significant increase in its capital reserves, netting 23 million euro in its most recent funding round launched late last month. GBE's technology platform uses artificial metabolic pathways where several enzymes catalyze sugars derived from biomass feedstock for production of light olefins, converting first to acetone and then fermented to extract the volatilized gas isobutene, one of the most important petrochemical building blocks that can be converted into fuels, plastics, organic glass, and elastomers. Use of the proceeds from the capital increase will include the financing of the isobutene process’ industrialization phase via the construction of two pilots, the development of the butadiene and propylene processes, and the initiation of new programs. Liliane Bronstein, Global Bioenergies’ Chief Financial Officer: "The French investment funds have largely participated in this operation. We have also attracted investors from several other European countries as well as from the USA. Overall, orders have been placed by about forty institutional investors." 07/12/2013

Oxford Catalysts to Provide Technology for Oregon Biomass to Fuel Plant

Oxford Catalysts GroupThe United Kingdom (UK) based Oxford Catalysts Group (OCG) has announced its selection to provide the Fischer-Tropsch (F/T) catalytic technology for a biomass to liquids (BTL) renewable fuel production plant to be located in Oregon. Red Rock Biofuels, a subsidiary of IR1 Group LLC is the project developer, and chose Oxford for the core catalysis systems technology. The plant will be designed to convert around 170,000 tons per year of forestry derived biomass into approximately 1,100 bpd of liquid transportation fuels. The BTL project was recently awarded a $4.1 million grant from the US Department of Defense (under the Defense Production Act Title III Advanced Drop-in Biofuel Production Project), and is intending to apply for a further grant of up to $70 million to construct the proposed plant. Preliminary engineering is complete, and is expected to progress through detailed engineering and design over the course of some nine months. Oxford Catalysts Group PLC maintains two operating subsidiaries, Velocys, Inc. and Oxford Catalysts Ltd, to design, develop and commercialize technology for the production of synthetic oil from waste gas (which would otherwise be flared or reinjected), stranded gas, renewable sources such as waste biomass. Terr4y Kulsea, co-founder and President of IR1: "The choice of Velocys FT was easy. No other FT technology offered the combination of high performance and efficiency at a scale appropriate for a BTL facility. We're pleased to be working with the Group on this pioneering project." 07/10/2013

Autark Institute and Agnion Energy Partner for Biomethane Purification Project

agnion energyThe Autark Institute for Energy, Research and Consulting (Autark) of Gorlitz, Germany and agnion energy GmbH have jointly announced an initial two-year collaboration for development of catalytic synthesis gas (syngas) reforming subsystems. The purification technology is for agnion's Heatpipe Reformer (HPR) thermal conversion technology platform. The project leader is Prof. Dr. Jürgen Karl, Chair of Energy Process Engineering at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. Scientific support will be provided by the University of Zittau/Görlitz and the Fraunhofer Institute for Safety and Energy Technology (UMSICHT) in Oberhausen. Ten years ago Professor Karl and his team developed the HPR at the Technical University of Munich before protecting the system with over 30 patents and preparing it for the market. The HPR is a small-scale wood-gasification combined heat and power (CHP) plant with an electrical output of 400 kW and a thermal output of 630 kW. The HPR produces high methane gas content syngas from gasification of wood or biogenic solid waste. The proposed downstream catalytic gas purification process under development with Autark will then remove impurities such as sulphur and hydrocarbons from the synthesis gas. For power generation alone, the agnion platform achieves about 30% conversion efficiency; in CHP mode with heat recovery, the total energy efficiency approaches 80%. 07/10/2013

BioNitrogen Secures Site in Louisiana for Biomass to Urea Plant

BioNitrogenFlorida based BioNitrogen Corporation has announced signing an agreement to acquire approximately 245 acres in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana for approximately $2 million. The land is adjacent to the Pointe Coupee Port Commission port in Lettsworth operated by Terral River Services. Closing is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2013. Construction on this site for the initial Louisiana plant is scheduled to be performed by CCC Group and is slated to commence in the fourth quarter of 2013. The company's technology platform gasifies low-value biomass such as sugar cane bagasse, palm waste, rice hulls, peanut hulls, cotton byproducts and corn stover, converting the synthesis gas to urea. In April of this year, BioNitrogen secured its second off-take agreement for sale of urea to United Suppliers, Inc. from proposed Louisiana facilities. Bryan Kornegay Jr., President and CFO of BioNitrogen: "We are very excited to have secured this important strategic property. This contiguous 245-acre parcel is unique in that it is adjacent to the Pointe Coupee Parish port terminal which will provide us turnkey operational capacity and open access to the Mississippi River, Red River and Atchafalaya River systems. The land is surrounded by significant forestry biomass within a 75 mile radius on three sides and agricultural biomass to the south. The site provides excellent road and barge transportation access with ample land for biomass accumulation, construction of up to five plants and expansion of value added businesses such as urea coating and blending." 07/09/2013

Swedish Institute Publishes Forest Waste to Biofuels Investigation

Swedish Knowledge Centre for Renewable Transport FuelsThe Swedish Knowledge Centre for Renewable Transport Fuels, known as "f3" for "Fossil Free Fuels", has announced completion of an investigation and publication (in Swedish only) of "CURRENT AND FUTURE SUSTAINABLE BIOFUELS" assessing conversion of forest wastes and residuals into biofuels, on assignment to the Swedish government. Earlier this year, the Swedish government's investigation concerning a future fossil free transport sector, Utredningen om FossilFri Fordonstrafik, gave f3 the assignment to describe the current knowledge status concerning future transportation fuels and their sustainability. An Executive Summary and a feature article on the assessment are both available (also only in Swedish) from f3's website. The Summary notes, "One of the EU's climate [directives] is that 10 percent of the fuels in transport to be renewable by 2020. For this to become reality, good alternatives to fossil fuels [are needed]. But what is good in one place and for a purpose need not be the same as for a different location and a different purpose. The problem is complex and requires multiple solutions. A new report from f3 presents current knowledge about the production of biofuels and sustainability issues such as energy and land efficiency, GHG performance and costs. The study includes both existing and future fuel systems, based on different raw materials and production processes, especially from a Swedish perspective, but also with international perspectives." 07/09/2013

Waste2Tricity Plans Bilsthorpe MRF + Waste to Energy Plant

Waste2TricityLondon-based Waste2Tricity (W2T) has announced plans to develop a £70 million waste conversion and resource recovery complex in Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom (UK). Teaming with Peel Environmental, AMEC and Foster Wheeler, W2T is planning to design, develop, and operate the Bilsthorpe Energy Centre for diversion of 120,000 tonnes of waste per year from landfilling and generation of over 10 megawatt of electricity. The Centre will include two key parts; a Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) and a Plasma Gasification Facility. The Bilsthorpe plant will be a "Flagship" project for W2T and will be replicated in the UK as well as globally. For the Bilsthorpe project, the team expects to complete the Concept Design Study (CDS) in August of this year with Peel currently undertaking Public Consultation as part of the planning process. Peter Jones OBE, Chairman of W2T: "This medium-scale build forms part of our strategic programme to pursue similar opportunities in the UK and abroad. This Flagship project will also be replicated in a number of locations including Thailand. The fuel-cell ready Energy Centre will represent an inward investment of approximately £70 million to the local economy and will contribute to and diversify the UK’s energy generation capacity by creating a distributed low cost hydrogen and electricity network through the deployment of such systems around the country."  07/08/2013

Collège Boréal and EACOM Timber Launch Study of Biochar for Remediation

Collège BoréalLocated in Ontario, Canada, Collège Boréal has announced that it is collaborating with Quebec-based EACOM Timber Corporation in its first applied research project on the analysis and use of biochar produced by the forest industry for agricultural use. EACOM's sawmill in Nairn Centre, Ontario could use the results of the research to encourage the use of this charcoal, which has a high content of mineral nutrients to remediate soil used by the mining and forest industries. Collège Boréal's Xstrata Nickel Biodiversity Applied Research Centre will lead the study, expected to be completed in November 2013. The Nairn Centre's biopower plant will contribute the wood ash and char to be analyzed during the initial laboratory assessment phase of the research, applying various amounts and combinations of the char and ash to soil samples to assess their effect on the growth of jack pine and birch seedlings. This test phase will eventually be followed by observations in the field, in Collège Boréal's experimental forests. As early as summer 2014, the results of the research will allow a first set of large-scale experiments using biochar in the Greater Sudbury area. The project was made possible by the support of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC). Brian Vaillancourt, Dean of Collège Boréal's School of Trades and Applied Technology: "Our efforts, along with the knowledge acquired with over 15 years in environmental research, are all the more noteworthy now that, with the support of the NSERC, Collège Boréal will benefit for the first time from recognition by an agency with one of the highest levels of research in Canada. This new research project is another one among the many initiatives that already enrich our students' curriculum, allowing them to work to preserve our lakes and our regions and acquire real field experience thanks, among other things, to our two experimental forests." 07/08/2013

Due 08/07/2013: Comments to Idaho DEQ on Draft Composting Guidance

State of IdahoThe Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has issued a request for public comment on its draft guidance for operation of composting facilities. The guidance has been developed in an effort to aid plant owners and operators and the general public in developing an understanding of the state's regulatory requirements pertaining to composting of organics. The DEQ notes: "Due to the variety of feedstock used in composting, different local, state, and federal regulations may apply to various operations. The draft guidance addresses applicable state regulations based on the facility classification, odor management, and methods of testing and sampling to determine safety and quality of finished compost." The guidance covers windrow, aerated static pile and in-vessel compositing and details the state's three through-put determined Permit Tier levels. Backyard composting is addressed, as are microbial degradation of biosolids and agricultural wastes and residuals to include animal as well as plant waste materials. The draft Processing (Composting) Facility Guidance and Checklists for Tier II and Tier III Processing Facilities is available for review at the DEQ's State Office in Boise and by download from DEQ’s website. Submit written comments on DEQ's website or by mail or email by 5 p.m., MST, Wednesday, August 7, 2013, to Dean Ehlert, Solid Waste Program Manager, Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, State Office, 1410 N. Hilton, Boise, ID 83706 or by email to < >. 07/08/2013

Clarke to Supply Biogas Engines for Tamar's UK Anaerobic Digestion Plants

Clarke EnergyUnited Kingdom based Clarke Energy has announced securing a four-project supply contract with Tamar Energy of London. Tamar Energy has placed initial orders with Clarke Energy for four GE Power & Water’s J420 and two J416 containerized Jenbacher gas engines. The engines will be fitted with heat exchangers to facilitate cogeneration, recovering heat as hot water for use in the heating of the digesters and pasteurization. The biogas engines will be deployed at four of Tamar Energy’s anaerobic digestion plants in the UK, including anaerobic digestion (AD) plants in Holbeach in Lincolnshire; Retford in Yorkshire; Halstead in Essex and Farleigh in Wiltshire. Clarke’s service network will provide support for the genset performance. Together the four sites will have a combined capacity of 8MW, turning organic waste into biogas, a nutrient rich fertilizer (known as digestate) and water. Tamar notes that it now has an additional 14 sites in various stages of development, as the first step to create a "critical mass" network of around 40 plants across the UK by 2018. Dan Poulson, Engineering and Strategy Director of Tamar Energy: "Our plans are to develop a network of anaerobic digestion plants across the UK in order to help meet the country’s renewable energy targets. Clarke Energy’s technical solution, backed up by the largest network of dedicated gas engine specialists in the UK, were key factors in us awarding these orders." 07/06/2013

Technokomplex Ships Pirotex Low-Temp Pyrolysis Plant to Columbia

TechnokomplexBased in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, the company Technokomplex has announced shipment of a Pirotex low-temperature, closed loop pyrolysis plant to clients in Columbia. Technokomplex experimented for several months to adapt the Pirotex pyrolysis plant cooling system for the operating in the hot conditions of the Columbian site. The Pirotex pyrolysis plant is ISO 9000 certified, producing emissions lower than the requirements of Europe and the Americas. Pirotex equipment is based on the company's proprietary based on closed pyrolysis technology, designed for recycling and utilization of rubber- and polymer-containing wastes, oil sludge and waste oils. Rubber goods and waste tires recycled in the closed pyrolysis unit generate greater volume of liquid fuel when compared with the use of open pyrolysis units. The equipment is highly automated allowing reducing of labor. Tires recycled in the unit Pirotex allows production of derived products of better quality. Mini plant for tires recycling can be used for plastics, oil sludge and waste oils recycling. The company plans to widen the range of its products in South America by offering the Konstanta line for carbon processing and the Mini Oil Refinery, which processes pyrolysis fuel into gasoline, diesel and mazut, a heavy, low-quality fuel oil commonly sold in Russia. The company has begun its business in the field of utilization in 2005 and today equipment manufactured by the company operates in many cities in Russia, Bulgaria, Turkey and now the USA. 07/06/2013

DECC Proposes Home and Business Scale Feed-in Tariffs to Parliament

UK Department of Energy & Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom (UK) Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has announced that it has introduced its Feed-in Tariff (FIT) proposals before Parliament for amendments to the country's Energy Bill. Under the proposal, DECC's FITs would pay households, businesses, organizations, and communities for renewable electricity generated through installation of solar photovoltaic, wind, small modular combined heat and power (Micro-CHP), and/or anaerobic digestion. Generation under 50 kilowatts (kWe) simply registers the installation with a licensed electrical supplier; for generation capacity over 50 kWe, installations are to be registered with the Office of the Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem). The registrars review for FIT program eligibility, process the generation data, and pay the generator a renewable electricity generation tariff. Where applicable, the supplier also pays the generator an export tariff for any surplus electricity exported to the national electric grid. DECC carried out extensive stakeholder consultations on the FITs during 2012; the program review and application guidelines for the overall FIT program are available along with background on the government's efforts to use the tariff schemes to increase the use of low-carbon technologies. 07/05/2013

Algae.Tec to Convert Emissions to Biofuels at AU's Largest Coal-Fired Plant

Algae.TecAustralia (AU) based Algae.Tec has announced entering into an agreement with Macquarie Generation, the country's largest coal-fired power plant for algae carbon capture. The plant is owned by the New South Wales Government, which operates the 2,640 megawatt Bayswater coal-fired power station in the Hunter Valley, New South Wales (NSW) near Sydney. As the "centerpiece" of the NSW energy system, the Bayswater plant consumes about 7.5 million tonnes of coal per year and delivers power to eastern Australia, from South Australia to Northern Queensland. Algae.Tec will establish its carbon capture technology platform adjacent to the Bayswater plant, which will divert carbon-laden emissions to containerized algal growth chambers. The algae will feed on “waste” carbon dioxide emitted by the power station and the resulting algal oil will be converted to biodiesel and hydrogenated to grade A jet fuel. Macquarie Generation CEO and Managing Director Russell Skelton: "Our agreement with Algae.Tec is another example of MacGen finding creative ways to improve our business and improve our environmental performance. Its new technology is improving a traditional power plant. Carbon is now our single largest cost. This technology should reduce our carbon output, reduce our carbon bill, and at the same time improve our bottom line." 07/05/2013

Worldwatch Releases Renewable Energy Report on Central America

Worldwatch InstituteWashington, D.C. based non-profit Worldwatch Institute has published its latest energy report, The Way Forward for Renewable Energy in Central America, and is available free of charge for on-line download. The report provides a comprehensive and up-to-date status survey and gap assessment of renewable energy in Central America, focusing on the status of renewable energy technologies in Central America and analyzing the conditions for their advancement in the future. It identifies important knowledge and information gaps and evaluates key finance and policy barriers, making suggestions for how to overcome both. Among the report’s key findings: Central America is exploring its potential for expanding beyond existing hydropower and geothermal energy, developing other renewable energy resources such as wind, solar, biofuels, and agricultural waste. Worldwatch finds that Costa Rica is leading in its ambition to be “carbon neutral” by 2021. In all Central American countries, a rapid transition to 100% renewable electricity generation is both technically possible and socioeconomically beneficial. Central America can power its economies in large part with renewable energy sources, helping the region to address some of its most pressing development challenges. What is needed now is the continued, collaborative effort of researchers, governments, and the private sector to help realize this goal. The Worldwatch report provides concrete recommendations to advance Central America's renewable energy development. 07/05/2013

Green Biologics, Easy Energy Collaborate on Iowa Biochemical Demo Plant

Green BiologicsUnited Kingdom (UK) based Green Biologics Ltd. (GBL) has announced entering into a collaborative agreement to modify Easy Energy Systems's ethanol demonstration plant in Emmetsburg, Iowa to produce renewable n-butanol and acetone. Arizona based Easy Energy completed successful ethanol trials last year at the Iowa 40,000 liter fermentation facility. Easy Energy's technology platform is based on its patented Modular Energy Production Systems (MEPs) modular waste biomass to ethanol stills that are self-contained, fully automated, liquid biofuel refineries, pre-fabricated and factory tested ready to ship. In May 2013, Green Biologics successfully demonstrated its advanced fermentation process at pilot scale in Gahanna, Ohio. The scale-up work complements commercial scale demonstration work already achieved in China. In 2011, Green Biologics partnered with Laihe Rockley Biochemical Ltd in Songyuan, China and in 2012 produced commercial scale cellulosic n-butanol from residual corn waste (corn shells, corn cobs and stover). Patrick Simms, Chief Operating Officer for GBL’s North American business: "This technology capitalizes on the unique characteristics of Green Biologic’s advanced biocatalysts and provides a doubling of butanol production productivity compared to existing processes with a modest incremental capital investment. In less than 12 months, our development teams in the UK and Ohio moved from concept to successful pilot demonstration. We are now scaling to 80,000 liters in Iowa." 07/03/2013

DOE Awards $13MM to Support Four R&D Biofuels Projects

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced a total of $13 million in funding for four research and development (R&D) next generation biofuels projects to optimize production of gasoline, diesel, and jet fuels from biomass. Ceramatec from Salt Lake City, Utah, will use electrochemical deoxygenation to separate oxygen from bio-oil. With support up to $3.3 million, this project will help produce hydrocarbon products suitable for further processing in conventional petroleum refineries. Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) will receive up to $2.1 million to develop a microbial electrolysis process to remove hydrogen from the water in bio-oil. The work of the ORNL's Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS) will help reduce the corrosivity of bio-oil and improve the efficiency of converting hydrogen and biomass to biofuels. The University of Oklahoma will negotiate for up to $4 million for thermal fractionation and supercritical solvent extraction research to maximize the amount of renewable carbon and hydrogen that can be extracted from biomass and converted to a refinery-compatible intermediate and suitable for final upgrading to a transportation fuel. Wisconsin based Virent Energy Systems could secure up to $4 million to develop a separation process which uses its BioForming® technology to efficiently convert carbon from lignocellulosic biomass into hydrocarbon fuels. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz: "By partnering with private industry, universities and our national labs, we can increase America's energy security, bolster rural economic development, and cut harmful carbon pollution from our cars, trucks and planes. As the President made clear in his plan to cut carbon pollution, partnerships like these will help move our economy towards cleaner, more efficient forms of energy that lower our reliance on foreign oil." 07/03/2013

CARB Announces Goods Movement Emission Reduction Workshop Series

California Air Resources BoardThe California Air Resources Board (CARB) has announced a series of public workshops to discuss preliminary recommendations for use of $150 million in funding awards to local and state agencies for projects through the Proposition 1B: Goods Movement Emission Reduction Program. The purpose of the workshops is to receive public input on how the funds should be distributed among the eligible projects within each of California's four priority trade corridors to reduce freight emissions. Projects funded under this Program must achieve early or extra emission reductions not otherwise required by law or regulation. Program Guidelines for 2013 and other programmatic documents are available on-line. CARB provides funding to eligible agencies; those agencies then offer financial incentives to owners of equipment used in freight movement to upgrade to cleaner technologies. California's local agencies apply to CARB for funding, and then those agencies offer financial incentives to owners of equipment used in freight movement to upgrade to cleaner technologies. Given the current greenhouse gas emissions reduction focus for updating the AB 32 Scoping Plan and assessment of crucial elements like the Waste Management Sector, there are cross-cutting issues of transport-related emissions reduction that need careful attention. Workshops are set for July 11th in Fresno and Los Angeles, and July 15th in Sacramento. The Sacramento workshop will be webcast, and live video feed has been set up for alternative locations to telecast the Fresno workshop. If you have any questions, call CARB's Goods Movement Information Line at:  (916) 44-GOODS (444-6637) or email at: <>. 07/03/2013

Due 09/30/2013: Proposals to SJVAPCD for Alternative Fuels Infrastructure

San Jaoquin Valley Air Pollution Control DistrictThe San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD, or District) has announced the release of its Request for Proposal (RFP) to accept proposed projects for alternative fuel infrastructure under its Public Benefit Grants Program (PBGP). There are two eligible focus areas under the solicitation, new infrastructure and expansion to existing infrastructure. Eligible applicants are public agencies such as cities, counties, special districts (i.e. water districts, irrigation districts, etc.) and public educational institutions (i.e. school districts, community colleges, state universities, etc.) located within the geographic boundaries of the District. A total of $5 million is available in this round of the PBGP, a project support mechanism created by the District in 2011 to help meet air quality goals. The PBGP was designed to meet the needs and challenges faced by Valley public agencies in their efforts to secure funding for a wide variety of clean-air, public benefit projects. The PBGP will provide the necessary flexibility and leveraging for local public agencies to ensure the success of these types of projects which provide a direct benefit to the public and encourage innovation at the local level by providing significant funding in the areas where it is needed most. Questions and proposals should be directed to David Lopez, Air Quality Specialist SJVAPCD,, (559) 230-6144. Proposals are due September 30, 2013. 07/03/2013

Milton Keynes Council Awards Waste Recovery Contract to AmeyCespa

AmeyCespaThe Milton Keynes Council has announced entering into contract with United Kingdom (UK) based AmeyCespa to design, build, and operate the Milton Keyes Recovery Park. The waste handling and conversion complex will be located in the Old Wolverton industrial area northwest of London, close to the Council's existing recycling facilities. AmeyCespa was initially selected as preferred bidder in October of last year, proposing to integrate three different technologic approaches for  95% reconstituting and resource recovery of materials from the "Black Sack" fraction of the Council's residential and industrial waste stream that could not be otherwise recycled. The technologies consist of: (a) mechanical recyclate extraction, (b) anaerobic digestion of food wastes and other organics, and (c) advanced thermal conversion to synthesis gas (syngas). AmeyCespa selected Energos to provide the advanced gasification systems. The Energos technology platform provides two-stage thermal conversion, first with gasification to produce a synthesis gas, then with high-temperature combustion of the syngas to generate steam, which drives combined heat and power (CHP) generation. The Milton Keynes Council began a consultation for permit (application number EPR/UP3937ZZ/A001) from the UK's Environmental Agency early last month; following the consultation, AmeyCespa will submit a planning application in early 2013, hoping to begin construction in 2014 and open the facility in 2016. Concurrently, local news indicates that Energos has just received approval from the City Hall of Bradford, UK, to proceed with an 8.35 megawatt waste gasification CHP project. Scheduled to also to begin construction in 2014 upon full permitting, Energos is reported to be closing on securing the £90 million needed to build the West Bowling plant. 07/02/2013

NREL Launches Utility-Scale Energy Systems Integration Facility

National Renewable Energy LaboratoryThe US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has announced the opening of the unique utility-scale Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF) on its Golden, Colorado research and development campus. The ESIF provides laboratory and office space for research to overcome challenges related to the interconnection of distributed energy systems and the integration of renewable energy technologies into the electricity grid. The ESIF will house more than 15 experimental laboratories and several outdoor test beds, including an interactive hardware-in-the-loop system that lets researchers and manufacturers test their products at full power and real grid load levels. The facility will also feature a petascale supercomputer that can support large-scale modeling and simulation at one quadrillion operations per second. Congress provided $135 million to construct and equip the user facility. The President’s FY 2014 budget request includes an additional $20 million for facility operations. The Department encourages utilities, manufacturers, universities, and other national laboratories to fully utilize the ESIF’s unique capabilities and resources. NREL has also posted details and announced an initial agenda for its 26th annual Industry Growth Forum scheduled for December 3-4 in Denver, Colorado, focusing on innovative prototype, pre-commercial and expanding clean energy companies. The Forum begins with the tightly-scheduled One-on-One Networking Session; attendees can sign up for 10-minute meetings with around 50 leading investors, corporations, government agencies, and industry experts. Advance registration for this year's Growth Forum opens September 6, 2013. 07/02/2013

Abengoa Inaugurates First Waste-to-Biofuels Demo Plant in Salamanca, Spain

AbengoaHeadquartered in Seville, Spain, the multi-national energy and environmental services company Abengoa has announced the formal opening of its waste-to-biofuels (W2B) demonstration facility in Babilafuente, Salamanca, Spain. The plant has the capacity to treat 25,000 tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) from which it will obtain up to 1.5 million liters of bioethanol for use as fuel, launching the plant's commissioning phase late in March of this year. Abengoa's technology platform segregates organic fiber from the MSW, and then subjects the cellulose-rich feedstock to enzymatic hydrolysis using in-house developed enzymes. The cellulose "soup" is then fermented to produce bioethanol. Abengoa notes, "The production of bioethanol from municipal solid waste is a major technological breakthrough in the waste management model, since it increases the recovery rate, minimizes the carbon footprint and generates major benefits for society. It is a renewable and clean source of energy that helps to cut our dependency on fossil fuels while reducing greenhouse gas emissions per kilometer travelled by 70%. Furthermore, it maximizes the recovery of the organic fraction of the MSW and prevents more than 80% of the waste ending up in landfill." Manuel Sánchez Ortega, CEO of Abengoa: "This plant once again highlights Abengoa’s commitment to technological research and innovation, which has enabled it to maintain a competitive advantage in its sectors, leading projects with huge technological potential and programs that involve world-leading research centers and strategic partners." 07/02/2013

Due 07/29/2013: Qualifications to BAB2E for Biosolids-to-Energy Facility

Bay Area Biosolids to Energy CoalitionThe Bay Area Biosolids to Energy Coalition (BAB2E, or the Coalition) has briefly reopened their Request for Qualifications (RFQ) timeline to pre-qualify additional firms for development of a biosolids-to-energy facility to serve wastewater treatment plants in the San Francisco Bay Area. Four teams have previously been pre-qualified to submit on the Request for Proposals (RFP) to be released this month. It is the Coalition’s preference that the proposed biosolids to energy systems be able to generate "usable energy", defined as energy derived from the thermal conversion of biosolids to products such as electricity transportation fuels such as diesel or hydrogen, biomethane, or other energy products. Thermal byproducts of these conversion technologies such as low-grade waste heat or hot water can be considered usable energy if they are shown usable outside of the conversion process. Thermal conversion technologies being considered for this project include gasification, pyrolysis, and supercritical wet-oxidation. Proposals dependent upon incineration will not be accepted. Interested teams that not already pre-qualified to participate in the RFP have this limited time to submit a statement of qualifications for the project. Questions and requests for clarification or additional information need to be submitted by close of business on July 12, 2013 to Caroline Quinn (). Successful teams will be allowed to participate in the RFP, and have until July 29, 2013 to submit a statement of qualifications. Successful teams selected from this RFQ process will be eligible to participate in the RFP. Final proposals from selected teams will be due October 3, 2013. 07/01/2013

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