June 2013 News and Matters of Interest

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Progressive Waste Solutions Opens C&D Advanced MRF in Vaughn, Ontario

Progressive Waste SolutionsCanada based Progressive Waste Solutions Ltd. (PWS) has announced that it has opened its advanced waste reduction and resource recovery facility in Vaughn, Ontario. The plant is specifically designed to process construction and demolition debris from the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), which is estimated to produce nearly 500,000 tonnes of waste annually. The new $14 million PWS facility is sited on 10 acres and is equipped to process about 20 per cent of the market's construction and demolition debris, or 100,000 tonnes of waste per year. The wood that is recovered at the facility will be processed into clean, high-quality "green" fuel to be utilized at electricity and steam generating plants, replacing fossil fuels and reducing greenhouse gas emissions downstream. The Honourable Jim Bradley, Ontario Minister of the Environment, was in attendance to make remarks and to officially open the facility: "Ontario's proposed Waste Reduction Act is about recycling wastes back into our economy as raw material, generating new jobs and Ontario-made products. We want to attract more companies like Progressive Waste Solutions that are helping to protect our environment while building a stronger, greener economy." 06/29/2013

Xebec Commissions Second Biogas to CNG Plant in South Korea

Sebec AdsorptionBased in Quebec, Canada, Xebec Adsorption Inc. has announced commissioning of its second small-scale BXG biogas to compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel facility in South Korea. The facility located in Daegu City upgrades biogas to produce compressed natural gas (CNG) for city buses and other public vehicles. Xebec’s advanced biogas upgrading system processes 875 standard cubic feet per minute (scfm) of raw biogas from digestion of food waste to pipeline quality natural gas, displacing approximately 7.2 million Litres (equivalent to 2 million gallons) of fossil fuel annually. The company's technology platform is centered on three proprietary Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) systems, offering short cycle types and a compact footprint. BXG containerized and modular upgrading and compression systems are available as small as 30 scfm biogas processing capacity. Xebec provides a range of biogas upgrading, natural gas, field gas and hydrogen purification solutions for the international clean energy and crude-derived fuels displacement markets. The company was acquired by Air Products in March of last year, initiating rapid international growth. 06/29/2013

Due 07/15/2013: Comments to US DOE on State of Sustainable Waste to Energy

US Department of EnergyThe US Department of Energy (DOE), Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Exchange Program has released a Request for Information (RFI) seeking public and private stakeholder input regarding the state of technology development and commercial readiness of emerging waste to energy (WTE) technologies. Information is also sought in identifying what barriers to commercialization remain and the appropriate role for the DOE with regard to additional investment in research, development, demonstration, and deployment (RDD&D) to promote broad adoption and commercial replication. The DOE notes: "WTE technologies repurpose a variety of waste sources with thermochemical conversion processes to create bioenergy, biofuels, or bioproducts. Developing this resource into commercially-viable biomass has numerous benefits, including reducing methane emissions and facilitating energy independence and security." RFIs frequently precede funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) by a few months and serve as an indicator of the agency's current level of interest in specific topics. Detailed description, contact information and background papers are provided on the DOE's FOA webpage; scroll to "DE-FOA-0000933: RFI - WASTE: Waste Applications for Sustainable Technologies for Energy." For further program information, contact the EERE Exchange Program at  <>. No-fee Registration is required to enter the Exchange; information submissions are to be emailed to <> by July 15, 2013. 06/29/2013

VTT Finland Collaborates with AU Government on Bioeconomy Study

TT Technical Research Centre of FinlandThe VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) has announced an agreement with the South Australian State Government to study potential routes for increasing the competitiveness of Australian forestry industry through enhancing and diversifying the country's bioeconomy. The VTT study will identify new ways of increasing industry productivity and developing more sustainable and higher-value add products from the Limestone Coast’s forestry resources. The two-stage study is a key initiative of the State Government Department for Manufacturing, Innovation, Trade, Resources and Energy's (DMITRE) Manufacturing Works strategy, and is also one of the key actions identified in the Limestone Coast Economic Diversification report. The new opportunities presented by bioenergy, biochemicals, and biomaterials must be captured in addition to further developing opportunities in more traditional but evolving areas like construction elements, wood residue laminates, wood-plastic composite products, value added packaging materials etc. Initial focus determined existing business structure; the second stage will map improvement options. The Cellulose Fibre Chain Technology Roadmap project is supported by Regional Development Australia Limestone Coast and the project’s steering group includes central players in the Australian forest industry, academia and labor union together with representatives from the Commonwealth, State and local government. The first stage report is now available on-line. 06/26/2013

CalRecycle Hosts Workshops on Development of MRF Standards and BMPs

CalRecycleThe California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) has released a Public Notice for the third in a series of public workshops to address aspects of the development of best management practices (BMPs) and performance standards for materials recovery facilities (MRFs). Identical presentations will be given in Sacramento on July 16, 2913, and in the City of Lakewood, in southern California on July 18, 2013. This workshop will specifically focus solely on MRF capacity to provide recyclate quality "comparable to source separation." Staff will present a detailed walkthrough of one proposed approach for determining if mixed waste processing facilities (MWPFs) are comparable to source separation. Discussion will include definitions, certification process, numerical standards, and a MWPF evaluation process. Time will be available for stakeholder comments. For background, presentations are available from the September 19, 2012 sessions introducing the MRF standards program and the November 26, 2012 workshops on possible technical approaches. The current workshops will be webcast. Comments and questions should be directed to CalRecycle's Michelle Caballero at <>. 06/25/2013

CleanWorld Expands Capacity of Sacramento High-Solids AD Plant by 300%

CleanWorldFollowing successful demonstration and validation at 10,000 tons per year, California based CleanWorld has announced breaking ground for a 300% capacity expansion to 40,000 tons per year. CleanWorld's technology platform developed by Dr. Ruihong Zhang at University of California, Davis incorporates a modular, multi-stage digestive process where naturally occurring bacteria first break down, and then convert a thick organic slurry of food waste, manure, and other biomass into methane-rich biogas. The company's Sacramento BioDigester began accepting food waste in December of last year, and earlier this month began providing to-specification compressed biomethane fuel gas to waste hauler Atlas Disposal to fuel the company's fleet of heavy vehicles. The initial AD installation came on-line in 2012, co-located north of Sacramento at the American River Packaging Company; the most recent system is being installed on the UC Davis campus to manage 20,000 tons per year of campus food waste and other organics. Shawn Garvey, CleanWorld’s Vice President of Communications and Public Affairs: "With the Sacramento BioDigester, CleanWorld has taken an historic step forward in developing innovative and cost effective waste management and energy solutions." 06/25/2013

OriginOil's Technology Selected for Fish Farm Wastewater to Algae Integration

OriginOilLos Angeles based OriginOil has announced that its Electro Water Separation (EWS) technology has been selected by the Wyoming firm New Global Energy (NGE) as a key processing element in NGE's drive to acquire and restart idle fish farming operations in the Coachella Valley region of Southern California. OriginOil's EWS recently passed field trials at the Aqua Farming Technology facilities, demonstrating low-cost, high-speed, chemical free water sanitization and processing. NGE witnessed the trials and believes that by adopting EWS to sanitize water in a continuous loop process, fish farms can free up valuable land lost to filtration ponds, and reduce or eliminate expensive chemicals and antibiotics. The system also allows fish farmers to quickly harvest algae and pelletize it for highly nutritious and cost-effective fish feed. OriginOil’s EWS will support Aqua Farming Technology’s innovative farming practices, which span two sites across 120 acres in the Coachella Valley. Aqua Farming was the first to generate a significant portion of its farm’s power needs from solar energy and the first to implement a water recycling system to reduce fresh water consumption. Perry West, Chairman of NGE: "Following OriginOil’s field demonstration earlier this month, we have concluded that this technology is a strategic asset in our drive to restart the California aquaculture industry. We believe that this technology, combined with solar panels for energy and algae for fish feed, may give us the competitive advantage to produce highly profitable, highly nutritional California seafood." 06/25/2013

USAID Provides $100MM Investment Guarantee for Clean Energy in India

USAIDThe US Agency for International Development (USAID) announced that it will partner with US based institutional investor Northern Lights Capital Group to facilitate a $100 million investment in India’s clean energy sector via Nereus Capital. This investment, through the Agency’s Development Credit Authority, is expected to create hundreds of additional megawatts of sustainable energy capacity and will help to advance India’s burgeoning clean energy industry. The partnership is the first time in the Agency’s history that it has partnered with a private investment fund to facilitate targeted investment. USAID will provide a 40% credit guarantee for a $100 million limited partner commitment to Nereus Capital's India Alternative Energy Fund managed by Northern Lights Capital Group, an institutional investor. In order to meet latent demand and address energy shortfalls, the India government has set a target of 30,000 megawatts of renewable energy generation capacity in the next five years. USAID Administrator Raj Shah, traveling with Sec. Kerry in India, commented: "USAID will be able to dramatically leverage large scale funding to help India’s transition to a low carbon economy and open-up new development opportunities for enhanced energy access. This investment could eventually create as much as 300-400 additional megawatts of sustainable energy capacity, which is equivalent to lighting the homes of tens of thousands of Indian families. And as our first investment in a private investment fund, it will help to facilitate access for U.S. entrepreneurs to this important emerging market." 06/25/2013

WELTEC BIOPOWER Altmark AD Plant Selling Biogas to Regional Grid

WELTEC BIOPOWERGermany based WELTEC Biopower has announced that its 70,000 tonne per year anaerobic digestion (AD) combined heat and power (CHP) plant is now through all testing and has begun injecting upgraded biomethane into the regional natural gas grid infrastructure. The Altmark plant is in the Arneburg region of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, sited adjacent to an industrial biomass to power plant and near the abandoned Stendal Nuclear Power Plant site. Construction began on the Altmark Industrial and Commercial Zone site in March 2012. The completed facility consists of four digesters of 4,900 cubic meter total capacity, six digestate storage units of 5,000 cubic meters and a liquid reservoir. The plant produces 1,650 standard cubic meters of raw biogas an hour, with 250 cubic meters being used onsite to meet the facility's thermal demand. The remaining raw gas is treated to produce about 700 cubic meters per hour of 99% pure methane. Input of 70,000 tonnes per year consists of maize silage, whole-plant grain, sugar beets as well as dry chicken dung, chicken manure, and liquid manure. Altmark is traditionally an agricultural region with a high proportion of grassland, making the plant site attractive and providing a secure raw material supply. Since 2009 the Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection (BMELV) has been promoting this historical cultural landscape with a special regional development concept as one of Germany‘s 25 bioenergy regions. 06/25/2013

USFS Awards $2.5MM in Grants for 10 Woody Biomass to Energy Projects

US Forest ServiceForest Service Chief Tom Tidwell has announced ten grants totaling about $2.5 million to small businesses and community groups for development of woody biomass energy projects. Administered by the US Forest Products Laboratory (FPL), Woody Biomass Utilization Grants (WBUG) encourage use of locally sourced biomass material generated during fire risk reduction and forest health and restoration efforts, with funds going toward design, permitting, and cost analyses for biomass to energy project development. Ten of the seventeen applications received were selected for awards; each will bring at least 20% matching funds:

  Chilkoot Indian Association, Haines, Alaska $35,000

    Ketchikan Gateway Borough, Ketchikan, Alaska $143,363

    Sierra Institute for Community and Environment, Plumas County, Calif. $250,000

    Calaveras Healthy Impact Products Solution, Wilseyville, Calif. $184,405

    Narragansett Regional School District, Baldwinville, Mass. $250,000

    Stoltze Land and Lumber Company, Columbia Falls, Mont. $210,988

    New Generation Biomass, Alamogordo, N.M. $250,000

    Wisewood Inc., Harney County, Ore. $250,000

    Oregon Military Department, Salem, Ore. $250,000

    Menominee Tribal Enterprises, Neopit, Wis. $250,000

The 2013 WBUG round opened February 19, 2013 and closed April 8, 2013. Awardees are being encouraged to seek additional public and private funding to progress from work accomplished with these funds. In particular, USDA Rural Development has established grants and loan programs that might help fund construction of such facilities. Chief Tidwell: "These grants help grow new jobs, support clean energy production and improve our local environments, especially in reducing fire threats. Communities from Massachusetts to Alaska will benefit from the program this year." 06/22/2013

LanzaTech and Siemens Metals Partner for Steel Mill CO2 to Bioethanol

LanzaTechNew Zealand based LanzaTech has entered into a ten-year world-wide partnership with the Metals division of Siemens for development and marketing of its technology platform. Siemens and LanzaTech will work together on process integration, optimization, marketing, and customer projects. LanzaTech's patented fermentation technology transforms carbon-rich off-gases generated by the steel industry into low carbon bioethanol and other platform chemicals, using CO, CO2, and H2 off-gases from converter, coking plant, or blast furnace processes as nutrients and a source of energy for production of bioethanol, acetic acid, acetone, isopropanol, n-butanol or 2,3-butanediol and other chemicals.This can reduce a mill's carbon footprint by around one-third compared to the amount of CO2 in emissions resulting from combustion of off-gases for electricity generation. LanzaTech has had a pilot plant in Auckland, New Zealand since 2008 utilizing raw steel mill gases, and two pre-commercial level facilities converting flue gas from Baosteel and Shougang steel plants into ethanol, each at an annualized capacity of 300 tons. LanzaTech is now planning to begin construction on two commercial facilities in China in 2013 with production expected in 2014. Siemens and LanzaTech are already pursuing several commercial gas fermentation project opportunities around the world. Dr Jennifer Holmgren, CEO of LanzaTech: "Global demand for affordable and sustainable energy has never been stronger. Carbon emissions from steel mills can create an important new source of energy while simultaneously reducing emissions. We are delighted to be partnering with Siemens to deliver integrated solutions that improve the value and environmental footprint of the global steel industry." 06/21/2013

Enerkem Raises CAD $50MM for Gasification of Municipal Solid Waste

EnerkemMontreal based Enerkem has announced securing $50 million Canadian in its most recent round of financing, bringing 2013 investments to $87 million. One of Canada's largest institutional investors Investissement Québec contributed to this round, joining existing investors Waste Management of Canada, Rho Ventures, Braemar Energy Ventures, The Westly Group, Cycle Capital, Fonds de solidarité FTQ and Fondaction, who each increased their investment in Enerkem with this new equity financing round. Enerkem makes biofuels and renewable chemicals from waste. With its proprietary technology, Enerkem converts non-recyclable municipal solid waste into methanol, ethanol, and other widely used chemical intermediates. Enerkem operates both a demonstration plant and a pilot facility in Quebec. Enerkem is currently building a full-scale waste-to-biofuels facility in Edmonton, Alberta, and is developing similar facilities in North America and globally. Quebec Premier Pauline Marois: "Climate change, the dwindling supply of hydrocarbons and other environmental challenges have made it necessary to rethink our very lifestyles, not to mention the way we transport people and goods. By redefining our economic approach and adapting it to 21st-century realities, we can make Quebec one of the greenest and most prosperous regions of the planet. Enerkem is living proof that biofuels can be a wonderful opportunity for economic growth. Enerkem’s projects not only create jobs but also reduce the carbon footprint left by our transport systems, and they can clearly have a beneficial effect on our balance of trade." 06/21/2013

Due 07/05/2013: Advisor Applications to EPA for MSW Landfill Stds Review

US Environmental Protecition AgencyThe US Environmental protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it is accepting self-nominations from small businesses to become advisors to a Small Business Advocacy Review (SBAR) Panel for the development of a proposed rulemaking and potential revision of New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills. EPA must review and revise the NSPS at least once every eight years; this action addresses Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations (40 CFR) Subpart WWW of the Clean Air Act along with various emissions issues previously identified. EPA is required to convene an SBAR to provide an opportunity for small businesses, small governments, and small not-for-profit organizations (collectively referred to as small entities) to provide advice and recommendations to ensure that EPA carefully considers small entity concerns. Accepted applicants become Small Entity Representatives (SERs) advising the EPA and other agencies on the primary SBAR Panel. Background documents and timelines formal Rulemaking and Implementation program for Standards of Performance for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills (Docket #A-88-09) are available on-line. Individuals who are interested in potentially serving as a SER should send a message to <> or call 202-564-1192 by no later than July 5, 2013. 06/21/2013

Pöyry Releases White Paper on Potential Significance of Using Biocoal in Asia

PöyryThe Finnish engineering company Pöyry has announced release of a white paper, "Biocoal – Bioenergy Game Changer in Asia?" at the Centre for Management Technology (CMT) Biomass Pellets Trade & Power conference in Seoul, September 9-10, 2013. National Renewable Energy Policy in Japan and South Korea promotes biomass consumption growth, with co-firing in Japan’s power plants projected to increase while South Korea’s biomass usage expands to 10 million tonnes per year by 2020. The white paper's author, Andreas Teir, Director of Global BioFutures Practice for Pöyry, explores wood and palm pellet supply, sustainability, agricultural residue, collaborations and biomass market in Malaysia, Canada, US and Russia. The paper explains: …"processing biomass into biocoal and densified biocoal facilitates the use of biomass in energy generation and creates opportunities for fuel sourcing from further distances at reduced costs. Biomass is processed to biocoal through a number of technologies, including torrefaction and steam explosion techniques. Biocoal can then be densified to pellets or briquettes to increase the bulk density and decrease transportation costs. Biocoal pellets have hydrophobic characteristics and can be received and handled by the power plants in the same manner as fossil coal. Processing biomass to biocoal gives it coal-like characteristics such as darkness in colour, brittleness and requires less energy for milling and pelletising than traditional biomass. Biocoal contains up to 90% of the original energy content of the biomass used. In pelletised form, biocoal has a 30% higher energy density than white pellets, which decreases transportation costs. Biocoal can be co-fired directly, and used in gasification processes or densified." The paper can be received upon request without cost from the CMT trade association's website. 06/20/2013

Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions Awards $1.3MM for Novel Biomass Uses

Alberta Innovates Bio SolutionsCanadian public/private corporation Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions (AI Bio) has announced release of awards totaling $1.3 million to six Canadian applied research teams for advanced and novel uses of residual biomass. The awards are being funded from Al Bio's Bioindustrial Research and Innovation Program 2012-13. Researchers in the six projects plan to use renewable wood or agricultural fibre for a variety of innovative products or processes including bioplastics for automotive, packaging, or biomedical industries, and biochar for removal of contaminants from oil tailings water. Other projects will focus on developing green biocomposite building products like high-strength, low-weight, foam-core sandwich structures, low-cracking concrete, high-performance cross-laminated timber panels and building-code-certified structural insulated panels from oriented strand board. Dr. Stan Blade, Chief Executive Officer of Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions: "The projects funded through our Bioindustrial Research and Innovation program hold great promise for increasing economic activity in Alberta's bioindustrial sector, helping to strengthen and diversify our provincial economy. Blending forest or agricultural fibre with existing materials or using the fibre in innovative ways may lead to products that are environmentally sustainable with desirable market qualities." Established on January 1, 2010 under the Alberta Research and Innovation Act, Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions is a member of the Alberta Innovates family and reports to the Minister of Alberta Enterprise and Advanced Education. 06/20/2013

New Earth Solutions Starts Power Export from Avonmouth RDF Plant

New Earth SolutionsUnited Kingdom (UK) based NEAT Technology Group Limited has announced that it has begun export of electricity on contract to the regional grid from its refuse-derived fuel (RDF) facility in Avonmouth. NEAT, the thermal technology subsidiary of New Earth Solutions, utilizes a patented technologic platform of Advanced Thermal Conversion (ATC) that combines pyrolysis and gasification to efficiently convert RDF to power. The RDF operations are adjacent to New Energy Solution's main 250,000 tonne per year Avonmouth Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) plant, utilizing post-recycling residual materials from the MBT to create stabile, homogenous and well-characterized RDF to fuel two 6.5 megawatt electricity (MWe) generation trains. New Earth handles nearly half a million tonnes of contracted waste a year and has been preparing waste as a fuel since 2010. Until recently, all of this RDF was being exported to the European continent; now the fuel is being sent via a 30 metre connecting conveyor to the ATC, closing-the-loop and enhancing New Earth’s operational efficiency. Under the UK Government’s Renewable Obligation Order, which encourages the development of innovative technology to help meet the UK’s renewable energy target, electricity produced by the NEAT technology qualifies for double ROCs. Graham Lockyer, NEAT’s Business Development Director: "We started hot commissioning the plant in February and since then we have successfully processed 10,000 tonnes of prepared RDF with a cumulative total of over 10,000 operational hours across eight modular Phase 1 thermal units.  We are now generating and exporting renewable energy to the grid and New Earth’s MBT is running on electricity produced from waste it processed just hours before." 06/20/2013

GE Jenbacher Engines Generate Power from First Sub-Saharan Biogas Plant

General ElectricGE has announced that its authorized Jenbacher engine distributor, the United Kingdom based project developer Clarke Energy, will install GE engine units on an anaerobic digestion (AD) project owned by Tropical Power for production of combined heat and power. The Kenyan project site is Clarke Energy's first in the sub-Saharan Africa AD effort. The digesters will convert a vegetable farm's harvest and process wastes to biogas, which will then fuel the Ecomagination-qualified Jenbacher engines for generation of 2.8 megawatts of power. The two J420 units will be designed to operate at the farm’s high altitude of nearly 2,000 meters above sea level. The containerized gas engines will be configured for cogeneration, with surplus heat recovered as hot water and used to support the biogas plant’s process heating. The plant will meet all of the farm's demand for heat and power, off-setting purchase of electricity from the unstable regional grid and diesel fuel for generator operation needed to run pumps, irrigation production, compressors and other equipment. Karl Wetzlmayer, general manager of gas engines for power generation—GE Power & Water: "This first biogas engine project in sub-Saharan Africa for Clarke Energy and GE demonstrates how our fuel-flexible Jenbacher gas engines can provide reliable and cleaner on-site power, using local energy resources and labor to help promote energy and economic security throughout the African continent." 06/20/2013

Global Bioenergies Ready to Begin Industrial Isobutene Production Scale-Up

Global BioenergiesBased in France with an office in Ames, Iowa, Global Bioenergies (GBE) has announced successful pilot plant trials, and has scheduled scale-up to industrial production of isobutene beginning in July 2013. The expanded operations will be supported by a €5.2 million grant over three years from Investissements d’Avenir, which is managed by the Commissariat Général à l’Investissement. GBE began testing with a one liter lab testing module, progressed in mid-2012 to a 42 liter pilot, and will now build a 500 liter fermenter to provide process validation at a scale of approx 10 tons of yearly isobutene production. The progress has resulted in a positive stock appraisal by France's ODDO Securities. GBE utilizes a gas fermentation technology platform of bacterial enzymes for conversion of sugars to the gas isobutene, a foundation chemical crucial to a wide variety of manufacturing processes previously dependent on petroleum extraction. GBE notes that the isobutene gaseous fermentation achievement is also the first time that an olefin has been bio-produced using a non-natural metabolic pathway. Fermentation of a gas rather than a liquid product allows separation by ambient pressure vapor extraction, greatly simplifying pathways for low-value biomass conversion to high-value products. Marc Delcourt, CEO of Global Bioenergies: "This industrial pilot phase begins in accordance with our schedule. It is a new era in Global Bioenergies’ history. The company has been and will continue to be moved by scientific innovation, but a second engine – that of industrial deployment – has been switched on. The success of this new phase in process industrialization will enable Global Bioenergies to grant multiple licenses along specific branches of the isobutene product tree. Further developments will allow the production of very high purity isobutene to cover all applications of this platform-molecule." 06/19/2013

Xylitol Canada Successfully Completes Wood Sugar Extraction Demo

Xylitol CanadaBased in Toronto, Xylitol Canada has announced completion of a three-month pilot-scale program to demonstrate its energy efficient, low cost methods for extraction of the wood sugar xylose from which the dietary sugar xylitol is made. The company has been working since 2008 to develop a process that can produce environmentally sustainable xylose and xylitol; the process uses a combination of steam and enzymes to produce xylose with significantly less waste. The company's commercialization strategy focuses on strategic biorefinery partnerships in which Xylitol's cellulosic biomass residual can be used to produce higher value biochemicals and transportation fuels by a second company's processing. Initial successful trials converted Aspen wood feedstock to sugar and residual, supporting the technical feasibility of process scale-up. A commercial facility is being designed to produce up to 10,000 tonnes of xylose per year from sustainably harvested North American hardwood. Andrew Reid, President and CEO of Xylitol Canada: "By completing these trials, we have confirmed our position as a leader in identifying sustainable new sources of xylitol in North America. These types of technology advances and partnerships are a necessary step that will allow us to competitively promote North American xylitol for domestic consumers. We are proud of the significant progress we've made over the last few years, and are excited to continue our pursuit to become a leading producer of North American xylitol." 06/19/2013

Due 07/12/2013: Comments on California's AB 32 Waste Mgt Sector Plan

CalRecycleAs Teru Talk reported last week, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) held a public workshop yesterday to present a draft framework for a Waste Management Sector Plan as required by the 2008 Scoping Plan. During afternoon workshop, CalRecycle asked that stakeholder comments be filed by July 12, 2013, submitted by email <>. In addition to the joint agency staff technical papers reviews previously and available on-line, CalRecycle staff Nancy Frevert also presented on state procurement of recyclable goods, and the agency's proposed program changes intended to aid market draw through identification of contracted goods procurement in addition to direct state purchases. The state procurement topic was included (beginning with slide 24) in the workshop's slide presentation; the issue was also reviewed by the California Assembly's Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review during the June 12, 2013 informational and oversight hearing. The CARB conducted its first AB 32 Scoping Plan update workshop on June 13, 2013 and will hold at least three more workshops around California before taking the final Update before its Board in November of this year. CalRecycle will also continue working on both the Scoping Plan update and on the AB 341 Legislative Report on Implementation, due at the start of 2014. Questions regarding the joint agency efforts to update the Scoping Plan may be addressed to Teri Wion at CalRecycle <> or Mei Fong at CARB; (916) 344-2570. 06/19/2013

CEC and US DOE Collaborate for Energy Research and Demo Projects

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) announced that it has established a framework for collaboration on energy research and demonstration projects by entering into a "first-ever" Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E). The state-federal effort intends to identify research related to cutting-edge energy technologies to maximize the effectiveness of government research and development funding that will reduce energy costs, enhance electricity reliability and minimize environmental impacts related to the production, delivery, and use of energy. The collaboration may include coordinated solicitation funding and technical information sharing through meetings, workshops and webcasts. The MOU also establishes a framework that may lead to ARPA-E award recipients deploying and testing technologies at the sites and facilities of the CEC and/or Energy Commission stakeholders. For technologies that are mature and have a high probability of market deployment, the CEC may provide additional support for projects impacting the State of California. "Collaborating with states like California that foster innovation and support breakthrough technologies is critical in developing energy options for America's future," says ARPA-E Deputy Director Cheryl Martin. "We look forward to working closely with the California Energy Commission to encourage innovative research and development, help move technologies to their next step and grow the local, state, and national energy innovation community." 06/18/2013

SARTA Launches AgStart Program to Accelerate Ag Technology Ventures

Sacramento Regional Technology AllianceThe Sacramento Regional Technology Alliance (SARTA) has announced the launch of AgStart, SARTA's newest industry-cluster-focused program, which will accelerate the growth of companies developing and bringing to market innovative sustainable agricultural technologies. SARTA is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 corporation founded in 2001, and focused on a nine-county region of Butte, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Solano, Sutter, Yolo, and Yuba counties. The AgStart program will offer seed grants to companies commercializing AgTech innovations, and host a "pitch competition" for Ag tech companies. AgStart will represent the region as an Ag tech hub at the Ag Innovation Showcase in Kansas City, Missouri, in September and will integrate Ag tech innovation content into SARTA's annual CleanStart Showcase on October 16, 2013. SARTA, in partnership with the University of California, Davis (UC Davis), received a $1 million i6 Challenge Grant to foster agricultural technology innovation in the Sacramento area region. UC Davis has launched the Sustainable AgTech Innovation Center (SATIC), and will create an AgEntrepreneurship Academy to will help agriculture entrepreneurs identify market needs and opportunities, and create agriculture “food chain” clusters of innovation. Together, the partners are working to identify and accelerate new ventures focused on sustainable agriculture through the region. For more information, contact Doug Kohl, SARTA's new AgStart Program Manager, at <> or (209) 770-0919. 06/18/2013

Calysta and NatureWorks Agree on Joint Biomethane-to-Chemical R&D

Calysta EnergyCalifornia based Calysta Energy has announced entering into a multi-year collaboration with international bio-sourced polymer development company NatureWorks LLC, a Minnesota-based subsidiary of Cargill. Calysta's synthetic biology pathways convert carbon-laden gases such as methane-rich biogas from anaerobic digestion facilities, wastewater treatment plants, and landfills into foundation chemicals. Calysta secured a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant this January to support development of a production platform for a new class of modified lipids, focusing on development of precursors for biobased biodegradable plastics which can serve as drop-in replacements to those used for current petroleum-derived plastics. Among NatureWorks' development is the bio-sourced polymer stock compound Ingeo, currently being produced at commercial scale from simple plant sugars from corn starch and sugarcane, while the company has been exploring second-generation cellulosic sugar sources. The collaborative research will focus on direct methane conversion to lactic acid as a precursor to polymers, a process that if successful could significantly reduce the cost of production while broadening the base of readily available feedstock. Alan Shaw, Ph.D., chairman, president and CEO of Calysta Energy: "We are pleased to be partnering with NatureWorks, an industry leader in renewable technology and biopolymer business development. Calysta’s proprietary technology enables a novel route from a significant greenhouse gas to high-value industrial chemicals such as lactic acid. This approach demonstrates the power of biology compared to chemical transformation. Specific products, such as lactic acid, would be extremely difficult to make economically from methane using traditional catalysts." 06/18/2013

CARB, CalRecycle Host AB 32 Scoping Plan Workshop on Waste Management

California Air Resources BoardThe California Air Resources Board (CARB) and California's Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) have posted a Revised Agenda for a public workshop to be held in Sacramento at the Cal/EPA Headquarters on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 from 1:00pm to 4:30pm. At the workshop, staff will present a draft framework for a Waste Management Sector Plan as required by the 2008 Scoping Plan to the state's Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (Assembly Bill 32, or AB 32), which set 2020 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction standards. The Scoping Plan prioritized key sources of GHGs, identifying improved waste management as crucial to meeting AB 32's goals and tasking the CARB and CalRecycle to collaborate with each other and with stakeholders to characterize emission reduction opportunities for handling solid waste. Subsequent legislation has since added to AB 32 planning, including the Cap and Trade Program (Final Resolution 11-32) of 2008 and AB 341's mandate for commercial recycling, 2011. Staff have developed white papers in advance of and following Tuesday's workshop agenda; an Overview of the Waste Management Sector defines the priorities, progressing through each of the major Task elements: (1) Recycling, Reuse, and Remanufacturing of recovered materials; (2) Composting and Anaerobic Digestion; (3) Biomass Conversion; (4) Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Thermal Processes; and (5) Landfilling of Waste. Staff then will present a draft Implementation Plan for stakeholder consideration and comment. One over-riding theme: California must "take full ownership of the waste generated within its borders." The workshop will be webcast; comments may be submitted by email (climatechange@calrecycle.ca.gov). Questions may be addressed to Teri Wion at CalRecycle (teri.wion@calrecycle.ca.gov) or Mei Fong at CARB; (916) 344-2570. 06/15/2013

JBI Begins Shake-Down Testing on Third Plastic2Oil Processor Assembly

Plastic2OilNew York based JBI, Inc. has announced completion of assembly on the company's third pyrolytic retort for conversion of non-recyclable waste plastic into alternative fuel. The new processor is now undergoing initial plastic feeding, fuel production, and process debugging, which will address any initial problems and any parts that may potentially fail under the full heat of the process and plastic loads. The latest patent pending processing model incorporates significant advancements over past designs, including real-time residuals removal, and is currently undergoing initial plastic feedstock processing tests. The current processors run at 20 ton per day capacity, producing about one liter of oil per kilogram of waste plastic with the ambient pressure retorts running on the lighter gases extracted during processing. Catalytic conversion and in-line addition of fuel additives produces a finished fuel substitute for standard petroleum diesel. Since 2011 through March 31, 2013, JBI has processed approximately 2.8 million pounds of plastic and produced approximately 482,000 gallons of in-spec end user fuels, including diesel, fuel oil #6 and naphtha. JBI President and Chief Executive Officer Tony Bogolin: "We believe that this new processor will significantly improve our production and will be our flagship for use at future P2O sites. In addition, we anticipate that consistent production out of this processor will be a stabilizing force to help fuel the Company’s growth." 06/14/2013

CalETC's New Alternative Fuels Report Praises California's LCFS

CalETCThe non-profit California Electric Transportation Coalition (CalETC) has announced release of a new report, California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard: Compliance Outlook for 2020, exploring the rapid development of alternative fuels and offers high praise for the states' Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) as a global market driver. This report summarizes the first phase of a year-long assessment of the economic and environmental impacts of meeting the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). Developed by a coalition of investors, utilities, and alternative fuels and vehicle producers, the report analyzes recent developments in the transportation sector and presents three scenarios that ratchet down the carbon intensity of transportation fuels 10 percent, to meet the goal of the LCFS by 2020. All three projections point to an increasingly diverse fuel supply, with more innovation leading to more renewable fuels and advanced vehicles. The report concludes that the LCFS is achieving its goal of encouraging technological innovation through private investment, and that its goals are achievable within its mandated timeline, given current market conditions and revised estimates of low-carbon fuel availability out to 2020. 06/14/2013

PHG Energy Integrates Wood Gasification with GE's Clean Cycle Generator

PHG EnergyTennessee based PHG Energy (PHGE) has announced success in a collaborative project with GE to integrate its wood gasification system with GE's "Clean Cycle" heat-to-power Rankine Cycle generator. Electricity produced through the GE generators will be sold to the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). The next step in commercialization should create an integrated bioenergy combined heat and power system with a design capacity between one and five megawatts. “This system integrates three proven technologies: GE’s heat-to-power generator, PHG Energy’s gasifier and a standard heat exchanger,” said PHGE President Tom Stanzione. “The project is simple and elegant in its straightforward design, capable of operating on multiple and varied waste streams, and offers operating costs far below existing waste-to-energy generation systems in the marketplace.” PHGE successfully demonstrated its wood gasification system for production of clean-burning producer gas at the Gleason, Tennessee facilities of the Boral Brick Corporation in 2011, using the six-retort installation to off-set the brick works' kiln fuel demand and for PHGE's own research and development. PHGE is currently developing a commercial system for conversion of both wood waste and biosolids for the City of Covington, Tennessee. Earlier this week, GE announced an agreement to deploy its Clean Cycle system for power generation in a remote area of Alaska, in that case using heat from three diesel generators to produce additional power. 06/14/2013

Energy Answers' Puerto Rico Waste to Energy Project Receives EPA Air Permit

Energy Answers InternationalThe US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced its final approval of a Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) air permit for a new 77 megawatt solid waste facility owned by Energy Answers Arecibo, LLC’s, at the former site of Global Fibers Paper Mill in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. The permittee is a subsidiary of New York based Energy Answers International, Inc and its Virgin Island affiliate Energy Answers International, LLC. Energy Answers' concurrent announcement explains that the $650 million waste-to-energy complex is only one element of the highly integrated Arecibo Resource Recovery Facility, designed to receive up to 2,100 tons of municipal solid waste (MSW) per day. The front-end materials recovery facility (MRF) will first recovery reusable goods and recyclable materials. Post-processing residuals will then be stabilized using Energy Answers' proprietary Processed Refuse Fuel (PRF) technology, which finely shreds the residual and removes ferrous metals. The shredded PRF can then be baled for longer term storage as needed, or fed directly to the dual waste combustion chambers. Since first proposed in early 2012, the project air permit has undergone extensive EPA assessment including numerous public hearings and receipt of over 3,000 public comments; key permit related documents may be reviewed on-line. In response to public comments, several operating, monitoring and reporting requirements are more stringent than originally proposed. In addition to the direct requirements of the permit for the facility, Energy Answers will finance the installation of a second monitor in the community to collect data on lead emissions, in addition to monitors already operating in the Arecibo area. 06/13/2013

Cyclone Power and Ohio State Kick-Off Heat-Driven Engine Testing Program

Cyclone Power TechnologiesCyclone Power Technologies Inc of Pompano Beach, Florida has announced the official start of a development and testing program with Ohio State University's Center for Automotive Research (OSU CAR). Cyclone recruited OSU CAR this February to assist in the commercialization of its external combustion engine technology, specifically the company's Waste Heat Engine (WHE) model. OSU CAR is a Columbus-based interdisciplinary research center within Ohio State University's College of Engineering, located about 30 miles from Cyclone's manufacturing partner, Precision CNC. The Center is performing finite element and dynamic stress analysis of the engine, followed by independent durability testing and validation. Among other expertise, OSU CAR focuses on advanced engine development, alternative fuels for reduced fuel consumption and emissions, electric and hybrid drive-trains, and advanced battery technology. The Cyclone Power system is an advanced Rankin Cycle engine driven by heat derived from essentially any fuel source; the company is engaged globally in numerous application assessments including biodiesel, synthetic fuel gas from thermal conversion of waste, and solar-derived heat. Harry Schoell, Chairman and CTO of Cyclone, stated: "We're honored to be working with this well-grounded group of engineers, and believe that with the expertise and resources that OSU CAR brings to the table, we will be able to meet our goals of getting our WHE into production by the end of this year. My innovation team here in Florida will be providing all support necessary to successfully transition our technology to our manufacturing partners in Ohio." 06/13/2013

Due 07/12/2013: 2nd Call for Grant Applications to DECC for Energy Projects

United Kingdom Department of Energy & Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has announced the second-round opening of a grant program soliciting innovative ideas in energy efficiency, energy storage, and low carbon energy generation. Proposals are now being accepted from entrepreneurs, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and start-ups, both from the public and private sectors. DECC expects to open Calls for projects every four to six months from June 2013, until the full funding has been allocated. Applicants need to demonstrate a "robust evidence based case for funding, that will include but not be limited to: (1) the potential impact of the innovation on 2020 and/or 2050 low carbon targets or security of supply; (2) the technical viability of their innovation and coherent development plan that will commercially progress the innovation; (3) value for money; and (4) the size and nature of the business opportunity. Of the total £35 million allocated to the Energy Entrepreneurs Fund program over this DECC Spending Review period, £16million has been awarded since the first phase in Autumn 2012. The remaining £19million is now available on a competitive, rolling basis to support projects up to a maximum value of £1million for work completed by 31st March 2015. The Deadline for the first call for applications within this second phase is July 12, 2013. Applicants will first need to review the Guidance Notes and other forms and details available on-line, and register their contact details by 5th July on the Energy Entrepreneurs registration website. 06/13/2013

ENER-G Selected for Landfill Gas to Energy Project in Celaya, Mexico

ENER-GThe United Kingdom-based green power developer ENER-G has been selected by the Mexican municipality of Celaya to build and operate a landfill gas (LFG) management project, according to the Energy Services and Technology Association (ESTA). ENER-G Mexico specializes in biogas generation, utilizing methane from landfill gas, anaerobic digestion, and mines to generate renewable electricity. ENER-G designs, builds, operates, and owns the landfill gas generators, but can also sell, lease or hire power generation packages. The company will invest £1.5 million in the landfill gas generation project, which will capture the methane gas emitted from 1.5 million tons of waste and convert it into one megawatt (MW) of renewable energy.  The facility is expected to begin power generation towards the end of 2013 and it is projected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 40,000 tons CO2 equivalent per year. The proposed plant at the Tinajitas Landfill in Celaya is the third LFG effort that the international firm has secured in Mexico with its sister company Biogas Technologies Ltd., first in the municipality of Durango and another LFG to power project in Aguascalientes, providing reliable power to a Nissan plant. The landfill gas generation projects will help Mexico to deliver on its new Climate Change Act, which commits Mexico to cutting its carbon dioxide emissions by 30 per cent by 2020, and by 50 per cent below current levels by 2050, and to generate 35 per cent of electricity from renewable sources by 2024. 06/12/2013

Green Investment Bank Releases Market Report on Anaerobic Digestion

Green Investment BankUnited Kingdom based Green Investment Bank (GIB) has announced the release its Anaerobic Digestion Market Report 2013, detailing the current status of the anaerobic digestion (AD) industry in the United Kingdom. Key findings of the report: (1) Growing opportunity: There has been significant recent growth in the AD sector with 106MWe of capacity installed or in construction by FY2012, versus 45MWe in FY2010. An additional 148MWe of specific capacity has been identified as available to be developed which would require capital investment of circa £650 million; (2) Fragmented and immature market: AD sector is highly fragmented and immature – with the top 5 operators accounting for less than 28% of the market with the majority of facilities in the UK having been in operation for less than 3 years; (3) Wide ranging industry load factors: There is a marked divergence in operational performance between different facilities much of which is attributed to feedstock. Operational performance for agricultural facilities in 2012 was 69%; 67% for source segregated food and 19% for residual waste; and (4) Critical Factors to Project Success: a) Feedstock selectivity; b) Deep understanding of, and access to local markets for Digestate; c) Dedicated operating personnel; d) Active process management. GIB commissioned SLR Consulting to worm with its own analysts on the base research, with plans to regularly release updates. 06/12/2013

USDA Approves $98.6MM in Advanced Biofuels Production Support Payments

US Department of AgricultureUS Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced that up to $98.6 million in payments supporting advanced biofuels production have been approved. The payments are provided through USDA Rural Development’s Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels, known as the Advanced Biofuel Payment Program. The payments to producers support and expand production of advanced biofuels refined from sources such as cellulose, sugar and starch other than corn kernel starch, hemicelluloses, lignin, waste materials, biogas, butanol, diesel-equivalent fuel, sugarcane, and nonfood crops such as poplar trees or switchgrass. Producers who did not apply for payments during the October 2012 application window may now apply for payments for third and fourth quarter fiscal year 2013 production as well as for any applicable incremental production. Applications received by July 11, 2013 will be considered for Fiscal Year 2013 funds. Complete details on how to apply and on available funding are found on Page 34975 of the June 11 Federal Register. Secretary Vilsack: "The United States is on the path to a cleaner, more secure energy future. By helping producers to support and expand the production of advanced biofuels, USDA is ensuring that Rural America is a key component of President Obama's 'all-of-the-above' energy strategy to reduce the Nation's reliance on foreign oil." 06/12/2013

ESA Releases Practical Guide to a Circular Economy by Reprocessing Waste

Environmental Services AssociationThe United Kingdom (UK) based Environmental Services Association (ESA) has released a report entitled Going for Growth: A Practical Route to a Circular Economy, available for download without charge. The waste and resource recovery industry is central to the circular pathway, assisting in the redesign as well as the infrastructure. Countries can no longer depend on a "linear economy" of use-dispose, and now must learn to recover, process, and return materials from the waste stream back into the raw materials supply chain. Used goods are put into a processing flow for reuse of what can be cleaned and repaired or repurposed, while dismantling and reconstituting recovered materials where reuse is not feasible. Reprocessing allows constituents of wastes to be recycled, including conversion of organics to soil amendments, to fuels and chemicals, and ultimately to energy for post-recycling residual wastes. Going for Growth addresses the global challenges and barriers as well as the benefits and incentives, highlighting the fact that domestic reprocessing capacity lags far behind recycling capacity. The localized infrastructure of facilities that can cleanly and effectively convert wastes back into raw materials must be dramatically increased, globally, cutting transport emissions form long-haul recyclate brokerage while retaining resources and jobs in the region of the waste generation. Generation, collection and utilization of better data characterizing all stages of materials flow within the economy is sorely needed. Product manufacturers need to design for increased product end-of-life reuse/recovery options. Materials managers need to fully report end destinations of recyclates. Oversight agencies need to encourage recovered materials quality improvements. 06/11/2013

Renmatix, UPM Sign JDA for Conversion of Lignocellulosic Biomass to Sugars

RenmatixPennsylvania-based Renmatix has entered into a non-exclusive joint development agreement (JDA) with the Swedish firm UPM. Under terms of the JDA both companies will further develop Renmatix’s water-based Plantrose process that uses water at very high temperatures and pressures to breakdown biomass through supercritical hydrolysis. The water acts as both a powerful solvent and catalyst, creating rapid reactions that can convert woody biomass into low-cost sugar intermediates for subsequent downstream processing into biochemicals. The process has two core steps: (1) fractionation of biomass and separation of the remaining solids which contain cellulose and lignin, and (2) cellulose hydrolysis of the pretreated solids under more severe conditions utilizing hot compressed water as the primary solvent. UPM focuses on connecting the "bio" and "forest" industries under its Biofore program. UPM New Businesses and Development (NBD) is an important part of UPM’s renewal and Biofore strategy to provide added value to renewable wood raw material, with key projects in biocomposites, biofibrils and biochemicals. Michael Duetsch, Director of Biochemicals, at UPM: "We are very excited about this truly collaborative endeavor. It combines UPM’s core competencies in sustainable sourcing and efficient industrial processing of wood, with Renmatix’s unique conversion technology. Access to second generation, lignocellulosic, sugars through a process that uses almost no consumables is a crucial factor in Plantrose technology’s attractiveness." 06/11/2013

Penn State NEWBio Webinar Will Explore Future of Residential Wood Heating

NEWBioPennsylvania State University's NEWBio program hosts the free monthly "Northeast Bioenergy Webinar Series", and has announced the next presentation on June 11, 2013: The Future of Residential Wood Heating. The presentation features John Ackerly, President of the Maryland based non-profit, the Alliance for Green Heat, in an exploration of the newest global wood heat technologies along with US state and federal policies, regulations and markets. In February 2012 following discussions with the magazine Popular Mechanics, the Alliance launched the international Wood Heat Design Challenge, organizing an effort supported by a wide array of solid partners and sponsors. Some of the world's most innovative small scale wood stove designs are in "heated" competition; four stove design and development firms remain at this stage of the Challenge, vying now for the top slot in the Wood Stove Decathlon scheduled for November 15-19, 2013 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. In addition to expanding knowledge of high-efficiency residential and small-business wood heat, the Alliance promotes transparency in efficiency ratings on wood fired systems, tracking such matters as the Environmental Protection Agency's on-going regulatory changes impacting commercial scale wood fired outdoor boilers. The NEWBio webinar series is offered by Penn State without charge on the second Tuesday of each month, with participation gained through on-line registration. 06/10/2013

Stafford County Approves Lease for EEP's $73MM MSW Pyrolysis Project

Energy Extraction PartnersThe Board of Supervisors of Stafford County, Virginia last week approved the lease of 11 acres of property controlled jointly by the City and County of Fredericksburg at the Rappahannock Regional Landfill to the local firm Energy Extraction Partners (EEP). The decision follows the Rappahannock Solid Waste Management Board (R-Board) selection of EEP's submission to the Request for Proposals released for development of an alternative energy project utilizing the region's municipal solid waste (MSW). Local news indicates that the R-Board received three proposals in November, including from EEP. The firm's technology platform would produce a refuse derived fuel pellet from post-recycling MSW residuals, as feedstock for non-combustive pyrolytic conversion to synthetic fuel gas (syngas). The proposed design uses the cleaned and cooled syngas to fuel a turbine generator, while excess heat will be captured and returned for feedstock drying and site-demand steam production. The R-Board's selection of EEP was contingent on the lease approval by the County along with separate approval from the City Council of Fredericksburg, since the property is jointly controlled by the City and County. The County made a final lease dependent on EEP's ability to secure financing and to deliver a $1 million payment to the R-Board by June 28, 2013. Mr. Yavorski, President and CEO of EEP, told Teru Talk that he anticipates resolution of all outstanding lease arrangements by mid to late July, 2013. 06/10/2013

CARB Posts Draft Alternative Diesel Regulations, Schedules Workshop

California Air Resources BoardThe California Air Resources Board (CARB) has released draft regulatory language for oversight of the sale of alternative diesel fuels in California. ARB has posted a Notice and Agenda for a public workshop to discuss the provisions, scheduled for Thursday, June 13, 2013. Once codified as a new section 2293 in Title 13 of the California Code of Regulations (CCR), this first alternative diesel fuel (ADF) regulation will address only biodiesel, while providing the template for a streamlined pathway to legal sale of ADF in California. The template would apply a prescribed process to any ADF for which emissions data warrant enhanced monitoring, analyses, and if needed, emissions mitigation; or where emissions data are unavailable. The process would allow a gradual and controlled ramp up of sales while requiring emissions testing, market monitoring, and analysis of specified market performance criteria. The regulations go into effect July 1, 2014. The draft proposes a four-stage ramp-up: Stage 1: Limited Start-Up Sales for ADFs With No Emissions Data; Stage 2: Expanded Sales with Enhanced Monitoring, Specified Pre-Mitigation Performance Criteria and Analysis; Stage 3: Emissions-Mitigated Sales, Continued Enhanced Monitoring and Analysis, and Stage 4: Unrestricted Sales, Reduced Reporting. For general information, visit the Biodiesel/Renewable Diesel website. 06/09/2013

GE Supplies Waste Heat to Energy Systems for Remote Alaskan Community

GEGeneral Electric Company (GE) has announced that it will provide its Clean Cycle waste heat to power generator module to the Kotzebue Electric Association (KEA), servicing remote cities in Alaska. Kotzebue is located north of the Arctic Circle, and is facing high fuel costs and major logistical challenges for providing reliable electricity and heat. The city of 3,200 residents is dependent upon a single annual summer shipment of diesel fuel. GE’s innovative technology will use recovered exhaust heat from the city’s three diesel engines, with savings of more than 177,000 liters (46,000 gallons) of diesel fuel per year and reduction of the city’s energy costs. The new Clean Cycle unit utilizes an Organic Rankine Cycle that creates no additional emissions and will displace about 100 kilowatts (kWe) of electricity otherwise dependent on diesel fuel. Brad Garner, president—heat recovery solutions, GE Power & Water: "We have a great interest in bringing small-scale waste heat recovery to diesel utility applications around the world. Kotzebue highlights how the Clean Cycle technology can reduce cost and increase fuel efficiency by utilizing heat from diesel engines. This is a tangible value and an attractive power source for end customers." The cooperation between GE and KEA received financial support from the state of Alaska “Renewable Energy Fund,” which promotes the use of Alaska’s natural energy resources in order to reduce the costs of electricity and heat generation; the installation is scheduled to begin operating in the fourth quarter of 2013. 06/09/2013

Cool Planet Energy Secures $29MM for First Commercial Biofuels Facility

Cool Planet Energy SystemsBased in Camarillo, California, the biofuels and biochemicals company Cool Planet Energy Systems has announced closure on $29 million as part of a Series D funding round seeking $100 million total. The funds will be used for construction of its first commercial production facility that will convert biomass and organic wastes into about 10 million gallons of gasoline per year. Cool Planet’s patented thermo-mechanical process enables the deployment of small, modular facilities through a distributed model, “taking the plants to the biomass instead of bringing the biomass to the plants.” The modular approach provides viable economics at small scale, producing gasoline, biochar and sequestering significant quantities of carbon. The company announced last fall that it had successfully produced gasoline at about $1.50 per gallon, using low-grade feedstock including woodchips, crop residue, algae, etc. and produces multiple distinct gas streams for catalytic upgrading to conventional fuel components. Fast thermal/mechanical processing of biomass typically produces a large quantity of neutral carbon since biomass has substantial excess carbon versus hydrogen when used to produce conventional petrochemical fuel components. The company is also developing long term sequestration options for this excess carbon. When the excess process carbon is used for fuel such as a coal substitute, the entire process is carbon neutral and, thus, produces both carbon neutral petrochemical compatible components and a carbon neutral coal substitute. Barry Rowan, Cool Planet CFO: "We are very pleased to have completed this early close which includes investments by all of our existing investors along with some high quality new investors. We remain very encouraged by the response to our ongoing fundraising efforts in the U.S. and globally, and fully expect to achieve our goal of raising a minimum of $100 million in this round." 06/09/2013

California Assembly to Review CalRecycle Management of Recycled Products

California CapitolThe California Assembly's Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review has now posted notice of an informational and oversight hearing scheduled for June 12, 2013 to consider agency management of "Recycled and Environmentally Preferred Products." The purpose of the hearing is to review compliance with Public Contract Code sections that require state agencies to purchase recycled and environmentally preferred products and to determine if opportunities exist within the procurement process to increase the state's purchasing of these materials. The discussion will focus on State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (SABRC) administered by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle), the Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program (EPP) administered by the Department of General Services, details about state departments' recycled-content purchasing and their compliance with SABRC program requirements, and ideas to increase purchases of recycled-content products. Given CalRecycle's current development of an implementation plan required by AB 341, the SABRC program can provide crucial "market draw" for Mandatory Commercial Recycling. The state's ability to ensure Recycling occurs in accordance with Public Resources Code §40180 definition of "recycling" remains in doubt, as Teru Talk has discussed in earlier exploration of issues surrounding AB 341. The public hearing will end with an opportunity for comment; written comments should be faxed to the committee by close of business by June 7, 2013, to (916) 319-3650. See Teru's comments filed with the Committee. 06/07/2013. The California Assembly's Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review has now posted a Final Hearing Agenda for the June 12, 2013 Hearing on "Recycled and Environmentally Preferred Products." Also provided: a revised and expanded Background Paper in preparation for the Hearing. The Committee sought public comment toward the hearing; we filed our own comments (here), identifying and exploring problems in CalRecycle's management of the State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign (SABRC). Updated: 06/11/2013

CPUC Commissioner Will Keynote Annual California Bioresiduals Symposium

California Public Utilities CommissionCommissioner Carla Peterman with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will provide the opening Keynote at "The Future Role of California Bioenergy" for this year's California Bioresiduals Alliance. The 8th Annual Symposium: "A Call to Action" is scheduled for September 18 and 19, 2013 in the CalEPA Building, Sacramento. Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the symposium, and some speakers are still to be confirmed in the current agenda. The two-day Symposium has a long history of taking on challenging topics; this year's focus is primarily on the sweeping legislative reforms recently passed and currently under assessment that impact clean conversion of bioresidual wastes to heat, power, fuels, chemicals, and other commodities. The first session will provide an overview of Bioenergy Legislation and Requirements, including the recently-passed Assembly Bill 1122 that provides a "carve-out" for Renewables Portfolio Standard procurement of up to 250 megawatts of community scale bioenergy. Session 2 places this suite of legislation in context of the Bioenergy Action Plan, the Sessions 3 and 4 delve into how this impacts our advancements in wastewater treatment plant and dairy resource recovery efforts. Session 5 takes on the difficult issues surrounding Siting bioenergy facilities; Session 6 then focuses on impacts on Forest-sourced bioenergy project development. We wrap the Symposium with a Session 7 case study of Bioresiduals usage in mine reclamation, and offer two guided field trips. Teru Talk is a proud media sponsor of the event; for further information, contact us here or UC Davis symposium coordinator Magy Hoyer at <>or (530) 754-8508. 06/07/2013

Canada's AgriInnovation Program Supports Bio-Composite Development

CanadaThe Canada Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food has announced that the Harper Government is supporting development and commercialization of non-food bio-plastics and bio-composites. As part of Canada's Growing Forward 2 (GF2) policy framework ($3 billion over 5 years) launched April 1, 2013, the government's AgriInnovation Program has provided a repayable grant of $360,000 to the Canadian firm Competitive Green Technologies to purchase and install equipment to produce biopolymer resin compounds from non-food biomass fibers. The technology to formulate bio-resins was developed by the Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC) at the University of Guelph and the company has acquired a 10-year exclusive license in North America. MP Dave Van Kesteren (Chatham-Kent-Essex) made the announcement on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz: "Our government believes that strategic support for innovative Canadian businesses is a smart investment in our economy. This innovative Canadian-developed technology will enable producers to find new markets and add value to their products, boosting their bottom line." 06/06/2013

Draft Energy Bill Focuses on Decarbonization of UK Power Industry

United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom (UK) Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has released details of its Energy Bill, now moving through the UK's House of Commons. The bill is intended to "decarbonise" the UK's power generation sector, and includes a provision to set a specific target for the power industry's greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) in 2016, aiding in the legislated country-wide Carbon Budget goal of an 50% reduction in GHGs by 2030 and an overall 80% reduction by 2050. Elements of the Bill include introduction of a Capacity Market, long-term Contracts for Difference, an Emissions Performance Standard to prevent use of unabated coal. By 2020, the Energy Bill will have created £110 billion in incentives for private sector investment in to building new cleaner energy infrastructure, including renewables, new nuclear, CCS and gas-fired power stations to displace the use of coal for feeding power to the country's electric grid. Secretary of State, Edward Davey: "Everything in this Bill is based on the premise that we need to significantly decarbonise our power sector in order to meet climate targets. We secured a landmark agreement across the Coalition to treble support for low-carbon investment to £7.6 billion in 2020, and we are reforming the market to provide the certainty required to attract investment in renewables, new nuclear, CCS and demand reduction." 06/06/2013

GETH Secures Off-Take Agreement for Crude Oil from Waste Plastic and Tires

Green Envirotech HoldingsNewly headquartered in Oakdale, California, Green Envirotech Holdings LLC (GETH) has announced execution of an agreement with Ebbros Energy Partners, LLC of Overland Park, Kansas, following on an Oil Production Revenue Sharing Agreement between the companies in March. Ebbros has just signed a crude oil outright purchase agreement with Phillips 66 (ConocoPhillips) for delivery of 206 barrels per day of GETH's crude oil. GETH's technology platform converts plastic and tires to oil using electromagnetic-energy driven pyrolysis to produce the crude oil, carbon black, syngas, and steel. GETH has integrated Ebbros' advanced materials separation capabilities with thermal technologies developed by Agylix' Plastic2Fuel platform, and more recently entered into a joint venture with GreenOil, a European subsidiary of Petrosonics, LLC, to utilize its oil contaminant and upgrading process train elements. Petrosonics was recently awarded multiple patents in 42 countries for their base technology, for removing sulfur from crude oil and refined fuels. The Petrosonics process can be refinery-based, effecting desulfurization of multiple streams and also includes transmix and alternative "green oil" desulfurization processing. GETH's waste to crude oil product received third party validation a year ago, resulting in acceptance by a then-unnamed major oil company. The use of electromagnetic pyrolysis facilitates more effective heat transfer while causing no environmental impact. The company indicates that a standard twelve-module integrated tire and plastic waste conversion plant will include six systems for plastic and six for tire to produces about 25,000 barrels of oil per month. 06/05/2013

World Bioenergy Association Releases Biomass to Biogas Fact Sheet

World Bioenergy AssociationBased in Sweden with a global presence, the World Bioenergy Association (WBA) has announced the launch of its fifth publication, "Biogas - an Important Renewable Energy Source" as part of a series of verifiable, easily referenced sources of information addressing global biogas usage and potential. The fact sheet discusses current and potential Biogas supply for a variety of uses or markets, including electricity, heat and transportation fuels. The WBA advocates that each country create a biogas development plan with the target to use at least 30% of the biogas potential by 2030, with quantitative targets and monitoring measures. The deployment of biogas technology requires a decentralized approach involving many new entrepreneurs. The construction and successful operation of biogas plants need an integrated support policy by the governments comprising the following elements: Training and education of the labor force; Monitoring and continuous improvements in the plant’s operation; Access to the electricity and the gas grid; and Reliable long-lasting financial support in the form of tariffs for the electricity or biomethane sold to the grid and to vehicle fuels. WBA president Heinz Kopetz: "The global potential for biogas is very large. Estimations show that biogas could cover around 6% of the global primary energy supply, or one third of the current use of fossil gas. Biogas can be produced in all countries around the world, as there are suitable feedstocks in all societies. One large advantage with biogas production is that it often helps to mitigate other environmental problems, and reduce the volumes of waste." 06/05/2013

Suez Environnement and Demeter Invest in COGEBIO for Biomass Gasification

Suez EnvironnementFrance based Suez Environnement has announced that its venture capital fund "Blue Orange" has partnered with Demeter Partners in an investment into the French company COGEBIO SA. COGEBIO (website in French only) specializes in developing gasification technology and a hybrid burner system. The COGEBIO GASCLEAN gasification multi-design platform is designed to produce a clean-burning synthetic fuel gas or syngas from conversion of low-grade biomass including woodchips, crushed pallets, wood pellets and agricultural by-products, for the recovery of heat and electricity. Coupled with its proprietary hybrid mixing chamber and burner, applications can be fueled by combinations of synthesis gas, fossil fuel and combustion air and operation can vary from 100% biomass fuel to 100% fossil fuel. The process has an applicable power range of 50 to 2,000 thermal kilowatts (kWt). At present, COGEBIO is adding an efficient cogeneration system for production of combined heat and power, with a hot air turbine and heat exchange power train in prototype mode. Created in 2010, Blue Orange is the SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT corporate investment fund for new water and waste technologies. With a budget of €50 million over 10 years, Blue Orange supports the commercial and industrial development of young promising innovative technology companies. It acts as an investor and industrial partner based on a capital investment stake. Blue Orange also benefits from the Group’s R&D programmes. 06/05/2013

Greenleaf Power Finalizes Tracy, California Biomass Plant Acquisition

Greenleaf PowerCalifornia based Greenleaf Power, LLC has announced finalization of its acquisition of the 19 megawatt electric (MWe) Tracy Biomass plant in northern California from US Renewables Group, which has owned and operated the plant since 2007. Greenleaf Power acquires, develops, owns, and operates power projects that utilize residual biomass as fuel. Greenleaf Power currently owns and operates more than 120 megawatts of biomass generating assets in California, after acquiring the 47-megawatt Desert View plant in Mecca, the 30-megawatt Honey Lake plant in Wendel, and the 28-megawatt Eel River plant in Scotia. The Tracey plant has an existing long-term renewable power purchase agreement (PPA) with the investor-owned utility, Pacific Gas & Electric. Greenleaf Power is a portfolio company of Denham Capital, a global energy-focused private equity firm. Hugh Smith, CEO: "Biomass energy is one of the few renewable technologies that provides baseload renewable energy. While most other renewable sources are intermittent, biomass provides reliable predictable power under all conditions throughout the year." 06/05/2013

Ad Astra and Cummins Run Generator on Biogas and Hydrogen in Costa Rica

Ad Astra Rocket CompanyTexas based Ad Astra Rocket Company has announced that in collaboration with engineers from Cummins Inc., they have successfully run a Cummins-built generator on mixtures of hydrogen and biogas in Costa Rica. The positive trials come as Ad Astra focuses on long-term hydrogen storage, and on designing a reliable process to mix and control hydrogen and biogas. The electrical generator designed and manufactured by Cummins is part of an experimental 7.5 kW renewable energy system being studied for potential commercialization by a combined team from Ad Astra Rocket Company, Cummins Inc. and EARTH University in Costa Rica. Other components of this system include an Ad Astra designed solar and wind-based hydrogen production and storage system. Ad Astra is developing this system in collaboration with Costa Rica’s state-owned oil refinery, RECOPE. In addition, anaerobic digester biogas production is being studied by EARTH University. The Friday tests were conducted with hydrogen-propane mixtures in preparation for the first methane deliveries, which will follow the commissioning demonstration. The collaborative project was initiated in July of 2011 as part of an integrated renewable energy concept being studied by Ad Astra with application to distributed power architectures and other derivative uses worldwide. Ad Astra Rocket will conduct the experimental characterization of the system and the production of hydrogen gas, while EARTH University will manage the production and delivery of methane gas, generated in bio-digesters from organic waste. 06/05/2013

Due 07/23/2013: Applications to California EISG Small Grant Programs

California Energy CommissionThe California Energy Commission (CEC) Energy Innovation Small Grant (EISG) Program has again released a cycle of funding opportunities for its Electricity Program (13-02), for the Natural Gas Program (13-02G), and for the broader Transportation Program, which itself is broken into an Electricity element (13-03T- Electricity) and a Natural Gas element (13-02T-Natural Gas). The EISG Program provides up to $95,000 for hardware projects and $50,000 for modeling projects to small businesses, non-profits, individuals and academic institutions to conduct research that establishes the feasibility of new, innovative energy concepts. Research projects must target one of the PIER R&D areas, address a California energy problem and provide a potential benefit to California electric and natural gas ratepayers. To encourage participation in the program the application and award process has been simplified and assistance is available in gaining access to technical experts. The Grant Application Manual and supporting documents for the current solicitation can be downloaded from the solicitation notice page; manuals are modified to fit each new solicitation. If you have any questions regarding the EISG Program or grant application, please contact the EISG Program Administrator by phone at (619) 594-1049, by fax at (619) 594-0996 or by email at <>. 06/05/2013

CPUC Adopts Streamlined Standard Contract for Feed-In Tariff Program

California Public Utilities CommissionThe California Public Utilities Comission (CPUC) has released its formal decision adopting a Joint Standard Contract for the state's Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Program (Rulemaking 11-05-005), as the next step in the implementation of the State's Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS). The decision orders the Investor Owned Utilities (IOUs) to revise their existing FiT programs to include a new streamlined standard contract and provides changes to contractual terms especially applicable to smaller renewable generation projects, such as commonly designed for distributed energy generation. This decision is separate from actions the CPUC intends to take later this year to address the recent amendments enacted by SB 1122 (Rubio, Stats. 2012), which directs electrical corporations to collectively procure 250 megawatts (MW) from developers of specified categories of bioenergy projects. Instead, this decision simplifies the underlying contract mechanism by focusing on the FiT program and responds to the Legislature's intent and the policy of the state to encourage electrical generation from small distributed generation that qualifies as an "eligible renewable energy resource” under the RPS program with an effective capacity of three megawatts or less and, among other things, is strategically located and priced to reflect the “value of different electricity products, including baseload, peaking, and as available.” 06/01/2013

Due 06/17/2013: Comments to CEC on Bioenergy Development in California

California Energy CommissionOn Monday, June 3, 2013, the California Energy Commission (CEC) will lead a day-long workshop presenting many different aspects of the development of bioenergy in the state. The CEC participates as a member of the Bioenergy Interagency Working Group (BIWG).The workshop Notice provides background on the BIWG's focus on requirements of Executive Order S-06-06 and the Bioenergy Action Plan. The workshop Agenda indicates that Session 1 will address Biomass to Biofuel; Session 2 shifts focus to Biomass to Power, and Session 3 tackles Bioenergy Benefits and Environmental Considerations. Each moderated session provides a public/private panel and ends with an opportunity for public comment. This workshop will not discuss Biomethane, the topic of the CEC's prior workshop regarding Challenges to Biomethane Procurement held on May 31, 2013. All panel and staff presentations are posted to the CEC's website. The workshop will be webcast, allowing remote access by both phone and computer, with instructions on the notice. Written comments are due by June 17, 2013 and should b e submitted to the Dockets Unit identifying Docket No. 13-IEP-1M and indicating the email is addressing "Status of Bioenergy Development in California". Send emails to <> and copy the CEC's technical lead staff, Garry (O'Neill) Mariscal at <>. 06/01/2013

Due 06/28/2013: Comments to DECC's Proposed Increases to RHI Tariff Levels

United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate ChangeThe United Kingdom Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced release of proposed increased tariff levels for heat generated by ground source heat pumps, large biomass conversion facilities, and solar thermal applications. The tariffs apply to projects accredited under the Government's Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) program launched in late 2011, which DECC describes as a "world first and is designed to revolutionize the way homes and businesses across the nation are heated, cut carbon emissions and help meet renewable targets." The proposed levels follow a review earlier this year; DECC is not proposing to increase the tariffs for small and medium biomass as part of this review, based on the current high level of demand for these technologies. Biomethane and biogas combustion are outside the scope of this review. The RHI budgeting mechanism is presented in detail with data on quarterly forecasts current to April 30, 2013. The consultation is open until June 28, 2013, and DECC provides a "consultation package" as the preferred form for responding. 06/01/2013 

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