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California Carbon Reduction Partnership Growing (Ind. Report)
Rising Sun Center for Opportunity
Date: 2021-04-12
In the Golden State, the Oakland-based not-for-profit Rising Sun Center for Opportunity is reporting the Alameda County Workforce Development Board, Bay Area Regional Energy Network, and East Bay Community Energy have joined other Bay Area industry, labor, and government agencies to work to "ensure equitable access to high-road jobs in the building decarbonization industry" and reducing the region's carbon footprint.

Other organizations joining the effort include the Construction Trades Workforce Initiative, Emerald Cities Collaborative, The Greenlining Institute, several builder groups, and the cities of San Francisco, Berkeley, and Oakland.

According to Rising Sun, most housing in the Bay Area uses natural gas for cooking, water heating, and space heating. Reducing residential carbon dioxide emissions will require new housing to be all electric new construction, as well as significant retrofitting of existing housing.

The effort is being funded by California High Road Training Partnership and California Climate Investments program. (Source: Rising Sun, PR, The Independent, 10 Apr., 2021) Contact: Rising Sun, Julia Hatton, CEO, 510-665-1501, www.risingsunopp.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Footprint,  


Thermal Battery Specialist Secures €110Mn Investment (Int'l.)
EnergyNest
Date: 2021-04-12
Norwegian thermal battery pioneer EnergyNest report it has secured €110 million investment as part of a deal with Infracapital, making Infracapital EnergyNest's largest shareholder.

The new funds will be used to scale up development of the company's modular heat-based energy storage system batteries and offer long term, financed energy storage solutions to customers that unlock "substantial energy and carbon cost savings," acording to the release.

EnergyNest describes itself as one of the first thermal storage companies globally with a market ready battery and projects in execution, including for Norwegian chemical giant Yara and Italian energy company Eni, where installation is expected to take place in Q2, The firm claims that it is The company is targeting an industrial heat energy storage market that it says could excess €300 billion a year in the coming decades, according to the release. (Source: EnergyNest, PR, Apr., 2021) Contact: EnergyNest, Christian Thiel, CEO, www.energy-nest.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News EnergyNest news,  Energy Storage news,  Battery news,  


Thermal Battery Specialist Secures €110Mn Investment (Int'l.)
EnergyNest
Date: 2021-04-12
Norwegian thermal battery pioneer EnergyNest reports it has secured €110 million investment as part of a deal with Infracapital, making Infracapital EnergyNest's largest shareholder.

The new funds will be used to scale up development of the company's modular heat-based energy storage system batteries and offer long term, financed energy storage solutions to customers that unlock "substantial energy and carbon cost savings", according to the release.

EnergyNest describes itself as one of the first thermal storage companies globally with a market ready battery and projects in execution, including for Norwegian chemical giant Yara and Italian energy company Eni, where installation is expected to take place in Q2, The firm claims that it is The company is targeting an industrial heat energy storage market that could excess €300 billion a year in the coming decades, according to the release. (Source: EnergyNest, PR, Apr., 2021) Contact: EnergyNest, Christian Thiel, CEO, www.energy-nest.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News EnergyNest,  Energy Storage,  Battery,  


PSU $4.6Bn Endowment Aims for Net-zero Emissions (Ind. Report)
Penn State University
Date: 2021-04-09
In the Keystone State, the Penn State University Office of Investments has announced it will eliminate greenhouse gas emissions associated with underlying investments, but not necessarily divesting fossil fuels, in Penn's $4.6 billion endowment by 2050.

The goal supports efforts outlined in the 2015 Paris Agreement and the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to reduce the world's net anthropogenic emissions to zero by 2050. This announcement builds upon Penn State's annual Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0 report, released on Dec. 1, 2020, which summarized the University's latest progress in environmental sustainability made from 2019 to 2024 with a commitment to achieve a 100 pct carbon-neutral campus by 2042.

Penn State has reduced its overall carbon emissions by 37.2 pct since 2009 and "greened" its physical footprint with 27 buildings achieving US Green Building Council LEED certification, 34 buildings having green roofs, and 14 acres of open space having been added through the creation of Penn Park. In 2020, the University signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for the construction of two new solar energy facilities which will offset 75 pct of both the academic campus and the University of Pennsylvania Health System's electricity consumption through renewable energy. (Source: Penn State University, PR, The Pennsylvanian, Apr., 2021) Contact: Penn State University, 814-865-6528, www.bursar.psu.edu/endowments

More Low-Carbon Energy News New-Zero Carbon Emissions,  


CO2, Methane Emissions Surged in 2020 (NOAA Ind. Report)
NOAA
Date: 2021-04-09
In Washington, just released research from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has found carbon dioxide and methane -- which is nearly 30 times more potent at trapping heat within the atmosphere than CO2 -- emissions surged in 2020.

Research data collected at remote NOAA sampling locations indicated the global surface average for CO2 was 412.5 parts per million last year -- a 2.6 ppm increase. The global increase rate constituted the fifth-highest on record for a single year, after 1987, 1998, 2015 and 2016, according to NOAA. Atmospheric methane's annual increase for 2020 was 14.7 parts per billion, the largest in the 37 years NOAA has measured it. (Source: NOAA Research News, Website PR, 7 Apr., 2021) Contact: NOAA, oar.communications@noaa.gov, www. research.noaa.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2,  Mathane,  NOAA,  


USDA Touts Carbon Sequestration Easements (Ind. Report)
USDA
Date: 2021-04-07
In Washington, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service reports that over the past 28 years it has protected more than 5 million acres of wetlands, grasslands, and prime farmland -- an area the size of New Jersey -- in perpetuity through the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). ACEP helps landowners, land trusts, and other entities protect, restore, and enhance wetlands, grasslands, and working farms and ranches through conservation easements

Wetland Easements -- totaling over 2.8 million acres nationwide -- improve water quality by filtering sediments and chemicals, reducing flooding, recharging groundwater, protecting biological diversity while Agricultural Land Easements protect productive working lands being converted to non-agricultural uses. Agricultural land easements total more than 1.9 million acres.

Working with private landowners to protect, preserve and restore wetlands, grasslands, forests and farmlands is integral to USDA's efforts to build resiliency and reduce the impacts of climate change across the nation. Easements allow landowners to partner with NRCS to implement voluntary climate-smart management practices that maximize the amount of carbon sequestered from the atmosphere and stored in soils or plant biomass across these landscapes.

The Biden Administration USDA is engaged in a "whole-of-government effort to combat the climate crisis and conserve and protect our nation's lands, biodiversity and natural resources including our soil, air and water." (Source: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, PR, 3 April, 2021) Contact: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Terry Cosby, Acting Chief, 202-690-7246, www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/site/national/home

More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Carbon Sequestration,  


Clearway Repowering Pinnacle Wind Farm Turbines (Ind. Report)
Clearway Energy
Date: 2021-04-07
San Francisco-based Clearway Energy Group reports upgrades to the 2012-vintage Pinnacle Wind Farm in Keyser, West Virginia are underway and expected to be completed before the year end.

According to the release, the company secured $128 million in financing for the repowering work that will sequentially replace the 23 existing turbines with newer, more efficient units.

Clearway Energy Group is one of the largest developers and operators of clean energy in the United States with over 4.7 GW of wind, solar, and energy storage in operation, including assets owned through affiliate company Clearway Energy, Inc., according to the company website. (Source: Clearway Energy Group, PR, Cumberland Times-News, Contact: Clearway Energy Group, www.clearwayenergygroup.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Wind,  CLearway Energy,  


ADM Rebooting Idled Ethanol Plant Production (Ind. Report)
Archer Daniels Midland
Date: 2021-04-05
Further to our 27 April, 2020 coverage, Chicago-headquartered biofuel pioneer and ethanol producer Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) reports it is rebooting ethanol production at its 300-gpy corn dry mills plants in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Columbus, Nebraska.

"We've been carefully monitoring a wide variety of industry ethanol conditions, and in recent weeks, we've seen consistent signs pointing to accelerating demand for domestic ethanol. company said in a statement. Inventories across the industry are steadily coming down, China is importing volumes, we continue to expect driving miles to increase as the pace of vaccinations accelerates, and the EPA's support of a strong Renewable Fuel Standard is helping drive great blending economics," according to a company statement . Ethanol deliveries are expected by mid-April, with full capacity by late spring. (Source: Archer Daniels Midland, PR, Apr., 2021) Contact: ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, www.adm.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Archer Daniels Midland,  Ethanol,  


Battery Nanomaterial Tech Startup Raises $3Mn (Int'l. Funding)
Nanom
Date: 2021-04-05
Reykjavik, Iceland headquartered battery nanomaterials specialist Nanom reports it has raised $3 million in seed funding for its process technology that boost battery performance and expects to announce its partners in the next few months.

The nanomaterial process technology has provided a 9x improvement for the Nickel-Iron batteries used in a wide range of large-scale energy storage devices, transportation and other applications. The technology can also be used to create solid state batteries with carbon fibre and a silk interposer treated with an electrolyte. This can be used to create batteries in the structure of electric vehicles such as cars and boats. The company has already created a pilot project where a 1 meter electric boat was constructed where the hull of the boat became the battery.

The nanoparticle process generates particles that are many orders-of-magnitude more effective in increasing energy surface in existing batteries by mixing them into the slurry that is a standard part of all battery manufacturing lines. Nanom has achieved scale in its manufacturing process and can already satisfy the requirements of battery markets which is a key challenge for nanoparticle production, according to the company release. (Source: Namon, PR, eeNews Europe, 5 Apr., 2021) Contact: Nanom, Armann Kojic, CEO, +354 776 7555, 650 427 9060 – California Office, n@nnom.com, www.nnom.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Battery Energy Storage,  


500-MW Uzbekistan Wind Farm Construction Underway (Int'l. Report)
Masdar
Date: 2021-04-05
UAE-based renewable energy developer Masdar -- the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company -- is reporting an agreement with the Government of Uzbekistan to extend the capacity of its originally contracted Zarafshan wind farm project from 500-MW to up to 1.5 GW.

In 2020, Masdar contracted with the Government of Uzbekistan to develop, construct, and operate the 500-MW Zarafshan wind farm project, its second utility-scale clean energy project in the country, and the largest wind farm in Central Asia. When fully operational in 2024, the project is expected to generate sufficient power for as many as 500,000 homes and displace 1.1 million tpy of CO2. (Source: Masdar, PR, Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing, 4 Apr., 2021)Contact: Masdar, Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi, CEO, +971 2 653 3333, www.masdar.ae

More Low-Carbon Energy News Masdar,  Wind,  


Aemetis Advanced Fuels Keyes Plant CARB Certified (Ind. Report)
Aemetis,California Air Resources Board
Date: 2021-04-02
Cupertino, California-based Aemetis Inc., a renewable natural gas (RNG) and renewable fuels company, has received certification from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) -- effective as of Oct. 1, 2020 -- for a new LCFS Tier 2 fuel pathway for the Aemetis Advanced Fuels Keyes ethanol production plant utilizing renewable dairy biogas as a process energy input.

The Aemetis Central Dairy Digester Project is a collection of dairy lagoon anaerobic digesters that are built, owned and operated by Aemetis Biogas LLC utilizing waste animal manure to generate renewable methane gas to produce negative CI RNG for transportation use to displace diesel fuel. The completed Aemetis Central Dairy Digester Project is expected to include over 30 dairy digesters in the current phase (with plans to expand to more than 52 dairies), and utilize 36 miles of private pipeline owned by Aemetis, a centralized gas clean up unit located at the Aemetis Keyes ethanol biorefinery, an RNG onsite fueling station and an interconnection to PG&E's natural gas pipeline.

The company plans to begin construction of the next five dairy digesters and the additional 32 miles of biogas pipeline in the second quarter, with five more dairy digesters set to begin construction in the third quarter and five digesters beginning in the first quarter of 2022 for a planned total of 17 dairy digesters and a 35-mile biogas pipeline. (Source: Aemetis, PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: CARB, Richard Perry, CEO, Melanie Turner, Information Officer, (916) 322-2990, melanie.turner@arb.ca.gov, www.arb.ca.gov; Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO , Todd Waltz, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News RNG,  Biogas,  Anaerobic Digestion,  Aemetis,  Ethanol,  California Air Resources Board ,  


POET Launches POET Pure™ Plant-Based Products (Ind. Report)
POET
Date: 2021-04-02
Sioux Falls, South Dakota-headquartered ethanol pioneer POET reports it has expanded production to include renewable CO2, renewable dry ice and all-natural, 100 pct plant-based pharmaceutical-grade purified alcohol as part of a suite of bio-based products under a new label, POET Pure™.

POET Biorefining -- Leipsic will produce up to 35 million gpy of purified alcohol which will include grain neutral spirits (GNS) and USP-grade alcohol. A second expansion at POET Biorefining --Alexandria is also scheduled to come online in Q2 2021.

POET, the world's largest biofuels producer, operates 27 facilities across 7 states. At full run rates, POET purchases 5 pt of US corn and produces 2 billion gpy of ethanol, 10 billion ppy of distillers dried grains, and 600 million ppy of corn oil. (Source: POET, PR, 31 Mae., 2021) Contact: POET Pure, Darin Cartwright, VP, www.poetpure.com; POET, Jeff Broin, CEO, (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News POET,  Ethanol,  DDG,  


ExxonMobil, Porsche Testing Advanced Biofuels (Ind. Report)
ExxonMobil
Date: 2021-04-02
Irving, Texas-based oil giant ExxonMobil Corp. and German auto-maker Porsche report they are jointly testing advanced biofuels and renewable, lower-carbon eFuels -- fuels made from hydrogen and captured CO2.

The first iteration involves Esso Renewable Racing Fuel, a blend of primarily advanced biofuels formulated by ExxonMobil in-house scientists and engineers. As early as 2022, the companies plan to test the second iteration of Esso Renewable Racing Fuel, which will contain eFuel components and is anticipated to achieve an up-to 85 pct reduction in greenhouse gas emissions when blended to current market fuel standards for passenger vehicles.

The eFuel will be sourced from the Haru Oni pilot plant based in Chile that generates hydrogen, which is then combined with captured CO2 drawn from the atmosphere to produce methanol. ExxonMobil is providing a license and support for the proprietary technology to convert the methanol to gasoline, which will result in a lower-carbon fuel.

In the pilot phase, around 35,000 gallons of eFuels will be produced in 2022. As the fuel's primary user, Porsche will use the eFuels in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup starting in the season of 2022. The first on-track testing of Esso Renewable Racing Fuel occurred March 30, 2021 in Zandvoort, Netherlands, and will continue throughout the 2021 and 2022 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup race series. (Source: ExxonMobil, PR, 31 Mar., 2021) Contact: ExonMobil, Andy Madden, VP Strategy and Planning , ExxonMobil Fuels & Lubricants, www. corporate.exxonmobil.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News ExxonMobil,  Alternative Fuel,  Biofuel,  


SK Innovation Considers Ditching US Battery Plants (Ind. Report)
SK Innovation
Date: 2021-03-29
South Korean battery maker SK Innovation reports it is considering pulling the plug on its $2.7 billion electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant and halting construction of a second battery manufacturing plant in Commerce City, Georgia, as well as other U.S. operations. Combined, the two facilities would have a combined production capacity of 20 gigawatt-hours a year, enough for 250,000 electric vehicles and create 2,600 jobs.

The company's position is in response the US International Trade Commission's February finding that SK had "misappropriated" 22 trade secrets from its rival LG Chem. The two firms have as yet been unable to come to a mutually agreeable compensation settlement for SK's "misappropriation.

The ITC, while slapping the firm with a 10-year business ban, has allowed SK Innovation a grace period of up to four years for it to continue supplying Volkswagen and Ford. (Source: SK Innovation, Korea Herald, 28 Mar., 2021) Contact: SK innovation, www.eng.skinnovation.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News SK Innovation,  Battery,  LG Chem,  


UK Green Homes Grant Funding Scheme Gets the Chop (Int'l. Report)
UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Date: 2021-03-29
In London, the UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has announced its £1.5 billion Green Homes Grant voucher scheme, which was launch launched last July, will close on Wednesday, 31 March. The scheme will be replaced with a £ 300 million national home energy upgrades and low carbon heating program.

The scheme, previously due to run until March next year, offered households grants of up to £5,000 -- £10,000 for those on low incomes -- to pay for insulation or low-carbon heating. More than 123,000 grant applications were made in February but only 28,000 vouchers issued and just 5,800 energy efficiency measures installed. (Source: UK Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), PR, Morning Star, 28 Mar., 2021) Contact: BEIS, +44 0 20 7215 5000, enquiries@beis.gov.uk, www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-business-energy-and-industrial-strategy

More Low-Carbon Energy News BEIS,  Green Building,  Energy Efficiency,  


EIA to Provide New Monthly Biofuels Report (Ind. Report)
U.S. EIA
Date: 2021-03-29
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports it will release expanded monthly biofuels data through a new report -- the Monthly Biofuels Capacity and Feedstocks Update on March 31, 2021. The first edition of this report will also modify petroleum and biofuel volumetric balances in the interactive Supply and Disposition summary data table in its Petroleum Navigator. Changes to the monthly biofuels data and petroleum and biofuel volumetric balances include:
  • The Monthly Biofuels Capacity and Feedstocks Update replaces the Monthly Biodiesel Production Report, but the biodiesel report will continue to be the source of EIA's historical monthly biodiesel data before January 2021.

  • Table 1 of the Monthly Biofuels Capacity and Feedstocks Update will report expanded coverage of production capacities for biodiesel, fuel alcohol, and renewable fuels. Table 2 of the Monthly Biofuels Capacity and Feedstocks Update will replace Table 3 of the Monthly Biodiesel Production Report and reflect expanded coverage of the types of biofuel feedstocks consumed to include feedstocks used in the production of biodiesel, fuel alcohol, and renewable fuels.

    Changes to the Supply and Disposition summary data table include:

  • For the Renewable Fuels Except Fuel Ethanol product category, Renewable Fuels & Oxygenate Plant Net Production under Supply will include renewable fuels in addition to biodiesel. For the Renewable Fuels Except Fuel Ethanol product category, balance quantities reported as Adjustments under Supply will be discontinued, while balance quantities reported as Products Supplied under Disposition will be introduced.

  • For the Distillate Fuel Oil product category, biodiesel quantities reported as Adjustments under Supply will be discontinued.

  • For the Finished Petroleum Products product category, which includes Distillate Fuel Oil and Kerosene-Type Jet Fuel as two of the subcategories, quantities of petroleum products blended with biofuels at biofuel producing plants will be reported as Renewable Fuels & Oxygenate Plant Net Production under Supply.

    The composition of the monthly data for the Fuel Ethanol product category of the Supply and Disposition summary data table will continue to be consistent with that of the historical data before January 2021. EIA plans to publish revisions to the new monthly biofuels data for 2021 and petroleum and biofuel volumetric balances with the release of the Petroleum Supply Annual data tables in August 2022, according to the release. (Source: U.S. Energy Information , 26 Mar., 2021) Contact: EIA, www.eia.gov/index.php

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EIA,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  


  • KPS to Increase Viridis Bioethanol Plant Capacity (Ind. Report)
    Viridis, Koch Project Solutions
    Date: 2021-03-29
    Houston-headquartered renewable chemicals specialist Viridis Chemical, LLC is reporting a fixed price, performance-guaranteed agreement with Koch Project Solutions, LLC (KPS) to design and construct capital improvements to increase production capacity at its renewable chemicals -- USP grade bio-based ethanol and bio-based Ethyl Acetate -- plant in Columbus, Nebraska.

    Viridis Chemical, LLC is a world-class manufacturer of renewable chemicals committed to the safe, environmentally sound, and economically viable conversion of bio-Ethanol into useful products previously derived from oil or natural gas. Viridis provides value to customers by offering a green, domestically sourced alternative to their existing supply chain. Viridis Chemical adds purpose to our suppliers and to the economy of Nebraska by further increasing the range of usefulness of local, agriculturally derived feedstock, according to the company website. (Source: Viridis Chemical LLC, PR, Website, 29 Mar., 2021) Contact: Viridis Chemical, LLC, Carl Rush, CEO, Randy Whittaker, CFO, Beverly Jernigan, Media, (713) 494-1733, beverly@beverlypr.com, www.viridischemical.com; Koch Project Solutions, LLC, Paul Switzer, CEO, Antoine Schellinger, Marketing, 346-257-3949, antoine.schellinger@kochprojectsolutions.com, www.kochprojectsolutions.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Viridis Bioethanol news,  Ethanol news,  Koch Project Solutions news,  


    U.S. Gain Building RNG Station in Compton, CA (Ind. Report)
    U.S. Gain
    Date: 2021-03-29
    Appleton, Wis.-based U.S. Gain, a division of U.S. Venture, reports it is partnering with AJR Trucking and its sister company, MDB Transportation Inc. to build a renewable natural gas (RNG) fueling station in Compton, California, near the port of Long Beach. MDB Transportation provides drayage and rail services in southern and central California

    The new RNG fueling station, which will be open to the public and other fleets, features fast-fill capabilities and an easy in, easy out design to accommodate heavy duty trucks servicing the port. It will be operational 24 /7 and meets the emission standards set by the Port of Long Beach and the Harbor Trucking Association (HTA).

    Since transitioning to RNG, AJR Trucking has replaced more than one million gallons of diesel fuel with RNG, eliminating over 2,200 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions -- equivalent of removing 1,234 cars off the road or planting more than 149,747 trees, according to the release. (Source: U.S. Gain, PR, 29 Mar., 2021) Contact: U.S. Gain, S. Lowney, (920) 381-2190 slowney@usgain.com, www.usgain.com; AJR Trucking, Jack Khudikyan, CEO, 310-707-1120, www.linkedin.com/company/ajr-trucking

    More Low-Carbon Energy News U.S. Gain. RNG news,  Renewable Natural Gas news,  


    Los Angeles 100 pct Renewable Energy Study (NREL Study Attached)
    NREL
    Date: 2021-03-26
    A just released National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) study commissioned by the city of Los Angeles has concluded L.A. can achieve 98 pct clean energy within the next decade and 100 pct by 2035.

    To meet that goal, the NREL report recommends: building solar farms, wind turbines and batteries as fast as possible; install solar panels on rooftops, electric cars in garages and electric heat pumps in homes; and invest in energy efficiency and "demand response" programs that pay people to use electricity during off-peak periods.

    The study says "the benefits would be immense: not only helping to counteract the climate crisis, but also slashing deadly air pollution from cars, trucks, power plants and gas furnaces, much of it concentrated in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color."

    Download the LA100: The Los Angeles 100 pct Renewable Energy Study HERE. (Source: NREL, Mar., 2021) Contact: NREL, www.nrel.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News National Renewable Energy Lab,  NREL,  Renewable Energy,  


    Viridis, HELM Announce Ethanol Marketing Partnership (Ind. Report)
    Viridis Chemical
    Date: 2021-03-26
    Houston-headquartered Viridis Chemical , LLC and Hamburg, Germany based chemicals marketing firm HELM subsidiary HELM U.S. Corp are reporting an exclusive Global Marketing Partnership for the purchase and sale of USP grade bio-based Ethanol and bio-based Ethyl Acetate to be produced at the Viridis Chemical manufacturing plant in Columbus, Nebraska.

    Under the agreement, HELM will be solely responsible for global sales, marketing and logistics management for both of Viridis Chemical's products. Viridis Chemical's Columbus plant is currently undergoing capital improvements that will increase production capacity. The plant is expected to begin production of high-quality USP-grade bio-Ethanol in mid-2021 and production of bio-based Ethyl Acetate at a global scale in Q4 2022. (Source: Viridis Chemical LLC, PR, 18 Mar., 2021) Contact: Viridis Chemical, Carl Rush, CEO, www.viridischemical.com; HELM U.S. Corp., Oliver Leptien, Pres. and CEO, Bjorn Steckel, Marketing, (281) 623-0100, bsteckel@helmus.com, www.helmus.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Viridis Chemical,  Ethanol,  


    ABC Touts Fastest Growing US Biogas Businesses (Ind. Report)
    American Biogas Council
    Date: 2021-03-26
    American Biogas Council (ABC) has identified the following companies as the eight fastest growing biogas businesses in the US as determined by gross revenue growth from 2019 to 2020: DMT Clear Gas Solutions, www.dmt-cgs.com; DVO Inc., www.dvoinc.com; EnviTec Biogas, www.envitec-biogas.com; Evonik, www.corporate.evonik.com/en; Greenlane Biogas, www.greenlanebiogas.com; Nacelle, www.nacellesolutions.com; Paques Environmental Technologies , www.en.paques.nl; and PlanET Biogas , www.planet-biogasusa.com .

    Collectively, revenue from the fastest eight grew by more than 300 pct. from 2019 through 2020. ABC notes there are presently 2,200 operating biogas projects across all 50 states. (Source: American Biogas Council, PR, 24 Mar., 2021) Contact: American Biogas Council, Patrick Serfass, Executive Director, 202-904-0220, 202-640-6595, info@americanbiogascouncil.org, www.americanbiogascouncil.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Biogas Council,  Biogas,  


    Chicago PACE Closes $4.6Mn Amped Kitchens Funding (Ind. Report)
    Property Assessed Clean Energy
    Date: 2021-03-26
    Chicago PACE, a program of the City of Chicago's Department of Planning and Development, reports it has closed $4.6 million in Commercial (C-PACE) funding in support of completed energy efficiency work at the recently opened Amped Kitchens Chicago facility in the Belmont-Cragin neighborhood.

    The $4.6 million in private funding through the Chicago PACE program was provided by CounterpointeSRE, a national C-PACE capital provider, and was earmarked to a long list of energy efficiency improvements that included new HVAC consisting of packaged RTUs, hoods, water heaters, and indirect fired gas furnaces as well as LED lighting at the 5801 W Dickens Ave. facility.

    The Chicago PACE program, a public-private partnership designed to fund energy-saving and renewable infrastructure improvements to commercial and multifamily properties, is administered by Loop-Counterpointe PACE LLC, a joint venture between Loop Capital Markets and Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate.

    Amped Kitchens provides long-term production space to some of the nation's most innovative and successful food brands. (Source: Chicago PACE, PR, 25 Mar., 2021) Contact: Chicago PACE, inquiry@chicagopace.org, www.ChicagoPACE.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Property Assessed Clean Energy .PACE,  PACE-C,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Jersey City Invests in Microgrid, Energy Efficiency (Ind. Report)
    Jersey City, Schneider Electric
    Date: 2021-03-26
    In the Garden State, Jersey City reports it will partner with Schneider Electric to implement the city's first Energy Savings Improvement Program (ESIP) and self-sustainable municipal microgrid which is expected to save taxpayers approximately $21 million in energy and operational costs over 20 years.

    The city of 258,000 residents will also enter into a roughly $500,000 contract for the PSE&G Direct Install / "Energy Savers" energy efficiency program for the installation of LED lighting, water conservation measures, HVAC equipment replacements, and other energy efficiency upgrades at 22 city-owned facilities with PSE&G covering majority of the costs. (Source: City of Jersey City, PR, Hudson Reporter, 26 Mar., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News PSE&G,  Schneider Electric,  Microgrid,  Energy Efficiency,  


    USGC Helps Ensure Ethanol's Environmental Role in Fuel Recovery (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    U.S. Grains Council
    Date: 2021-03-24
    "As fuel demand begins its recovery around the world, the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) is taking steps to ensure ethanol will continue to expand as a part of policy solutions that address greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and offer a comprehensive portfolio of other benefits including air quality improvement and economic value.

    "USGC's ethanol team and consultants offered an update this week to the Council's Ethanol Advisory Team the member-driven group of grain producers and agribusiness representatives that identify opportunities, set priorities and chart the course of the Council every year, giving them background on ethanol's role in the Paris Agreement -- of which the US is again a member -- explaining what it means to have the U.S. rejoin and presenting an outlook for ethanol as it relates to the Paris Agreement as whole.

    "As many countries have listed their transportation sectors and named biofuels or ethanol specifically to contribute to overall emissions reductions outlined in the Paris Agreement, the case can be made for U.S. ethanol to help meet these countries' global initiatives.

    "Even with policies in place some countries are not meeting the intended goals or mandates, leaving room for further GHG emissions reductions. India for example has recently announced its national plan to blend 20 pct ethanol nationwide by 2025. In the most recent market year, it blended just above a 5 pct rate from a nationwide average standpoint. Filling in that blend gap will be critical to fully realize these benefits. Identifying these gaps and demonstrating the benefit and how to fill them is an ongoing role the Council provides with its global partners.

    "For instance, new research from Environmental Health and Engineering Inc. demonstrates that U.S. corn-based ethanol cuts GHG emissions by 46 pct providing benefits nationally, but also globally, as ethanol trade expands. In terms of emissions reductions, this means the U.S. saved more than 4 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2020 from ethanol exports alone and could provide other countries a pathway to meeting their own Paris Agreement commitments.

    “Elevating the contribution that ethanol has already made to abate emissions globally is critical, and these reductions are expected to continue as further investment in abatement technologies take place and policies expand around the globe." (Source: U.S. Grains Council, PR, Website, Mar., 2021) Contact: US Grains Council, Brian D. Healy, Director Global Ethanol Market Dev, Bryan Jernigan, bjernigan@grains.org, www.grains.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News U.S. Grains Council,  Paris Climate Agreement,  Ethanol ,  


    Los Angeles 100 pct Renewable Energy Study (NREL Study Attached)
    NREL
    Date: 2021-03-24
    A just released National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) study commissioned by the city of Los Angeles has concluded L.A. can achieve 98 pct clean energy within the next decade and 100 pct by 2035.

    To meet that goal, the NREL report recommends: building solar farms, wind turbines and batteries as fast as possible; install solar panels on rooftops, electric cars in garages and electric heat pumps in homes; and invest in energy efficiency and “demand response” programs that pay people to use electricity during off-peak periods when solar and wind power are plentiful.

    The benefits would be immense: not only helping to counteract the climate crisis, but also slashing deadly air pollution from cars, trucks, power plants and gas furnaces, much of it concentrated in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color, the report notes.

    Download the LA100: The Los Angeles 100 pct Renewable Energy Study HERE

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NREL news,  Renewable Energy news,  


    Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition Announcement (Ind. Report)
    Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition
    Date: 2021-03-22
    "The Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition member organizations commend state agency and stakeholder efforts in recommending a clean fuels policy in Minnesota. We thank Governor Walz for establishing the Governor's Council on Biofuels and strongly support the Council's recommendation -- finding number 10, recommendation number 4 -- to move forward with a clean fuels policy in Minnesota. We also applaud the Minnesota Department of Transportation for establishing the Sustainable Transportation Advisory Council, which also included a clean fuels policy and implementation guidelines in its set of approved recommendations to the Department. A clean fuels policy will help assure that Minnesota remains in a leadership position with respect to clean fuels innovation, building on past successes.

    "Minnesota is behind schedule in achieving the transportation greenhouse gas reduction and clean fuel adoption goals established through the bipartisan Next Generation Energy Act of 2007. We believe that a clean fuels policy, such as the proposed Future Fuels Act, can help get Minnesota back on track.

    "We believe that the Future Fuels Act, designed based on recommendations in the Mid-continent Clean Fuels Policy Initiative's white paper A Clean Fuels Policy for the Midwest, can have many benefits for Minnesota, including:

  • Benefits for consumers through market access for clean fuels that are often lower cost or a better value than conventional fuels but currently face barriers to entry in the marketplace.

  • Large net-positive and equitable economic impacts for the state through increased investment in a broad portfolio of cleaner fuels, including ethanol, biomethane, biodiesel, other biofuels, electricity,and charging infrastructure.

  • Equitable access to clean transportation for all Minnesota communities.

  • Increased investment in cleaner fuels for all types of vehicles and a more innovative and prosperous clean fuels sector spurring consumer demand for cleaner products,

  • A technology- and fuel-neutral, performance-based approach that rewards the cleanest fuels without having government pick winners and losers and expands the fuels market.

  • Reductions in air pollution and increased health benefits, particularly in areas that have been disproportionately impacted by transportation pollution.

  • Economic incentives and market demand to maximize the resource value of organic waste (including manure, biosolids, and food waste), reducing the climate impacts of organic waste, and supporting counties' efforts to achieve state-mandated recycling goals.

  • Increased energy independence by relying less on imported resources and more on state resources.

  • Reduced greenhouse gas emissions in the two largest emitting sectors of transportation and electricity as well as in the agricultural sector.

  • A potential to support voluntary farmer-led efforts to invest in and adopt agricultural conservation practices that benefit soil health and water quality and reduce farm-level greenhouse gas emissions." (Source: Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition, PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition, www.BetterEnergy.org , Twitter: @GreatPlainsInst; Facebook: Great Plains Institute

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Minnesota Future Fuels Coalition,  Clean Fuel,  Biofuel,  


  • NYPA, Tonawanda Announce LED Streetlight Program (Ind. Report)
    NYPA
    Date: 2021-03-22
    In the Empire State, the New York Power Authority (NYPA) and the Town of Tonawanda and the City of Tonawanda have partnered for the installation energy-efficient LED streetlights throughout the municipalities under the state's Smart Street Lighting NY program that calls for at least 500,000 streetlights throughout the state to be replaced with LED technology by 2025.

    The installation of more than 7,600 LED streetlights in Tonawanda is expected to begin this month for completion before the year end. The $7.5 million project will be implemented by NYPA. The town is financing the lighting installation and the more than $12 million purchase of the lights from National Grid through a municipal bond. (Source: NYPA, Niagara Gazette, 22 Mar., 2021) Contact: NYPA, Gil Quiniones, Pres., CEO, www.nypa.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NYPA,  LED Light,  LED Streetlight,  


    Penna. DEP Eases Energy Efficiency Loan Process (Ind. Report)
    Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
    Date: 2021-03-22
    In Harrisburg, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) reports it has revamped the Green Energy Loan Fund (GELF) to make it easier for commercial property owners to get low-interest loans for large-scale, high-impact energy efficiency projects.

    The DEP and GELF work with building owners to ensure projects meet minimum energy savings requirements. In preparation for financing, GELF offers borrowers technical assistance to help building owners identify the most efficient, effective solutions to improve their building's energy performance. The improvements make it easier for borrowers to get even lower interest rates if they commit to performing a retro-commissioning -- upgrading -- several years after installation of their energy-saving project. New equipment must reduce energy use at least 25 pct, and whole building projects must reduce energy use more than 10 pct over current building energy code.

    The GELP prioritizes local community development efforts and seeks to support projects in Environmental Justice areas. Nearly 30 pct of funded projects have been in buildings owned or controlled by persons of color or with low income, and more than half have been located in low-income census tracts.

    The Green Energy Loan Fund has financed 16 projects for a total of $23 million in improvements to 2.1 million square feet of building space since 2009. The financing has enabled a carbon dioxide emissions reduction of 110,000 tons over the life of these projects.

    Download Penna. Green Energy Loan Fund details HERE. (Source: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, www.dep.pa.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Efficiency Loans,  


    Stoke-on-Trent Energy Efficiency Projects Funded (Int'l.)
    Energy Efficiency
    Date: 2021-03-22
    In the UK, the city of Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been allocated funding from the government Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme for a series of energy efficiency and decarbonisation projects expected to cost the city roughly £4.3 million.

    According to a council report, work at various city facilities and building will include: replacement of gas boilers with low-carbon air source heat pumps: installation of photovoltaic panels on six council buildings; a new building energy management system (BEMS) for 30 buildings, replacing the existing system, upgrading windows, and other energy efficiency measures. The report notes the energy efficiency improvements are "in line with the city council's asset management strategy to reduce energy consumption across the corporate estate."

    When completed, the projects are expected to reduce the city’s carbon footprint by up to 1,659 tpy of CO2 and save an estimated £590,000 a year on energy costs. (Source: Stoke-on-Trent, PR, 21 Mar., 2021) Contact: Stoke-on-Trent City Council, www.stokesentinel.co.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency news,  UK Energy Efficiency news,  


    BP Planning Teeside Blue Hydrogen Production Plant (Int'l.)
    BP
    Date: 2021-03-19
    In the UK, oil giant BP is reporting plans to develop U2Teesaide, the country's largest blue hydrogen production facility, targeting 1GW of hydrogen production by 2030. The proposed development would capture and send for storage up to 2 million tpy of carbon -- equivalent to capturing the emissions from the heating of one million UK households.

    Industries in Teesside account for over 5 pct of the UK's industrial emissions and the region is home to five of the country's top 25 emitters, according to BP.

    With large-scale, low-cost production of clean hydrogen, H2Teesside could support the conversion of surrounding industries to use hydrogen in place of natural gas, playing an important role in decarbonizing a cluster of industries in Teesside, BP said. (Source: BP, PR, Website, OE, 18 Mar., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Hydrogen,  Teeside,  CCS,  


    PACE Loans Under Review in the Show Me State (Reg. & leg.)
    PACE Loan
    Date: 2021-03-19
    In Jefferson City, Missouri House and Senate committees have passed legislation that would place significant new regulations on residential property assessed clean energy (PACE) loans.

    Under the legislation, PACE programs would be examined by the state Division of Finance every 24 months at an estimated cost of $50,000 per review. Under another bill, (HB 697), mortgage lenders would have the power to veto PACE loans.

    PACE loans are repaid as a line item added to borrowers' property tax bills and processed by county collectors as though they were a tax and, in the event of a mortgage payment default, are collected ahead of the mortgage loan. Consequently, mortgage lenders are uneasy with PACE financing and federal mortgage lenders Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae do not allow PACE loans on top of mortgages they hold.

    Current law allows PACE loans only in cities and counties that pass ordinances authorizing the lending. Proposed legislation would limit a PACE loan plus the outstanding mortgage debt to no more than 80 pct of a property's appraised value, plus the value of improvements made. (Source: Various Media, Energy News, 18 Mar., 2021) Contact: PACE, info@pacenow.org, www.pacenow.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News PACE Loan,  Energy Efficiency,  PACE,  


    Expected 2021 Renewable Energy Trends, Predictions from ENVIVA (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Enviva Biomass
    Date: 2021-03-19
    The following has been submitted by the world's largest industrial wood pellets producer, ENVIVA Holdings LP:

    Bioenergy is the largest renewable energy source in the EU and will be critical to increased deployment of wind and solar -- The use of bioenergy has more than doubled since 2000 as a result of its end-use as heat, transportation, and electricity. In fact, biomass is the only renewable fuel on the market that is readily available today and can replace fossil fuels for heat generation.

    In heavy industries such as steel, aluminum, and cement -- sustainably sourced wood-based biomass offers a carbon-neutral fuel replacement for coal and gas-fired furnaces (and combined heat and power plants). As a dependable and dispatchable renewable fuel, sustainably-sourced biomass represents a prime solution to complement the intermittency of wind and solar (among other renewables) that will reduce carbon emissions by more than 85 pct on a lifecycle basis.

    Looking ahead to more future-oriented solutions, such as the development of the hydrogen economy, biomass is projected to play an important role. The most obvious is to use biomass directly to create hydrogen through gasification and thereby avoid carbon emissions that are associated with natural gas. Even further down the road, when surplus solar and wind could potentially be used to create hydrogen at scale, there will be an exciting opportunity to produce aviation and other fuels with carbon capture of biomass that could result in even fewer net greenhouse gas emissions. Likewise, as decarbonization efforts in the steel and cement industry rapidly increase.

    ENVIVA is the world's largest producer of industrial wood pellets, a renewable and sustainable energy source used to generate electricity and heat. Through its subsidiaries, ENVIVA Holdings, LP owns and operates wood pellet processing plants and deep-water export terminals in the Southeastern U.S. and exports primarily to previously coal-fired power plants in the U.K., Europe and Japan. We make our pellets using sustainable practices that protect Southern forests and employ about 1,100 people and support many other businesses in the U.S. South. ENVIVA Holdings, LP conducts its activities primarily through two entities: ENVIVA Partners, LP, a publicly traded master limited partnership (NYSE: EVA), and ENVIVA Development Holdings, LLC, a wholly owned private company. (Source: ENVIVA Holdings, LP, Jan., 2021) Contact: ENVIVA Holdings, LP. ENVIVA Biomass, Enviva Partners, LP, (301) 657-5560, www.envivabiomass.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ENVIVA,  Biomass,  Wood Pellet,  


    Palm Coast Community Center Scores LEED Silver Cert. (Ind. Report)
    USGBC
    Date: 2021-03-17
    In the Sunshine State, the city of Palm Coast -- pop. 81,000 -- reports its recently expanded 21,000 square feet Community Center has received US Green Building Council LEED Silver certification for environmental sustainability and resource efficiency. The project earned LEED qualifying points for:
  • Location and Transportation -- surrounding density and diverse uses, bicycle facilities, reduced parking footprint, green vehicles;

  • Sustainable Sites -- construction activity pollution prevention, site assessment, open space, rainwater management, heat island reduction (reduce effects on human and wildlife habitats by reducing the impact of heat retaining components);

  • Water Efficiency -- outdoor water use reduction, indoor water use reduction, building-level water metering;

  • Energy and Atmosphere -- fundamental commissioning and verification, minimum energy performance, building-level energy metering, fundamental refrigerant management, optimize energy performance, enhanced commissioning (verifying the training of the staff and testing to operate the energy and water systems), enhanced refrigerant management (reduce ozone depletion by minimizing the emission of harmful compounds), green power and carbon offsets (100 pct of the total building energy consumption is offset by the use of renewable energy sources);

  • Materials and Resources -- storage and collection of recyclables, construction and demolition waste management planning, building life-cycle impact reduction (reuse or salvage at least 25 pct of the materials for the building), product disclosure and optimization -- environmental product declarations (utilize products and materials that have environmental, economical, and socially preferred life-cycle impacts), product disclosure and optimization -- material ingredients (Install materials that have a minimum level of recycled content), construction and demolition waste management (reduce construction waste that is disposed of in landfills);

  • Indoor Environmental Quality -- minimum IAQ performance, environmental tobacco smoke control, enhanced IAQ strategies (utilize mechanically and naturally ventilated ideals to promote occupant comfort), low-emitting materials (reduce concentrations for chemical contaminants), construction IAQ management plan (promote the well-being of the construction workers during construction), thermal comfort (provide multiple controls of the mechanical system to the building occupants), interior lighting (provide multiple controls of the lighting to the building occupants);

  • Innovation -- achieved a higher level of low-emitting materials and use of environmentally sensitive cleaning products to maintain the building;

  • Regional Priority Credits -- surrounding density and diverse uses (extra credit granted on the location of the project), thermal comfort (extra credit granted on the location of the project). (Source: City of Palm Coast, Palm Coast Observer, Mar., 2021) Contact: City of Palm Coast, www.palmcoastgov.com; USGBC, www.usgbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  LEED Certification,  USGBC,  


  • Gas Goes Green Pathway to Net Zero (ENA Report Attached)
    Energy Networks Association
    Date: 2021-03-17
    In the UK, the Energy Networks Association (ENA) has released its Gas Goes Green Pathway to Net Zero report in response to the need to replace the natural gas that 85 pct of Britain's homes use for heating, hot water and cooking with greener alternatives such as hydrogen and biomethane.

    Download the ENA Gas Goes Green Pathway to Net Zero report HERE. (Source: Energy Networks Assoc., PR, 12 Mar., 2021) Contact: Energy Networks Association, +44 (0) 20 7706 5100, www.energynetworks.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Net Zero Emissions,  


    Ameresco Completes Santa Fe Energy Efficiency Project (Ind. Report)
    Ameresco
    Date: 2021-03-17
    Framingham, Mass.-based renewable energy and energy efficiency specialist Ameresco, Inc. is reporting completion of a facilities energy efficiency upgrade project for the City of Santa Fe, N.M.

    The energy efficiency improvements included various building roof replacements, parapet and EFIS wall repairs, power conditioning, pool repair, HVAC and building automation and others. Ameresco will also help the city with facility maintenance and capital planning needs and to identify potential funding strategies to update its infrastructure.

    The completed energy efficiency measures are expected to save the city more than $88,600 per year in electric power and natural gas costs. (Source: Ameresco, PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: Ameresco, Leila Dillon, 508-661-2264, www.ameresco.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ameresco news,  Energy Efficiency news,  


    Biogas Council Touts Fastest Growing Biogas Businesses (Ind. Report)
    American Biogas Council
    Date: 2021-03-17
    In Washington, the American Biogas Council is reporting the following eight companies as the fastest growing biogas businesses in the U.S., based on 2019-20 gross revenue growth: DMT, DVO, Inc., Envitec Biogas, Evonik, Greenlane Biogas, Nacelle, Paques Environmental Technologies, and PlanET Biogas. Collectively, revenue from the fastest eight grew by more than 300 pct.

    According to the Council release, the US biogas industry presently has 2,200 operating projects in all 50 states. Biogas systems recycle organic material into renewable energy and soil products. Because each year the US generates millions of tons of manure, agricultural waste and food scraps, plus billions of gallons of wastewater every day, the potential to build new biogas systems to manage those large volumes of organic waste is enormous. At least 15,000 new systems could be built, catalyzing an estimated $45 billion in new capital deployment along with 374,000 short-term construction jobs to build the new systems and 25,000 permanent jobs to operate them. This number of systems could produce enough energy to power 7.5 million American homes and reduce emissions equivalent to removing up to 15.4 million passenger vehicles from the road, in addition to many other benefits. (Source: American Biogas Council, Website PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: American Biogas Council, Patrick Serfass, Executive Director, 202-904-0220, 202-640-6595, info@americanbiogascouncil.org, www.americanbiogascouncil.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biogas,  Biogas,  Anaerobic Digestion,  American Biogas Council,  


    LG Energy Solution Boosting US Battery Production (Ind. Report)
    LG Energy Solution
    Date: 2021-03-12
    Seoul, South Korea-based LG Energy Solution -- fka LG Chem -- reports it plans to invest more than $4.5 billion over the next four years to increase battery production capacity in the U,S.

    This new investment will allow 70 GWh of additional battery production capacity primarily for electric vehicles and some energy storage system providers.

    The company presently operates a battery production facility in Holland, Mich.

    (Source: LG Energy Solution, PR, Facebook, 11 Mar., 2021) Contact: LG Energy Solution, +82-2-3777-1114, www.lgensol.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News LG Chem,  LG Energy Solution ,  Battery,  Energy Storage,  


    Wisc. Seeks Low-Carbon, Clean Energy Roadmap (Ind. Report)
    Wisconsin Public Service Commission
    Date: 2021-03-12
    In Madison, Wisconsin Public Service Commission (PSC) has 2-1 to launch an investigation into utilities' ongoing transition to zero-carbon electricity. The investigation seeks to identify economic and environmental benefits of a transition to clean energy and chart a course toward a clean energy future while maintaining reliable and affordable electricity.

    To that end, the PSC will review goals set by the state's five largest utilities to reduce carbon emissions 100 pct by 2050 and meet recommendations stemming from Gov. Tony Evers' executive order on clean energy, as well as the Governor's Climate Change Task Force and ideas for accelerating the clean energy transition as outlined by a Wisconsin group of utilities, consumer advocates and business groups. The investigation will also consider:

  • Retirement of fossil fuel power plants and deployment of new energy alternatives;

  • Increase in customers who generate their own power and are tied to the grid;

  • Increase in new technologies like battery storage;

  • Programs that help customers control their energy use and lower utility bills;

  • The design and operation of the regional transmission grid and wholesale markets.

    According to the most recent strategic energy assessment, 75 pct of the state's power is currently generated with fossil fuels. If nuclear were also excluded, 91 pct of the Badger State's power mix would need to be replaced with renewable energy sources.

    Under Wisconsin state law, the PSC is required to prioritize energy conservation and efficiency, as well as renewable energy resources, to the extent it's "cost-effective, technically feasible, and environmentally sound." (Source: Wisconsin Public Service Commission, PR, Wisc. NPR, Mar., 2021) Contact: Wisconsin Public Service Commission, Rebecca Valcq, Chairperson, (608) 266-5481, fax -- (608) 266-3957, www.psc.wi.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Wisconsin Public Service Commission,  Low-Carbon Energy,  Renewable Energy,  


  • Ellomay Inks 28-MW Spanish PV Plant EPC Agreement (Int'l.)
    Ellomay Capital
    Date: 2021-03-10
    Tel-Aviv-headquartered renewable energy developer Ellomay Capital Ltd. is reporting its solar plant construction unit Ellomay Solar S.L.U. has centered into a €15.32 million engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) agreement for a 28-MW photovoltaic plant in the municipality of Talavan, Caceres, Spain, with MYTILINEOS S.A.'s renewables and storage development business unit METKA EGN Spain S.L.U. Work began March 1 and is expected to be completed within 9 months.

    To date, Ellomay has evaluated numerous opportunities and invested in the renewable, clean energy and natural resources industries in Israel, Italy and Spain, including:

  • Approximately 7.9MW of photovoltaic power plants in Spain and a photovoltaic power plant of approximately 9 MW in Israel;

  • 9.375 pct indirect interest in Dorad Energy Ltd., which owns and operates one of Israel's largest private power plants with production capacity of approximately 860 MW, representing about 6 - 8 pct of Israel's total current electricity consumption;

  • 51 pct of Talasol, which owns a photovoltaic plant with a peak capacity of 300MW in the municipality of Talavan, Caceres, Spain;

  • Groen Gas Goor B.V., Groen Gas Oude-Tonge B.V. and Groen Gas Gelderland B.V., project companies operating anaerobic digestion plants in the Netherlands, with a green gas production capacity of approximately 3 million, 3.8 million and 9.5 million (with a license to produce 7.5 million) Nm3 per year, respectively;

  • 83.333 pct of Ellomay Pumped Storage (2014) Ltd., which is involved in a project to construct a 156 MW pumped storage hydro power plant in the Manara Cliff, Israel. (Source: Ellomay Capital Ltd., PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: MYTILINEOS S.A, www.mytilineos.gr; Ellomay Capital, Kalia Weintraub, CFO, +972 (3) 797-1111, hilai@ellomay.com, www.ellomay.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ellomay Capital,  Solar,  Energy Storage,  


  • EP Votes to Retain Free CO2 Quotas for Industry (Int'l.)
    EU
    Date: 2021-03-10
    Yesterday in Brussels, the European Parliament (EP) rejected proposals to phase out free CO2 pollution credits for industries covered by the EU's Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), even as the bloc plans to gradually replace the scheme with a border carbon tax to shield EU industries from "environmental dumping."

    The European Commission (EC) is expected to unveil its proposal for a carbon border tax in June as part of a package of climate laws aimed at cutting the EU's CO2 emissions by 55 pct by 2030. (Source: European Commissions, euractive, 10 Mar., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EU Carbon Tax,  Border Carbon Tax,  EUETS,  Carbon Credits,  


    Green Hydrogen, Ammonia Seen as Future Marine Fuel (Alt. Fuel)
    FuelEU Maritime Initiative
    Date: 2021-03-08
    According to a just published letter from Transport & Environment (T&E) and marine shipping companies DFDS, CMB, Viking Cruises and ommodities trader Trafigura, "biofuels do not offer a sustainable alternative for shipping as crop-based biofuels emit more emissions than the fossil fuels they replace and there will not be enough advanced biofuels to meet demand. On the other hand, green hydrogen and ammonia are sustainable and can be produced in sufficient quantities to decarbonise the shipping industry." Accordingly, "Lawmakers must send a clear signal to potential investors to focus on renewable electricity-based hydrogen and ammonia when the EU proposes its maritime fuel policy next month", the letter states.

    Globally, €1.4 trillion in capital investments will be required to produce green hydrogen and ammonia for the shipping industry. The EU should seize this opportunity to create new jobs and support sustainable economic growth in line with the EU Green Deal when it propose its FuelEU Maritime Initiative in April, the letter states.

    Not-for-Profit and politically independent shipping industry organization Transport & Environment's vision is for an affordable science-based zero-emission mobility system with climate and environment impacts. (Source: Transport & Environment, PR, Website 3 Mar., 2021) Contact: Transport & Environment, Faig Abbasov, Shipping Program Director, +32 (0)487 717296, www.transportenvironment.org; FuelEU Maritime Initiative, www.safety4sea.com/eus-fueleu-maritime-initiative-to-drive-decarbonization

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Marine Fuel,  Maritime Fuel,  Green Hydrogen,  Ammonia,  Alternative Fuel,  Biofuel,  


    9H, Wyoming University Partner on Solar Energy Research (R&D)
    9H Research Foundation
    Date: 2021-03-08
    In Wyoming, the Laramie-based 9H Research Foundation reports it will donate possibly millions of dollars to the University of Wyoming (UW) in the form of clean energy installations and in-kind support services for construction of a philanthropic student research facility and the creation of a world-class clean energy engineering curriculum at UW.

    First Solar, the largest U.S. solar manufacturer, made a $300,000 in-kind donation to the project with more than 2,000 advanced thin film solar photovoltaic modules totaling nearly 1 megawatt of capacity. Other funders include Creative Energies Solar, Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium, Alt E Wind & Solar, RiskThinking.AI, and Black Bean Capital Partners.

    To drive innovation and provide students with hands-on research experience, 9H Foundation is hiring additional student interns and funding $15,000 worth of projects for seven student groups to design and build solar and energy storage projects out of the new research facility. (Source: 9H Research Foundation, Gillette News Record, 7 Mar., 2021) Contact: 9H Energy, 9H Research Foundation Gene Humphrey, Co-Founder, info@9henergy.com, www.9henergy.com; University of Wyoming College of Engineering and Applied Science, 307-766-4253, enginfo@uwyo.edu, www.uwyo.edu; First Solar, David Brady, Inv. Rel., (602) 414-9315, dbrady@firstsolar.com, www.firstsolar.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News First Solar,  9H Research Foundation,  Solar,  


    Zemo Partnership Touts Renewable Fuels Assurance Scheme (Int'l.)
    Zemo Partnership
    Date: 2021-03-08
    In London, the soon to be launched Zemo Partnership Renewable Fuels Assurance Scheme has found the introduction of E10 petrol-biofuel blend and the widespread use of high blend renewable fuels (HBRF) could reduce truck emissions by 46 million tonnes over the next decade.

    The HBRF study covers renewable fuels including biodiesel, hydrotreated vegetable oil and biomethane and identifies the opportunities and barriers to adoption and the GHG-saving opportunities available for sustainable, renewable fuel adoption by heavy duty vehicles.

    The study notes that with a market average of 30 pct HBRF used in place of diesel and natural gas by 2030, the sector could save an additional 46 million tonnes in GHG emissions over the next decade.

    The Zemo Partnership Renewable Fuels Assurance Scheme is an initiative designed and managed by Zemo Partnership that aims to give fleet operators independent assurance of purchasing sustainable, low carbon fuels approved under the RTFO, and customer supply chain specific GHG emission performance data. The scheme is open to all UK suppliers of renewable fuels including those that supply blends of renewable fuels. Companies are required to apply to Zemo Partnership to become an approved Renewable Fuel Supplier and demonstrate compliance with the scheme performance criteria and undergo an annual compliance check. This entails independent verification of company procedures, processes and renewable fuel production data by an auditor, according to the Zemo website.

    Once approved renewable fuel supplier will be able to issue their customers with 'Renewable Fuel Declarations' every three months for batches of sustainable low carbon fuels sold. The declaration will identify the carbon intensity and GHG emissions savings specific to the renewable fuel supply chain as well as information on feedstocks, the Zemo website notes. (Source: Zemo Partnership, PR, Website, 8 Mar., 2021) Contact: Zemo Partnership, Gloria Esposito, Sustainability Head, +44 (0)20 7304 6880, hello@zemo.org.uk, www.zemo.org.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel,  E10,  Biofuel Blend,  


    CME Launches Global Emissions Offset Futures (Ind. Report)
    CME Group, CORSIA
    Date: 2021-03-05
    Chicago-based derivatives marketplace CME is reporting the launch and availability for trading of its Global Emissions Offset (GEO) futures.

    GEO futures, which were designed to help customers manage the risks associated with voluntary decarbonization strategies, are based on the selection criteria and review process developed for the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA). GEO futures allow for delivery of CORSIA eligible voluntary offset credits from three ICAO approved registries and are listed by and subject to the rules of NYMEX. (Source: CME Group, PR, Mar., 2021) Contact: CME Group, www.cmegroup.com/geo

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Offset,  Carbon Credit,  Carbon Market,  CORSIA,  


    Canary Biofuels Nails Invigor Bioenergy Acquisition (M&A)
    Invigor Bioenergy
    Date: 2021-03-05
    On the Canadian prairies, Calgary-headquartered Canary Biofuels Inc. is reporting completion of a $16.5 million (Cdn) non-brokered private placement equity financing and closing of its acquisition of biodiesel producer Invigor Bioenergy Corporation, also of Calgary. The company also inked an agreement with Canadian Western Bank providing for a credit facility with $7 million of borrowing capacity.

    Canary will use proceeds from the financing to convert the Invigor biodiesel facility to produce 75 million lpy of second-generation biodiesel from agricultural waste feedstock before the year end. (Source: Canary Biofuels Inc., PR, CNW, 3 Mar., 2021) Contact: Canary Biofuels, George Wadsworth Pres., www.canarybiofuels.com; Invigor Bioenergy, (403) 243-4584, www.invigor-energy.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Invigor Bioenergy,  Canary Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  


    LMV Touts Green Energy Storage Breakthrough (New Prod & Tech)
    LVM Technology
    Date: 2021-03-05
    St. Petersburg, Florida-based renewable energy storage start-up LVM Technology LLC is touting its recently patented longer-term energy storage solution -- an innovative pumped-hydro system utilizing a liquid-vapor mixture to maintain constant pressure in renewable energy storage tanks.

    Typically, compressed air is used to store energy in the form of pressure, but the pressure varies as fluid is dispensed. The potentially game-changing technology uses a liquid-vapor mixture (LVM) instead of air to maintain constant pressure as the stored liquid is dispensed. Potential applications beyond energy storage include constant high-pressure water distribution for high-rise buildings or municipalities, aero-space, residential, etc., according to the company release. (Source: LMV Technology LLC, PR, 4 Mar., 2021) Contact: LVM Technology LLC, Ramsey Nashed, 727-418-6622, www.lvmtechnology.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Energy Storage,  


    NextGen Biomass Comments on Japan's Hydrogen Plans (Opinions, Editorials & Asides
    Zilkha Black Pellets,NextGen Biomass Technologies
    Date: 2021-03-03
    Houston, Texas-based Zilkha Black® (biomass) Pellet producer NextGen Biomass Technologies comments on Japan's hydrogen fuel plans: "In March 2019, Japan released its third Strategic Roadmap for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells. The plan targets reduction in hydrogen production costs and leadership in carbon capture strategies to convert hydrogen from fossil fuels. Investments are flooding in on this plan's strength.

    "We (NextGen) are optimistic about the courage and vision that the Japanese nation is showing in the hydrogen economy. Here in the U.S., officials are projecting a 2028 timeline to commercialize hydrogen as a fuel. It is obvious that Japan is much more aggressive and pushes the envelope in research, development and full-scale production operations. One recent example is the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries steel plant project in Australia, which is using hydrogen instead of coal.

    "Japan's top two carmakers have been steadily selling hydrogen fuel cell cars at a loss in California for more than a decade. This business model has been valuable to both companies and the Japanese government, based on customer feedback and increased interest in supporting the U.S.'s build-out of a hydrogen infrastructure. These are cars limited to use only in California, where the U.S. has 44 of its 47 hydrogen fueling stations.

    "We (NextGen) have worked with others in the biofuel and biofuel derivatives market to see how our Zilkha Black Pellets work in biosyngas reactors, where companies typically generate methane and other heavier petroleum replacements that can be converted to hydrogen. Most of these processes are not currently at full production scale. The factor holding many of them back is the variability of feedstock. When different feedstocks, or even the same feedstock with varying particle or different moisture contents are added, the process must sometimes be adjusted significantly to avoid loss of product, equipment and other hazards. Using Zilkha Black Pellets as a base for bioreactors ensures a stable, uniform size, moisture and makeup feedstock to which smaller amounts of varied feedstocks can be added. These pellets cost significantly less to transport than raw biomass ever will.

    "Hydrogen from biomass is a viable, low-cost electricity solution, and we are excited to work with companies operating in this space. Using a stable uniform feedstock, especially in the initial full-scale production phases, can mean the difference between a successful project and one that never reaches its goal." (Source: NextGen Biomass Technologies, Larry Price, (713) 979-9961, info@nextgenbiomass.com, lprice@nextgenbiomass.com, nextgenbiomass.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Zilkha Black Pellets,  Hydrogen,  Green Hydrogen,  NextGen Biomass Technologies,  


    Banff Dist. Heating Switching from Nat. Gas to Biomass (Ind. Report)
    Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change,
    Date: 2021-03-03
    In Ottawa, Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Hon. Jonathan Wilkinson, is reporting the Ministry will invest $530,000 to support a project that converts wood, woody biomass and municpal waste into energy in the Rocky Mountains Town of Banff (pop. 8,000), Alberta.

    The town's planned $1.3-million biomass district heating system will replace natural gas with wood waste--woody biomass to heat four municipal buildings. The project will see a roughly 6,000 tonnes reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over the project's lifetime. The federal funding comes from the Government of Canada's Low Carbon Economy Challenge, which invests in projects that reduce carbon pollution, save money, and create good jobs. (Source: Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change, CNW, Mar., 2021) Contact: Town of Banff, 403.762.1200, www.banff.ca; Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change, www.canada.ca/en/environment-climate-change.html

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change,  Woody Biomass,  


    EDF Texas Solar Project Lands 100 MW Virtual PPA (Ind. Report)
    EDF Renewables North America
    Date: 2021-03-03
    EDF Renewables North America is reporting an affiliate of energy services group Enterprise Products Partners LP will off-take 100 MW/132 MW DC of power from its Space City Solar complex in Wharton County Texas under the terms of a virtual power purchase agreement (PPA) tied to the second phase of a 345 MW/455 MW DC project which is slated to break ground this summer for completion in summer 2022.

    The off-take deal supports Enterprise's goal for sourcing 25 pct of its power from renewables by 2025. (Source: EDF Renewables, PR, Renewables Now, Mar. 2021) Contact: Enterprise Products Partners, www.enterpriseproducts.com; EDF Renewables, Sandi Briner, 858-521-3525, www.edf-re.com; EnterSolar, 917-580-3198, www.entersolar.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EDF Renewables North America,  Solar,  


    BlocPower Raises $63Mn to "Green" Old Buildings (Ind. Report)
    BlocPower
    Date: 2021-02-26
    In NYC, Brooklyn Navy Yard-based company BlocPower is working to reduce the nation's greenhouse gas emissions by "greening" older buildings which, according to BlocPower, produce more greenhouse gases than the entire U.S. transportation sector.

    BlocPower utilizes its proprietary software for analysis, leasing, project management, and monitoring urban clean energy projects and building owners and tenants saving 20-40 pct per year on their energy bills. The company's machine learning tech platform works by determining which retrofits will produce the most energy savings in a building while remotely monitoring energy consumption. Common retrofits include solar panels and cold-climate electric heat pumps which BlocPower offers to multifamily building owners for no money down.

    To date, BlocPower has "green" upgraded more than 1,000 buildings in New York City, including over 200 in Brownsville, and is now working in 23 other cities, according to the company.

    BlocPower is backed by Kapor Capital, one of Uber's first investors, Andressen Horowitz, early investor in Facebook, Twitter, AirBnB and Lyft, the former Chairman of Google, and American Family Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact. (Source: BlocPower, Websitem BKReader, 24 Feb., 2021) Contact: BlocPower, Donnel Baird, CEO, (718) 924-2873, support@blocpower.io, www.blocpower.io

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BlocPower,  Energy Efficiency,  Solar,  

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