Return to Today's Publications

 

Newsletter:
Date Range (YYYY-MM-DD) -
Company, Industry or Technology:
  Search Tips


Renewable Fuels Coalition Urges EPA to NOT Appeal Court "Hardship" Waiver Decision (Ind. Report, Reg. & Leg.)
American Coalition for Ethanol
Date: 2020-03-20
With the need for a decision only days away, the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union -- the coalition that scored a unanimous court decision against the U.S. EPA -- is now calling for the agency to not appeal the decision.

The coalition took the EPA to court and won over several "hardship" exemptions the EPA granted to small refineries, releasing them from their renewable fuel obligations in 2016 and 2017. The Trump Administration sought and secured an extension of the appeal deadline until Tuesday, March 24, this year.

"With the renewable fuels industry reeling from coronavirus, trade disputes and small refinery exemptions, now is certainly not the time for the Trump administration to take any action that would cause further pain for ethanol producers or the farmers that supply them. The best thing they could do to support our industry and keep ethanol plants open is to announce immediately that they will not appeal," the coalition wrote.

As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress. (Source: American Coalition for Ethanol , Various Trade Media, 18 March 2020) Contact: U.S. Grains Council, Tom Sleight, Pres., (202) 789-0789, (202) 898-0522, www.grains.org; Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org; American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, (605) 334-3381 ext. 3389, www.ethanol.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News American Coalition for Ethanol,  RFS,  "Hardship Wiver",  Renewable Fuel ,  


PREEM Selects Topsoe Hydroflex for Gothenburg Refinery (Int'l.)
PREEM. Haldor Topsoe
Date: 2020-03-13
Stockholm-headquartered PREEM reports its selection of Lyngby, Denmark-based Haldor Topsoe A/S's HydroFlex renewable-fuel technology to produce clean renewable diesel and jet fuel at its Gothenburg refinery in Sweden. The 16,000 bpd unit, which is expected to come on line in 2024, will produce renewable fuels from tall oil, tallow, and other renewable feedstocks.

Preem is the largest fuel company in Sweden, with a refining capacity of more than 18 million m3 of crude oil per year.

Topsoe's HydroFlex is an industry-proven technology that produces renewable fuels, such as gasoline, diesel, and sustainable aviation fuel, from all renewable feedstocks. Topsoe will license and supply basic engineering, proprietary equipment, catalysts and technical services. (Source: PREEM, PR, Chem Engineering, 12 Mar.,2020) Contact: Haldor Topsoe, Morten Schaldemose, , EVP, www.topsoe.com; PREEM, Petter Holland, CEO, Pres., +46 (0) 10 459 1000, www.preem.se/en/in-english

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels,  PREEM,   . Haldor Topsoe,  Renewable Fuel,  Renewable Diesel,  


BP, Santos Partnering on Aussie CCS Project (Int'l. Report)
BP,Santos
Date: 2020-03-11
Independent Asia-Pacific region oil and gas producer Santos and UK-based oil industry giant BP are reporting a non-binding agreement which could see BP invest $20 million to support Santo's Moomba carbon capture and storage (CCS) project in Australia's Cooper Basin.

The CCS project aims to capture 1.7 million tpy of CO2 currently separated from naturalthe CO2 back into the same geological formations for permanent storage. The Cooper Basin reinjection capacity is assessed at up to 20 million tpy of CO2 for 50 years. The non-binding agreement, which is subject to finalization of terms and a final investment decision, is targeted for the end of 2020. (Source: BP, GasWorld, 9 Mar., 2020) Contact: BP Press Office, +44 (0) 20 7496 4076, bppress@bp.com, www.bp.com; Santos, Kevin Gallagher, CEO, + 61 2 8016 2832, www.santos.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Santos,  CCS,  


EIA Reports Rising Ethanol Production (Ind. Report)
EIA
Date: 2020-03-09
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is reporting US ethanol production for the week ending 28 Feb. jumped to the highest in a month while stockpiles were up slightly with an average output of 1.079 million bpd -- the highest level since Jan. 31.

In the U.S. Midwest, by far the biggest-producing region, output of the biofuel jumped to 1.007 million barrels on average, from 977,000 a week earlier. Gulf Coast production increased to 24,000 bpd, on average, from 22,000 bpd seven days earlier. Rocky Mountain output was unchanged at an average of 14,000 bpd. West Coast production declined to 14,000 bpd from 15,000 bpd, and East Coast output fell to an average of 19,000 bpd from 26,000 bpd the previous week.

Stockpiles in the seven days that ended on Feb. 28 came in at 24.964 million barrels, up from 24.718 million a week earlier, according to EIA. (Source: EIA March 8, 2020)Contact: EIA, www.eia.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News EIA,  Corn,  Ethanol,  


Wascon Blue Planing Four Mexican Biorefineries (Int'l Report)
Wascon Blue
Date: 2020-03-09
Miguel Hidalgo, Mexico-based gasoline company Wascon Blue reports it will invest $720 million in four new "green" biorefineries to produce gasoline from byproducts of the process of refining crude oil and natural gas. The company's "innovative formula of BluePower® Biofuels , its Additive acts at the molecular level by increasing the octane in gasoline and cetane in Diesel", according to its website.

Wascon will source the raw material from the state oil company Pemex, which currently exports the byproducts and later imports them after they've been converted to gasoline. The Wascon biorefineries will produce a gasoline with a lower concentration of aromatics, which are base components of gasoline that are a main source of octane and also one of the leading pollutants in the fuel. Conventional gasoline contains around 30 pct aromatics, but the goal of Wascon Blue is to reduce that to 20 pct an replace the remaining 10 pct with sustainably produced sugar cane and sorghum ethanol.

The first of the 4 new biorefinery complexes will be constructed in Veracruz and will have 30,000 bpd capacity beginning in 2021. The company plans to supply 100,000 bpd of "green" gasoline by 2025. (Source: Wascon, Wascom Blue, El Financiero , 7 Mar., 2020) Contact: Wascon Blue, Enrique Olivera, Pres., contacto@wasconblue.com, +55 6385 5542 www.wasconblue.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Wascon Blue,  


Tropical Forests Losing Ability to Absorb Carbon (Study Attached)
Carbon Sink
Date: 2020-03-06
The recently released attached study notes the Amazon and other tropical forests losing their "carbon sink" capabilities and could turn into a source of CO2 in atmosphere by next decade. owing to the damage caused by loggers and farming interests and the impacts of the climate crisis. In that event, the impact of climate change is likely to become much more severe and the world will have to cut its carbon emissions even faster than presently outlined under the Paris Climate Agreement.

The study, published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, tracked 300,000 trees over 30 years, providing the first large-scale evidence of the decline in carbon uptake by the world's tropical forests. The researchers combined data from two large research networks of forest observations in Africa and the Amazon, as well as years spent traveling to remote field sites

Access the Asynchronous Carbon Sink Saturation in African and Amazonian Tropical Forests study HERE. (Source: Nature, Mar. 2020)

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


Net Zero Teesside Project Consortium Announced (Int'l. Report)
OGCI Climate Investments
Date: 2020-03-04
OGCI Climate Investments, a $1-billion investment fund of The Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, is reporting the formation of a consortium of OGCI members -- BP, Eni, Equinor, Shell, and Total -- to accelerate the development of the Net Zero Teesside carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) project in the northeast of England.

Net Zero Teeside aims to capture up to 6 mtpa of CO2 emissions from local industries. There are also plans for a combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) facility with carbon capture technology which will provide low-carbon power as a complement to renewable energy sources and underpin the investment in the infrastructure. Net Zero Teesside also said it signed memorandums of understanding (MOUs) with three existing industrial partners demonstrating the strong local commitment to decarbonizing existing local industry. (Source: OGCI, OIL GAS Facilities, 2 Mar., 2020)Contact: OGCI Climate Investments, +44 (0) 203 922 0853, contact@climateinvestments.energy, www. oilandgasclimateinitiative.com › climate-investments; Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, www.oilandgasclimateinitiative.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News CCUS,  Teeside,  Oil and Gas Climate Initiative,  ,  


NJ Announces 7,500 MW Offshore Wind Solicitation (Ind. Report)
New Jersey
Date: 2020-03-02
In Trenton, Garden State Governor Governor Phil Murphy (D) has announced the offshore wind solicitation schedule to meet the 7,500 MW offshore wind goal by 2035 and called upon the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to implement the schedule. Reaching 7,500 MW will generate enough electricity to power more than 3.2 million homes and meet 50 pct of the state's electric power need.

The proposed schedule calls for the next 1,200 MW solicitation to be opened by September 2020, with an award made by Q2, 2021.

New Jersey aims to source 50 pct of it energy from renewables by 2030 and achieve a 100 pct clean energy economy by 2050. (Source: Office of Governor Phil Murphy, PR, 28 Feb., 2020) Contact: NJ BPU, www.bpu.state.nj.us

More Low-Carbon Energy News NJ BPU,  New Jersey Offshore Wind,  Wind,  Offshore Wind,  


US Renewable Fuel Prices Up With RFS "Hardship Waiver" Program Announcement (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuel
Date: 2020-02-28
Reuters is reporting U.S. renewable fuel prices were up by 25 pct the week following a Bloomberg reports that the Trump administration has decided to cut back on "hardship waiver" exemptions for oil refineries from the renewable fuel standard biofuel blending laws.

Following the Bloomberg report, renewable fuel credits for 2019 traded at 35 cents each , up 7 cents while credits for 2020 traded at 40 cents each.

As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress.

(Source: Various Media, Successful Farming, Reuters, 26 Feb., 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  


BP Exits Ind. Groups Over Climate Policy Disagreements (Ind. Report)
BP
Date: 2020-02-28
Petroleum industry giant BP reports it is dropping its affiliation with three industry trade association on the grounds that the associations' climate change related policies and positions do not align with BP's.

BP is dropping the Western Energy Alliance because its interests did not aligned on federal regulation of methane in the US, and the Western States Petroleum Association and American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers over carbon pricing positions.

As previously reported on 14 Feb., BP plans to:

  • Achieve a 50 pct cut in the carbon intensity of its products by 2050 or sooner

  • Install methane measurement at all BP major oil and gas processing sites by 2023 and reduce methane intensity of operations by 50 pct.

  • Increase its investment in non-oil and gas businesses over time.

  • More actively advocate for policies that support net-zero, including carbon pricing -- carbon tax.

  • Further incentivise the company's workforce to deliver aims and mobilize them to advocate for net- zero and set new expectations for relationships with trade associations.

  • Aim for recognition as a leader for transparency of reporting, including supporting the recommendations of the TCFD, and launch a new team to help countries, cities and large companies decarbonize.

    BP's current worldwide greenhouse gas emissions from its operations stand at 55 million tpy of CO2 equivalent (MteCO2e), and the carbon in the oil and gas that it produces is equivalent currently to around 360 MteCO2e emissions a year -- both on an absolute basis. Taken together, delivery of these aims would equate to a reduction in emissions to net zero from what is currently around 415 MteCO2e a year, according to the BP release. (Source: BP Website, 26 Feb., 2020) Contact: BP Press Office, +44 (0) 20 7496 4076, bppress@bp.com, www.bp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Climate Change,  Carbon Emissions,  


  • Garden State BPU Lifts Smart Meter Moratorium (Ind Report)
    New Jersey BPU
    Date: 2020-02-21
    Sitting in Trenton, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) reports it has lifted a more-than-two-year moratorium on utilities moving to smart meters and advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) -- technology that is presently used in over 92 million homes nationwide.

    In its order, the BPU directed the state's three largest electric utilities to file plans with the agency within six months to implement smart meters and AMI. In lifting the moratorium, the board found that AMI has the potential to benefit the distribution system, streamline and modernize utility operations and benefit the environment.

    The installation of roughly 2 million smart meters over six years is expected to come in at roughly $794 million and aligns with the BPU's recently adopted Energy Master Plan. (Source: NJ BPU, NJ Spotlight, 20 Feb., 2020) Contact: New Jersey BPU, www.bpu.state.nj.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Smart Meters ,  New Jersey BPU,  


    NDSP Abandons Planned N.D. Soybean Crushing Plant (Ind. Report)
    North Dakota Soybean Processors
    Date: 2020-02-19
    Brewster, Minnesota-based North Dakota Soybean Processors (NDSP) reports it has been forced to abandon efforts to build a large-scale soybean crushing facility at the Spiritwood Energy Park in Spiritwood, North Dakota, after more than three years and a $6 million investment.

    If constructed, the NDSP soybean-crushing facility would have processed 42 million bpy of locally grown soybeans and produce approximately 935,000 tons of soybean meal and 475 million pounds of soybean oil for sale into domestic and export animal feed and soybean oil markets, including with respect to the soybean oil serving as a renewable feedstock for planned or existing renewable diesel refinery facilities in North Dakota and throughout the western U.S., according to the company website (Source: North Dakota Soybean Processors, , Website, 17 Feb., 2020) Contact:North Dakota Soybean Processors, Robin Skrivan (507) 842-6715, info@ndsoy.com, www.ndsoy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News North Dakota Soybean Processors,  Soybean,  


    Notable Carbon Budget Quote from BP CEO (Innt'l. Report)
    BP
    Date: 2020-02-17
    "The world's carbon budget is finite and running out fast; we need a rapid transition to net zero. We all want energy that is reliable and affordable, but that is no longer enough. It must also be cleaner. To deliver that, trillions of dollars will need to be invested in replumbing and rewiring the world's energy system. It will require nothing short of reimagining energy as we know it." -- BP CEO Bernard Looney, Feb., 2020

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  


    BP Aiming for Net-Zero Carbon by 2050 (Int'l., Ind. Report)
    BP
    Date: 2020-02-14
    In the UK, petroleum industry giant BP is reporting plans to become a net-zero carbon company by 2050 or sooner. To that end, the oil giant aims to:
  • Reach net-zero carbon in its oil and gas production on an absolute basis by 2050 or sooner.

  • Achieve a 50 pct cut in the carbon intensity of its products by 2050 or sooner

  • Install methane measurement at all BP major oil and gas processing sites by 2023 and reduce methane intensity of operations by 50 pct.

  • Increase the proportion of investment into non-oil and gas businesses over time.

  • More actively advocate for policies that support net-zero, including carbon pricing -- carbon tax.

  • Further incentivise the company's workforce to deliver aims and mobilise them to advocate for net- zero.

  • Set new expectations for relationships with trade associations.

  • Aim for recognition as a leader for transparency of reporting, including supporting the recommendations of the TCFD, and

  • Launch a new team to help countries, cities and large companies decarbonise.

    BP's current worldwide greenhouse gas emissions from its operations stand at 55 million tpy of CO2 equivalent (MteCO2e), and the carbon in the oil and gas that it produces is equivalent currently to around 360 MteCO2e emissions a year -- both on an absolute basis. Taken together, delivery of these aims would equate to a reduction in emissions to net zero from what is currently around 415 MteCO2e a year, according to the BP release. (Source: BP, PR, Feb., 2020) Contact: BP press office, +44 (0) 20 7496 4076, bppress@bp.com, www.bp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Climate Change,  Carbon Emissions,  


  • 2019 New Jersey Energy Master Plan (Ind. Report Attached)
    New Jersey PUC, Renewable Energy
    Date: 2020-02-14
    In January, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) released its 2019 New Jersey Energy Master Plan -- Pathway to 2050 outlining the policies, initiatives and actions the Garden State can take to affordably meet its ambitious 2050 clean energy and decarbonization target of cutting its carbon emissions by 80 pct and power its economy with a 100 pct carbon-neutral renewable energy by 2050.

    For the report, the Rocky Mountain Institute, together with Evolved Energy Research, analyzed six decarbonization pathways that New Jersey could take and summarized the findings and made recommendations for policymakers and the public.

    Download the 2019 nNew Jersey Energy Master Plan -- Pathway to 2050 HERE. (Source: NJPUC, Feb., 2020) Contact: NJBPU, 800-624-0241, www.bpu.state.nj.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News New Jersey PUC,  Renewable Energy,  


    Green Bldg. Materials Compliance Platform Launched (New Prod. & Serv.)
    Green Building
    Date: 2020-02-14
    In the Land Down Under, Manely, NSW-based Edge Environments is touting its new Building Products Information Rating (BPI) national database that allows the building industry to check the sustainability credentials of construction materials in order to ensure material compliance with regulatory standards and "green" rating requirements.

    BPI is intended to give greater transparency the construction industry's thatselection and use of materials that meet sustainability regulations intended for "green" building ratings.

    In addition to the green rating of building materials, the free BPI Rating also assesses the expected performance and resilience of products and the companies producing them.

    The BPI search platform is the brainchild of Jonas Bengtsson, CEO of sustainability advisory firm Edge Environments and was developed by IT firm ComplyFlow with the backing of a government grant from AusIndustry and support from the Insurance Council of Australia. (Source: Edge Environment, Hotel Management, 13 Feb., 2020) Contact: Edge Environment, Jonas Bengtsson, CEO, +61 2 9438 0100, www.edgeenvironment.com


    Utility Reimbursement for Energy Efficiency Prog. Losses (Ind. Report)
    New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
    Date: 2020-02-14
    In the Garden State, a draft proposal from the staff of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) is at the core of the agency's efforts to achieve the state's 2018 mandated energy efficiency goals that promote a shift to 100 pct clean energy by 2050 -- a target unlikely to be met without overhauling the NJBPU's energy efficiency programs since the demand for electricity is expected to double by mid-century.

    Under the staff proposal, utilities will be able to recover lost revenues attributable to their energy efficiency programs, as well as programs to reduce peak-time energy consumption -- all of which runs contrary to established utility business models that encourage energy consumption to the point of wastefulness for growth and higher profits.

    The draft proposal is modeled on energy efficiency programs adopted by South Jersey Gas and New Jersey Natural Gas more than a decade ago, so-called limited decoupling. Dubbed Conservation Incentive Programs (CIP), they rely on incentives funded by shareholders to implement conservation programs. The staff draft balances the interests of both the utilities and ratepayers and allows utilities to earn a return on their energy efficiency investments, according to the NJBPU. (Source: New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, NJ Spotlight, 13 Feb., 2020) Contact: New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, 800-624-0241, www.bpu.state.nj.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News New Jersey Board of Public Utilities ,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Green Plains Adding Corn-Based Livestock Feed (Ind. Report)
    Green Plains Inc
    Date: 2020-02-12
    Omaha-headquartered ethanol producer Green Plains Inc. reports it will invest $400 million over the next two years to refocus its business on the production of corn-based, high protein animal feeds at its various production facilities. With this refocusing, ethanol will become a low-margin byproduct for the company.

    According to Reuters, the company's new game plan is in response to an uncertain ethanol market outlook, the Trump administration's continued issuance of RFS ethanol blending "hardship waivers" and an almost 20 pct drop in revenues from ethanol sales in 2019.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single waiver request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Green Plains, Successful Farming, Feb., 2020)Contact: Green Plains, Jim Stark, VP-IR, (402) 884-8700, www.gpreinc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Green Plains Inc.,  DDGs,  Ethanol,  RFS,  


    Lightsource BP Orders 1.2 GW of Canadian Solar Modules (Int'l.)
    Lightsource BP,Canadian Solar
    Date: 2020-02-07
    UK oil and gas giant BP-backed Lightsource BP reports ordering 1.2 GW of Guelph, Ontario-based Canadian Solar Solutions Inc. modules for various, un-named photovoltaic (PV) projects in the US and Australia.

    The order calls for the delivery of bifacial polycrystalline PERC modules, of the BiHiKu (CS3W-PB-AG) type, which, according to Canadian Solar, enhance power production when installed in a limited area and "dramatically" cut the levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) of the solar plant. The high-power HiKu (CS3W-P) modules are also part of the deal.

    BP acquired a 43 pct stake equity share in Lightsource Renewable Energy in 2017 for $200 million over three years, and the company was then relabeled Lightsource BP. (Source: Canadian Solar Solutions, PR, Feb., 2020) Contact: Canadian Solar Solutions, www.canadiansolar.com; Lightsource BP, Carl Jackson, Director Utility-scale Solar Initiatives, +44 0 333 200 0755, www.lightsourcebp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Lightsource BP,  Canadian Solar,  Solar,  


    Biofuels Ind. Groups Applaud Court's RFS Waiver Ruling (Ind Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2020-01-29
    Further to Monday, 27 Jan. coverage -- Court Disqualifies Recent RFS "Hardship" Waivers -- the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and other biofuel industry groups are praising the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling striking down three small refinery "hardship" exemption waivers.

    The court ruled the EPA cannot "extend” exemptions to any small refineries whose earlier, temporary exemptions had lapsed" as was the case in the three over ruled exemptions.

    Geoff Cooper, President and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA)noted: "The Court has affirmed our long-held position that EPA's recent practices and policies regarding small refinery exemption extensions were completely unlawful. And while the decision addresses three specific exemptions, the statutory interpretation issues resolved by the court apply much more broadly."

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Various Media, Agri-Pulse, 28 Jan., 2020) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, Geoff Cooper, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  RFA,  RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol Blend,  


    Court Disqualifies Recent RFS "Hardship" Waivers (Reg & Leg.)
    Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2020-01-27
    It is being widely reported that a U.S. appeals court has ordered the EPA to reconsider three recently issued Renewable Fuel Standard small refinery "hardship waivers" on the grounds that the refineries did not qualify for the waivers and their issuance was "flawed."

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit dated Jan. 24 came after a coalition of biofuel industry groups had challenged the 2016 exemptions for Holly Frontier's Woods Cross and Cheyenne refineries, as well as CVR Energy's Wynewood refinery.

    The court ruled the EPA overstepped its authority and errored in granting the waivers because the refineries had not received exemptions in the previous year. The court said the RFS is worded in such a way that any exemption granted to a small refinery after 2010 must take the form of an "extension".

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source (Source: Successful Farming, Various Media, Reuters, 25 Jan., 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Renewable Fuel Standard,  "Hardship" Waiver,  


    Tata Tackles Indian Cellulosic Ethanol Project (M&A, Int'l. Report)
    Tata
    Date: 2020-01-24
    In Mumbai, Tata Projects Ltd., one of India's fastest growing infrastructure companies, is reporting acquisition of Bharat Petroleum Corporation's (BPCL) 2G Bio Ethanol Project at Bargarh, Odisha.

    The project is expected to produce 100 KL per day of fuel-grade cellulosic ethanol from agricultural waste and residues primarily rice straw and corn stover. The project will also assist in addressing growing environmental concerns and supporting the Indian government's Ethanol Blended Petrol programme.

    Tata Projects provides turnkey solutions for the construction of roads, bridges, fully integrated rail & metro systems, commercial building and airports and setting up power generation plants, power transmission & distribution systems, chemical process plants, water and waste management and complete mining and metal purification systems, according to the company website. (Source: Tata Projects, Rural Marketing 24 Jan., 2024) Contact: Tata Projects, 00 9712 679 5565, tpl@tataprojects.com, www.tataprojects.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Tata,  India Biofuel,  Cellulosic Ethanol,  Ethanol,  


    NJ BPU Proposes Energy Efficiency Program Framework (Ind Report)
    New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
    Date: 2020-01-22
    In a straw proposal, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) reports it is proposing a framework for how the Garden State can significantly cut electric and gas use and implement 2018 state legislation mandating utilities curb customer electric usage by 2 pct and gas use by 0.75 pct per year.

    The energy efficiency plan proposes that state staff deliver statewide policy programs and goals, particularly those involving governmental entities, and that utilities help achieve goals based on the staff's assumption that utilities are best suited to deliver certain energy efficiency and peak reduction programs. (Source: New Jersey, BPU, Spotlight NJ, 21 Jan., 2020) Contact: New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, 800-624-0241, www.bpu.state.nj.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News New Jersey Board of Public Utilities ,  


    Indian OMCs Ethanol Tender Seeks 2.5bn Litres (Int'l. Report)
    India Sugar Mills Association
    Date: 2020-01-20
    In New Delhi, the Indian government's three oil marketing companies (OMCs) -- Hindustan Petroleum, Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum -- have reportedly floated a second tender for 2.53 billion litres of ethanol for delivery between February 1 and November 30, 2020, for the government's petrol-blending programme. In response to a September 2019 tender, sugar-ethanol producers offered less than one-third of the tendered amount.

    In the present tender, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) is seeking 1.07 bn litres, Hindustan Petroleum (HPC) 787 million litres and Bharat Petroleum (BPC) seeks 672 million litres. (Source: India Sugar Mills Association (Isma), Business Standard, 20 Jan., 2020) Contact: India Sugar Mills Association, +91-11-2626 2294 - 98, +91-11-2626 3231 - fax, isma@indiansugar.com, www.indiansugar.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News India Sugar Mills AssociationmEthanol ,  


    UKGBC Office Energy Performance Targets Released (Report Attached)
    UK Green Building Council
    Date: 2020-01-17
    The UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) has published new energy performance targets for commercial offices that are aiming to achieve net-zero carbon in operation. The targets were developed as an addition to UKGBC's landmark 2019 report Net Zero Carbon Buildings: A Framework Definition developed in collaboration with Verco, Better Buildings Partnership and BPF, with support from Arup, Carbon Intelligence, JLL UK and TfL.

    Details of the new energy performance targets include a trajectory of targets starting from current best practice with tightening targets every five years up to 2035, at which time offices aiming to be net-zero should be operating at the energy performance standards that will be needed by 2050.

    Download the Net Zero Carbon: Energy Performance Targets for Offices report HERE.

    Download Net Zero Carbon Buildings: A Framework Definition HERE. Source: UKGBC, Facilities Management Journal, Jan., 2020) Contact: UKGBC, Richard Twinn, Senior Policy Advisor, www.ukgbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UK Green Building Council,  


    US GAO to Investigate EPA RFS Small Refinery Exemptions, "Hardship Waiver" Program (Ind. Report, Reg. & Leg.)
    RFS,U.S. Government Accountability Office
    Date: 2020-01-15
    On Capitol Hill, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has replied in the affirmative to a request from bi-partisan group of U.S House members led by Rep. Abby Finkenauer, (D-Iowa) -- Chairwoman, Subcommittee on Rural Development, Agriculture, Trade, and Entrepreneurship Committee on Small Business House of Representative -- urging the agency to examine the review and approval of small refinery exemptions (SREs), including the DOE's viability of scores for the 40 compliance year 2018 SRE applications that had been reviewed as of that date.

    In its Jan. 10 reply, the GAO accepted the request as being within the scope of its authority and assigned Mark E. Gaffigan, managing director of Natural Resources and Environment to begin the investigation shortly.

    "Granting more than 80 small refinery exemption waivers isn't just something this administration can sweep under the rug," Finkenauer said in a statement announcing the GAO investigation.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Office of US Rep. Abby Finkenaur, 10 Jan., 2020) Contact: Office of US Rep. Abby Finkenaur , https://finkenauer.house.gov/sites/finkenauer.house.gov; U.S. Government Accountability Office, (202) 512-3000, contact@gao.gov, www.gao.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel Standard,  "Hardship" Waiver,  


    ADNOC Expanding Carbon Capture, Utilization Storage Capacity (Int'l)
    Abu Dhabi National Oil Company
    Date: 2020-01-13
    In the UAE, the state-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Company reports it plans to lower its greenhouse gas emissions intensity by 25 pct by 2030. The company, which produced about 3 million bpd of oil and 10.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas, is currently among the five lowest greenhouse gas emitters in the oil and gas industry and has one of the lowest methane intensities in the world of 0.01 per cent, according to a release.

    Additionally, ADNOC plans to scale up its carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) programme, from 800,000 tpy of captured CO2 to 5 million tpy by 2030. (Source: ADNOC, N Business, 13 Jan., 2020) Contact: ADNOC, Dr Sultan Al Jaber, CEO, +971 2 7070000. +971 2 6023389 - fax, www.adnoc.ae

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Abu Dhabi National Oil Company,  


    BP Invests in Hong Kong Energy Management Software Firm (Int'l.)
    BP Ventures
    Date: 2020-01-10
    BP Ventures, the venture capital unit of energy giant BP is reporting a $3.6 million investment in Hong Kong-headquartered energy management AI company R&B Technologies. The move is intended to support BP Alternative Energy s focus on low-carbon power, storage, the digital energy value chain and wider energy as a service offers.

    R&B's software as a service (Saas) applies AI techniques to energy diagnostics and optimization in the commercial and industrial sector, processing data to generate insights and recommendations for improving energy efficiency and enhancing predictive maintenance in buildings.

    BP Ventures is actively seeking direct investment opportunities in China in the areas of advanced mobility, power and storage, carbon management, bio- and low carbon products and digital transformation, according to a release. (Source: BP Ventures, PR, Current +-, 9 Jan., 2019)Contact: R&B Technologies, Glenn Wu, COO & CTO, info@rnbtech.com.hk, www.rnbtechgroup.com; BP Ventures, www.bp.com › global › bp-ventures BP Alternative Energy, www.bp.com/en/global/corporate/what-we-do/alternative-energy.html

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP Alternative Energy ,  BP Ventures,  Energy Management,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Suncor Challenges EPA RFS Waiver Denial (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
    Suncor Energy
    Date: 2020-01-08
    Denver-based Suncor Energy U.S.A. Inc., a unit of Calgary, Alberta-based Suncor Energy, reports it has filed an appeal of the US EPA's October 2019 decision in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Denver. The agency recently finalized a rule designed to account for biofuel gallons waived from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

    In its appeal, Suncor, which received waivers for what were previously two refineries in Commerce City, Colorado, argued the agency's action was "arbitrary, capricious, and not otherwise in accordance with law." The EPA reportedly rejected Suncor's petition because the refineries no longer meet EPA's definition of a small refinery, which produces 75,000 bpd or less. Suncor previously received waivers for what were two small refineries, one that produced nearly 33,000 bpd and another at nearly 67,000 in 2018. The refineries were among the original facilities to receive waivers in 2006.

    According to the company's website, since 2006, Suncor has been making a significant impact in Canada's emerging biofuels industry. Suncor is using revenues from oil sands development to invest in biofuels, particularly ethanol produced from corn. Ethanol is a cleaner burning, renewable resource. The ethanol production industry is expanding in Canada and the United States. New government regulations require that a percentage of ethanol be blended into fuels to reduce the environmental impacts of vehicle emissions. Suncor operates Canada's largest ethanol facility -- the St. Clair Ethanol Plant in the Sarnia-Lambton region of Ontario. (Source: Suncor Energy, DTN, 6 Jan., 2019) Contact: Suncor Energy USA, 303-793-8000, www.suncor.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Suncor Energy ,  RFS,  "Hardship Waiver",  


    Refiners Raise Clean Fuel to IMO Standard (Int'l. Report)
    International Maritime Organisation
    Date: 2020-01-06
    Reuters is reporting global oil refiners have "upgraded processing units and adjusted operations to raise output of low-sulphur residual fuels and marine gasoil (MGO) to prepare for stricter shipping fuel standards that kick in on Jan.1, 2020."

    The new London-based International Maritime Organization (IMO) standards prohibit the use of fuels containing more than 0.5 pct sulphur, compared with 3.5 pct through the end of December, unless the ship is equipped with exhaust-cleaning "scrubbers".

    The shipping industry consumes about 4 million bpd of marine bunker fuels, and the rule changes will impact more than 50,000 merchant ships globally, opening a significant new market for fuel producers. (Source: International Maritime Organization, Gulf Today, Reuters, 31 Dec., 2019) Contact: International Maritime Organization, Stefan Micallef, Director of Marine Environment Division, +44 (0) 20 7735 7611, www.imo.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Low-Sulphur Fuel,  Alternative Fuel,  Gasoil,  IMO,  Maritime Fuel,  Shipping Fuel,  Bunker Fuel,  


    Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy Snares Bunge Ethanol Plant Stake (Ind. Report, M&A)
    Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy
    Date: 2020-01-06
    White Plains, NY-based agribusiness major and ethanol producer Bunge Ltd is reporting the sale of its equity stake in an ethanol plant in Iowa to Council Bluffs-based Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy LLC (SIRE). Under the deal Bunge will purchase all of the plant's the ethanol production.

    According to its website, SIRE is a dry-mill grain processing facility that produces over 110 million gpy of fuel grade ethanol, over 365,000 tpy of Dried Distillers' Grain (DDGs) with the ability to produce Wet Distiller Grains (WDGs), as well as approximately 90,000 ppd of corn oil. The facility will consume over 44.6 million bpy of corn feedstock from southwestern Iowa and several counties in southeast Nebraska. (Source: Bunge, Biofuel Int'l., 6 Jan., 2020) Contact: Southwest Iowa Renewable EnergyLLC, Mike Jerke, CEO, 712-366-0392 www.sireethanol.com; Bunge Ltd, (914) 684-2800, www.bunge.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Bunge,  Ethanol,  DDGs,  


    Hydrogen Gas Specialist Looses NB Power Funding (Funding)
    JOI Scientific,NB Power
    Date: 2020-01-03
    In Fredericton, the New Brunswick Department of Energy and Resource Development is reporting the provincial utility NB Power has ceased its ongoing financial financial support of Merrit, Florida-based hydrogen gas developer JOI Scientific.

    NB Power had pumped $13 million into the company and reportedly continues to lease a lab space for the company that cost about $20,000 a month.

    The company, which claims its "Hydrogen 2.0" technology isolates hydrogen gas from seawater, which can then be burned to create clean energy, failed to prove its technology by a December 31, 2019 deadline. (Source: NB Power, GlobalNews, 31 Dec., 2019) Contact: NB Power, Gaetan Thomas, CEO, Marc Belliveau, Communications, (506) 458-4203, www.nbpower.com; JOI Scientific, 209-787-3564, info@joiscientific.com, www.joiscientific.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Hydrogen,  NB Power,  


    Irving Cuts Climate Change, Emissions Commitment (Ind. Report)
    Irving Oil
    Date: 2019-12-23
    St.John New Brunswick-based Irving Oil, Canada's largest carbon emitter has reportedly abandoned a previous pledge to cut carbon output by 17 pct from 2005 levels by 2020, in favor of a "keeping up with the Jones" approach of keeping its emissions and environmental performance competitive with its rivals.

    In 2017, the 320,000 bpd Irving family owned refinery in St. John emitted just over 3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e), according to Environment Canada. In effect, the company is no longer targeting an outright reduction in carbon emissions but is maintaining the status quo as dictated by the top 25 pct of rival refineries in Canada through 2025.

    Founded in 1924, privately held Irving Oil operates Canada's largest refinery in Saint John, New Brunswick, more than 900 fueling locations and a network of distribution terminals spanning Eastern Canada and New England. It also operates Ireland's only refinery, located in the village of Whitegate, according to Wikepedia. (Source: Irving Oil, Reuters, Chronicle Herald, 20 Dec., 2019) Contact: Irving Oil, www.irvingoil.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  


    NJ BPU Solar Transition Incentive Program Now In Force (Ind. Report)
    New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
    Date: 2019-12-20
    On December 6, 2019, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) issued an order effective December 16, 2019, establishing a Solar Transition Incentive Program (TREC), the key provisions of the Order are as follows:
  • The TREC Program will be available to all solar projects that submitted complete SREC Registration (SRP) Applications after October 29, 2018 that have yet to commence operations but otherwise remain in good standing in the SRP pipeline at the time the BPU determines that 5.1 pct of all electricity sold in New Jersey comes from solar generation;

  • All TREC Program projects will generate a factored Transition Renewable Energy Certificate for each MWh of electricity generated;

  • TRECs will be generated for 15 years and will be purchased by a TREC Administrator who will allocate the TRECs amongst the load serving entities;

  • The Clean Energy Act of 2018 established a cap that prohibits the cost of Class 1 RECs (excluding the cost of offshore wind RECs), which includes the TREC, from amounting to more than 9 pct of the total electric sales during Energy Years 2020 and 2021, and amounting to more than 7 pct of total electric sales during subsequent energy years;

  • The TREC is valued at $65 for energy years 2021, 2022 and 2023, and $189 for each remaining energy year of the projects' 15 year TREC eligibility. The BPU will provide further guidance as to whether the TREC value will remain as set forth above or will be changed to a flat $152 for all 15 years of generation eligibility;

  • TRECs may be sold in the energy year (June 1 -- May 31) in which they are generated and the following energy year. If the TREC is not sold within the applicable window, they may be sold as Class 1 RECs.

    The order now provides some certainty to solar developers and will provide a transition program until the BPU establishes a new long-term incentive program. (Source: NJ BPU, Dec., 2019) Contact: New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, 800-624-0241, www.bpu.state.nj.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar,  Solar Incentive,  New Jersey Board of Public Utilities ,  


  • White House Confirms 2020 Biofuel RVO Plan (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2019-12-20
    Reuters is reporting the Trump administration plans to stick with its proposed 2020 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) biofuel blending requirements as proposed in October, despite the farming sector's complaint that the plan does too little for corn growers.

    Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) oil refiners are required to blend some 15 billion gpy of corn-based ethanol into their gasoline, but small facilities can be exempted if compliance would hurt them financially.

    The October proposal was intended to placate corn growers and compensate the biofuel industry for the administration's expanded use of refinery exemptions, but which the industry has largely panned as insufficient, according to Reuters. The EPA's October plan would raise the biofuels volumes that some refineries must blend in 2020 based on DOE recommendations for volumes that should be exempted.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Reuters, Various Media, 19 Dec., 2019)

    For details see our Oct. 21 report as follows -- Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021. The Trump administration EPA has issued the attached supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking seeking additional comment on the recently proposed rule to establish the cellulosic biofuel, advanced biofuel, and total renewable fuel volumes for 2020 and the biomass-based diesel volume for 2021 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.

    The notice does not change the proposed volumes for 2020 and 2021. Instead, it proposes and seeks comment on adjustments to the way that annual renewable fuel percentages are calculated. Annual renewable fuel percentage standards are used to calculate the number of gallons each obligated party is required to blend into their fuel or to otherwise obtain renewable identification numbers (RINs) to demonstrate compliance.

    Specifically, the agency is seeking comment on projecting the volume of gasoline and diesel that will be exempt in 2020 due to small refinery exemptions based on a three-year average of the relief recommended by the BOE, including where DOE had recommended partial exemptions. The agency intends to grant partial exemptions in appropriate circumstances when adjudicating 2020 exemption petitions. The agency proposes to use this value to adjust the way it calculates renewable fuel percentages. The proposed adjustments would help ensure that the industry blends the final volumes of renewable fuel into the nation's fuel supply and that, in practice, the required volumes are not effectively reduced by future hardship exemptions for small refineries. Consistent with the statute, the supplemental notice seeks to balance the goal of the RFS of maximizing the use of renewables while following the law and sound process to provide relief to small refineries that demonstrate the need.

    Download the Renewable Fuel Standard Program -- Proposed Volumes for 2020 and Biomass-Based Diesel Volume for 2021 HERE. Contact: EPA Renewable Fuel Standard, 800-385-6164, www.epa.gov/fuels-registration-reporting-and-compliance-help/forms/fuels-program-helpdesk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol.Ethanol Blend,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  Red Trail Energy,  


    BP Brightens its Lightsource Solar Stake (Int'l, M&A)
    Lightsource
    Date: 2019-12-09
    British energy, oil and gas giant BP is reporting it will increase its stake to a 50-50 joint venture position in UK-based solar developer Lightsource BP, originally known as Lightsource Renewable Energy.

    BP acquired a 43 pct stake equity share in Lightsource in 2017 for $200 million over three years, and the company was then relabelled Lightsource BP. (Source: BP, Renewables, 9 Dec., 2019) Contact: Lightsource BP, Carl Jackson, Director Utility-scale Solar Initiatives, +44 0 333 200 0755, www.lightsourcebp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Solar,  BP,  Lightsource,  


    BP Bunge Bioenergia Joint Venture Formation Completed (Ind. Report)
    BP, Bunge,BP Bunge Bioenergia
    Date: 2019-12-04
    Following up on our 24th July report, UK petroleum and energy major BP and White Plains, NY-based agribusiness and ethanol producer Bunge Ltd. are reporting the formation of BP Bunge Bioenergia, the Brazilian bioenergy joint venture that combines their Brazilian bioenergy and sugarcane ethanol businesses.

    The joint venture has 11 biofuels sites in five Brazilian states and more than 1.5 billion lpy of ethanol production capacity. (Source: BP Bunge Bioenergia, PR, Energy Global, Dec., 2019) Contact: Bunge, www.bunge.com; BP, www.bp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP Bunge Bioenergia,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  BP,  Bunge,  


    Acciona to Construct Paraguayan Alt. Fuels Plant (Int'l.)
    Acciona
    Date: 2019-11-27
    Madrid-headquartered engineering group Acciona SA reports it has been selected to construct a 20,000 bpd advanced biofuels HVO and SPK project using Honeywell UOP technology near the Paraguayan capital city of Assuncion. HVO is a renewable substitute for diesel and and SPK is a renewable aviation fuel.

    Financial details of the agreements were not disclosed but the project is expected to come in at roughly $88 million. (Source: Acciona SA, Successful Farming, Reuters, 25 Nov., 2019) Contact: Acciona SA, +34 91 663 28 50 / Fax - +34 91 663 28 51, www.acciona.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Acciona ,  Alternative Fuels,  


    Notable Quote -- BP Economist Makes Emissions, Weather Connection
    BP
    Date: 2019-11-25
    "If there is a link between the growing levels of carbon in the atmosphere and the types of weather patterns observed in 2018 this would raise the possibility of a worrying vicious cycle: increasing levels of carbon leading to more extreme weather patterns, which in turn trigger stronger growth in energy (and carbon emissions) as households and businesses seek to offset their effects."

    "It's clear we're on an unstable path with carbon emissions rising at their fastest rate since 2011." -- Spencer Dale, BP Chief Economist Contact: Spencer Dale, www.bp.com/en/global/...economics/spencer-dale-group-chief-economist.html

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BP,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  


    ABA's EPA Biofuel Waivers Lawsuit Dismissed (Reg. & Leg.)
    Advanced Biofuels Association
    Date: 2019-11-15
    Following up on our 26th April coverage, the Washington, D.C., District Court of Appeals has dismissed the Advance Biofuels Association's (ABA) lawsuit challenging the EPA's use of small refinery exemptions on the grounds that the ABA failed to "identify a final agency action."

    In its suit, the ABA claimed the EPA was exceeding its authority when it granted a larger number of waivers under the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) to small oil refineries. The court did, however, note "the EPA's briefing and oral argument paint a troubling picture of intentionally shrouded and hidden agency law that could have left those troubled by the agency's actions without a viable avenue for judicial review."

    Since 2016, the EPA has granted a total of 85 waivers accounting for 4.04 billion gallons of biofuels that were not blended into the nation's fuel supply.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Various Media, NAFB News Service, 13 Nov., 2019) Contact: Advanced Biofuels Association, www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Advanced Biofuels Association,  EPA RFS,  RFS Waiver ,  


    BP Invests in Carbon Off-Setter Finite Resources (Ind. Report)
    BP, Finite Carbon
    Date: 2019-10-30
    UK-based oil giant BP reports it has invested $5 million in Finite Resources, parent company of Wayne, Pennsylvania-based Finite Carbon, a forest carbon management company. The investment will enable Finite Carbon to grow a new line of business to incentivize forest management financed by businesses seeking to voluntarily offset carbon emissions, according to a Kallanish Energy reports.

    Finite Carbon, is the largest developer of forest carbon offsets in North America, with over 40 forest projects covering nearly 3 million acres. Finite Carbon has developed and transacted more than 60 million compliance offsets, valued at nearly $600 million for landowners. (Source: BP, Kallanish Energy, 29 Oct., 2019) Contact: Finite Carbon, Sean Carney, CEO, 484-586-3080, www.finitecarbon.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Finite Carbon,  Carbon Offsets,  BP,  Carbon Emissions,  


    Oil & Gas Climate Initiative Commits to Cutting Emissions (Int'l)
    Oil and Gas Climate Initiative
    Date: 2019-10-28
    In London, the thirteen-member Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI) is reporting a $1 billion commitment to support the goals of the Paris Climate Accord -- including investments in carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS) and supporting carbon taxes and economic incentives aimed at reducing emissions.

    Initially, OGCI will help decarbonize multiple industrial hubs in the United States, United Kingdom, Norway, the Netherlands and China. The OGCI also aims to build on the industry's reduction in methane emissions (9 pct in 2018) and to include carbon emissions in hope that future temperature increases will not exceed 2 degrees Celsius. To complement its methane emissions-intensity target, OGCI seeks to reduce collective average carbon intensity by 2025.

    The OGCI member companies -- BP, Chevron, CNPC, Eni, Equinor, ExxonMobil, Occidental, Pemex, Petrobras, Repsol, Saudi Aramco, Shell and Total -- account for 32 pct of global operated oil and gas production, according to the OGCI website. (Source: OGCI, Alex Mills, Tims Record News, 28 Oct., 2019) Contact: Oil and Gas Climate Initiative, +44 (0)203 922 0853, contact@climateinvestments.energy, www.oilandgasclimateinitiative.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Oil and Gas Climate Initiative ,  


    BPA Urges Congress to Support Bldg. Energy Efficiency (Ind. Report)
    Building Performance Association
    Date: 2019-10-18
    In Washington, the Building Performance Association (BPA) is urging Congress to act to advance energy efficiency in buildings by maintaining funding for important federal energy efficiency programs and passing legislation that will enable more American families and businesses to access efficiency upgrades.

    Legislation that advances energy efficiency in buildings, especially residential buildings, provides numerous benefits in addition to energy and pollution reductions: supporting small businesses and creating jobs across America, strengthening the durability and resilience of buildings, improving health and comfort, and increasing energy affordability, according to BPA.

    BPA notes the buildings sector is responsible for nearly a third of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. While buildings are a significant contributor to our climate crisis, they can also be a key part of the solution. With an aging building stock across the country we have only scratched the surface on investing in energy efficiency improvements. Congress can address barriers to retrofitting these existing homes and buildings and advance energy efficiency across the entire buildings sector by supporting workforce development and training, providing incentives for homeowners, and ensuring that building efficiency is part of any conversation on clean energy and climate. (Source: Building Performance Association, PR, Oct., 2019) Contact: Building Performance Association, Kara Saul Rinaldi, VP Gov. Affairs, (202) 276-1773, kara.saul-rinaldi@building-performance.org, www.Building-Performance.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Google's EIE to Help Cut Air Pollution, CO2 Emissions (Ind. Report)
    Google
    Date: 2019-10-11
    Tech giant Google has announced is touting Environmental Insights Explorer (EIE)⁠, a new tool that uses Google's global mapping data to help gauge and reduce carbon emissions and measure renewable energy potential across cities.

    The EIE will initially be available in Europe starting with Dublin, Birmingham, Manchester, with Wolverhampton and Coventry to follow soon. Copenhagen will get what Google is calling "hyperlocal, street-level air quality data" as part of EIE Labs, which will help streamline and optimize action against climate change by piloting climate-focused datasets. Dublin has already been utilizing the new tool to help track emissions from transportation modes.

    Review EIE details HERE. (Source: Google, Oct., 2019) Contact: Google EIE Lab, insights.sustainability.google/labs

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  CO2,  Transportation Emissions,  Vehicle Emissions,  

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  CO2,  Transportation Emissions,  Vehicle Emissions,  


    EIA Data Questions RFS "Hardship" Waivers Effect on Ethanol Demand (Ind. Report)
    EIA
    Date: 2019-10-04
    As previously reported, ethanol industry proponents have petitioned the EPA to cease issuing Small Refinery "Hardship" Exemptions (SREs) allowable under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The ethanol industry is trying to convince the EPA that the waivers are hurting their business and, therefore, the agency should stop issuing them.

    Month-over-month, official government data tells a very different story. According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the ethanol blend rate has remained within normal statistical variation, despite the flood of "hardship" waivers. EIA data shows:

  • The overall physical ethanol consumption for Q1 2019 (the most recent, complete data available) is higher than it was in 2018.

  • The average ethanol blend rate was higher in Q1 2019 (10.21 pct) than in Q1 2018 (10.09 pct).

  • In February 2019, the ethanol blend rate was 10.53 percent -- the highest in the 12 months preceding. And the March 2019 ethanol blend rate was 10.18 percent -- higher than the March 2018 blend rate of 9.75 percent.

    These blend rates have been stable for the past few years, underscoring the truth that ethanol demand is premised partially on the RFS, partially on demand for clean octane and partially on other factors -- not SREs.

    Similarly, when it comes to mid-level ethanol blends like E15, there is no data indicating that SREs are reducing demand. E15 and other mid-level ethanol blend sales have been growing all year and, in the case of E15, sales are higher at this point than they were last year, according to the Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), EIA, Business & Industry Connection, 3 Oct., 2019) Contact: AFPM, Derrick Morgan, Snr, VP, (202) 586-8800, www.afpm.org; EIA, www.eia.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol.Ethanol Blend,  EIA,  


  • EPA Halts RFS "Hardship" Waiver Changes (Ind. Report)
    RFS,"Hardship Waivers"
    Date: 2019-10-02
    It is being widely reported by Fox News and others that the EPA has stalled on updates to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuels policy regarding biofuel blending "hardship" waivers (exemptions) that have been issued at near wholesale levels.

    The EPA appears to be acting on instructions from Trump who is no doubt preoccupied with his own whistleblower and impeachment worries.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Fox News, Various Other Media, 2 Oct., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Trump,  RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Biofuel Blend,  


    St1 Nordic Licenses Honeywell Ecofining Tech. (Ind. Report)
    Honeywell UOP, St1 Nordic
    Date: 2019-09-20
    Des Plaines, Ill.-based Honeywell UOP is reports it has licensed its Ecofining renewable fuels technology to Helsinki-headquartered St1 Nordic Oy for the production of 4,000 bpd of diesel and jet fuel at St1 Nordic's refinery complex in Gothenburg, Sweden. Basic engineering design for the project has already been completed.

    The Ecofining process converts inedible oils, animal fats, tall oils derived from forestry residues and other waste feedstocks into Honeywell Green Diesel which is chemically identical to petroleum-based diesel and can be used as a drop-in fuel. It also features up to an 80 pct lifecycle reduction in greenhouse gas emissions compared with diesel from petroleum.

    In addition to Ecofining technology, Honeywell has commercialized the UOP Renewable Jet Fuel Process™. Jet fuel produced by this process can be blended seamlessly with petroleum-based fuel. When used in up to a 50 pct blend with petroleum-based jet fuel, Honeywell Green Jet Fuel™ requires no changes to aircraft technology and meets all critical specifications for flight, according to Honeywell. St1 Nordic Oy researches and develops economically viable, environmentally sustainable energy including waste-based advanced ethanol fuels and industrial wind power. (Source: Honeywell, Chemical Engineering, 19 Sept., 2019) Contact: St1 Nordic, Bo-Erik Svensson, Managing Director, www.st1.eu; Honeywell UOP, Bryan Glover, VP Petrochemicals & Refining Technologies, www,uop.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Honeyell UOP,  Green Diesel ,  St1 Nordic ,  


    Shell, BP Join Collaboratory for Advancing Methane Science (Int'l)
    Collaboratory for Advancing Methane Science
    Date: 2019-09-20
    Petroleum giants BP and SIEP, Inc. (Shell) are reported to have joined the Collaboratory for Advancing Methane Science (CAMS), an industry-led consortium researching methane emissions and delivering transparent data to evaluate the most effective methane emissions reduction strategies. Other CAMS participants include Cheniere, Chevron, Equinor, ExxonMobil, and Pioneer Natural Resources.

    CAMS undertakes scientific studies addressing methane emissions along the natural gas value chain, from production through end use. Studies will focus on detection, measurement and quantification of methane emissions with the goal of finding opportunities for reduction. CAMS' first project is to develop an open access oil and gas operations emissions calculator that will estimate methane emissions at a basin level and enable operators to evaluate effectiveness of mitigation strategies. (Source; CAMS, Green Car Congress, 19 Sept., 2019) Contact: Collaboratory for Advancing Methane Science, www.methanecollaboratory.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methan,  GHG,  Greenhouse Gas,  


    Plant-level U.S. Biodiesel Prod. Capacity Data Released (Ind. Report)
    U.S. Energy Information Administration
    Date: 2019-09-16
    On September 13, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its first annual U.S. Biodiesel Plant Production Capacity Report. The report includes the total biodiesel production capacity for all operating plants in both million gallons per year (gal/y) and barrels per day (b/d) as of January 1, 2019. The names of the reporting plants are organized by Petroleum Administration for Defense Districts (PADD). Like the Ethanol Plant Production Capacity Report, EIA plans to update the report annually.

    The 2019 U.S. Biodiesel Plant Production Capacity Report shows 102 operating biodiesel plants with 2.6 billion gpy in biodiesel production capacity, or 167,000 bpd. More than half of the nation's biodiesel production capacity is in the Midwest region, led by Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois. Of the top 15 biodiesel-producing states, 9 are located in the Midwest.

    U.S.biodiesel production topped 1.8 billion gallons (119,000 bpd) in 2018, implying a 72 pct utilization rate based on the nameplate capacity level recorded at the beginning of 2018.

    In its latest Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), EIA forecasts that U.S. production of biodiesel will reach about 2.0 billion gallons (128,000 bpd) in 2019, resulting in 77 pct utilization of reported nameplate capacity as of January 1, 2019.

    Respondents report the biodiesel production capacity data to EIA on Form EIA-22M, Monthly Biodiesel Production Survey, and EIA publishes the data in the Monthly Biodiesel Production Report. All entities that produce biodiesel that meets ASTM D 6751-07B specifications and is used for commercial purposes within the United States submit Form EIA-22M. Additional data collected on Form EIA-22M include production, sales, stock changes, and feed stock inputs to production. (Source: US EIA Release, Sept., 2019) Contact: US EIA, www.eia.gov/petroleum/ethanolcapacity

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biodiesel,  U.S. Energy Information Administration,  


    Trump Plan Would Boost Biofuel Quotas 10 pct in 2020 (Reg & Leg)
    Teump
    Date: 2019-09-16
    Reuters is reporting U.S. Pres. Trump has tentatively approved a plan to increase the amount of biofuels that oil refiners are required to blend each year to compensate for the large number of financial "hardship" exemptions granted to "small" -- 75,000 bpd or less -- refiners by the EPA.

    Under the plan, the EPA will calculate a three-year rolling average of total biofuels gallons exempted under its Small Refinery Exemption program and add that figure to its annual biofuel blending quotas each year -- about 1.35 billion gallons in 2020. That would come in addition to a tentative agreement to boost 2020 blending volumes by 1 billion gallons, including 500 million gallons for conventional biofuels like corn-based ethanol and 500 million gallons for advanced biofuels like biodiesel, according to the Reuters report.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied. (Source: Reuters, Various Media, 16 Sept., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  "Hardship" Waiver,  Ethanol Blend,  

    Showing 1 to 50 of 267.

    Go to page:
    1 2 3 4 5 6