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PA. DEP Orders Natural Gas Well Methane Leak Repairs (Ind. Report)
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection,Range Resources
Date: 2020-01-17
In Harrisburg, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has laid down the law to Fort Worth-headquartered Range Resources ordering it to "once and for all" fix a faulty and leaking cement casing at the Harman Lewis Marcellus Shale natural gas well in Lycoming County, in north-central Pennsylvania.

The DEP claims the well has been leaking methane for the past 9 years -- since 2011. Range Resources disagrees with order and contends the methane contamination is from natural ground sources. The DEP contends the well's cement casing is defective, despite attempts in 2015 and 2016 to repair it, and has given Range Resources two months to submit a plan to reduce the methane gas migration and, after the department approves the plan, four months to submit a plan to successfully plug the well and a bore hole next to it. Range has 30 days to appeal the order to the Environmental Hearing Board, and probably will.

Editor's note: While carbon dioxide is typically painted as the bad boy of greenhouse gases, methane is reported to be roughly 30 times more potent as a heat-trapping gas. As temperatures rise, the relative increase of methane emissions will outpace that of carbon dioxide from these sources. (Source: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, TrbLive, Ap, 13 Jan., 2020)Contact: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, www.dep.pa.gov; Range Resources, www.rangeresources.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection ,  Methane,  Range Resources,  


Kingston, NY Opts for 2,400 LED Streetlights (Ind. Report)
New York Power Authority
Date: 2020-01-15
The New York Power Authority (NYPA) and the City of Kingston recently announced the start of installation of LED streetlights throughout the city as part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Smart Street Lighting NY program. The project will save the city more than $200,000 annually and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 570 tons per year. Smart Street Lighting NY is a statewide program that calls for at least 500,000 streetlights throughout the state to be replaced with LED technology by 2025.

The nearly $1.4 million upgrade, financed and implemented by NYPA, includes the replacement of 2,400 streetlights throughout the city with energy-saving LED fixtures, improving lighting quality and neighborhood safety while reducing energy and maintenance costs. Installation will begin next week and is expected to complete during the summer. (Source: NYPA, Environment Energy Leader, 14 Jan., 2020) Contact: City of Kingston, John Schultheis, Engineering Office, (845) 334-3967, www.kingston-ny.gov; NYPA, Gil C. Quiniones, CEO , Pres., www.nypa.gov; BuildSmartNY, www.buildsmart.ny.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News BuildSmartNY,  New York Power Authority,  Energy Efficient Light,  LED Streetlight,  


Ameresco, New Bedford Housing Authority Ink $12Mn EPC (Ind Report)
Ameresco,New Bedford Housing Authority
Date: 2020-01-13
In the Bay State, Framingham-headquartered energy efficiency and renewable energy specialist Ameresco and the New Bedford Housing Authority are reporting a $12.7 million Energy Performance Contract (EPC) that is expected to save the Housing Authority $19.6 million in energy and water cost savings over its sixteen-year term.

The project, which involves 15 public housing developments encompassing close to 1,500 households, includes water conservation, exterior and common-area lighting upgrades, boiler replacements, and roof-top mounted solar installations in conjunction with significant incentives available from the Commonwealth's Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target (SMART) Program.

With more than 30 years of experience, Ameresco has implemented improvements for over 130,000 households under performance-based energy and water services contracts, according to the company. (Source: Ameresco, New Bedford Housing Authority, Framingham Source, 12 Jan., 2020) Contact: New Bedford Housing Authority, 508-997-4829; Ameresco, Bob Georgeoff, VP, (508) 661-2288, www.ameresco.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ameresco,  Energy Efficiency,  


Kresge Foundation Commitment to Advance Solar+Storage, Energy Efficiency (Ind. Report, Funding)
Clean Energy Group
Date: 2020-01-13
The Kresge Foundation, the Montpelier, Vermont-based not-for-profit Clean Energy Group (CEG) and New York City Energy Efficiency Corporation (NYCEEC) are reporting a $3.3 million commitment to accelerate the market development of solar PV plus battery storage (solar+storage) technologies in historically under-served communities. The multiyear financing program guaranteed by the Kresge Foundation includes:
  • A $3 million loan guarantee to reduce credit risk for solar+storage projects in low- and moderate-income areas. Structured as a 50 pct payment guarantee to help ensure borrowers' loan payments remain current, this innovative credit enhancement reduces the risk of a payment default to lenders and their investors who provided capital for solar+storage loans.

  • $170,000 in a capacity-building grant to accelerate the participating lender's ability to finance solar+storage projects, build project pipelines and actively engage in information sharing.

  • $120,000 in technical-assistance grants to enable eligible project owners and developers to assess the technical and financial feasibility of new solar+storage projects.

    Clean Energy Group is a national, nonprofit advocacy organization working on innovative technology, finance, and policy programs in the areas of clean energy and climate change.

    Established in 2010 as the nation's first local green bank, NYCEEC is a 501(c)(3) mission-driven lender focused exclusively on energy efficiency and clean energy in buildings. (Source: Clean Energy Group, Vermont Business, 9 Jan., 2020) Contact: NYCEC, Jessica Luk, Director of Development, www.nyceec.com; Clean Energy Group, Robert Sanders, rsanders@cleanegroup.org, www.cleanenergygroup.org; Kresge Foundation, www.kresge.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Clean Energy Group,  Solar+Storage,  Energy Storage,  


  • Corn LP Joins Harvestone Ethanol Marketing Platform (Ind. Report)
    Corn LP,Harvestone Group
    Date: 2020-01-08
    Franklin, Tennessee-based Harvestone Group is reporting Goldfield, Iowa-based ethanol producer Corn LP has joined its marketing and trading platform under the terms of a five-year contract. Corn LP produces roughly 75-million gpy of ethanol.

    Harvestone Group, and its affiliated companies, is a global commodity merchant focused in the biofuels sector. By designing innovative service offerings and investing in strategic infrastructure, the company help build bridges and cement alliances between producers and end users, ultimately driving the supply chain to operate more efficiently, according to the company's website. (Source: Harvestone, Biofuel Int. 8 Jan, 2019) Contact: Harvestone Group, www.harvestonegroup.com: Corn LP, Brady Hess, 515-825-3933, www.cornlp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Corn,  Corn Ethanol,  Ethanol,  Harvestone Group,  


    Commercial-Scale Cement Plant CCS Initiative Announced (Ind Report)
    Svante Inc., LafargeHolcim, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures,
    Date: 2020-01-08
    Burnaby, British Columbia-based Svante Inc., LafargeHolcim, Oxy Low Carbon Ventures, LLC, and Paris-based Total SA are reporting a joint study to assess the viability and design of a commercial-scale carbon-capture facility at the Holcim Portland Cement Plant in Florence, Colorado.

    The study will evaluate the cost of the facility designed to use Svante's technology to capture up to 725,000 tpy of CO2 from the cement plant, which would be permanently sequestered underground by CO2 management and storage specialist Occidental.

    This joint initiative follows the recently-launched Project CO2MENT between Svante, LafargeHolcim and Total in Canada at the Lafarge Richmond cement plant, where progress has been made towards re-injecting captured CO2 into concrete. (Source: Savante Website, BusinessWire, 6 Jan., 2019) Contact: Svante Inc., Claude Letourneau, , Pres., CEO, Julia McKenna , Inv. Relations, 604.456.0504, jmckenna@svanteinc.com, www.svanteinc.com; LafargeHolcim, www.lafargeholcim.com; Oxy Low Carbon Ventures, Jeff Alvarez, IR, (713) 215-7864, jeff_alvarez@oxy.com, www.oxy.com; Total SA, +33 1 47 44 46 99, www.total.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Total SA,  Svante Inc.,  LafargeHolcim,  Oxy Low Carbon Ventures,  CCS,  CCUS,  CO2,  Carbon Capture,  


    Valero, AFPM Seek "Point of Obligation" Clarification (Reg & Leg)
    Valero Energy ,American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers
    Date: 2020-01-08
    San Antonio-headquartered Valero Energy Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil processor by capacity, and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers organization have filed a court petition asking the U.S. Supreme Court to determine whether the U.S. EPA is required to consider petitions to change the "point of obligation" under the Clean Air Act's Renewable Fuel Standard.

    The petition notes: "The Clean Air Act's Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program requires EPA to undertake annual notice-and-comment rule making to determine a 'renewable fuel obligation' for the nation's transportation fuel supply. The first of three annual 'required elements' is to determine the point of obligation -- i.e., to ensure that the obligation shall be applicable to refineries, blenders, and importers, as appropriate. EPA admits that it initially placed the point of obligation on refineries and importers, but not blenders, for reasons of administrative convenience. EPA has repeatedly refused to re-examine that placement in annual rule making, and it denied petitions for rule making seeking reconsideration out-side the statutorily-mandated annual assessment."

    The petition specifically questions: whether the requirement that EPA "shall" make a "calendar year" determination of the "appropriate" point of obligation requires EPA to consider in each annual rule whether the point of obligation remains appropriate.The petition also questions whether EPA can evade the annual duty by partitioning the point of obligation into a one-time collateral proceeding that ignores key evidence,relies primarily on the agency's own convenience, and claims more deference from a reviewing court than an annual rule would receive. (Source: AFPM Website, Valero Energy, Ethanol Producer, 6 May, 2019) Contact: American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers, www.afpm.org; Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers ,  RFS,  Point of Obligation,  Valero Energy ,  


    Enel Announces US Wind, Solar Project Startups (Ind Report)
    Enel Green Power North America
    Date: 2020-01-06
    Enel Green Power (EGP) reports it has begun operations at two renewable energy plants in the United States. The projects include the first 252 MW phase of the 497-MW Roadrunner solar project in Upton County, Texas, and the 66 MW Whitney Hill wind power project developed by Swift Current Energy in Logan County, Illinois.

    This announcement follows the recent start of operations of 450 MW of EGP's High Lonesome wind farm in Texas bringing the company's total new renewable capacity added in the US in 2019 to nearly 800 MW with another 1 GW currently under construction across six renewable energy projects. (Source: Enel Green Power North America, PR, reve,3 Jan., 2019) Contact: Enel Green Power North America, Georgios Papadimitriou, Connor Branch, Bus. Dev., (978) 681-1900, www.enelgreenpower.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Enel Green Power North America,  Wind,  


    Franklin County Promotes Bldg. Energy Efficiency Program (Ind Report)
    Franklin County Regional Housing & Redevelopment Authority
    Date: 2020-01-03
    In the Bay State, the Franklin County Regional Housing & Redevelopment Authority is touting its Housing Rehabilitation Program. The program is designed to provide income-eligible homeowners with interest-free, deferred payment loans to correct health and safety code deficiencies and to improve home energy efficiency. The program is partially through Community Development Block Grants. Eligibility is based on household annual gross income and occupancy.

    Eligible home improvements include: electrical and plumbing upgrades, structural repairs, accessibility modifications, septic repairs or replacement, heating and hot water system repairs or replacement, replacing windows, roof repairs or replacement, wells, lead paint abatement, insulation and weatherization and other energy efficiency upgrades. (Source: Franklin County Regional Housing & Redevelopment Authority, Town of Hawley, Greenfield Recorder, 31 Dec., 2019) Contact: Franklin County Regional Housing & Redevelopment Authority, 413-863-9781, www.fcrhra.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Greenlane Claims Calif. Biogas Upgrading Contract (Ind. Report)
    Greenlane Renewables,SoCalGas
    Date: 2020-01-03
    Burnaby, B.C.-based Greenlane Renewables Inc is reporting its wholly owned subsidiary, Greenlane Biogas North America Ltd. has secured a new $8.3 million (Cdn) ($6.3 million) biogas upgrading contract with an unidentified California customer. Engineering work will begin immediately on the California-based landfill project. Order fulfillment will begin immediately upon completion of permitting and approval of submittals by the customer, expected by early to mid 2020, with delivery expected to occur within approximately six months of commencement.

    The facility is expected to process 1,600 standard cubic feet per minute of landfill gas to produce approximately 97 pct pure biomethane, or approximately 380,000 gigajoules (GJ) per year renewable natural gas (RNG) for direct injection into the local gas distribution network owned and operated by SoCalGas. In addition, the residual off-gas, a byproduct of the biogas upgrading process, will be blended with natural gas to generate power for on-site facilities and processes. (Source: Greenlane Renewables Inc. PR, 31 Dec., 2019) Contact: Greenlane Biogas, Brad Douville, Pres., CEO, (604) 259-0343, brad.dauville@greenlanerenewables.com, www.greenlanebiogas.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RNG,  Renewable Natural Gas,  Greenlane Renewables,  Biogas,  Methane,  SoCalGas,  


    State ‘net energy’ proposal raises static among developers

    Date: 2019-12-31
    A proposal that would require new commercial construction projects in Massachusetts to use only renewable energy has opponents and proponents drawing a line in the sand. Supporters say the net zero net energy proposal is needed to address global warming more quickly. Opponents argue that there is not sufficient technology and capacity to increase electrification to meet the demand. Opponents also say the proposal would greatly diminish housing development during the state’s housing crisis and that electricity bills for tenants would skyrocket. “As housing costs continue to skyrocket, we need more housing. To add an additional cost to housing production is essentially a barrier ... We’ll see a slowdown in housing production,” said Tamara Small, CEO of Needham-based NAIOP, the state’s commercial real estate development association. NAIOP has about 1,700 members in Massachusetts. The proposal basically requires new commercial construction and significant commercial renovations to generate as much renewable energy as needed on-site. What can’t be generated on-site can be purchased off-site. Only energy from solar, wind and hydro would be allowed. The use of all fossil fuels, including natural gas, propane, oil, coal and wood pellets, would be banned. While the proposal is primarily for commercial construction, it would affect some housing as well. The exemptions are single-family houses, multifamily homes of three stories or less, and mobile and modular homes. The proposal was written by the American Institute of Architects and submitted to the International Code Council to be considered for codes being compiled for 2021. All 50 states adopt some version of ICC’s residential, commercial and other codes. The AIA’s Massachusetts Chapter in November also submitted the proposal to the Massachusetts Board of Building Regulations and Standards for consideration for inclusion in the 10th edition of the state’s building code. Massachusetts in 2009 became the first state to adopt a “stretch code,” an enhancement to its base building energy code that provides for more energy-efficient construction. To be designated as a Green Community, municipalities have to comply with the stretch code. While the stretch code initially resulted in a 10% jump in energy efficiency, that has decreased after two subsequent editions of the code, in part because the base energy code has gotten more efficient. “Now about 80% of the 351 cities and towns have become designated as Green Communities. A good majority are saying we need to take the next step, which is net zero,” Nunnari said. This would be another tool in their quest toward mandating a higher level of energy efficiency, he added. The hope, he said, is if ICC agrees to include the proposal in its 2021 documents, all 50 states would have the opportunity to adopt the net zero regulation or amend it to their liking. California, he noted, has already imposed a net zero energy requirement for new residential and commercial buildings by 2030. Similar regulations are being considered by several other states and regions, he said. The proposal has the backing of several hundred organizations. (Source: Worcester Telegram & Gazette, 28 Dec., 2019)


    Azure Power Raises $75Mn from Quebec Pension Fund (Int'l Report)
    Azure Power
    Date: 2019-12-20
    New Delhi-based independent Indian solar power producer Azure Power Global Limited is reporting closure of its previously announced $75 million (US) private placement.

    The total was raised from Canadian pension fund Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (CDPQ) through sale of 6,493,506 equity shares at $11.55 per share. CDPQ's equity interest in Azure Power now stands at 49.4 pct. Azure Power has a pan-India portfolio of more than 3 GW. (Source: Azure Power, PV Mag., 17 Dec., 2019) Contact: Azure Power, Ranjit Gupta, CEO, +91-11-4940-9854, pr@azurepower.com, www.azurepower.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Azure Power,  Solar,  


    EGLE Offers Alt. Fuel Vehicle, Engine Grants (Ind. Report)
    Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy
    Date: 2019-12-13
    In Lansing, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) is reporting the availability of a total of $450,000 for clean diesel and alternative fuel engine and equipment replacement projects under the 2020-21 Michigan Clean Diesel Program RFPa competitive grant request for proposal (RFP).

    The 2020-21 Michigan Clean Diesel Program RFP targets efforts to replace old diesel equipment, vehicles, and engines with new alternative fuel or hybrid versions. Applicants can be cities, townships and villages; county government agencies; public school districts; private schools; public transit agencies; port authorities; metropolitan planning organizations; nonprofit organizations; or private businesses. (Source: Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy , PR, 11 Dec., 2019) Contact: Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, 800-662-9278, www.michigan.gov › egle

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Alternative Fuel,  


    Alberta Supports Cement Plant CO2 Storage Study (Ind. Report)
    Alberta, Emissions Reduction Alberta,Lrhigh Cement
    Date: 2019-12-11
    On the Canadian prairies, the government of Alberta reports it is contributing $1.4 million towards a $3 million feasibility study of capture and storage of carbon emissions project at the Lehigh Cement plant in Edmonton. If constructed, the project could capture an estimated 600,000 tpy of CO2 and avoid up to 90 pct of the plant's current emissions.

    The project will align with the province's new Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) program which is intended to help industries deploy pioneering, emissions-reducing technologies and will support research and investment in clean technology. (Source: Gov. of Alberta, Journal of Commerce, Dec., 2019) Contact: Lehigh Cement, (780) 420-250, www.lehighhanson.com; Emissions Reduction Alberta, Steve MacDonald , CEO, 780-498-2068, info@eralberta.ca, www.eralberta.ca; Technology Alberta Innovation and Emissions Reduction System, www.alberta.ca/technology-innovation-and-emissions-reduction-system.aspx

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  Cement,  Emissions Reduction Alberta,  


    Biorenewable Deployment Consortium IDs Biobased Renewables Trends (Ind. Report)
    Biorenewable Deployment Consortium
    Date: 2019-12-11
    In Richmond, Virginia, the Biorenewable Deployment Consortium (BDC), which tracks global developments in the biobased Industries, reports it has identified the following key trends that have emerged over the last decade:

    1. The development of biobased products will vary widely by region on a worldwide basis, and national policy will continue to be a driver of emerging industries,

    2. Conversion of waste streams to value added products is a trend that will continue,

    3. The US will continue to be a leader in the use of biofuels, on a percentage basis,

    4. The relatively recent communication of the environmental impact of spent plastic has caused a public awareness that now pushes the development of sustainable replacements,

    5. The use and value of lignin will emerge this decade.

    For additional detail, please request full text from ehorn@biorenewabledc.org at the Biorenewable Deployment Consortium.

    Since 2006 , BDC has become a highly respected 501(c)(3) organization and has worked to bring together like-minded companies to share ideas and partner to deploy bio-processes that can be economic in the long run without government subsidy, by investigating new processes, being a resource, brokering partnerships, and holding two forums a year for its members, where leading edge information from various bio-companies is shared and tours are made of bio-facilities. BDC recognizes the need for low cost feedstock, cost effective measures such as integration of processes, high value products, and good management to achieve the economics needed for success. (Source: Biorenewable Deployment Consortium, PR, 9 Dec., 2019) Contact: Biorenewable Deployment Consortium , Eric Horn, Exec. Dir., ehorn@biorenewabledc.org, www.biorenewabledc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biorenewable Deployment Consortium ,  


    Diamond Green Diesel Seeks Ren. Diesel Pathways Cert. (Ind. Report)
    Diamond Green Diesel
    Date: 2019-12-06
    Diamond Green Diesel -- a JV formed between a subsidiary of Valero and Irving, Texas-based low-carbon feedstock supplier Darling Ingredients Inc. -- reports it has filed an application with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) seeking carbon intensity (CI) certification for the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) of renewable diesel (RD) pathways from distillers corn oil; rendered animal fat; and used cooking oil (UCO) at the Diamond Green Diesel LLC facility in Norco, Louisiana.

    The Norco plant uses the UOP Ecofining Process to produce renewable diesel. The process hydrogenates triglycerides and free fatty acid feedstocks which are then isomerized to create a high-quality hydrocarbon fuel (RD). In addition to RD, the process produces a liquid petroleum gas vapor stream (LPG vapor); a liquid petroleum liquid stream (naphtha LPG); and a purge gas stream. All of the co-product streams go to the adjacent Valero oil refinery to be separated into fuel gas, propane, and naphtha through a distillation process. For the purposes of the CI certification, displacement credit was given to the fuel gas used as fuel gas for hydrogen production at the Valero refinery.

    Producing 275 million gpy of Honeywell Green Diesel™, Diamond Green Diesel is the largest commercial advanced biofuel facility in the US. (Source: Diamond Green Diesel,Green Car Congress, 5 Dec., 2019) Contact: Diamond Green Diesel, sales@diamondgreendiesel.com, www.diamondgreendiesel.com; Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com; Darling Ingedients, Melissa A. Gaither, VP IR , (972) 281-4478, mgaither@darlingii.com, www.darlingii.com; Honeywell UOP, Bryan Glover, VP Petrochemicals & Refining Technologies, www,uop.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Diamond Green Diesel,  


    Florida Energy Efficiency Conservation Act Endangered (Reg. & Leg.)
    Florida Energy Efficiency
    Date: 2019-12-06
    Reporting from Tallahassee, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Nicole Fried has announced a newly created council to address climate and energy is considering changes to, or replacement of, the Sunshine State's 30-year old Florida Energy Efficiency Conservation Act (FEECA).

    . Under FEECA, the state Public Service Commission (PSC) is mandated to set energy conservation and efficiency goals for utilities every five years. The utilities are in turn required to offer energy conservation and efficiency goals and incentives -- LED light bulbs, attic insulation, water heater wraps and others -- to utility customers and add the cost of the programs to customers' power bills. The PSC previously rejected a call from the state's utilities to eliminate the FEECA program completely.

    FEECA uses the rate impact measure (RIM) to measure the impact and effectiveness of energy conservation programs on customers based on costs, not on the net savings produced by lowering energy consumption. (Source: Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Miami-Herald, Contact: Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, 800-435-7352, www.fdacs.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency news,  


    Lafarge Canada Touts Carbon Efficient Cement Plant (Ind. Report)
    Lafarge,SVante
    Date: 2019-12-02
    Following the implementation of Project CO2MENT, cement giant Lafarge Canada reports flue gas from its Richmond Cement Plant is now being captured using a $28-million Savante system that purifies cement flue gas by trapping its contaminants to enable an efficient and durable CO2 capture process.

    The next phase of Project CO2MENT will demonstrate of CO2 utilization solutions such as reinjecting it into low-carbon fuels, CO2concrete, and fly ash, will begin in 2020.

    The CO2MENT Project -- a partnership between LafargeHolcim and TOTAL S.A. -- is constructiung a 1 tpd plant in Richmond, BC that will re-inject captured CO2 into concrete as a storage solution. A 30 tpd demonstration plant was completed this summer at Husky Energy's Pikes Peak South thermal project in Saskatchewan, Canada. (Source: Lafarge Canada Inc., PR, Businesswire, 29 Nov., 2019) Contact: Lafarge Jill Truscott, (403) 723-7151, jill.truscott@lafargeholcim.com; Svante, Claude Letourneau, Pres., CEO, www.svanteinc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Lafarge,  


    DOE Supports Lehigh Bldg. Thermal Battery R&D (R&D, Funding)
    Lehigh University
    Date: 2019-11-27
    According to Carlos Romero, director of Lehigh University's Energy Research Center (ERC) in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the addition of renewable energy into the electrical grid is forcing conventional power plants to adapt to new power generation realities. To address the new realities, an interdisciplinary team, promoted by Lehigh's Institute for Cyber Physical Infrastructure and Energy (I-CPIE), is launching a project on thermal energy storage (TES) for applications in fossil-fired power plants.

    The team matches the ERC's expertise in power generation and energy with appropriate expertise in civil engineering within Lehigh's Advanced Technology for Large Structural Systems (ATLSS) Engineering Research Center.

    Other project partners include: Advanced Cooling Technologies Inc., Dominion Energy-Virginia, Slaw Precast (concrete), Nycon (steel fiber), Hanson Cement and others.

    The research group recently received a three-year, $2 million grant from the US DOE Transformative Power Generation Program to support the design, engineering, optimization, and testing of the Lehigh team's heat Thermal Energy Storage (TCM-TES) concept. (Source: Lehigh University Energy Research Center, PR, Nov., 2019) Contact: Lehigh University, Energy Research Center, Carlos E. Romero Director and Principal Research Scientist, (610) 758-4092, cerj@lehigh.edu, www.lehigh.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Storage,  Battery,  


    Greek Parliament Investing €2.6Mn in Energy Efficiency (Int'l.)
    Greek Culture Ministry
    Date: 2019-11-27
    In Athens, the Greek Parliament, through the Culture Ministry, is calling for bids in the neighborhood of €2.8 million improve the energy efficiency of the 1843 vintage parliament building. Upgrades are expected to include: new pipes and air conditioning systems, replacement of a total of 191 windows and doors and the addition of an exterior insulating layer on the roof of the building.

    Upon completion, the upgraded Parliament building is expected to consume at least 30 pct less energy and emit 39 pct less CO2 on an annual basis. The Greek Culture Ministry will supervise the project. (Source: Greek Culture Ministry, TheMayor.eu, Nov., 2019) Contact: Greek Culture Ministry, www.culture.gr

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Heliogen Claims Concentrated Solar Breakthrough (New Prod & Tech)
    Heliogen
    Date: 2019-11-20
    Los Angeles, California-based solar energy tech company Heliogen -- fka Edisun -- is reporting development of a way to create concentrated solar energy at temperatures hot enough to replace fossil fuels in industrial processes that contribute significantly to global carbon emissions.

    The company's technology works by using cutting-edge computer vision technology to align a large array of mirrors to reflect sunlight to a precise target. The process creates heat exceeding 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,832 Fahrenheit), that can replace traditional fuels such as coal, gas and oil in the production of materials such as cement, steel and petrochemicals.

    The company was founded by entrepreneur and inventor Bill Gross with the backing of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates' Breakthrough Energy Ventures Fund , AOL founder Steve Case, Los Angeles-based investor and entrepreneur Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong and others. (Source: Heliogen, Geek Wire, 19 Nov., 2019) Contact: Heliogen, Bill Gross, CEO, Fatimah Bello, VP, Business Development 626.585.6900, hello@heliogen.com, www.heliogen.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Concentrated Solar,  Heliogen,  Edisun,  Solar,  


    Israel Launches $18Mn Energy Efficiency Plan (Int'l. Report)
    Israel
    Date: 2019-11-18
    In Jerusalem, the Ministries of Economy, Energy and Environmental Protection are reporting the launch of a roughly $18 million (U.S.) plan to streamline energy consumption and reduce greenhouse gas emissions across 108 industrial plants and local authorities nation wide.

    The plan promotes the replacement of old and inefficient technologies in energy consumption, with new and cost-effective systems including indoor and outdoor lighting systems, air conditioning, heat pumps, compressed air systems, streamlining various manufacturing processes, and more. These projects are expected to bring in annual savings of about 175 million kWh, estimated at $24 million per year. This plan is part of a national strategic program to implement greenhouse gas emission reduction and energy efficiency targets. (Source: Xinhua, 18 Nov., 2019)

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


    Cargill Recognized for Energy Efficiency Upgrades (Ind. Report)
    Xcel Energy,Cargill
    Date: 2019-11-13
    Xcel Energy is reporting it has awarded Minnetonka, Wisconsin-based Cargill for its recently completed remodeling and energy efficiency upgrade of its 600,000 square foot corporate headquarters in Minnetonka.

    The project upgrades included building automation system replacement, a new air handling unit and an upgrade to 90 pct of the electrical system, resulting in an over 3 million kWh over 650 kW totaling $568,000 in rebates, according to the Xcel release. (Source: Xcel Energy, PR, swnewsmedia, Nov., 2019) Contact: Xcel Energy, Karen Rhodes, Energy Director of Customer Solutions, (612) 215-5300, www.xcelenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Xcel Energy,  Cargill,  Energy Efficiency,  


    EDPR Acquires 50 pct Stake in 278MW US Solar Portfolio (M&A)
    EDP Renewables,First Solar
    Date: 2019-11-13
    EDP Renewables North America LLC is reporting acquisition of a 50 pct stake in a 278 MW portfolio of three solar projects in the U.S. as well as a contract to develop 804 MW of offshore wind power through a 50/50 joint venture.

    The first portfolio of three solar energy plants developed by Tempe, Arizona-based First Solar Inc. is expected to commence operations in the coming months and is secured by Power Purchase Agreements. The second announcement involves an agreement to supply 804 MW of clean and renewable offshore wind energy enough to power approximately half a million homes to customers in Massachusetts. (Source : EDPR, Strategic Research Institute, SteelGuru, 12 Nov., 2019) Contact: EDP Renewables North America, Miguel Prado, CEO, (713) 265-0350 - Houston, +351 21 001 25 00, www.edpr.co; First Solar, Kathryn Arbeit, VP, Project Dev., David Brady, Inv. Rel., (602) 414-9315, dbrady@firstsolar.com, www.firstsolar.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News EDP Renewables ,  Solar,  First Solar ,  


    DOI Announces $5Mn for US Territories Energy Efficiency (Funding)
    US DOI
    Date: 2019-11-04
    U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) is reporting over $5 million in fiscal year 2019 funding under the Energizing Insular Communities (EIC) program to support a variety of energy retrofitting and efficiency projects that are estimated to provide thousands in savings for the residents of the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

    The Energizing Insular Communities grants for energy efficiency and related projects are going to:

  • American Samoa Power Authority -- $1,876,325 to conduct a retrofit and replacement of all 5,792 high pressure sodium street lights in the territory with LED fixtures over the next two years for an expected annual savings of $347,233.26 in electricity .

  • Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands -- $785,000 for LED light systems on public buildings and pathways on the island of Tinian.

  • The Rota Commonwealth Utility Corporation -- $222,988 for a feasibility study for a 2 mw battery energy storage system and $160,000 to provide a PV system for the Rota aquaponics program site.

  • Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) -- and $152,393 for professional services to update the CNMI's Strategic Energy Plan, last published in 2013. The Strategic Energy Plan, once updated, will continue to guide CNMI's overall efforts to reduce costs of energy in the territory and explore the best options for energy production in the territory.

  • Guam Power Authority -- $1,729,815 -- $620,428 to install solar arrays estimated to produce 93,072 kilowatt hours per year, which represents four percent of GPA's annual energy consumption, and roughly $36,000 in annual savings.

  • Bringing Energy Savings To Schools Program -- $586,771 for an LED lighting retrofit at the Agueda I. Johnston Middle School. The program is a collaborative effort between the Guam Power Authority and the Guam Department of Education to find ways to reduce costs of energy consumption at Guam’s public schools. Once the retrofit is completed, Johnston Middle School is expected to realize an annual savings of $49,763 in utility costs. An additional $522,616 to fund a LED lighting retrofit at the Maria A. Ulloa Elementary School which is expected to contribute to $38,946 in annual savings for the school.

  • U.S. Virgin Islands Energy Office -- $625,500 for the design, material procurement, and installation of a solar plus-storage micro-grid pilot project at the St. Croix Educational Complex's emergency hurricane shelter.

    . The Energizing Insular Communities grant program provides funding for energy strategies that reduce the cost of electricity and reduce the cost of energy to consumers. Funds under this program are appropriated annually by the U.S. Congress. (Source: US DOI, Marianas Variety, 3 Nov., 2019)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  US DOI,  


  • Scout Clean Energy Completes 300MW Texas Wind Project (Ind. Report)
    Scout Clean Energy
    Date: 2019-11-01
    Boulder, Colorado-based renewable energy developer, owner and operator Scout Clean Energy (Scout) reports it has completed construction and received tax equity funds for the 300MW Ranchero Wind Farm located in Crockett County, Texas (Ranchero).

    Scout started of construction on Ranchero in January of this year. The completion follows the recently announced commencement of construction on Scout's 180MW Heart of Texas wind farm in McCullough County, Texas. The utility-scale project will incorporate 120, GE 2.5MW wind turbines with 127-meter rotors. Renewable Energy Systems (RES) constructed the project under a balance-of-plant contract.

    Scout, a portfolio company of Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners, is developing a portfolio of over 3,000 MW of wind, solar and energy storage projects across 10 US states. (Source: Scout Clean Energy, PR, 31 Oct., 2019) Contact: Scout Clean Energy, Michael Rucker, CEO, (303) 284-7566, michael@scoutcleanenergy.com, www.scoutcleanenergy.com; Quinbrook, www.quinbrook.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Scout Clean Energy,  Wind,  


    West Haven Expects Major Energy Efficiency Savings (Ind. Report)
    City of West Haven
    Date: 2019-10-30
    In Connecticut, the City of West Haven (pop. 55,000 +-) reports the installation of a solar array as part of the reconstruction and energy efficiency upgrade of the city's High School. The upgrades are expected to cut the city's electric power and energy costs by roughly $40,000 per year -- more than $1 million over the project's expected 25 years service period.

    West Haven High's $130 million reconstruction and energy efficiency upgrades include: replacement of inefficient boilers with high-efficiency units; LED lighting; a fully insulated building envelope; energy-efficient windows; water-saving fixtures; and high-efficiency HVAC equipment. (Source: City of West Haven, West Haven Patch, 28 Oct., 2019) Contact: City of West Haven, Building Dept., 203-937-3590, www.cityofwesthaven.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Vistra Announces CO2 Emissions Reduction Targets (Ind. Report)
    Vistra Energy
    Date: 2019-10-30
    Irving, Texas-headquartered electric power generator and provider Vistra Energy is reporting its long-term emissions reduction targets to achieve a greater than 50 pct reduction in CO2 equivalent emissions by 2030 as compared to a 2010 baseline and a greater than 80 pct reduction in CO2 equivalent emissions by 2050 as compared to a 2010 baseline. The company also aims to reach net-zero carbon emissions in the same timeframe assuming necessary advancements in technology and supportive market constructs and public policy, according to a release. Since 2010 Vistra's combined power generation portfolio has decreased CO2 equivalent emissions by more than 31 pct, removing nearly 170 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent emissions from the atmosphere, according to the company which recently announced the anticipated retirement of approximately 2.5 GWs of coal assets in Illinois. The Illinois closure will further reduce the company's CO2 equivalents an additional 11 pct compared to a 2010 baseline.

    In total, since 2010, Vistra and its predecessor companies have retired, or announced plans to retire, nearly 13 GW of fossil generation, including 14 coal generation plants and 3 natural gas generation plants.

    Vistra notes it believes a national or regional, economy-wide carbon fee is the ideal public policy solution to appropriately incentivize investments in carbon-free and carbon-reducing technologies. (Source: Vistra, PR, 29 Oct., 2019) Contact: Vistra Energy, Curtis Morgan, CEO, www.vistraenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vistra Energy,  CO2,  Carbon Emissions,  Coal,  


    National Biodiesel Foundation B100 Project Funded (Ind. Report)
    National Biodiesel Foundation,Optimus Technologies
    Date: 2019-10-25
    In the Show Me State, the Jefferson City-headquartered National Biodiesel Foundation is reporting receipt of grant funding from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its 2020 National Clean Diesel Project which is run in partnership with Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT), Pittsburgh-based Optimus Technologies and Renewable Energy Group (REGI) based in Ames, Iowa.

    The project will retire older, more polluting vehicles in Iowa and replace them with new B100-optimised vehicles for the cities of Des Moines and Ames, Iowa. The replacement vehicles will use Optimus' Vector technology which allows the vehicles to operate exclusively on 100 pct biodiesel, with the exception of start-up and shutdown, to optimize fuel savings and emissions performance. REG will provide the refueling infrastructure for the fleet of new B100 vehicles. (Source: National Biodiesel Foundation, PR, 25 Oct., 2019) Contact: National Biodiesel Foundation Tom Verry, Exec. Dir., info@biodieselfoundation.org, www.biodieselfoundation.org; Iowa DOT, David May, Fleet Manager, www.iowadot.gov; Optimus Technologies, Colin Huwyler, CEO, 412.727.8228, www.optimustec.com; REGI, Cynthia J. Warner, President and CEO, 515-239-8000, www.regi.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News B100,  Biodiesel,  National Biodiesel Foundation,  Optimus Technologies,  Renewable Energy Group,  


    Re-Gen Waste Expanding Irish Waste-to-Fuel Facility (Int'l.)
    Re-Gen Waste
    Date: 2019-10-23
    Newry, Ireland-headquartered waste management specialist Re-Gen Waste Ltd. reports it has invested £5 million ($6.4 million) to develop and expand its alternative fuel production facility at Carnbane industrial estate, Newry. The expanded facility is expected to reach full production by next month.

    The company presently exports 80,000 tpy of solid recovered fuel (SRF) but will now manufacture higher calorific value pellets and baled material for export to the European cement and steel industries. Joseph Doherty, managing director.(Source: Re-Gen Waste Ltd., Cement News, 22 Oct., 2019) Contact: Re-Gen Waste Ltd., Joseph Doherty, Managing Director, +44 28 3026 5432, www.regenwaste.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Alternatiove Fuels,  


    Pattern Acquiring Two Wind Power Facilities fo $293Mn (M&A)
    Pattern Energy Group
    Date: 2019-10-16
    Pattern Energy Group reports it will acquire ownership interests in the Henvey Inlet Wind facility in Ontario and the Grady Wind facility in New Mexico for a total of $293 million. To that end, Pattern notes it has inked an agreement for a $260-million private placement of perpetual preferred stock with certain institutional investors and intends to use a portion of the net proceeds to finance the two acquisitions.

    The 300-MW Henvey Inlet Wind facility and the 220-MW Grady Wind facility have 20- and 25-year PPA respectively. (Source: Pattern, Zacks, 15 Oct., 2019) Contact: Pattern Energy Group, Mike Garland, CEO, Matt Dallas, (917) 363-1333, matt.dallas@patternenergy.com, www.patternenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Pattern Energy Group,  


    Another "EPA Bait and Switch" (Opinions, Editorials & Aside)
    NATSO
    Date: 2019-10-16
    Alexandria, Virginia-based NATSO, representing America's travel plazas and truckstops, today issued the following statement on the Environmental Protection Agency's plan to implement the RFS deal that President Trump negotiated less than two weeks ago:

    "Unfortunately, EPA's plan does not stay true to the President's promise to account for gallons that are waived as part of the RFS's small refinery exemption program.

    "Specifically, today's plan would provide accounting relief for just a fraction of the gallons that have actually been waived and base that relief on the far smaller number of gallons that the DOE recommended be waived.

    "When the deal was first announced on Oct. 4, many champions in the biofuels industry lauded the President because they thought that EPA received and understood the President's message. Apparently this is not the case.

    "In the deal President Trump negotiated, EPA was supposed to ensure that it would account for all of the gallons that are waived as part of the small refinery exemption process. Today's plan simply does not do that. It is another 'EPA bait and switch' where the White House announces a deal that, at a high level, is favorable for the biofuels community, and EPA later decides to bail out refiners at the expense of farmers. I've seen this movie before.

    "The math here is simple. In 2016, EPA waived 790 million gallons under the small refinery exemption program. In 2017, it waived 1.82 billion gallons, and in 2018 it waived 1.43 billion gallons. This averages out to 1.346 billion gallons waived per year over the past three years. To provide the accounting relief that President Trump negotiated in his deal just two weeks ago, EPA would need to ensure that 1.346 billion gallons are added to the 2020 renewable fuel obligations.

    "Instead, the proposal EPA Administrator Wheeler issued today would provide accounting relief for just 580 million to 770 million gallons -- far less than the 1.346 billion gallons that President Trump promised. The irony in all of this is that by basing accounting relief on DOE's recommendations, rather than the actual volume waived, this proposal shines a bright light on the damage that EPA has directly inflicted on the biofuels community in recent years by disregarding DOE's recommendations and waiving more gallons than was recommended. It will undoubtedly generate the same level of opposition that the most recent round of small refinery exemption announcements generated, at a time when this Administration has enough on its plate already."

    NATSO is the trade association of America's travel plaza and truckstop industry. Founded in 1960, NATSO represents the industry on legislative and regulatory matters; serves as the official source of information on the diverse travel plaza and truckstop industry; provides education to its members; conducts an annual convention and trade show; and supports efforts to generally improve the business climate in which its members operate. (Source: NATSO, PR, 15 Oct., 2019) Contact: NATSO, David Fialkov, VP Gov. Affairs, Tiffany Wlazlowski Neuman, (703) 739-8578, www.natso.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  NATSO,  Trump,  


    CEMEX Plants Score EPA ENERGY STAR Certification (Ind. Report)
    CEMEX
    Date: 2019-10-11
    Global building materials and cement company CEMEX USA is reporting two of its cement plants -- Miami and Brooksville South -- have been awarded US EPA ENERGY STAR® Certification for 2019, recognizing CEMEX's efforts in energy efficiency and sustainability.

    These two CEMEX plants have been repeatedly certified by the EPA's ENERGY STAR® program for their conservation efforts. This year's recognition marks nine consecutive years of ENERGY STAR® Certification for CEMEX's Miami Cement Plant, while the Brooksville South Cement Plant has achieved the certification seven out of the last eight years. (Source: CEMEX, USA PR, 10 Oct., 2019) Contact: DOE Energy Star®, www.energystar.gov; CEMEX USA, www.cemexusa.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ENERGY STAR,  Energy Eficiency,  CEMEX,  


    Qatar Commissions Region's Largest CCS Facility (Int'l. Report)
    Qatar
    Date: 2019-10-09
    In Qatar, the Ministery of State for Energy Affairs reports the commissioning of a previously unannounced carbon capture and storage (CCS) facility aimed at storing as much as 5 million tonnes of carbon from Qatar's liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities by 2025.

    According to the Ministry announcement, the 2.1 million tpy capacity facility is the region's largest such facility. (Source: Qatar Ministery of State for Energy Affairs, The Peninsula, Reuters, 8 Oct., 2019) Contact: Qatar Minister of State for Energy Affairs, www.gco.gov.qa › ministries › minister-of-state-for-energy-affairs

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  Carbon Capture,  CO2,  Qatar,  


    GEVO CEO Comments on RFS Announcement (Opinions & Asides)
    Gevo
    Date: 2019-10-09
    "Friday's (renewable fuels standard) announcement by the EPA is a step in the right direction and will hopefully put the RFS back on track after 31 oil refineries received exemptions back in August. I'm glad President Trump supported this step. A robust renewable fuel standard is important for our farmers, the biofuel industry, and reducing greenhouse gases. Every drop of biofuel we get into the market is a win and helps to change the conversation about what is possible from low carbon, sustainable biofuels.

    "With Gevo it is possible, for example, to replace an entire gallon of transportation fuel with fuels that are renewable with net zero, or even carry a negative, GHG profile. That is a game changer. Good for farmers, good for consumers, good for the environment." -- Patrick Gruber, CEO, Gevo, 8 Oct., 2019 Contact: Gevo, Patrick Gruber, CEO, 303-858-8358, pgruber@gevo.com, www.gevo.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Gevo,  RFS,  Renewable Fuel Standard,  


    Texas Tech Prof. Funded to Improve Chemical Plant Energy Efficiency (Ind. Report, Funding)
    Texas Tech University
    Date: 2019-10-07
    Texas Tech University chemical engineering professor Chau-Chyun Chen, the Jack Maddox Distinguished Engineering Chair in Sustainable Energy, is investigating chemical plant design and construction in an effort to make them smaller and more energy efficient.

    In support of that effort, Prof. Chau-Chyun Chen has been awarded a four-year $1.1 million grant from the Rapid Advancement in Process Intensification Deployment (RAPID) Manufacturing Institute, a public-private partnership between the US DOE Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).

    Chen and his team will work to advance the process simulation software used when designing these chemical plants that physically require less space use less energy.

    Project partners include: Savannah River National Laboratory,Georgia Institute of Technology, Dow Chemical Company and others. (Source: Texas Tech University, Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, 30 Sept., 2019) Contact: Texas Tech University, Prof. ChauChyun-Chen, (806) 834-3098, chauchyun.chen@ttu.edu, www.depts.ttu.edu/che/groups/chengroup

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Ameresco Begins Phase Two MUSC Efficiency Upgrades (Ind. Report)
    Ameresco
    Date: 2019-09-30
    In the Bay State, Framingham-headquartered energy efficiency and renewable energy specialist Ameresco, Inc. is reporting work is underway on the second phase of a $43 million, comprehensive energy savings performance contract (ESPC) energy savings project at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).

    Ameresco's work will include replacement of campus lighting fixtures with high-efficiency LEDs, installation of building automation and control systems, upgrading HVAC systems and chiller plant optimization, an equipment operation and maintenance training program for MUSC employees, and others. (Source: Ameresco, Bus.Wire, 30 Sept., 2019) Contact: Ameresco, Bob Georgeoff, VP, (508) 661-2288, www.ameresco.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ameresco,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Pittsburgh Firms Support Methane Emissions Ruductions (Ind. Report)
    Equitrans Midstream Corporation
    Date: 2019-09-27
    In the Steel City, Equitrans Midstream Corp. (ETRN) and EQM Midstream Partners LP (EQM) have come out in support of the US oil and gas industry's ongoing efforts to reduce methane emissions and therefore oppose the US EPA's proposed rollback of methane regulations.

    The EPA's April 2019 inventory report showed total methane emissions are down 15.8 pct since 1990 -- insufficient to achieve regulatory compliance on methane emissions in order to address the global impacts of climate change.

    ETRN and EQM currently utilize various methane mitigation methods across their operations and are evaluating additional enhancement and mitigation efforts, such as: expansion of the Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) programme; pneumatic controller upgrades; re-compression of pipeline gas prior to maintenance procedures; and upgrading existing stations with air or electric starts.

    ETRN is a member of the Environmental Partnership -- a voluntary reduction programme offered through the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the ONE Future Coalition of natural gas companies working together to voluntarily reduce methane emissions across the natural gas supply chain to 1 pct pct. (Source: ETRN, PR, Sept., 2019) Contact: Equitrans Midstream Corporation, Diana Charletta , Pres., CEO, www.equitransmidstream.com; EQM Midstream Partners, www.eqm-midstreampartners.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane,  EPA,  


    Stora Enso Addresses Construction CO2 Emissions (Int'l. Report)
    Stora Enso
    Date: 2019-09-25
    In Stockholm, Stora Enso reports it is participating in the World Green Building Week, the largest annual and global communication campaign on sustainable buildings organized by the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC).

    Stora Enso develops and produces solutions based on wood and biomass for a range of industries and applications worldwide, leading in the bioeconomy and supporting our customers in meeting demand for renewable eco-friendly products.

    "Stora Enso has helped us lead the change towards a building sector that meets the decarbonization goals of the Paris Agreement, addressing both operational and embodied emissions. As a campaign ambassador and advocate for new policies such as the EU's 'Level(s)' framework that seek to mainstream life-cycle assessment, they are evidence to politicians that the sector is ready to deliver net zero carbon," according to James Drinkwater, Director of WorldGBC's Europe Regional Network.

    Carbon dioxide emissions from construction materials -- mostly cement and steel -- account for approximately 11 pct of all global emissions. Stora Enso has also supported the creation of the WorldGBC's Bringing embodied carbon upfront report that highlights the importance of emissions from materials.

    The World Green Building Council (WGBC) is the world's largest international organisation promoting the practice of sustainable building. Stora Enso Wood Products joined WGBC in 2017. (Source: Stora Enso, PR, 24 Sept., 2019) Contact: Stora Enso Wood Products Div., Jari Suominen, Div. Head, +43-664-6183907, jari.suominen@stroaenso.com, www.storaenso.com; World Green Building Council, James Drinkwater, www.worldgbc.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Woody Biomass,  Building Sustainability,  ,  Stora Enso,  World Green Building Council,  


    DOE Invests $56Mn in Coal Technology Projects (R&D, Funding)
    US DOE,DOE Office of Fossil Energy
    Date: 2019-09-23
    The U.S. DOE is announcing 32 winners for $56.5 million in federal funding for cost-shared R&D projects for advanced coal technologies and research under six separate funding opportunity announcements (FOAs). The projects further the (Trump) Administration's commitment to strengthening clean coal technologies and cover a range of topics, including carbon capture, utilization, and storage; rare earth element recovery; coal to products; crosscutting coal R&D; steam turbine efficiency; and advanced materials. The awards are as follows:
  • $10 million for ten projects under DE-FOA-0001992, Maximizing the Coal Value Chain. The projects will develop innovative uses of domestic coal for upgraded coal-based feedstocks used to produce power and make steel and for producing high-value products from coal or coal by-products.

  • $11.9 million under DE-FOA-0001996, Advancing Steam Turbines for Coal Boilers. The two projects selected under this FOA seek to improve the performance of steam-based power cycles, resulting in lower cost electricity with reduced emissions per megawatt-hour from coal fueled boilers.

  • $9.3 million for ten projects under DE-FOA-0002001, Crosscutting Research for Coal-Fueled Power Plants. This effort supports DOE's Crosscutting Research Program, which develops technologies that can be applied to a range of fossil energy uses.

  • $5 million under DE-FOA-0002002, Advanced Materials for High-Efficiency, Flexible and Reliable Coal-Fueled Power Plants. DOE selected five projects to support its Crosscutting Research program, which fosters the development and deployment of innovative systems for improving efficiency and environmental performance.

  • 3 projects will receive up to $15 million under DE-FOA-0002003, Process Scale-Up and Optimization/Efficiency Improvements for Rare Earth Elements (REE) and Critical Materials (CM) Recovery from United States Coal-Based Resources.

  • 2 projects will receive $5.3 million under DE-FOA-0001998, Transformational Sensing Systems for Monitoring the Deep Subsurface. This award seeks to reduce uncertainty of and enable real-time decision-making associated with subsurface carbon dioxide (CO2) storage. The selected projects support DOE's Carbon Storage Research Program by improving characterization and prediction of subsurface fluid movement and enhancing real-time measurement of critical subsurface properties.

    DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL)will manage the selected projects. (Source: US DOE, 20 Sept., 2019) Contact: US DOE Office of Fossil Energy, www.energy.gov/fe; NETL, www.netl.doe.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DOE Office of Fossil Energy,  NETL,  Coal,  Clean Coal,  US DOE,  


  • Schneider Electric Launches Water Efficiency Innovations (Ind. Report)
    Schneider Electric
    Date: 2019-09-23
    Energy management and automation specialist Schneider Electric has unveiled new IIoT-based innovations for the water industry. These digital innovations, including EcoStruxure Pumping Performance Advisor, EcoStruxure Augmented Operator Advisor, EcoStruxure Hybrid DCS for Water and the PROficient Premier Access Portal, drive process optimization to increase efficiency and reduce operating costs to make operations in water and wastewater more profitable.

    EcoStruxure Pumping Performance Advisor is a digital service designed to manage pump station performance through insights, recommendations and direct access to Schneider service team of engineers. This new group of digital services for the continuous improvement of pumping in water and wastewater, address challenges such as cost of water, while maximizing the return on your assets for 24/7 operations. Leveraging data-driven digital technologies, this solution can help you reduce energy cost and increase performance, reduce unplanned downtime and extend life of mechanical and electrical assets.

    EcoStruxure Hybrid DCS is an automation system that operates an entire water plant in a single common database.. EcoStruxure Augmented Operator Advisor improves operational efficiency with augmented reality, enabling operators to superimpose the current data and virtual objects onto a cabinet, machine, or plant.

    PROficient Premier Access Portal is a new online platform that provides fast, easily-accessible information and expertise to Schneider’s Consulting Engineer community, product information, technical information, support and more.

    EcoStruxure is Schneider Electric's open, interoperable, IoT-enabled system architecture and platform. It delivers enhanced value around safety, reliability, efficiency, sustainability, and connectivity. EcoStruxure leverages advancements in IoT, mobility, sensing, cloud, analytics, and cybersecurity to deliver Innovation at Every Level. This includes Connected Products, Edge Control, and Apps, Analytics & Services. EcoStruxure has been deployed in 480,000+ sites, with the support of 20,000+ system integrators and developers, connecting over 1.6 million assets under management through 40+ digital services. (Source: Schneider Electric, PR, 23 Sept., 2019) Contact: Schneider Electric, Kakali Ray, VP Sales, www.schneider-electric.us

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Schneider Electric,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Cement Giant Commits to Cutting Carbon Footprint (Int'l. Report)
    LafargeHolcim
    Date: 2019-09-20
    Swiss-based worldwide cement giant LafargeHolcim reports it has earmarked €145.4 million ($160.3 million) specifically to reduce its carbon footprint by improving the carbon-efficiency of its products. The company aims to reduce annual CO2 emissions in Europe by a further 15 pct -- 3 million tonnes, by 2022.

    The full amount will be invested in advanced equipment and technologies to increase the use of low-carbon fuels and recycled materials in the company's processes and products. Additional funds are to be earmarked in the future for the introduction of new carbon-efficient materials and services, according to the release. LafargeHolcim's project scope will cover more than 80 projects across 19 European countries over the next three years. (Source: LafargeHolcim, PR, 19 Dept., 2019)Contact: LafargeHolcim, Rene Thibault, www.lafargeholcim.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Footprint,  LafargeHolcim,  Carbon Emissions,  Cement,  Climate Change,  


    DOE Announces $110Mn Grant Funding for CCUS R&D (R&D Funding)
    US DOE,NETL
    Date: 2019-09-16
    The U.S. DOE Office of Fossil Energy (FE) has announced approximately $110 million in federal funding for cost-shared R&D projects under three funding opportunity announcements (FOAs). Approximately $75M is for awards selected under two FOAs announced earlier this fiscal year; $35M is for a new FOA.

    These FOAs further the (Trump) Administration's commitment to strengthening coal while protecting the environment. Carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) is increasingly becoming widely accepted as a viable option for coal-fired energy sources or gas-fired power plants and other industrial sources to lower their CO2 emissions.

    Under the first FOA award, Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) Studies for Carbon Capture Systems on Coal and Natural Gas Power Plants, DOE has selected nine projects to receive $55.4 million for cost-shared R&D. The selected projects will support FEED studies for commercial-scale carbon capture systems.

    Under the second FOA award, Regional Initiative to Accelerate CCUS Deployment, DOE selected four projects to receive up to $20 million for cost-shared R&D. The projects also advance existing R&D by addressing key technical challenges; facilitating data collection, sharing, and analysis; evaluating regional infrastructure; and promoting regional technology transfer.

    Under the new FOA, , DOE is announcing up to $35 million for cost-shared R&D projects that will accelerate wide-scale deployment of CCUS through assessing and verifying safe and cost-effective anthropogenic CO2 commercial-scale storage sites, and carbon capture and/or purification technologies. These types of projects have the potential to take advantage of the 45Q tax credit for each ton of CO2 sequestered or utilized. The credit was recently increased to $35/metric ton for enhanced oil recovery and $50/metric ton for geologic storage.

    Projects selected under this new FOA shall perform the following key activities: complete a detailed site characterization of a commercial-scale CO2 storage site (50 million metric tons of captured CO2 within a 30 year period); apply and obtain an underground injection control class VI permit to construct an injection well; complete a CO2capture assessment; and perform all work required to obtain a National Environmental Policy Act determination for the site.

    DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory NETL) will manage the selected projects. (Source: US DOE, Office of Fossil Energy, PR, 13 Sept., 2019)Contact: US DOE Office of Fossil Energy. www.energy.gov/fe/foa-2058-front-end-engineering-design-feed-studies-carbon-capture-systems-coal-and-natural-gas, www.energy.gov/fe; NETL, www.netl.doe.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NETL,  CCS,  US DOE,  CCUS,  CO2,  Office of Fossil Energy,  


    Consortium Funds Offshore Wind Anchorage Study (R&D, Funding)
    National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium
    Date: 2019-09-13
    The new federally-funded U.S. National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium reports awarding its first contract to the U.S. DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The $300,000 award will support NREL's work on the economic feasibility of shared mooring lines to cut deep-water floating wind farm costs by connecting adjacent turbine platforms and distributing load, resulting in fewer anchors and considerable savings.

    The DOE-created consortium is funded with $20 million to conduct research and development to address technological barriers and lower the costs and risks of offshore wind in the United States. To that end, DOE and Department of the Interior (DOI) identified the following research areas to facilitate the development of the U.S. offshore wind industry: wind plant technology advancement; wind resource and physical site characterization, and; installation, operations and maintenance, and supply chain technology solutions.

    The Consortium is administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Agency (NYSERDA). (Source: National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium, ENR, 11 Sept., 2019)Contact: National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium, www.energy.gov › eere › national-offshore-wind-rd-consortium; NYSERDA, Alicia Barton, Pres., CEO, (518) 862-1090, www.nyserda.ny.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Wind,  Wind R&D,  NYSERDA,  


    HeidelbergCement Joins Norwegian CCS Project (Int'l. Report)
    HeidelbergCement
    Date: 2019-09-11
    HeidelbergCement reports it has joined a list of leaders from various industries in endorsing Norway's state-owned energy group Equinor's carbon capture and storage (CCS) plans.

    HeidelbergCement's Norwegian subsidiary Norcem has been involved in CCS research at its 1.2Mt/yr integrated cement plant in Brevik since 2011. The plant was "shortlisted" by the Norewgian government for its multiple-industry Northern Lights CCS project early last year Beginning in 2023, Equinor will remove 0.4Mt/yr of CO2, half of the plants total CO2 output, from Brevik for storage in empty oil and gas fields beneath the North Sea. (Source: HeidelbergCement, Global Cement News, 6 Sept., 2019) Contact: HeidelbergCement, Dr Bernd Scheifele, CEO, Jan Theulen, Director Alternative Resources, www.heidelbergcement.com; Equinor, Pal Eitrheim, VP New Energy Solutions, www.equinor.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News HeidelbergCement,  Carbon Emissions,  Equinor,  


    WPA Takes Canadian Clean Fuel Standard to Task (Ind Report)
    Wood Pellet Association of Canada
    Date: 2019-09-09
    Since 2017, the government of Canada has been developing the Clean Fuel Standard (CFS), a low carbon fuel standard-type policy, to reduce the life-cycle carbon intensity of fuels and energy used in Canada. The CFS aims to achieve 30 million tonnes CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) of annual reductions in greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 2030.

    The Wood Pellet Association of Canada (WPAC) has been providing input to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) as it works to design and shape the CFS. And, upon review of ECCC's proposed regulatory approach, WPAC is seriously concerned that the government will not allow end-use fuel switching in the buildings/stationary fuel use sector.

    WPAC believes it is unfair for ECCC to recognize fuel switching from gasoline to electricity or hydrogen in transportation, but not to recognize switching from heating oil to solid biofuels -- wood pellets or chips -- for Canada's second largest renewable energy product -- solid biomass heating. To that end, WPAC made the following representations to ECCC:

  • One of the three primary objectives of the CFS is low-cost compliance. By prohibiting recognition of fuel switching for stationary applications, ECCC will actually significantly increase the cost of CFS compliance, exclude the forest sector from participation in the short-term, and inhibit investment in the most proven commercial technology for displacement of heating oil -- wood pellet and chip boilers.

  • Canada consumes approximately three billion lpy of heating oil, the majority of which is consumed by Canadians in rural and Atlantic Canada. The latter accounts for 44 pct of heating oil consumption in the residential sector and 50 pct of heating oil consumption in the commercial/institutional sectors. Rural and Atlantic Canada also have among the lowest per capita income. ECCC's proposed regulatory approach will make CFS compliance for these low-income areas significantly more expensive than for those living in cities.

  • Under ECCC's proposed regulatory approach, the principal mechanism for ensuring compliance from heating oil primary suppliers will be to blend renewable diesel with heating oil. Since heating oil has low carbon intensity (CI) relative to other liquid fuels and much of the crude used to produce heating oil is sourced from outside of Canada, there is less opportunity for upstream reductions than with other liquid fuels. The 2030 target of 74 g CO2e/MJ is less than heating oil combustion emissions, meaning upstream efficiency improvements will be insufficient to meet the requirements. The only heating oil-miscible fuel that can also be stored outside in winter, as is often the case with heating oil, is renewable diesel.

  • Renewable diesel has a useful heat fuel cost of $65-82 per gigajoule (GJ) ($234-295 per MWh. In contrast, wood pellets, at $300-350 per tonne for residential sales, have a useful heat fuel cost of $20-24 per GJ. Wood pellets also have half the of default renewable diesel (29 g CO2e/MJ). Wood chips are half the carbon intensity of wood pellets which means, on an implied carbon price basis and assuming wholesale $0.75 per litre for heating oil, blending renewable diesel with heating oil has a fuel cost of $630/ per tonne CO2e to 884 per tonne CO2e. Switching from heating oil to wood pellets saves money on a fuel basis, in addition to avoiding taxes on heating oil. In this case, there is little reason to implement a complex policy such as the CFS.

  • Despite the billions of dollars invested in lignocellulosic liquid transportation biofuels, all technologies are still pre-commercial -- especially forest feedstock-based liquid transportation biofuels due to the recalcitrant structure of wood fibre. Co-processing of pyrolysis oil or biocrude in existing oil refineries at a meaningful volume will not occur before 2030. The forest sector represents over 75 pct of annually-available biomass resources in Canada and its exclusion from participation in the liquids class will dramatically increase the cost of fuel, especially in rural communities where wood chips and bioheat are a cost efficient and convenient source of energy. (Source: WPAC, Canadian Biomass, Environment and Climate Change Canada, 26 Aug., 2019) Contact: Wood Pellet Association of Canada, Gordon Murra, Exec. Dir., ; Environment and Climate Change Canada, www.canada.ca › environment-climate-change

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Environment and Climate Change Canada,  Wood Pellet Association of Canada,  Woody Biomass,  Wood Pellet ,  


  • Norwegian CCS Project Announces Major Participants (Int'l. Report)
    Equinor,Gassnova
    Date: 2019-09-09
    In Oslo, Norway's Equinor is reporting steel maker ArcelorMittal, Heidelberg Cement, the Swedish refiner Preem, and the Finish energy firm Fortum Oyi are among the firms signing Memorandums of Agreement (MoU) on joining the Norwegian government's Northern Lights underground carbon dioxide (CO2) storage project offshore Norway. The CCS project is led by Equinor in partnership with Shell and the French energy giant Total.

    Industry's commitment is considered crucial for the Norwegian government's investment in the project, which aims at capturing and storing up to 5 million tonnes of CO2 from various industrial sites onshore. The project is expected to cost between $802 million and $1.4 billion to establish a full CCS chain. To date, Norway has spent roughly $92 million on the project which could start operations in 2023 or 2024, according to a Gassnova, a governmental agency in charge of CCS development, report.(Source: Equinor, Gassnova, Reuters, 5 Sept., 2019) Contact: Equinor, Eldar Saetre , CEO, www.equinor.com/en; HeidelbergCement, Dr Bernd Scheifele, CEO, Jan Theulen, Director Alternative Resources, www.heidelbergcement.com; Fortum Oyi, www3.fortum.com; PREEM, Petter Holland, CEO, Pres., +46 (0) 10 459 1000, www.preem.se/en/in-english

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GassnovaCCS,  Equinor,  ArcelorMittal,  Heidelberg Cement,  Preem,  Fortum,  


    Efficiency Projects Cut School's Energy Use 43 pct (Ind. Report)
    Ameresco
    Date: 2019-09-09
    In Montana, Kalispell Public Schools is reporting completion of approximately $4 million in energy efficiency and energy saving projects. The upgrades included switched out approximately 29,000 fluorescent and halogen bulbs to energy-efficient LEDs for a 43 pct reduction in energy usage across the school district. Other projects included water efficiency retrofits, HVAC improvements; boiler and domestic hot water heater replacements, and others. The upgrades delivered a nealy 15 pct reduction in natural gas usage, an 18 pct drop in electrical demand and a 13 pct water usage, excluding irrigation, by 21 pct.

    Projects were completed under Energy Performance Contracts (EPC) and funded through zero-interest U.S. Department of Education Qualified Zone Academy Bonds, grants, rebates and some district funds. The projects were completed by energy efficiency and renewable specialist Ameresco. (Source: Daily Inter Lake, 7 Sept., 2019) Contact: Ameresco, Bob Georgeoff, VP, (508) 661-2288, www.ameresco.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Ameresco,  


    CW&L Offering Energy Efficiency Replacement Program (Ind. Report)
    Focus on Energy,
    Date: 2019-09-04
    In Ohio, the municipally-owned utility Columbus Water & Light (CW&L) reports it is partnering with Focus on Energy, a statewide energy efficiency and renewable energy program, to promote the Heating and Cooling efficiency by replacing old inefficient heating and cooling equipment with newer, more energy efficient versions.

    Under CW&L's program, rebate incentives are available through Focus on Energy to customers who upgrade equipment such as a furnace, boiler, smart thermostat or water heater. Utility customers who receive a rebate for a furnace fan or AC unit through the Focus on Energy program are eligible for an additional, matching incentive from Columbus Water & Light. Additional rebates are also available from the utility for AC tune-ups and smart thermostats. (Source: Columbus Water & Light, PR, Columbus Journal, 2 Sept., 2019) Contact: Columbus Water & Light, (920) 623-5912, www.columbuswaterandlight.com; Focus on Energy Ohio, (440)715-1300, www.focusonenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Focus on Energy,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Siemens Gamesa Turbines to Repower MidAmerican Project (Ind. Report)
    Siemens Gamesa, MidAmerican Energy
    Date: 2019-08-30
    Spanish wind Turbine giant Siemens Gamesa reports it has contracted with MidAmerican Energy Company to supply 21 of its SG 4.5-145 -- 4.8 MW "medium wind" turbines to the 95MW Southern Hills Expansion wind power project located in Iowa. The contract includes a 42 month service and maintenance provision.

    The Rolling Hills wind power project currently features 193 SWT-2.3-101 turbines. The repowering project also includes replacement of blades, hubs and nacelles for all units, and top tower sections for the SG 2.7-129 units. (Source: Siemens Gamesa, Power Tech, 29 Aug., 2019) Contact: MidAmerican Energy, Mike Fehr, VP Resource Development, (888) 427-5632, www.midamericanenergy.com; Siemens Gamesa, Andreas Nauen., CEO, www.siemensgamesa.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Siemens Gamesa,  Wind Turbine,  Wind,  MidAmerican Energy,  

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