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Blue Flint Ethanol CO2 Storage Project Funded (Ind. Report)
Blue Flint Ethanol
Date: 2020-06-22
The North Dakota Industrial Commission reports it will invest $3.4 million on a project to investigate the suitability of the geology around the Coal Creek Power Plant in Underwood, North Dakota for underground CO2 storage. The Lignite Energy Council also approved the investment. The Coal Creek plant is slated for closure in 2022.

The $7 million project was proposed by Blue Flint Ethanol, also of Underwood. The ethanol plant uses the CO2 in its processing of corn. (Source: Prairie Public Broadcasting News, 22 June, 2020) Contact: Lignite Energy Council, Jason Bohrer, Exec. Dir., 701-258-7117, www.lignite.com; Blue Flint Ethanol -- MidWest Ag Energy, 701-442-7500, 701-442-7514, www.midwestagenergy.com/fccp-blue-flint-19634; Blue Flint Ethanol, Midwest AgEnergy, Jeff Zueger, CEO, (701) 442-7500/(7010 251-3900, www.midwestagenergygroup.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Blue Flint Ethanol,  COs,  CCS,  


SD Senator Introduces RFS Pathway Biofuels Legislation (Re g & Leg)
Biofuel
Date: 2020-06-19
South Dakota Senator John Thune (R) has introduced bipartisan legislation that would help approve certain Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) pathway applications like corn fiber. The measure would compel the EPA to move forward on advanced biofuel applications rather than letting them sit idled at the agency awaiting action refinery applications for waivers move through the system, according to the Senator's release. (Soure: WNAX, 19 June, 2020) Contact: Senator John Thune, (202) 224-2321, (605) 348-7551, www.thune.senate.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Biofuel,  


Pattern Energy Acquires Clines Corners Wind Development (M&A)
Pattern Energy,Orion Renewable Energy
Date: 2020-06-17
Pattern Energy Group LP reports the completion of its acquisition of the 1,000 MW Clines Corners wind power development opportunity in Torrance and Guadalupe Counties, New Mexico, from Orion Wind Power Resources, LLC.

Orion Wind Power Resources is a joint venture between Oakland, California-based Orion Renewable Energy Group LLC and MAP® Energy.

With this acquisition, Pattern Energy now has more than 4,000 MW of New Mexico wind in development, representing more than $8 billion of planned investments. (Source: Pattern Energy Group, PR, 16 June, 2020) Contact: Orion Renewables, 510.267.8921, inquiries@orionrenewables.com, www.orionrenewables.com; MAP Energy, (650) 324-9095, info@map-energy.com; Pattern Energy, Mike Garland, CEO, Matt Dallas, Media, 917-363-1333, matt.dallas@patternenergy.com, www.patternenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pattern Energy,  Wind,  Orion Renewable Energy ,  


Flints Hills Kills Ethanol Production at GA Plant (Ind. Report)
Flint Hill Resources
Date: 2020-06-15
Flint Hill Resources reports it is permanently ceasing production at its idled 120 million gpy ethanol plant in Camilla, Georgia. The facility, which also produces 310,000 tpy og dried distillers grains (DDGs) and approximately 21 million ppy of non-food grade corn oil, will continue to operate as an ethanol terminal.

The shutdown is due to the "oversupply of ethanol in the marketplace and the loss of demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing a rationalization of U.S. ethanol production," according to the company release. As previously reported, the company had been unsuccessful in finding a purchaser for the plant. (Source: Flint Hills Resources, Albany Herald, 13 June, 2020) Contact: Flint Hills Resources, 229-522-2822, www.fhr.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Flint Hill Resources news,  DDGs news,  Ethanol news,  


Pale Blue Dot Appoints Carbon Capture Project Engineer (Int'l.)
Pale Blue Dot
Date: 2020-06-12
In Scotland, Aberdeenshire-headquartered Pale Blue Dot Energy reports it has tapped Jersey-based Petrofac to support front end engineering design and concept work on its Acorn carbon capture and hydrogen production project at the St Fergus gas terminal, near Peterhead. The project has secured funding from the EU and UK and Scottish governments.

Project partners, including Chrysaor, Shell and Total, aim to reform North Sea natural gas into clean hydrogen, with carbon dioxide emissions safely mitigated through the carbon capture and storage (CCS) infrastructure. The Acorn project holds the first UK CO2 appraisal and storage licence to be awarded by the Oil and Gas Authority. (Source: Pale Blue Dot, Thomson Media, 10 June, 2020) Contact: Petrofac Engineeing, Johm Pearson, CEO, www.petrofac.com: Pale Blue Dot, Ian Phillips, Project Director, info@pale-blu.com, www.pale-blu.com; pale-blu.com › acorn

More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  Pale Blue Dot,  


RFA Urges Trump to Reject Refinery Waivers (Ind. Report)
RFA
Date: 2020-06-12
"One year ago today, you visited Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy in Council Bluffs to join us in celebrating a monumental achievement. At your direction, EPA had just completed regulatory changes finally allowing year-round sales of gasoline containing 15 pct ethanol (E15).

"This long-awaited move unlocked the door to future demand growth for ethanol and corn. It also meant consumers would have increased access to cleaner and more affordable fuel options at the pump.

"Just as expected, the marketplace responded quickly. In the year since the red-tape barrier was removed, E15 sales are up 50pct.

"But E15 growth would have been exponentially larger if not for your EPA continuing to excuse oil refiners from their legal obligations to blend renewable fuels. As we told you a year ago, EPA's refinery waivers have caused devastating demand losses for ethanol and corn, and they under mine the expansion of E15.

"Even after a federal court overturned some refinery waivers in January, your EPA continues to receive dozens of exemption requests from oil companies. EPA is now even considering giving retroactive waivers for years that pre-date your administration.

"This needs to stop. It is hurting farmers, costing consumers, and derailing progress on energy and environmental security.

"The economic pain in farm country caused by these refinery waivers was compounded this spring—first by the Saudi-Russia oil price war, and then by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of this 'perfect tsunami,' half of the ethanol industry was recently shut down, leading to layoffs across rural America. The ethanol industry and farmers are hurting like never before.

Mr. President, we need your help. We ask that you stand up for the Renewable Fuel Standard. Please direct your EPA to abide by the January court ruling and end the abuse of the refinery waiver loophole.

"You stood by us, farmers, and consumers when you directed EPA to allow year-round E15. Now, we humbly ask that you stand with us again and ensure ethanol demand is not eroded by illegal refinery waivers. Thank you,"

Geoff Cooper, Pres. & CEO Renewable Fuels Associationwww.EthanolRFA.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS news,  Refinery Waivers news,  Biofuel Blend news,  RFA news,  


ClonBio Ethanol Group Records Rise in 2019 Profits (Int'l. Report)
ClonBio,Pannonia Bio,
Date: 2020-06-10
Irish-owned ClonBio Group is reporting a 143 pct increase in profit before tax in 2019 -- up from €39 million in 2018 to €95 million in 2019. The increase reflects a 22 pct rise in average ethanol prices in the period as well as volume growth and "continuing innovation and margin improvement across ethanol, high-protein animal nutrition and corn oil." according to a company release.

The company invested more than €65 in 2019 in the first phase of a three-year, €150 million investment programme over the period 2019-2021, according to the firm. ClonBio's Pannonia Bio, biorefinery is located in Hungary. (Source: ClonBio Group, PR, Agriland Ireland, 9 June, 2020) Contact: ClonBio, Mark Turley, CEO, +353 1 538 4550, www.clnbio.com; Pannonia Bio, +36 1 696 1833, www.pannoniabio.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News ClonBio,  Ethanol,  Pannonia Bio,  


Green Plains Partners Completes Debt Refinancing (Ind. Report)
Green Plains Partners
Date: 2020-06-05
In the Cornhusker State, Omaha-based Green Plains Partners LP and Green Plains Inc. have announced the successful refinancing of the partnership's debt facility which was arranged by Bank of America. The loan was approved by all of its existing lenders and became effective on June 4, 2020.

The new loan will mature on December 31, 2021, and includes a $130.0 million term loan and a $5.0 million revolving credit facility. The term loan requires a principal payment of $7.5 million on July 15, 2020 and $2.5 million in monthly principal amortization thereafter, with a step up to approximately $3.2 million beginning May 2021. The loan is secured by substantially all of the assets of the partnership.

Green Plains Inc. is a diversified commodity processing business with operations that include corn processing, grain handling and storage and commodity marketing and logistics services. The company is one of the leading corn processors in the world and, through its adjacent businesses, is focused on the production of high-protein feed ingredients. Green Plains owns a 50 pct interest in Green Plains Cattle Company LLC and owns a 49.0 pct limited partner interest and a 2.0 pct general partner interest in Green Plains Partners LP, according to the release. (Source: Source: Green Plains Partners LP; Green Plains Inc., PR, 4 June, 2020) Contact: Green Plains Partners, Phil Boggs , Snr VP Investor Relations and Treasurer , (402) 884.8700, phil.boggs@gpreinc.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Green Plains Partners news,  


Norfolk, Neb. Approves C-PACE Financing (Ind. Report)
C-PACE,PACE
Date: 2020-06-03
In the Cornhusker State, the city of Norfolk (pop. 25,000 +-) Council is reporting approval of the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loan program to assist commercial developers with energy efficiency and renewable energy project funding.

PACE loans are long term, fixed rate, non-recourse loans secured by assessments on the property with priority equal to property tax. PACE provides commercial real estate financing for HVAC systems, lighting, energy efficiency, energy conservation measures, water conservation such as low flow toilets and low flow fixtures, as well as renewable energy systems. (Source: City of Norfolk, WJAG, 2 June, 2020) Contact: City of Norfolk, (402) 844-2000, www.norfolkne.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News C-PACE news,  PACE news,  Energy Efficiency news,  


North Dakota E15 Expansion Program (Ind. Report)
North Dakota Ethanol Council
Date: 2020-06-03
In Fargo, the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council and the North Dakota Ethanol Council (NDEC) have launched the North Dakota Unleaded88 Expansion Program. The goal is to partner with fuel retailers to provide drivers with Unleaded88, a higher octane fuel containing 15 pct ethanol and 85 pct gasoline.

"Expanding the availability of Unleaded88 creates more market stability when the agriculture industry is struggling with a number of significant uncertainties," according to a statement from North Dakota Corn Utilization Council chairman Terry Wehlander. (Source: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, North Dakota Ethanol Council, June, 2020)Contact: North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, North Dakota Ethanol Council, (701) 566-9322, info@ndcorn.org, www.ndgorn.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News North Dakota Ethanol Council news,  Ethanol news,  E15 news,  


IRFA Seeks Legislative Biofuel Tax Action (Ind. Report, Reg & Leg)
Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-05-29
In the Hawkeye State, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) is calling for legislators to act on House File 2279 and Senate File 2403 that would extend and modernize fuel tax differentials for E15 and higher ethanol blends and B11 and higher biodiesel blends, which are set to expire on June 30, 2020.

With the passage of either bill, Iowa will not only continue to support renewable fuels but put millions of dollars back into the road use tax fund each year for vital infrastructure projects, according to IRFA. "If the legislature allows the biofuel tax differentials to expire, not only will it raise prices on consumers at the pump, it will also hurt Iowa's farmers and biofuels producers who are suffering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and trade disputes. Since the implementation of the current tax differential, we've seen biofuel blend sales increase dramatically, but with June 30 just around the corner, it is imperative the legislature take action now. Iowa cannot afford to take a step backward in promoting the use of renewable fuels," according to IRFA Policy Director Nathan Hohnstein, (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Assoc., 27 May, 2020) Contact: IRFA, Nathan Hohnstein, Policy Director , (515) 252-6249, (515) 225-0781 -- fax, www.iowarfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  Biofuel,  


Irish ClonBio Reports €95Mn 2019 pretax Profit (Int'l. Report)
ClonBio,Pannonia Bio,
Date: 2020-05-27
Dublin-headquartered family-owned agribusiness company ClonBio Group Ltd. has reported a 143 pct rise in annual pretax profits to €95 million in 2019 after ethanol prices strengthened. A good performance by its biofuels and protein-rich animal nutrition products (DDGs) also boosted the performance of ClonBio, which saw its turnover rise 26 pct to €361 million, according to a company release.

The company's core operating company, Pannonia Bio, a corn-based biorefinery in Hungary. was recently designated as an "essential company" by the Hungarian government, with a significant proportion of its monthly ethanol output now in use in the fight against coronavirus. (Source: CloneBio, Irish Times, 25 May, 2020) Contact: ClonBio, Mark Turley, CEO, +353 1 538 4550, www.clnbio.com; Pannonia Bio, +36 1 696 1833, www.pannoniabio.com

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


Ontario Cellulosic Sugar Producers Co-op Unplugged (Ind. Report)
Cellulosic Sugar Producers Co-operative
Date: 2020-05-20
In Canada, the farmer-owned Cellulosic Sugar Producers Co-operative (CSPC) which was originally formed to develop new processing opportunities for crop residues like corn stover and wheat straw -- one of the main opportunities for crop biomass derived from a once-proposed sugar refinery in Sarnia, Ontario to be constructed by Comet Bio, has pulled the plug.

Originally, 118 Sarnia area growers signed on to the project and committed 30,000 acres in total. CSPC initially developed a business model for the aggregation, transportation and storage of corn stover and wheat straw, was validated with field demonstrations and received financial support from the federal government through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

In closing, the organization noted "The market just wasn't as valorized for cellulosic fibre and other products. They were just a little short on some of the financing. We didn't want to continue without an actual plan to invest. The idea was, let's close it down before we start losing any money." It also noted the knowledge generated from the endeavor will be retained by Bioindustrial Innovations Canada -- the overarching non-profit agency working with CSPC to develop its markets. (Source Bioindustrial Innovation Canada, Farmtario, 14 May, 2020) Contact: Cellulosic Sugar Producers Co-operative, www.bincanada.ca

More Low-Carbon Energy News Corn Stover,  Cellulosic,  Bioindustrial Innovations Canada,  


LucasE3 to Construct Brazilian Ethanol Plant (Ind. Report)
LucasE3
Date: 2020-05-15
Shawnee, Kansas-based ethanol process engineering services provider LucasE3 is reporting an agreement with Brazil-based Maracaja Bioenergia to construct a new 30 million gpy corn ethanol plant in Mato Grosso State.

Construction is slated to get underway later this year for completion and commissioning within 12-14 months. (Source: LucasE3, PR, 13 May, 2020) Contact: LucasE3, Scott Lucas, (913) 608-3925, scott@LucasE3.com, www.LucasE3.com; Maracaja Bioenergia, www.fsbioenergia.com.br/en

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Brazil Ethanol,  


State-Owned Bank of ND Offers Ethanol Ind. Assistance (Ind Report)
Bank of ND ,North Dakota Industrial Commission
Date: 2020-05-04
Reporting from Bismark, the North Dakota Industrial Commission has authorized the Bank of North Dakota to provide a financing program to help the state's ethanol secure working capital to maintain operations during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. The state's ethanol producers use 140 million bpy of corn to produce 400 million gpy ethanol and 1.3 million tpy of distiller’s grains (DDGs).

The Industrial Commission will use the Partnership in Community Expansion program which offers buy-downs to to a maximum of $500,000 of a borrower's interest rate, in tandem with the legislatively authorized Fuel Production Loan Guarantee program for biofuels. Under terms of the program, ethanol producers may access up to $15 million or 50 cents per bushel of corn that would have normally been purchased in the first two quarters of 2020, whichever is less.

The Bank of North Dakota is a state-owned, state-run financial institution and the only government-owned general-service bank in the United States. (Source: Bank of ND, Wahpeton Daily News, May, 2020) Contact: Bank of ND, 800.472.2166 , 701.328.5600, bnd@nd.gov, www.bnd.nd.gov; North Dakota Industrial Commission, www.dmr.nd.gov

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


Valero Updates Ethanol, Renewable Diesel Results (Ind. Report)
Valero Energy
Date: 2020-05-01
In its just released Q1 financial results report, San Antonio-headquartered Valero Energy Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil processor by capacity, noted that while operations are being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic the demand for transportation fuels is beginning to rebound.

As per our 8 November, 2019 report, Valero has temporarily idled several of its ethanol plants. Ethanol production volumes for Q1 averaged 4.1 million gpd -- in line with production levels for Q1, 2019.

Valero's ethanol segment reported a $197 million operating loss for the first quarter of 2020, compared to $3 million in operating income for the same period of 2019. The decrease in operating income was primarily attributed to lower ethanol prices and higher corn prices, according to the report.

The report noted the impacts to its renewable diesel operations have not been as severe and progress is continuing on the Diamond pipeline expansion and the Diamond Green Diesel project, both of which are expected to be complete in 2021. Capacity at the Diamond Green Diesel facility is being expanded to 675 MMgy. Renewable diesel sales averaged 867,000 gpd during Q1 this year -- up 77,000 gpd when compared to the same period 2019. (Source: Valero, April, 2020) Contact: Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Biesel,  Valero Energy,  Ethanol,  


Archer Daniels Midland Idling Two Corn-Ethanol Plants (Ind. Report)
Archer Daniels Midland
Date: 2020-04-27
Chicago-headquartered biofuel pioneer and ethanol producer Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) reports the idling of two of its 300 million gpy corn ethanol plants in Columbus, Nebraska, and Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as the demand for ethanol continues to fall. The shutdown is expected to last for 3 or 4 months.

According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), fuel ethanol production is now at 563,000 bpd, the lowest level of production since the EIA began reporting ethanol production statistics in 2010. (Source: Archer Daniels Midland, ICIS, 23 April, 2020) Contact: ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, www.adm.com

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


Ethanol Industry Notable Quote
Ethanol
Date: 2020-04-24
"The fuel market is just telling us to shut down and not operate. Economically, it's abysmal." -- Randall Doyal, CEO, Al-Corn Clean Fuel. Contact: Al-Corn Clean Fuel , Randall Doyal, CEO, (507) 681-7100, www.al-corn.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Al-Corn Clean Fuel,  Ethanol,  


Kansas Johnson Corner Solar Project Now Online (Ind. Report)
Sunflower Electric Power Corp,Lightsource
Date: 2020-04-24
In Kansas, Sunflower Electric Power Corp. and Lightsource BP are reporting the 20-MW, $37 million Johnson Corner Solar Project in Stanton County has begun commercial operation. The project was financed and constructed by San Francisco-based Lightsource BP.

100 pct of the project's power generation is being sold under a 25-year PPA to Sunflower, a nonprofit electric utility providing wholesale generation and transmission services to six member-owners serving in central and western Kansas. The National Renewables Cooperative Organization (NRCO) played a key role in developing the project. (Source: Sunflower Electric Power Corp., Lightsource BP, Hays Post, 22 April, 2020) Contact: Lightsource BP, Kevin Smith, CEO in the Americas , www.lightsourcebp.com Sunflowe Electric Power Corp, Stuart Lowry, Pres., CEO, www.sunflower.net

More Low-Carbon Energy News Sunflower Electric Power,  Solar,  Lightsource,  


NCGA Calling for Low Carbon, High Octane Fuel Standard (Ind Report)
National Corn Growers Association
Date: 2020-04-24
According to the National Corn Growers Association's (NCGA) Mark Palmer, director of renewable fuels, the corn ethanol industry is presently dealing with some major challenges right now but is working on legislation to establish a federal low carbon, high octane fuel standard for automobiles.

A low carbon, high octane standard would allow sales of 20 pct or higher ethanol blends. Palmer says they hope to have legislation introduced in the House by late summer or early fall. (Source: National Corn Growers Association, Brownfield Ag News, 21 April, 2020) Contact: National Corn Growers Assoc., Mark Palmer, Renewable Fuels Dir., (636) 733-9004, (636) 733-9005 -fax, corninfo@ncga.com, www.ncga.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News National Corn Growers Association,  Low-Carbon Fuel,  Coen,  Corn Ethanol,  


Biofuel Producers Left in the Lurch on $19Bn Aid Pkg (Ind. Report)
USDA
Date: 2020-04-22
. "We don't have a fundamental way to help that (biofuel) sector," responded USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue to the Trump administration's announced $19 billion aid package to farmers.

Biofuels producers were not included in the aid package, although the sector consumes approximately 40 pct of America's total annual corn crop.

In the 2018/2019 crop marketing year, (Sept. 1- Aug. 31) the U.S. grew more than 14.42 billion bushels (366 million metric tons) of corn. (Source: USDA, nexstar, 21 April, 2020)Contact: USDA, Sonny Perdue, Sec., www.usda.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Sonny Perdue,  USDA,  Corn,  Corn Ethanol,  


USGC: US Ethanol Available for Export During COVID-19 (Ind Report)
U.S. Grains Council
Date: 2020-04-15
"While U.S. ethanol exports are up by 3 percent year-over-year according to new data from the USDA, the outbreak of COVID-19 will have structural impacts on demand for the rest of 2020. The U.S. Grains Council (USGC) is working to keep end-users around the world informed on the status of the U.S. ethanol industry as the pandemic continues to develop.

"USDA reported last week that U.S. ethanol exports increased slightly year-over-year to 812 million gallons (288 million bushels in corn equivalent) for the first six months of the marketing year (Sept. 2019-Feb. 2020). "Brazil remained the top export destination at 201 million gallons (71.3 million bushels in corn equivalent), despite a small decline due to the restructuring of Brazil's tariff rate quota (TRQ) and a strengthening U.S. dollar. The EU had a notable 28 pct increase from 2018/2019 imports at 79 million gallons (28 million bushels in corn equivalent).

"These data points were not able to take into account the still-developing impacts of COVID-19 and oil production disputes, which have led to deep decreases in demand for gasoline and shifts in the relationship between oil and ethanol prices.

"Compounding the overall demand decline, the lack of an agreement on crude production between the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and Russia sent shock waves across global energy markets and is contributing to shortages in a critical component to the industry -- storage.

"To date, U.S. ethanol weekly ending stocks are at a record high, and the United States remains positioned to supply customers globally. (Source: US Grains Council, PR, 13 April, 2020) Contact: US Grains Council, Brian Healy, Global Ethanol Market Development, (202) 789-0789, (202) 898-0522, www.grains.org

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


New York Ethanol Producer Switches to Sanitizer (Ind. Report)
Western New York Energy
Date: 2020-04-15
In the Empire State, Medina-based ethanol producer Western New York Energy (WNYE), the state's first and largest operational ethanol facility, reports its has adapted operations to produce 100,000 gpd of tech-grade ethanol for businesses that halted operations to meet the urgent sanitizer needs of hospitals and at-risk communities amidst the COVID pandemic.

WNY Energy generates more than 60-million gpy of biofuel annually, using 20-million bushels of corn. The $90-million facility was the first biofuel company in the northeastern US. (Source: Western New York Energy, PR Green Car Congress, 14 April, 2020) Contact: Western New York Energy LLC, 585-798-9693 www.wnyenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Western New York Energy ,  Ethanol,  


Valero Energy Halts 60 pct of Ethanol Production (Ind. Report)
Valero
Date: 2020-04-15
San Antonio-headquartere Valero Energy Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil processor by capacity, is reporting the temporary shutdown of 60 pct of its ethanol plant production capacity.

On 8 Nov., 2019, Valero stopped ethanol production at its corn ethanol facilities in Riga, Michigan and Bluffton, Indiana, due to "weak margins" and "market conditions". The plants will resume production "as soon as favorable economic conditions exit", according to the company's website. (Source: Valero, Website, 14 April, 2020) Contact: Valero Renewable Fuels, Joe Gorder, Pres., (800) 324-8464, www.valero.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Valero Energy,  Ethanol,  


Cornell, Helsinki U Join University Climate Alliance (Ind Report)
International Universities Climate Alliance
Date: 2020-04-13
The International Universities Climate Alliance (IUCA) is reporting Conell University in Ithaca, New York, and Finland's University of Helsinki have joined IUCA as founding members.

The IUCA, which includes 41 universities on six continents, was formed in an effort to share research insights and develop networks among the world's top scientists. Faculty from member institutions will work to identify effective ways to communicate research-based climate change science, global warming impact, mitigation strategies and climate adaptation to educators, business leaders, policymakers and the public.

Among the member universities are: Arizona State University; California Institute of Technology, Pasadena; Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Switzerland; King's College London; McGill University, Montreal; Monash University, Melbourne; New York University; Penn State University; University of the South Pacific; University of Ghana; and the University of Nairobi. (Source: IUCA, April, 2020) Contact: IUCA, www.universitiesforclimate.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  


Congressional Biofuels Caucus Seeking Direct Biofuels Industry Relief (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
USDA
Date: 2020-04-13
Iowa Congressman Steve King (R), a member of the Congressional Biofuels Caucus, reports he has signed the attached bi-partisan letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue requesting that the USDA use "funds from the CARES Act to provide direct relief to the biofuels industry."

Dear Secretary Perdue,

"The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided USDA with additional resources to support farm income and prices during this economic downturn. The CARES Act included a reimbursement of $14 billion to the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), and $9.5 billion for the Secretary to respond to the economic impacts of COVID-19. As the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prepares to address financial hardship in agriculture, we urge you to use funds from the CARES Act to provide direct relief to the biofuels industry.

"Demand for fuel is declining as states implement stay-at-home orders and discourage travel. This sudden shift in demand is worsening market conditions to the point ethanol plants are halting production. The biofuels industry is a vital market for the commodities our farmers produce, and USDA must take immediate action to ensure plants can retain skilled workers and continue production when market conditions improve.

"The biofuels sector provides a direct and significant boost to the value of corn and soybeans. Ethanol plants purchase two out of every five bushels of U.S. corn and biodiesel producers use over 8 billion pounds of soybean oil a year. Ethanol plants produce dried distillers grains (DDGs) as a byproduct, providing livestock farmers with a low-cost, high-protein component of animal feed. To assist with the response to COVID-19, some ethanol and biofuels plants have volunteered to produce hand sanitizer and disinfectant products to address nationwide shortages. And, ethanol plants produce high purity carbon dioxide that is critical for medical facilities and food processing. The biofuels sector plays a large role in the livelihood of America's commodity and livestock producers, and biofuels plants are major employers in many rural communities.

"USDA should take immediate action to stabilize the biofuels industry with resources provided by the CARES Act. We look forward to working with you on this issue as USDA assists producers through this challenging time. Thank you for considering this request." (Source: Congressman Steven King, KIOW Radio, 12 April, 2020) Contact: Rep Steve King, steveking.house.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  USDA,  


Senators Seeking Ethanol Ind. Support (Editorials, Opinions & Asides)
Ethanol,Chuck Grassley
Date: 2020-04-10
In a recent letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue Iowa's Sen. Chuck Grassley (R )and Sen. Joni Ernst(R) and a group of midwest senators, called for additional biofuel industry funding through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).

"As the country follows the advice of local and state governments and remain at home, motor fuel use has rapidly decreased. The decrease in fuel consumption has left (biofuel) production facilities little choice but to idle production or close completely.

"Farm income and prices for corn and other crop commodities are directly linked to the health of the renewable fuel industry. Ethanol plants use 40 percent of all corn grown in the United States. Among other feedstocks, biodiesel and renewable diesel producers currently use over 8 billion pounds of soybean oil a year, creating demand that adds 13 percent to the cash price of a bushel of soybeans.

"We have seen a significant drop in the price of corn and soybeans because of the decline in demand. Keeping plants open is vital for our states and we ask that you use the authority given by Congress to assist the biofuel industry during extremely difficult times. We are supportive of the proposals the biofuel industry has put forward to reimburse feedstocks and also believe that adding additional CCC funds to the Higher-Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program will drive future biofuel demand,” the senators continued," the letter said. (Source: Various Media, Atlantic News Telegraph, 8 April, 2020)Contact: Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), www.grassley.senate.gov; Sen. Joni Ernst, www.ernst.senate.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Chuck Grassley,  Ethanol,  


POET Idling Four Ethanol Plants (Ind. Report)
POET
Date: 2020-04-08
Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based ethanol producer POET has announced it is idling corn-ethanol production at its Chancellor, Ashton and Coon Rapids plants and delaying the start-up of Shelbyville. The company noted the shutdowns were directly related to the economic fallout from COVID-19.

"Across the board, biofuel producers and our partners in the farm community face an unprecedented challenge. We are working hard to ensure that every biorefinery remains well-positioned to support a strong and swift recovery once daily life returns to normal. That means responding dynamically to shifting conditions and optimizing production, market by market, as the situation evolves over the next few months", Poet founder and CEO Jeff Broin said in a recent press release. (Source: POET, Various Trade Media 1 April, 2020) Contact: POET, Jeff Broin, CEO., (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

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


Agave Biofuel Potential Studied in Australia (Int'l. Report, R&D)
University of Sydney
Date: 2020-04-03
Researchers from the University of Sydney, University of Adelaide and the UK's University of Exeter have analyzed the potential to produce bioethanol from the agave plant -- a high-sugar succulent commonly grown in Mexico and used for tequila. Agave is now being grown as a biofuel source in the Atherton Tablelands in Queensland, Australia, by agribusiness company MSF Sugar.

The study noted bioethanol yield of 7,414 litres a hectare each year is achievable with five-year-old agave plants. The study also found that sugarcane yields 9,900 litres per hectare each year. However, agave beats sugarcane on a number of measures, including fresh water eutrophication, marine ecotoxicity and water consumption. The project also found agave uses 69 pct less water than sugarcane and 46 pct less water than corn for the same yield. The economic analysis suggests that a first generation of bioethanol production from agave is currently not commercially viable without government support, given the recent collapse in the world oil price.

The study concluded bioethanol derived from agave is superior to that from corn and sugarcane in terms of water consumption and quality, greenhouse gas emissions, as well as ethanol output.. (Source: Spirits Business, April, 2020) Contact: MSF Sugar, www.msfsugar.com.au; University of Exeter, Dr Xiaoyu Yan, +44 01326 259485, www.exeter.ac.uk; University of Sydney, Daniel Tan, www.sydney.edu.au/research/opportunities/supervisors/1115

More Low-Carbon Energy News Agave news,  Biofuel news,  Bioethanol news,  


Corn for Fuel Ethanol Hits 469Mn Bushels in Jan. (Ind. Report)
USDA
Date: 2020-04-01
The USDA recently released its Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production Report for March, reporting that corn use for fuel ethanol production for January was down from the previous month, but up from January 2019.

Total corn consumed for alcohol and other uses in January was 519 million bushels. Total corn consumption was down 2 pct from December 2019, but up 5 pctfrom January 2019. Corn use for fuel alcohol was at 469 million bushels, down 2 pct from the previous month, but up 6 percent from the same month of 2019. Corn consumed in January 2020 for dry milling fuel production and wet milling fuel production was 90 percent and 10 percent, respectively.

Download the full Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production Report HERE. (Source: Grain Crushings and Co-Products Production Report, USDA, Mar., 2020) Contact: USDA, www.usda.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Corn,  Corn Ethanol,  Biofuel,  


Renewable Fuels Coalition Comments on Admin's Not Seeking SRE Ruling Re-hearing (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Americans for Clean Energy
Date: 2020-03-27
Further to our 20th Jan. coverage, a coalition of the Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, American Coalition for Ethanol and National Farmers Union released the following statement:

"We are pleased the Trump administration has decided not to side with oil refiners in seeking a re-hearing of this unambiguous and well-reasoned court decision in the Tenth Circuit. We trust this also means the administration does not plan to petition the Supreme Court for an appeal. Abiding by the court's ruling is the right thing to do at a time when our industries and rural America are already suffering from the effects of COVID-19, the Saudi-Russia oil price war and ongoing trade disputes.

"We look to the RFS as a source of demand stability and certainty, especially in these troubling times. Requesting a re-hearing would have only prolonged uncertainty in the marketplace and exacerbated the pain and frustration already being experienced in the Heartland.

"With this key milestone now behind us, we look forward to EPA applying the Tenth Circuit decision nationwide to all SRE (small refiner exemption) petitions, beginning with the 25 pending petitions for 2019 exemptions."

The coalition also noted that fully restoring the integrity of the RFS means immediate action to restore 500 million gallons of inappropriately waived 2016 blending requirements, as ordered by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. District in 2017. (Source: Various Media, The Fence Post, 25 Mar., 2020) Contact: 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; National Farmers Union, Roger Johnson, Pres., (202) 554-1600, www.nfu.org; NCGA, (636) 733-9004, (636) 733-9005 -fax, corninfo@ncga.com, www.ncga.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Americans for Clean Energy,  RFS "Hardship" ,  Waivers,  Renewable Fuels Associatio,  National Farmers Union,  National Corn Growers Association,  American Coalition for Ethanol,  


POET Temporarily Curtailing Corn Purchases (Ind. Report)
POET
Date: 2020-03-25
On Monday, Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based ethanol producer POET reported it is evaluating its production levels and temporarily suspended corn purchases at several of its locations due to weak biofuel demand.

Demand for motor fuels has fallen dramatically due to coronavirus pandemic "stay at home" and limited social interaction policies. (Source: POET, Reuters, 23 Mar., 2020) Contact: POET-DSM Advanced Biofuels, Steve Hartig, General Manager, (630) 780-8171, steve.hartig@dsm.com, www.poetdsm.com; POET, Jeff Broin, CEO., (605) 965-2200, www.poet.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News POET,  Poet-DSM,  Corn Ethanol,  Ethanol,  


Siouxland Ethanol to Produce Alcohol for Sanitizer (Ind. Report)
Siouxland ethanol
Date: 2020-03-25
In the Cornhusker State, Jackson-headquartered Siouxland Ethanol reports its is in the process of addressing some Tax and Trade Bureau and FDA regulations to allow production of roughly 270,000 gpd of 200 proof alcohol for hand sanitizer production.

With hand sanitizer being almost impossible to find during the coronavirus pandemic, Siouxland and several other ethanol producers are switch production to help fill the shortage. (Source: Siouxland Ethanol, KTIV, 23 Mar., 2020)Contact: Siouxland Ethanol, Nick Bowdish President/CEO, 402-632-2676, 402-632-2677 - fax, nick@nbowdishcompany.com, www.siouxlandethanol.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Hand Sanitizer,  Siouxland Energy ,  Ethanol,  


Emissions Impact of Coronavirus Lockdowns (Int'l. Report Attached)
European Space Agency,Visual Capatlist
Date: 2020-03-23
"There's a high chance you're reading this while practicing social distancing, or while your corner of the world is under some type of advised or enforced lockdown. While these are necessary measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, such economic interruption is unprecedented in many ways resulting in some surprising side effects.

"Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emissions, a major air pollutant, are closely linked to factory output and vehicles operating on the road. As both industry and transport come to a halt during this pandemic, NO2 emissions can be a good indicator of global economic activity -- and the changes are visible from space. These images from the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA), as well as satellite footage from NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA), show a drastic decline in NO₂ emissions over recent months, particularly across Italy and China."

Download the Emissions Impact of Coronavirus Lockdowns images HERE. (Source: European Space Agency, Visual Capitalist, 21 Mar., 2020) Contact: European Space Agency, +33 1 53 69 76 54, www.esa.int

More Low-Carbon Energy News European Space Agency,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  


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 ,  


Ethanol Producer Advances Carbon Sequestration Project (Ind. Report)
Red Trail Energy
Date: 2020-03-13
Following up on our 13th Dec., 2019 report, Richardton, North Dakota-based corn ethanol producer Red Trail Energy LLC reports that with the completion of a drill pad at its Richardton ethanol facility it expects to begin drilling a one-mile or deeper stratigraphic well for carbon dioxide (CO2) sequestration in April. (Source: Red Trail Energy, KFGO, 11 Mar., 2020) Contact: Red Trail Energy, Gerald Bachmeier, CEO, (701) 974-3308, www.redtrailenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Red Trail Energy,  CCS,  Carbon Capture,  


Iberdrola Snares French Offshore Wind Farm Developer (Int'l., M&A)
Iberdrola
Date: 2020-03-13
Madrid-based wind energy major Iberdrola reports it has taken 100 pct ownership of Ailes Marines -- developer and operator the €2.4 billion Saint-Brieuc offshore wind farm project in France. Iberdrola, which previously held 70 pct of the consortium's capital, acquired the remaining 30 pct from Avel Vor, after receiving the French Ministry of the Economy approval.

The 62-turbine project, which is scheduled to begin construction in 2021, will have an installed capacity of 496MW sufficient for roughly 835,000 household, when fully operational in 2023. (Source: Iberdrola, The Corner, 11 Mar., 2020) Contact: Iberdrola, Jonathan Cole, Global Managing Director for Offshore Wind, www.iberdrolarenewables.com Ailes Marines, www.eolienoffshoresaintbrieuc.com/en/ailes-marines/ailes-marines-sas

More Low-Carbon Energy News Iberdrola,  Offshore Wind,  


Costain Claims UK Carbon Capture Design Contract (Int'l. Report)
Costain,Pale Blue Dot
Date: 2020-03-09
Following up on our 28th June, 2019 report, in the UK, London-headquartered construction firm Costain reports it will provide engineering design services for clean energy developer Pale Blue Dot's Acorn Carbon Capture Scheme and hydrogen project at St Fergus gas terminal.

Costain will deliver concept design and front-end engineering design support for the project to repurpose Shell's Goldeneye pipeline and field to capture CO2 emissions while using some of the existing CO2 emissions at the St Fergus gas terminal (around 340,000 tonnes) in order to commission a very large scale CO2 transport and storage infrastructure that can support much larger future volumes.

Once this detailed engineering phase is complete Pale Blue Dot hopes to reach a final investment decision in late 2021. The second phase will see full-scale production of hydrogen at a St Fergus production hub with waste CO2 pumped back into the depleted Goldeneye gas field. (Source: Costain, Construction Inquirer , 2 Mar., 2020) (Contact: Costain, Rob Phillips, Energy Sector Director, +44 20 7796 5840, www.costain.com; Pale Blue Dot Energy, Emma Anderson, +44 (0) 1330 826890, www.pale-blu.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Costain,  Cabon Capture,  Pale Blue Dot,  


Notable Quotes -- Mitt Romney Talks Emissions, Climate Change
Mitt Romney,Climate Change
Date: 2020-03-09
"People say to me, 'Are you sure that we're causing (climate change)?' And I say, "I hope we're causing it. Because if we're not causing it, there's nothing we can do about it. So I hope we're causing it, and I believe we're causing it to a great degree.

"Passing laws in Washington about restricting the size of your washing machine and how many watts your lightbulb has -- that's nice, but it's not going to change global warming. The only way you're going to reduce or bring down the growth rate in CO2 emissions in the planet is if we develop technologies across all the things that emit CO2 -- that are low-emitting and that are less expensive than the current technologies.

"The governmental side -- you put money into colleges, universities, think tanks, labs. But how do you get everybody to think about it? I'm a fan of all ideas that might bring new technologies that are low-emitting, because I really want to see us do everything we possibly can to help China, Indonesia, Brazil, India -- the places that are growing emissions like crazy -- help them turn the corner and reduce our emissions." -- U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) Mar. 2020

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


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,  


Aurora Taking Pacific Ethanol's Stake in Ethanol JV (M&A)
Aurora Cooperative Energy,Pacific Ethanol
Date: 2020-03-06
In the Cornhusker State, Aurora Cooperative Energy Co. reports it will buy out Pacific Ethanol's 74 pct stake in a December, 2016 ethanol joint venture for $52.8 million.

The two companies joined forces in December 2016, combining the co-op's grain elevator, loop track and other assets with Pacific's two Aurora-area ethanol plants into a company called Pacific Aurora LLC. As part of the purchase, Aurora Cooperative said it will split the entity into two companies. The two ethanol plants, which have 145 million gallons of combined capacity, will be called Aurora Cooperative Ethanol LLC. (Source: Aurora Cooperative Energy, PR, Journal Star, Mar.2020) Contact: Aurora Cooperative Energy, Chris Vincent , Pres., CEO, 800-642-6795, communicationsteam@auroracoop.com, www.auroracoop.com; Pacific Ethanol, Paul Kohler, Pres., CEO, (916) 403-2790, investorrelations@pacificethanol.com, www.pacificethanol.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Pacific Ethanol,  


Advanced Biofuels -- Potential for Cost Reduction (Ind. Report Attached)
IEA Bioenergy
Date: 2020-03-02
"Bioenergy already plays an important role in the global energy economy, and it's expanded use is a critical element in future low carbon scenarios, where it can especially play an important role in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the transport sector. Decarbonising transport will require a range of bio-based transport fuels, and especially advanced low carbon fuels which are suitable for long-haul transport applications including aviation. A number of appropriate technologies to produce such fuels are being developed and commercialised. However so far, their production has only reached a limited scale.

"The costs of these advanced Biofuels are currently higher than those of the fossil fuels which they can displace and of more conventional biofuels such as ethanol from sugar or corn, or biodiesel. It is therefore important to consider what scope there is to reduce the production costs of a range o advanced biofuels, and to identify under what conditions they could become affordable."

Download the full IEA Advanced Biofuels -- Potential for Cost Reduction report HERE. (Source: IEA Bioenergy, Feb., 2020) Contact: IEA Bioenergy, www.ieabioenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News IEA Bioenergy,  Biomass,  Biofuel,  Bioenergy,  


City of Lincoln Expecting $2Mn in Biogas Sales (Ind. Report)
Blue Source,City of Lincoln
Date: 2020-03-02
In the Cornhusker State, the city of Lincoln reports it expects the sale of biogas generated at an upgraded city wastewater treatment plant to produce roughly $2 million per year in new revenue when an $8 million upgrade is completed this summer.

Salt Lake City, Utah-based energy management company Blue Source is leading the project. Bluesource works with companies, governments and NGOs to reduce and mitigate environmental impacts. the company develops projects that create land, water and climate benefits using strategic partnerships, finance, innovation and markets to achieve these goals, according to the company website. (Source: City of Lincoln, Yankton Press & Dakotan, AP, 28 Feb., 2020) Contact: Blue Source Inc., Will Overly, VP Bus. Dev., 801-322-4750, www.bluesource.com; City of Linclon, Elizabeth Elliot, Director Utilities, 402-441-7548, 402-441-7590 - fax, www.lincoln.ne.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Biogas,  Blue Source,  


Virginia Tech Commits $3.1Mn to Energy Efficiency Plan (Ind. Report)
Virginia Tech
Date: 2020-02-28
In the Old Dominion Sate, Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg reports approval of more than $3.1 million for the 5th phase of the school's ongoing Five-Year Energy Action Plan, a comprehensive blueprint to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy consumption and costs within five years.

One of the cornerstones of the Energy Action Plan is leveraging data to optimize energy usage to achieve energy efficiency at scale on campus. Ten new buildings are added to the university's energy management platform during each phase. Proposed projects under Phase 5 (2019-20) of the Energy Action Plan include:

  • LED lighting overhaul in a range of buildings

  • Lab ventilation optimization and retro-commissioning of HVAC energy systems

  • Power plant compressed air system optimization

  • Integration of 10 additional energy-intensive

    buildings into the university's energy management platform

  • Ongoing smart metering, meter replacement and maintenance, and

  • Implementation of a rooftop solar project at the Sterrett Facilities Complex. (Source: Virginia Tech, 25 Feb., 2020) Contact: Virginia Tech, Office of Energy Management, Christopher H. Kiwus, Associate VP, Chief Facilities Officer, 540-231-4300 www.facilities.vt.edu/energy-utilities/energy-reduction-efforts.html, www.vt.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Virginia Tech,  Energy Efficiency ,  


  • Cornhusker Governor Promotes Ethanol Blends in Detroit (Ind. Report)
    Ethanol
    Date: 2020-02-26
    In a letter to the Big Three US automakers, Nebraska State Governor Pete Ricketts (R) urged Ford, Fiat-Chrysler and GM to increase production of passenger vehicles designed to run on higher ethanol blends, such as E20, E30, E40, and E85.

    In his letter, the Governor emphasized the benefits of ethanol to the environment, the economy, and to family finances. He reminded the automakers that E15 is now available all twelve months of the year at gas stations throughout the United States. Additionally, he informed automakers about Nebraska's year-long, E30 demonstration program aimed at showing that conventional, non-flex-fuel, light-duty vehicles can safely run on E30. (Source: Office of Gov. Governor Pete Ricketts, Media Release, 23 Feb., 2020) Contact: Office of Governor Pete Ricketts, 402-471-2244, 402-471-6031 - fax, www.governor.nebraska.gov › contact-governor

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol Bleand,  Ethanol,  Biofuel,  E20,  E30,  E40,  E85,  


    20 pct of U.S. Electricity from Wind Will Have Limited Impacts on System Efficiency and Regional Climate (Cornell Report Attached)
    Cornell University
    Date: 2020-02-24
    According to new research from Cornell University, the U.S. could increase its present wind energy energy production from 7 pct to 20 pct within a decade "without requiring additional land, negative impacts on system-wide efficiency or local climates." The Cornell research, published Jan. 17 in Nature Scientific Reports, is funded by the U.S. DOE Office of Science and is based on an extensive series of high-resolution atmospheric simulations.

    Access the 20 pct of U.S. Electricity from Wind Will Have Limited Impacts on System Efficiency and Regional Climate report HERE. (Source: Cornell University Chronicle, 22 Feb., 2020) Contact: Cornell University, Prof. Sara C Pryor, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences , 607-255-3376, sp2279@cornell.edu, www.cornell.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cornell University,  Wind,  Renewable Energy,  


    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,  


    White Dog Labs Acquiring Central MN Renewables Biorefinery (M&A)
    White Dog Labs, Central Minnesota Renewables
    Date: 2020-02-07
    New Castle, Delaware-headquartered White Dog Labs (WDL) is reporting plans to purchase Central Minnesota Renewables' shuttered former ethanol -- biobutanol plant in Little Falls, Minnesota, and to upgrade the facility to produce ProTyton, a corn-based aquaculture feed product. The upgraded plant will managed by Midwest Renewable Energy, which operates a corn ethanol plant near Sutherland, Nebraska.

    The facility was originally constructed as the 21 MMgy Central MN Ethanol Co-op corn ethanol plant. Green Biologics Inc., a wholly owned U.S. subsidiary of U.K.-based biotechnology and renewable chemical company Green Biologics Ltd., purchased the facility in December 2014 through its Central MN Renewables LLC affiliate. The facility was retrofitted to produce biobased butanol and acetone and resumed operations in 2016. In mid-2019, Green Biologics announced it could not secure funding to continue operations and would close the plant.

    According to the WDL website, White Dog Labs was established in 2012 on the foundation of harnessing natural microorganism diversity to address global challenges in food sustainability, climate change and general human and animal nutrition. The company goes beyond discovery to also design and scale bioprocesses with end product application in mind.

    Core to WDL discovery is its proprietary Protocol B™ process coupled with additional high-throughput selection techniques for the isolation and cultivation of microbiome-derived anaerobic microorganisms. WDL's approaches result in large, diverse and novel strain libraries informed through emerging applications in microbiome science, and yield promising solutions for animal nutrition and health. WDL also invented a novel class of fermentation technology called MixoFerm™ that allows cultivation of previously "unculturable" bacteria while also improving the carbon efficiency of fermentation processes by 50 to 100 pct, according to the WDL website.(Source: White Dog Labs, PR, Ethanol Producer, 4 Feb., 2020) Contact: White Dog Labs., Bryan Tracy, (302) 220-4763, btracy@whitedoglabs.com, www.WhiteDogLabs.com; Central Minnesota Renewables, 320-632-1614, www.centralmnrenewables.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News White Dog Labs ,  Central Minnesota Renewables,  


    MCGA Announces Better Fuel Initiative (Ind. Report)
    Minnesota Corn Growers Association
    Date: 2020-01-27
    The Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) has unveiled its Better Fuel Initiative aimed at increasing the state's B10 ethanol blend rate to B15, and generally touting the advantages of biofuel.

    Minnesota was the first state to require ethanol blended fuels to improve air quality.

    With nearly 7,000 members, MCGA is one of the largest grassroots farm organizations in the United States. Working in close partnership with the Minnesota Corn Research & Promotion Council, MCGA identifies and promotes opportunities for Minnesota's 24,000 corn farmers while building connections with the non-farming public, according to the MCGA website. (Source: Minnesota Corn Growers Association, KDHL Radio, Contact: Minnesota Corn Growers Association, 952-233-0333, www.mncorn.org; Better Fuel Initiative, www.betterfuel.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Minnesota Corn Growers Association,  Ethanol,  B10,  B15,  


    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,  

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