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Honeywell, Preem Trial Biomass Pyrolysis Oil Renewable Fuel (Int'l.)
Honeywell, Preem
Date: 2021-10-08
Honeywell is reporting completion of a commercial refinery trial with Preem AB for co-processing of biomass-based pyrolysis oil in a fluidized catalytic cracking (FCC) unit. Utilizing UOP's proprietary bioliquid feed system with Optimix™ GF Feed Distributor, pyrolysis oil was co-processed in the FCC at Preem's Lysekil refinery to produce partially renewable transportation fuel.

Pyrolysis oil produced from sustainable solid biomass materials such as sawdust or agricultural residuals is a low carbon feedstock suitable for refinery upgrading. Biomass-based pyrolysis oil can qualify as an Annex IX Part A feedstock under the EU Renewable Energy Directive. Pyrolysis oil co-processed in an FCC is an economically attractive method of meeting RED biofuel mandates for Advanced Biofuels.

Preem AB is Sweden's the largest fuel company with more than 18 million cubic MPY capacity, Preem refines and sells gasoline, diesel, heating oil and renewable fuels worldwide. By 2030, Preem will produce approximately 5 million cubic meters of renewable fuels, and thereafter aims to become the world's first climate neutral biofuels- and refining company.Honeywell is aiming for carbon neutrality in its operations and facilities by 2035 (Source: Honeywell , PR, OGM, Oct., 2021) Contact: Preem AB, Peter Abrahamsson, Sustainable Development, +46 (0)70-450 10 01, www.preem.se; Honeywell Sustainable Technology Solutions, Ben Owens, VP, GM, www.uop.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Honeywell,  Preem ,  Biomass,  Pyrolysis Oil,  Renewable Fuel,  


Renewable Fuels Association Touts New Website (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2021-10-01
The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is touting its new redesigned website to provide access to important information and data more quickly, repackaged so it is easier to find. The streamlined website provides regularly updated market statistics and ethanol industry news, RFA studies, publications and infographics, and connections to RFA's increasingly popular social media accounts, according to the RFA release. (Source: Renewable Fuels Association, Website PR, 30 Sept., 2021) Contact: RFA, Geoff Cooper, CEO, www.EthanolRFA.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  


Bunge, Chevron Propose Renewable Fuel Feedstock JV (Ind. Report)
Bunge, CHevron
Date: 2021-09-29
San Ramon, California-headquartered Chevron U.S.A. Inc. and Bunge North America, Inc. are reporting a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for a proposed 50/50 joint venture to help meet the demand for renewable fuels and to develop lower carbon intensity feedstocks.

Under the proposed agreement, Bunge would contribute its soybean processing facilities in Destrehan, Louisiana, and Cairo, Illinois, and Chevron is expected to contribute roughly $600 million in cash. The companies anticipate approximately doubling the combined capacity of the facilities from 7,000 tpd by the end of 2024. The joint venture would also pursue new growth opportunities in lower carbon intensity feedstocks, as well as consider feedstock pre-treatment investments.

Bunge will continue to operate the facilities, leveraging its expertise in oilseed processing and farmer relationships to manage origination and marketing of meal and plant-based oil. Chevron would have offtake rights to the soybean oil to use as renewable feedstock to manufacture biodiesel and sustainable aviation jet fuel (SAF) . Chevron would also provide market knowledge and downstream retail and commercial distribution channels. The proposed joint venture is subject to the negotiation of definitive agreements with customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval. (Source: Bunge, Website PR, Sept., 2021) Contact: Bunge, Greg Heckman, CEO, Ruth Ann Wisener, 636-292-3014 Ruthann.wisener@bunge.com, www.bunge.com; Chevron, Mark Nelson, Exec. VP Downstream & Chemicals, Roderick Green, invest@chevron.com, www.chevron.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Bunge news,  Chevron news,  Biofuel Feedstock news,  Soybean Oil news,  


ePURE Weighs-In on 'Fit for 55' Legislation (Opinions & Asides)
ePURE
Date: 2021-09-27
"The name 'Fit for 55' is already part of the EU common language -- shorthand for a sweeping set of proposals to remake the legislative landscape for energy and climate policy. (The "Fit for 55' package of proposals aim to make the EU's climate, energy, land use, transport and taxation policies fit for reducing net greenhouse gas *GHG) missions by at least 55 pct by 2030.)

"For the EU biofuels industry, the new proposals -- including major changes to policies on renewable energy, alternative fuels infrastructure, the Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) and energy taxation, as well as a de facto deadline for the end of the internal combustion engine -- promise a potentially bumpy road ahead as the implications become clear to policymakers as they fine-tune this legislation in the coming months: unleashing the true potential of crop-based ethanol and creating a policy environment that can spark investment in advanced ethanol are must-have components of any realistic roadmap to carbon-neutrality.

"Transport Decarbonisation -- As usual, the signals from the Commission about whether biofuels can play a major role in transport decarbonisation are mixed. On the one hand, the Fit for 55 package sets important new goals for emissions reduction and creates a solid foundation for reaching them by giving a role to renewable liquid fuels in decarbonising transport. On the other, the Commission still hesitates to make the best use of emissions-reduction tools it has today, including biofuels -- even when targets have been raised to such a degree that their contribution is essential.

"Fully enabling biofuels in the drive to carbon-neutrality is just common sense. Even under a scenario in which electric vehicles make rapid gains in market share and the sale of internal combustion engines is phased out, the EU car fleet will consist predominantly of vehicles that run fully or partly on liquid fuel in 2030 and beyond. For these petrol and hybrid cars, renewable ethanol is the most cost-effective and socially inclusive way to reduce emissions. Europe cannot afford to ignore this View on transport decarbonization are mixed important part of the equation.

"Sustainability Issues -- With the main components of the Fit for 55 package, the Commission should fully maximize the tools it has on hand for decarbonisation -- especially the Renewable Energy Directive (RED). This is the third time since 2009 the Commission has tried to get RED right. With Fit for 55, the Commission finally realizes that to succeed it needs to focus on higher GHG intensity reduction targets that drive renewable energy in transport, without multipliers that hide the EU's continued reliance on fossil fuels.

Now that sustainability issues have been settled, the EU should unleash the potential of crop-based biofuels and encourage the wider deployment of advanced biofuels. The main questions about the sustainability of biofuels were settled after RED II was adopted in 2018 by phasing out high ILUC-risk biofuels.

"We know that deforestation and outdated 'food vs fuel' arguments do not apply to EU renewable ethanol. So with this revision we should be taking the next logical step and unleashing the potential of good biofuels. Other Fit for 55 components should work in concert to promote solutions that make a realistic impact on decarbonisation.

"The CO2 for Cars Standards should include more than just one technology and recognize the benefits of renewable fuels such as ethanol to reduce the carbon-footprint of cars on the road. The Energy Taxation Directive should incentivize renewable fuels, moving away from volume-based taxation and a parallel Emissions Trading System for transport should complement, not replace, binding national targets for emissions reductions in the Effort Sharing Regulation, and avoid increased fuel prices and social discontent.

"As the European Parliament and EU Member States go to work on this legislative package from the Commission in the coming months, it will be interesting to see whether Fit for 55 can be made fit for purpose." (Source: ePURE, Sept., 2021)

Editor's note -- ePURE, the European renewable ethanol association reports its members produced 5.57 billion litres (1.45 billion gallon +-) of ethanol and 6.16 million tonnes of co-products in 2020, with a significant increase in production of ethanol for industrial use. ePURE represents 35 members,including 19 ethanol producers with around 50 plants across the EU and UK, accounting for about 85 pct of EU renewable ethanol production. Contact: ePURE, Emmanuel Desplechin, Secretary General, www.epure.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Fit for 55,  ePURE,  Ethanol,  Carbon Emissions,  Decarbonization,  EU ETS,  


Aemetis Biogas, PG&E Ink RNG Pipeline Agreement (Ind. Report)
Aemetis Biogas, PG&E
Date: 2021-09-17
Cupertino, California-headquartered Aemetis Inc., a renewable natural gas (RNG) and renewable fuels company focused on negative carbon intensity products, reports its subsidiary Aemetis Biogas LLC has signed the standard renewable gas interconnection agreement with San Francisco-headquartered utility Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) and funded the final $1.2 million payment for installation of PG&E's interconnection equipment to deliver renewable natural gas (RNG) into the utility gas pipeline in Q4 2021.

The PG&E RNG interconnect equipment is scheduled to be delivered to the Keyes plant and installed during the next three months. RNG produced by the Aemetis Biogas Central Diary Digester Project will be delivered into the PG&E natural gas pipeline for sale to customers throughout California as transportation fuel. (Source: Aemetis Inc. , PR, Website, 15 Sept., 2021) Contact: Aemetis, Andy Foster, (408) 213-0940, Fax: (408) 252-8044, www.aemetis.com; PG&E, www.pge.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis Biogas,  PG&E,  Biogas,  RNG ,  


Neste, Kinder Morgan Partner on Biofuels Logistics (Ind. Report)
Neste, Kinder Morgan
Date: 2021-09-15
Helsinki-headquartered Neste reports it is partnering with Texas-based energy infrastructure developer Kinder Morgan, Inc. to support the increased production of renewable diesel (RD), sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and renewable feedstocks such as used cooking oil for polymers and chemicals production.

As part of the initial phases of the project, Kinder Morgan will modify 30 existing storage tanks and piping at its Harvey, Louisiana facility to accommodate segregated storage for a variety of raw material. The project includes the installation of a new boiler for heating tanks and railcars and infrastructure improvements The project, which is supported by a long-term commercial commitment from Neste, is expected to begin operations in Q1, 2023. (Source: Neste Corporation, Website News, 13 September 2021) Contact: Neste, Jeremy Baines, Pres., Neste U.S., +358 10 458 4128, www.neste.com; Kinder Morgan, www.kindermorgan.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste,  Kinder Morgan,  Renewable Fuels,  Renewable Diesil,  Biodiesel,  SAF,  


Neste Acquiring Agri Trading (Int'l. Report, M&A)
Neste Oyi,Agri Trading
Date: 2021-09-08
Helsinki-headquartered Neste Oyi reports an agreement to acquire 100 pct of Minnesota-based independent renewable waste and residue fat and oil traders Agri Trading and its affiliate entities, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval.

Together with previously announced acquisitions of IH Demeter, Bunge Loders Croklaan and Count Terminal in the Netherlands, and Mahoney Environmental in the United States, Agri Trading will also enhance Neste's competitiveness in the global waste and residue raw material market, according to the company.

Neste refines waste, residues and innovative raw materials into renewable fuels -- renewable diesel, sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) -- and sustainable feedstock for plastics and other materials through its proprietary NEXBTL technology.

As a technologically advanced refiner of high-quality oil products with a commitment to reach carbon-neutral production by 2035, Neste is also introducing renewable and recycled raw materials such as waste plastic as refinery raw materials. In 2020, Neste's revenue stood at €11.8 billion, according to the company website. (Source: Neste Oyi, PR, Website, 7 Sept., 2021) Contact: Neste Oyi, Thorsten Lange, Exec. VP, Heidi Peltonen, Team Lead, Sustainable Partnerships, Marketing & Services, +358 10 458 4128, www.neste.com; Agri Trading Corp, 800-328-5189, www.agritradingcorp.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste,  Neste Oyi,  SAF,  NEXBTL,  Biofuel,  


Strategic Biofuels Nails Biorefinery CCS Test Well (Ind. Report)
Strategic Biofuels
Date: 2021-09-03
As previously noted, Strategic Biofuels LLC, the leader in developing negative carbon footprint renewable fuels plants, reports its carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) test well program at its Louisiana Green Fuels (LGF) Project in Caldwell Parish, Louisiana, has been completed.

The test well program demonstrated that CO2, the main greenhouse gas generated during the fuel production process, can be safely and securely stored deep underground and that the storage reservoir has sufficient capacity to store all the gas produced over the plant's lifetime. Completing the test well program is an essential pre-requisite for securing the permit for the EPA Class VI sequestration well.

The design and execution of the test well program was developed by COO Bob Meredith with help from Geostock Sandia, an international consulting firm that has worked with the Department of Energy on carbon sequestration wells for almost two decades. (Source: Strategic Biofuels LLC, Aug, 2021) Contact: Strategic Biofuels, Strategic Biofuels & Louisiana Green Fuels, [startlimk]info@info@strategicbiofuels.net[endllink]

More Low-Carbon Energy News Strategic Biofuels ,  Biodiesel,  CCS,  


EPA Rcommends RFS Biofuel Blend Mandate Rollback (Reg & Leg.)
Renewable Fuel Standard
Date: 2021-08-30
Reuters is reporting the U.S. EPA is recommending the retroactive lowering Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) biofuel blending mandate.

Under the RFS, U.S. oil refiners are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels into the nation's fuel mix, or purchase tradeable credits (RINs) from those that do.

As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. (Source: Reuters, 26 Aug., 2021)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Standard,  Biofuel Blend,  


UK Doubling Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (Int'l. Report)
UK Department for Transport
Date: 2021-08-27
In the UK, the Department for Transport has estimated doubling of the country's present E5 biofuel blend standard to E10 could cut transportation CO2 emissions by 750,000 tpy -- equivalent to taking 350,000 cars off the road.

The upgrading to E10 is inline with a renewed push towards lowering carbon emissions through the massive transportation decarbonization plan (TDP) aimed at phasing out polluting vehicles. The plan also bans the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles starting in 2030, followed by a ban on hybrids in 2035 and petrol and diesel heavy trucks in 2040.

According to the London-headquartered UK Petroleum Industry Association (UKPIA) "The average UK biofuel CO2 emissions savings in 2019 were over 80 pct under the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation meaning that increasing the renewable fuel content of petrol will reduce overall CO2 emissions. It is also worth noting that renewable fuels added to UK petrol and diesel must meet the government's sustainability criteria." (Source: UK Petroleum Industry Association, The Express, Aug., 2021) Contact: UK Petroleum Industry Association, +44 20 7269 7600, www.ukpia.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News E10,  UK Department for Transport,  


Aemetis CCS Plan Feasibility Confirmed (Ind. Report)
Aemetis
Date: 2021-08-20
A new carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) study by Baker Hughes, commissioned by renewable natural gas (RNG) and renewable fuels specialist Aemetis subsidiary Aemetis Carbon Capture has concluded that more than 2 million metric tpy of CO2 can be removed from the atmosphere and safely stored the earth at two Aemetis ethanol plant sites in California.

The Baker Hughes study estimated that 1.0 million mtpy CO2 can be sequestered in the saline formations located deep underground at or near the Aemetis Keyes ethanol plant site. The study also noted that up to 1.4 million mtpy of CO2 should be injectable at or near the Aemetis Riverbank site. Once complete, the Aemetis Carbon Capture CCS project is expected to capture and sequester more than 2 million mtpy of CO2 at the two Aemetis biofuels plant sites in Keyes and Riverbank, California. Each MT of CO2 is planned to generate approximately $200 per MT from the California Low Carbon Fuel Standard and $50 per MT of IRS 45Q tax credit. Legislation is pending in Congress to increase the federal tax credit to $80 per MT of CO2 and to provide billions of dollars of grants and loans to finance CCS projects in the U.S., according to the release. (Source: Aemetis, PR, 18 Aug, 2021) Contact: Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis,  CCS,  RNG,  


Gevo Reboots Luverne Minn. Renewable Fuels Facility (Ind. Report)
Gevo, GEVO
Date: 2021-08-20
Gevo reports it has rebooted production of fuel-grade, renewable isobutanol (IBA) at its renewable fuels facility in Luverne, Minnesota. The Luverne plant as shutted last spring after the slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The IBA will be used as a feedstock for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and renewable premium gasoline production to fulfill existing sales contracts. These renewable hydrocarbons will be produced in Silsbee, Texas at the South Hampton Resources, Inc. hydrocarbon production facility. Gevo also expects to utilize some of the IBA produced to develop certain IBA specialty markets.

The Luverne facility will also allow Gevo to test and evaluate certain potential unit operations that may be incorporated into the company's Net-Zero 1 production facility that is expected to begin production in 2024 in Lake Preston, South Dakota, according to the release. (Source: Gevo, PR, Aug., 2021) Contact: GEVO Inc., Patrick Gruber, CEO, 303-858-8358, pgruber@gevo.com, www.gevo.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Gevo,  GEVO,  Isobutanol,  Biofuel ,  


Aemetis Names Biogas Pipeline Construction Contractor (Ind. Report)
Aemetis
Date: 2021-08-17
Cupertino, California-headquartered renewable natural gas (RNG) and renewable fuels specialist Aemetis, Inc.reports it has awarded a construction services contract to Machado & Sons Construction Inc. to construct the Company’s 32-mile biogas pipeline extension connecting multiple dairy anaerobic digesters throughout Stanislaus and Merced Counties in California.

The pipeline is part of the Aemetis Biogas Central Dairy Digester Project which is developing a network of lagoon digesters connected via a biogas pipeline to produce renewable natural gas (RNG).

The pipeline will transport the renewable biogas from the dairies to the Aemetis biogas upgrading facility at the Aemetis ethanol production plant in Keyes, California, where the biogas will be transformed into commercial-grade RNG for use as a carbon-negative “drop in” transportation fuel.

The planned 52 dairies in the Aemetis biogas project are expected to capture more than 1.4 million MMBtu of dairy methane and reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to an estimated 5.2 million metric tonnes of CO2 each year. The captured methane will be transformed to carbon-negative transportation fuel to displace petroleum-based diesel throughout the State of California. The 5.2 million metric tonnes of annual CO2 emissions reduction from the Aemetis Biogas project is estimated to reduce CO2 emissions equivalent to removing 1.1 million cars from the road.

. Aemetis Carbon Zero products include zero carbon fuels that can “drop in” to be used in airplane, truck, and ship fleets. Aemetis low-carbon fuels have substantially reduced carbon intensity compared to standard petroleum fossil-based fuels across their lifecycle. (Source: Aemetis, Website PR, 13 Aug., 2021) Contact: Aemetis, Andy Foster, Phone: (408) 213-0940, Fax: (408) 252-8044, www.aemetis.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis news,  RNG news,  Biogas news,  Anaerobic Digestion news,  


Phillips 66 Rodeo Renewable Diesel Prod. Underway (Ind. Report)
Phillips 66
Date: 2021-08-13
Houston-headquartered petroleum giant Phillips 66 reports its Haldor Topsoe HydroFlex technology equipped refinery in Rodeo, California, has begun renewable diesel production. Subject to permitting and approvals, full conversion of the refinery is expected to be complete in early 2024 when the facility's renewable fuel production capacity to 50,000 bpd.

Combined with its other renewable fuels facilities and projects, Phillips 66 has the potential to supply 1 billion gpy of renewable fuels, according to the release.

Phillips 66 also announced it is converting 600 branded retail sites in California to sell renewable diesel produced at the Rodeo biorefinery. (Source: Phillips 66, Aug., 2021) Contact: Phillips 66, Jeff Dietert , IR, 832-765-2297, jeff.dietert@p66.com, www.p66.com; Haldor Topsoe, +45 27 77 99 68, www.topsoe.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Haldor Topsoe ,  Phillips 66,  Renewable Diesel,  


Brazil Aims for 30 pct Renewable Fuels by 2030 (Int'l. Report)
Brazil
Date: 2021-08-06
In Brazilia, Brazilian Ministry of Mines and Energy (MME) Secretary of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels, Jose Mauro Coelho, reports the country's Fuel of the Future program, launched in April this year, aims to increase the share of renewable and low-emission fuels in Brazil's energy matrix.

Brazil's energy and transportation matrix is one of the cleanest in the world, according to Secretary Mauro Coelho. Presently roughly 25 pct of the country's fuel is from renewable sources, and the goal is to reach 30 pct by 2030 . (Source: Brazil Ministry of Mines and Energy , Rio Times, 4 Aug., 2021) Contact: Brazil Ministry of Mines and Energy, www.devex.com/organizations/ministry-of-mines-and-energy-ministerio-de-minas-e-energia-brazil-143187

More Low-Carbon Energy News Brazil Renewable Fuel,  Biofuel,  Renewable Fuel,  


"Dear Mr. President, RFA Commits to Low-Carbon Fuel Performance Goals" (Ind. Report)
Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2021-08-02
In a recent letter to U.S. President Joe Biden, the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) wrote: "As members of the RFA we share your vision for decarbonizing the transportation fuels sector and applaud your commitment to addressing climate change. We support your goals of achieving a 50 pct reduction in U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030 and reaching net zero emissions economy-wide by 2050.

"Low-carbon renewable fuels like ethanol are already helping our nation confront climate change by significantly reducing GHG emissions from the transportation sector. In fact, since 2008, the use of ethanol and other renewable fuels in the U.S. prevented nearly 1 billion metric tons of GHG from entering the atmosphere.

"Today's ethanol already reduces GHG emissions by 52 pct, on average, when compared directly to gasoline. Furthermore, many of us (RFA members) are already producing advanced and cellulosic ethanol that is certified by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as providing a 65-75 pct GHG reduction compared to gasoline. But given the urgency of the climate crisis and the need to reasonably decarbonize, the RFA are committing today to the pursuit of the following carbon performance goals:

  • By 2030, ensure that ethanol reduces GHG emissions by at least 70 pct, on average, when compared directly to gasoline. This equates to a 33 pct reduction in ethanol's average carbon footprint from 45 grams CO2-equivalent per megajoule (g/MJ) today to about 30 g/MJ by 2030.

  • By 2050, ensure that ethanol achieves net zero lifecycle GHG emissions, on average. As ethanol producers continue to adopt carbon capture, utilization, and sequestration (CCUS) and other low- and no-carbon technologies between 2030 and 2050, U.S. ethanol can achieve net carbon neutrality, on average, by mid-century or even sooner.

    "Ethanol's carbon footprint continues to shrink rapidly, as new technology and innovation have improved the efficiency of the entire production process. In fact, a recent study by DOE scientists found that ethanol's carbon footprint shrunk by 23 percent between 2005 and 2019. While we are proud of these advances in efficiency and sustainability, many opportunities exist to deliver even greater GHG reductions in the near term," the letter noted. (Source: RFA, PR, 27 July, 2021) Contact: RFA, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association news,  GHG Emissions news,  CCUS news,  Ethanol Low-Carbon Fuel news,  


  • Oman's First Biodiesel Plant Now Online (Int'l. Report)
    Synergy BioFuels
    Date: 2021-08-02
    In Muscat, Synergy BioFuels is reporting the commissioning and initial production of 30 tonnes of international EN14214 compliant biodiesel from used cooking oil at the Samail Industrial Estate in Oman.

    The biodiesel plant is part of the Oman Biofuels Hub established by Synergy. The biofuel hub includes in addition In addition to the biodiesel manufacturing plant, the biofuels hub includes a research center focused on biofuels and renewable fuels in collaboration with local researchers and universities. (Source: Synergy BioFuels, PR, Times of Oman, 2 Aug., 2021) Contact: Synergy BioFuels, www.synergybiofuels.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Synergy BioFuels,  Boidiesel,  


    Neste Lauds EU Fit for 55 Package (Opinions & Editorials)
    Neste, Fit for 55
    Date: 2021-07-23
    Helsinki-headquartered Neste Oyi issued the following comments in welcoming the EU's "Fit for 55" commitment to long-term policies and the ambition to become climate neutral by 2050:

    "As a whole, the Fit for 55 package seems to provide the tools to combat the climate crisis during this decade by raising the ambition level of emission cuts across different sectors of the economy. It will support the growth of renewable fuels markets in both road and aviation segments. The Commission's proposal to establish an EU-wide obligation to supply a growing minimum share of Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) as of 2025 will create a large market and progressively cut down emissions from flying. The package also supports Neste's climate commitments, including to reach carbon neutral production by 2035. Now that the EC's proposals will enter the legislative process, it will be important to further raise the level of ambition and keep the focus on emission cuts by various solutions, not only by specific technologies," notes Neste VP for Public Affairs, Ilkka Rasanen.

    "Neste firmly believes that all solutions are needed in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the societies. On European roads, the number of electric cars is growing at a rapid pace, which is a logical and welcome development as the power generation sector is embracing emission free technologies. However, achieving the ambitious climate targets requires both EVs and renewable transport fuels, as internal combustion engine vehicles will keep playing a key role for a long time, particularly in heavy-duty vehicles. The average age of cars in Europe is more than 10 years; this means that many new vehicles sold today will still be in use for another 15-20 years. When it comes to especially heavy-duty vehicles, internal combustion engines and renewable fuels, both biofuels and so-called e-fuels (Power-to-X), will be needed for a long time. After all, the combustion engine is not the problem when the fuel is renewable and sustainably produced. Already today, customers using the Neste MY Renewable Diesel™ made from 100 pct renewable raw materials can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90 pct compared to fossil diesel.

    "The aviation industry has already taken steps in the right direction by committing to the target of achieving carbon-neutral growth from 2020 onwards. Neste, as the world's leading producer of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), is committed to helping the aviation industry meet the proposed EU-wide obligation.

    "Following its sustainable sourcing principles, Neste continues to develop the availability of emerging, lower-quality waste and residue raw materials, as well as agricultural and forest harvesting residues, algae and municipal solid waste as future raw materials. Neste is also exploring Power-to-X technologies as a new renewable fuel." (Source: Neste, PR, Website 16 July, 2021)Contact: Neste, Ilkka Rasanen, Vice President, Public Affairs, +358 50 458 5123, www.neste.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste,  Biofuel,  Fit for 55,  


    RFA Comments on Refiners' RFS Arguments Rejection (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2021-07-23
    The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) issued the following comments on the D.C. Circuit Court's July 16th rejection of arguments from oil refiners that the "Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) causes them economic hardship and therefore the EPA should have waived their 2019 RFS obligations." The court ruled on the follow specific points:

  • Severe Economic Harm Waiver -- The court rebuffed the refiners' argument that EPA should have waived the 2019 RFS requirements because East Coast refiners purportedly could not pass through their RFS compliance costs and thus experienced "severe economic harm." According to the Court, "Obligated parties assert that the 'pass-through' theory is flawed and that RFS requirements impose severe economic consequences on refiners in the Eastern United States. We reject this challenge. EPA reasonably concluded that obligated parties had failed to make the strong causal showing required to trigger the waiver. It was reasonable for EPA to conclude that RFS costs alone were not the primary driver of the refineries' economic difficulties", the Court added.

  • Inadequate Domestic Supply Waiver -- The court also shot down the refiners' claim that a waiver of 2019 RFS requirements would have been justified due to an "inadequate domestic supply" of renewable fuels to meet the standards. "EPA adequately explained its refusal to exercise the inadequate domestic supply waiver," the judges wrote.

  • Point of Obligation -- Refiners also argued that EPA should have used the 2019 RFS rule-making to change the point of obligation for RFS compliance from refiners and importers to fuel blenders. The court discarded that argument stating "Refiners have repeatedly but unsuccessfully urged EPA to include blenders in the point of obligation. EPA's decision not to undertake another reassessment in the 2019 rule-making was not an abuse of discretion."

  • Exported Renewable Fuel -- The Court similarly rejected refiner arguments that exported renewable fuels should count toward RFS compliance. "EPA at no point suggested that it was substantively reconsidering its longstanding policy concerning the treatment of exported renewable fuel, and it reasonably refused to consider obligated parties' arguments for changing that policy," the court ruled. (Source: Renewable Fuels Assoc., Website PR, 16 July, 2021) Contact: RFA, Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  RFS,  RFS Waiver,  


  • Growth Energy Calls for Congressional Biofuel Support (Ind. Report)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2021-07-23
    Growth Energy has launched a new online digital ad campaign urging President Biden and leaders in Congress to stop oil industry handouts and uphold their commitments to reduce carbon emissions, support low carbon biofuels and strong Renewable Volume Obligations (RVOs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

    According to Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor, "It's time for leaders in Washington to make good on their commitments to clean, renewable energy and put a stop to Big Oil's efforts to restore its monopoly over the US fuel mix. The evidence is clear. Congress and the administration cannot decarbonise transportation without a growing role for low-carbon biofuels, which are vital to our climate, working families, and the economy. The last thing we can afford are more handouts to the oil industry. Policymakers must act swiftly to ensure uninterrupted, year-round access to E15 and set ambitious biofuel blending levels, including a statutory minimum of 15 billion gallons of conventional biofuel, under annual targets." (Source: Growth Energy, Website PR, 22 July, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, (202) 545-4000, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  Renewable Fuels,  


    Growth Energy Warns Against More RFS Waivers (Opinions & Asides)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2021-06-30
    Addressing a recent U.S. Senate Ag subcommittee meeting, Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor noted there's both a practical and a political downside if the US EPA lets small oil refiners off the hook in blending ethanol or buying biofuel credits.

    "In 2019, President Biden said in Iowa, and I quote, 'Those waivers are a gigantic mistake. We should not be exempting, we should be insisting that these major oil companies meet the criteria that are set,' end quote. We wholeheartedly agree. Lowering, waving, caping, or any backtracking on the promise of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) damages our ability to decarbonize our vehicle fleet, threatens large agricultural markets, and jeopardizes hundreds of thousands of jobs supported by the biofuel industry."

    According to Skor, a new study shows switching to E15 with incentives pending in Congress would add $18 billion to the economy, $10 billion to household income and 183,000 jobs. (Source: Growth Energy, DRG News, 29 June, 2021). (Source: Growth Energy , Website PR, 25 May, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Growth Energy,  RFS,  Hardship Waivers,  Biofuel,  Ethanol,  


    Neste's Porvoo Refinery Back On Line (Int'l. Report)
    Neste
    Date: 2021-06-28
    In Helsinki, Neste Oyi is reporting scheduled maintenance work at its Porvoo refinery in Finland has been completed and the refinery is back in production.

    The work came in at approximately €630 million, of which approximately €330 million was realized in the major turnaround in 2021. In 2020, only critical refinery maintenance work was completed due to the corona pandemic.

    Neste refines waste, residues and innovative raw materials into renewable fuels and sustainable feedstock for plastics and other materials. Neste is the world's leading producer of renewable diesel (RD) and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) developing chemical recycling to combat the plastic waste and helping customers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with our renewable and circular solutions by at least 20 million tons annually by 2030. The company aims for carbon-neutral production by 2035.

    In 2020, Neste's revenue stood at €11.8 billion ($14.070 billion) with 94 pct of the company's comparable operating profit coming from renewable products, according to the company website. (Source: Neste Corporation, Website PR, 24 June, 2021) Contact: Neste Oy, Carl Nyberg, Exec. VP, +358 50 458 5076, www.neste.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste ,  Renewable Diesel,  SAF,  Biofuel,  


    Preem's Lysekil Refinery Producing Renewable Petrol (Int'l.)
    Preem
    Date: 2021-06-25
    Sweden's largest fuel company Preem reports the first catalytic cracker tests to produce 300 tons of pyrolysis oil from sawdust have been carried out at the company's refinery in Lysekil. The plant has also begun processing 50,000 tons of pyrolysis oil. The oil will then be further refined at Preem's refinery in Lysekil, one of Preem's largest refineries producing petrol.

    Sweden's biofuel blend rate will increase to 7.8 pct in 2022. Preen plans to produce approximately 5 million cubic meters of renewable fuels by 2030, (Source: Preem, PR, Website, 22 June, 2021) Contact: Preem, +46 (0)70-450 10 01, www.preem.se

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Diesel,  Preem,  


    Biofuels 17 pct of US 2020 Renewables Consumption (Ind. Report)
    US EIA
    Date: 2021-06-18
    According to recent EIA data, consumption of renewable energy in the U.S. grew for the fifth consecutive year in 2020, reaching a record 11.6 quadrillion Btu -- 12 pct of total U.S. energy -- while fossil fuel and nuclear power consumption declined.

    EIA data shows that biofuels, including fuel ethanol, biodiesel and other renewable fuels, accounted for approximately 17 percent of U.S. renewable energy consumption in 2020, despite an 11 percent drop in biofuel consumption caused by market factors associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Wood and waste energy, wood pellets, and biomass waste from landfills accounted for about 22 pct of U.S. renewable energy consumption in 2019. (Source: U.S. EIA, Monthly Energy Review, 16 June, 2021) Contact: IS EIA, www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=48396, www.eia.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  US EIA,  


    Aemetis, Murex Ink $200Mn Biofuels Agreement (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis, Murex
    Date: 2021-06-16
    Cupertino-California-headquartered Aemetis, Inc. is reporting an estimated $200 million biofuels offtake agreement with Plano, Texas-based international renewable fuels supplier Murex, LLC to be delivered during 2021 to 2023.

    Under the agreement, fuel and the related Low Carbon Fuel Standard and Renewable Fuel Standard Credits will be sold at a fixed discount to the market price at the time of delivery. (Source: Aemetis, Inc., 14 June, 2021) Contact: Murex LLC, Robert Wright, President, www.murexltd.com; Aemetis Advanced Fuels, Andy Foster, Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis,  Murex ,  Biofuel,  


    Growth Energy Applauds Senate Push for RFS Transparency (Ind. Report, Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Growth Energy
    Date: 2021-05-28
    In Washington, Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor has thanked U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), who reintroduced the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Integrity Act. A companion to House legislation introduced in February, the bipartisan proposal would bring greater transparency to the U.S. EPA small refinery exemption (SRE) process and ensure refiners apply for exemptions in a timely manner.

    "This legislation provides long-overdue transparency for requests to avoid blending more low carbon renewable fuels that are key to America's low-carbon future. We applaud Senators Fischer and Duckworth for working to protect the integrity of the RFS so that farmers and biofuel producers, as well as the entire fuel supply chain, across the nation can count on stable demand and continue providing cleaner and more affordable fuel choices at the pump, Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said."

    "By arming the public with greater information on biofuel exemptions, we can keep oil refineries accountable to following the law and ensure uninterrupted progress toward achieving cleaner air and a healthier climate," Skor added.

    Currently, EPA does not provide a deadline for refiners submitting a request for an SRE. The bipartisan Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act explicitly sets a June 1st deadline the year prior to the biofuel targets going into effect the following year. This will allow EPA to account for any exempted gallons in the following year's Renewable Volume Obligation (RVO) as required by the Clean Air Act and ensure that the RVOs are met. Additionally, the legislation increases transparency into the SRE application process, allowing the public greater insight into which companies are receiving exemptions and why, according to the release. (Source: Growth Energy , Website PR, 25 May, 2021) Contact: Growth Energy, Emily Skor, CEO, www.growthenergy.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Grwoth Energy,  RFS,  


    Preem Completes Gothenburg Biorefinery Revamp (Int'l. Report)
    Preem
    Date: 2021-05-28
    Stockholm-headquartered Preem, Sweden's largest oil refiner, reports the revamping of it Gothenburg refinery has been completed. This is the second revamp of the hydrotreater, following work in 2010 that upgraded the unit to co-process 30 pct renewable feedstock using Topsoe's HydroFlex technology.

    With the second revamp, Preem and Topsoe achieved 85 pct co-processing of tallow and tall diesel feedstock enabling the production of roughly 5 million cubic meters of renewable fuels by 2030.

    Topsoe's HydroFlex is the industry-leading technology for production of renewable jet and diesel provides lower CAPEX, lower OPEX, lower carbon intensity (CI) score, better diesel yield, and can be deployed in both grassroots units and revamps for co-processing or stand-alone applications, according to the company. (Source: Preem, Website PR, 21 May, 2021) Contact: Preem, +46 (0)10 450 10 00, www.preem.com; Haldor Topsoe, Roeland Baan, CEO, Ulrik Frohlke, Media, +45 27 77 99 68, ulfr@topsoe.com, www.topsoe.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuel,  Preem,  Topsoe,  Tall Diesel,  Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  


    UPM Advances Biofuel Growth Plans (Int'l. Report)
    UPM
    Date: 2021-05-28
    Following up on our 29 Jan., 2021 coverage, Helsinki-headquartered UPM has moved forward with its biofuels growth plans and has begun the basic engineering phase of a next generation biorefinery. The potential biorefinery would produce roughly 500,000 tpy of high-quality renewable fuels including sustainable jet fuel (SAF).

    UPM is review the operating environment primarily in two locations - Kotka, Finland, and Rotterdam, the Netherlands. (Source: UPM, 20 May, 2021)Contact: UPM, Jyrki Ovaska, CTO, +358 204 150 564, www.upm.com, www.upmbiofuels.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UPM,  Biofuel,  SAF,  


    Aemetis Biogas Cleanup Unit Construction Underway (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis
    Date: 2021-05-24
    Cupertino, California-based advanced renewable fuels and biochemical producer Aemetis Inc. subsidiary Aemetis Biogas LLC reports construction is underway at its $12 million Biogas Central Dairy Digester biogas cleanup and compression unit project at the company's advanced ethanol plant in Keyes, California.

    The plant will produce pipeline-quality RNG that will be directly connected to the PG&E natural gas pipeline, according to the release. (Source: Aemetis Biogas , PR 20 May, 2021) Contact: Aemetis Biogas, Andy Foster, Pres., Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis,  Aemetis Biogas,  Biogas,  RNG,  


    UPM Advancing Planned Biofuel Growth (Int'l. Report)
    UPM
    Date: 2021-05-21
    Helsinki-headquartered UPM reports basic engineering is underway for a planned next generation 500,000 tpy biorefinery in Kotka, Finland or Rotterdam to produce renewable fuels including sustainable jet fuel (SAF). The company will next define the business case, select the most innovative technology option, including the use of green hydrogen in the production process, and determine the required investment to proceed.

    UPM has invested €179 million in the world's first biorefinery producing wood-based renewable diesel and naphtha called UPM BioVerno. The 130,000 tpy UPM Lappeenranta Biorefinery produces UPM BioVerno diesel and naphtha from crude tall oil, a residue of the company's pulp production. (Source: UPM Website, May, 2021) Contact: UPM Biofuels, +358 204 15 111, Fax. +358 204 15 110, www.upm.com/businesses/upm-biofuels

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UPM,  SAF,  Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  


    VW, Bosch, Shell Touting Blue Gasoline (Int'l, Alt. Fuels Report)
    VW, Bosch, Shell
    Date: 2021-05-10
    Stuttgart-based German technology provider Bosch, automaker Volkswagen and energy and petrochemical multinational Shell are touting the development of Blue Gasoline, which will be available at Bosch service stations this year.

    According to Bosch, this new fuel contains the equivalent of 33 pct renewable energy which reduces its CO2 emissions by 20 pct per kilometer traveled compared to gasoline. "On the path to environmentally friendly mobility we must ensure that we leave no technical opportunity untapped, starting with electromobility and ending with renewable fuels", claimed the president of Bosch's Propulsion Systems Solutions division, Uwe Gackstatter.

    VW's director of Development of Internal Combustion Engines, Sebastian Willmann, stresses that Blue Gasoline is another "critical component in reducing vehicle emissions, as it is particularly suitable for use in plug-in hybrid models."

    Technically, blue gas is gasoline or diesel that is a hydrocarbon fuel manufactured from hydrogen and carbon feedstocks instead of being refined from petroleum. Hydrogen comes in several colors. Black hydrogen comes from coal gasification and has 20X the mass of CO2 as of produced hydrogen. (Source: Bosch, Shell, Volkswagen, Europe Press, Explica, 9 May, 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News VW,  Bosch,  Shell,  Alternative Fuel,  Low-Carbon Fuel,  


    American Coalition for Ethanol Comments on Biden's GHG Reduction Plan (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    American Coalition for Ethanol
    Date: 2021-05-05
    "Renewable fuels like ethanol are a significant part of the solution to climate change and should be part of US commitments to contribute to global emissions reductions under the Paris Agreement. In fac, ethanol is the only transportation energy source that can reach net-negative carbon intensity through carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) and continued advancements within ethanol facilities and on-farm practices in how biofuel crops are grown.

    "Other countries have initiated national ethanol policies as part of their countries' global initiatives to decarbonize transportation fuels, and US biofuel producers are ready to play a larger role in meeting these targets here and around the world." -- Brian Jennings, CEO, American Coalition for Ethanol Contact: American Coalition for Ethanol, Brian Jennings, CEO, (605) 334-3381, www.ethanol.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Coalition for Ethanol ,  Ethanol,  Climate Change,  


    CABBI Investigates RFS Biofuel Mandates, Incentives (Ind. Report)
    CABBI
    Date: 2021-05-03
    New studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Institute for Sustainability, Energy and Environment Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation (CABBI) have found the need to adopt more targeted policies that value the environmental and ecosystem benefits of perennial bioenergy crops over cheaper options -- and provide financial incentives for farmers to grow them.

    In particular, the study calculated the net economic and environmental costs of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) mandates and found that maintaining the corn ethanol mandate would lead to a cumulative net cost to society of nearly $200 billion from 2016 to 2030 compared to having no RFS. The social cost of nitrogen damage from corn ethanol production substantially offsets the social benefits from GHG savings, the report notes.On the otherhand, the additional cellulosic mandate could provide substantial economic and environmental benefits with technological innovations that lower the costs of converting biomass to cellulosic ethanol and policies that place a high monetized value for GHG mitigation benefits. The study notes that maintaining the corn ethanol mandate pushes more land into corn production which increases the market price of other agricultural commodities. While producers might benefit from higher market prices.

    The study notes the cellulosic ethanol mandate could provide an overall benefit with the right policies. Supporting research and development to lower the cost of converting biomass to cellulosic ethanol would substantially reduce production costs and increase social benefits, and a high monetized value for GHG mitigation could offset all other costs.

    CABBI researchers hope performance-based policies -- including the low carbon fuel standard, carbon and nitrogen leakage taxes, or limits on crop-residue harvest -- can be implemented to supplement the RFS mandates after 2022.

    CABBI aims to integrate recent advances in agronomics, genomics, and synthetic and computational biology to increase the value of energy crops -- using a "plants as factories" approach to grow fuels and chemicals in plant stems, an automated foundry to convert biomass into valuable chemicals, and ensuring that its products are ecologically and economically sustainable. This holistic approach will help reduce fossil fuels dependence, according to the CABBI website. (Source: CABBI, PR, 27 Apr., 2021) Contact: CABBI, Evan DeLuc1a, (217)244-1586, cabbi-bio@illinois.edu, www.cabbi.bio

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CABBI,  Biofuel,  RFS,  Corn Ethanol,  


    Aemetis Carbon Zero Renewable Fuels Plant Permitted (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis
    Date: 2021-04-30
    Cupertino, California-based renewable natural gas and renewable fuels specialist Aemetis, Inc. is reporting receipt of nineteen construction permits from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District related to its Carbon Zero renewable fuels biorefinery at the Riverbank Industrial Complex in Riverbank, California. Each permit states a specific set of equipment and the conditions for operation of each unit.

    The Carbon Zero biorefinery is supported by $17 million of grant funding from the California Energy Commission and the California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority (CAEATFA) and is slated to begin operations in 2023, then double production capacity by year 2025. (Source: Aemetis, Inc. , PR, 29 Apr., 2021)Contact: Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

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


    RINs Hit Highs as High Court Deliberates RFS Waivers (Ind. Report)
    RFS, Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2021-04-28
    Reuters is reporting U.S. renewable fuel standard credits (RINs) jumped Tuesday to record highs as costs for soybean oil pushed up both renewable fuel and biomass-based credits.

    Renewable fuel (D6) credits for 2021 traded up from $1.44 to $1.50 each and biomass-based (D4) credits traded at $1.58 each, up from $1.52 previously -- highest since Reuters began reporting data for renewable fuel credits in 2013 and biomass-based credits in 2014.

    The credits, known as RINs, rose at the same time that the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday was hearing oral arguments for a case involving the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, which requires refiners to blend biofuels into their fuel mix each year or buy RINs from those that do. The Supreme Court's decision around the case will likely heavily influence the future of the RFS.

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance. Under the now vanquished administrator Greg Pruitt's direction, the EPA handed out 54 exemptions over two years and not a single request for an exemption was denied.Under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard, the nation's oil refineries are required to blend billions of gallons of biofuels such as ethanol into the fuel or buy credits from those that do. But the EPA can waive their obligations if they prove compliance would cause them financial distress. (Source: Various Media, Reuters, 27 Apr., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Standard,  


    Biofuels Included in USDA Infrastructure Investments (Funding)
    USDA
    Date: 2021-04-26
    In Washington, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports it is investing $487 million in critical infrastructure that will help communities in 45 states "build back better and stronger while prioritizing climate-smart solutions and environmental stewardship."

    USDA is making the investments under the Water and Environmental Program, the Rural Energy for America Program, the Electric Loan Program and the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program.

  • Biofuel Infrastructure -- USDA is investing $18.4 million in 20 states through the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) to build infrastructure to help expand the availability of higher-blend renewable fuels by approximately 218 million gpy. This will give consumers more environmentally-friendly fuel choices when they fill-up at the pump.

    For example, in Georgia, RC Bells Inc. will use a $130,500 grant to replace four dispensers and a storage tank at a fueling station in Acworth. The infrastructure supported by this investment will expand the use of renewable fuels by approximately 420,000 gpy.

  • Other investments include: Rural Water and Wastewater Infrastructure -- $374 million; Renewable Energy in Rural Communities -- $78 million; and Rural Electric Infrastructure Upgrades -- $17.4 million.

    USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to support infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, Tribal and high-poverty areas. (Source: USDA Rural Development , PR 22 Apr., 2021) Contact: USDA Rural Development www.usda.gov, www.rd.usda.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  HBIIP,  Biofuel,  


  • Fortistar Merger Launches Opal Fuels LLC (M&A, Ind. Report)
    Fortistar, TruStar Energy
    Date: 2021-04-23
    White Plains, N.Y.-based privately owned investment firm Fortistar LLC reports its renewable natural gas (RNG) portfolio company Fortistar Methane Group (FMG) and RNG fuel supply specialist TruStar Energy are merging under Opal Fuels LLC -- a fully-integrated renewable fuels supply company for North America.

    Founded in 1993, Fortistar provides capital to build, grow and manage companies that address complex sustainability challenges. The company utilizes its capital, flexibility and operating expertise to grow high-performing companies, first in power generation and now in mobility, carbon capture, the circular economy and other solutions that drive our transition to a zero-carbon future. As a team, Fortistar has financed over $3.5 billion in capital for companies and projects in the energy, transportation and industrial sectors, according to the company website. (Source: Fortistar, PR, 22 Apr., 2021) Contact: TruStar Energy, Scott Edelbach, COO, www.trustarenergy.com; Fortistar, Mark Comora, CEO, (914) 421-4937, MComora@fortistar.com, www.fortistar.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Fortistar,  TruStar Energy,  RNG,  


    Minn., California and Iowa E15 Sales on the Rise (Ind. Report)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2021-04-09
    The Iowa Department of Revenue is reporting sales of E15 jumped 24 pct in Iowa in 2020 , despite the pandemic-related drop in overall fuel consumption. Iowa retailers sold 60.59 million gallons of E15 in 2020, up from 48.96 million gallons in 2019 and more than double the 2017 volume of E15 sales, despite a 14.3 pct drop in the state's overall petroleum consumption from 2019 levels.

    Similarly, recent data from the Minnesota Department of Commerce showed 2020 E15 sales there nearly held steady with 2019 sales levels, despite the pandemic. Minnesota E15 sales were 93.46 million gallons, down 4 pct from 97.40 million gallons in 2019.

    On the west coast, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) noted 40.37 million gallons of E85 were sold in the Golden State in 2020, down 0.6 pct from the 40.6 million gallons sold in 2019. (Source: Iowa Department of Revenue Renewable Fuels Association, CARB, Biofuels News, 8 Apr., 2021) Contact: Renewable Fuels Association, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RFA,  FlexFuel,  E15,  E85,  Biofuel Blend,  


    Aemetis Announces Carbon Capture Inc. Unit (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis,California Air Resources Board
    Date: 2021-04-05
    Cupertino, California-based renewable fuels specialist Aemetis, Inc. reports the the establishment of Aemetis Carbon Capture, Inc.

    The new unit will initially capture, dehydrate, compress, and sequester CO2 from Aemetis Biogas anaerobic dairy digester projects in California's Central Valley to further reduce the carbon intensity (CI) of its dairy biogas fuel.(Source: Aemetis, PR, 1 April, 2021)Contact: Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Aemetis,  CCS,  Carbon Capture,  RNG,  Biogas,  Anaerobic Digester,  


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

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

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

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


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

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

    Changes to the Supply and Disposition summary data table include:

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

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

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

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

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


  • Covenant Updates Planned Sask. Canola HDRD Plant (Ind. Report)
    Covenant Energy
    Date: 2021-03-22
    On the Canadian prairies, Macoun, Sask.-based renewable fuel specialist Covenant Energy provided the following update on its stand-alone Hydrogenation-Derived Renewable Diesel (HDRD) production plant to be constructed in southern Saskatchewan.

    When fully operational in 2023, the plant will: produce 6,500 bpd of renewable fuels including renewable diesel, arctic-grade renewable diesel, and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF); reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) 80 to 85 pct when compared to fossil fuel diesel; create a demand for 35 million bushels of canola seed (worth roughly $500 million) to produce 325,000-350,000 tpy of canola oil feedstock; and use recycled hydrogen in the production process.

    The company has completed initial pre-FEED engineering and feedstock studies, as well as a marketing, demand, and pricing study. The plant is expected to begin production in 2023, subject to regulatory and other approvals. (Source: Covenant Energy, Website PR, Contact: Covenant Energy, Josh Gustafson, Pres., CEO, (306) 421-7442, joshgustafson@covenantenergy.ca; www.covenantenergy.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Canola Covenant Energy,  Renewable Diesel,  


    Neste Plans Rotterdam Biofuels Plant (Int'l. Report)
    Neste
    Date: 2021-03-17
    Espoo, Finland-headquartered oil refiner and biofuels producer Neste reports the selection of the Dutch port of Rotterdam as the location for its next renewable products refinery. A final investment decision is expected in late 2021 or early 2022.

    The new Rotterdam facility will be roughly the same size as the company's €1.5 billion ($1.79 billion) refinery expansion currently under construction in Singapore. The Singapore plant produces renewable fuels from waste and residues such as used cooking oil, animal fat from food industry waste, fish processing waste and residues from vegetable oil processing. (Source: Neste, PR, 15 Mar., 2021) Contact: Neste, www.neste.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste news,  Biofuel news,  


    Biofuels Legislation Tabled in Washington (Reg. & Leg.)
    Biofuel,EFA
    Date: 2021-03-10
    In Washington, the following two bi-partisan ethanol focused legislation supported by the National Corn Growers Association, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Coalition for Ethanol, Growth Energy, and POET have been tabled in Congress:
  • The Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Investment and Market Expansion Act, which would expand access to higher blends of Biofuels, was tabled by U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R) and Rep. Cindy Axne, the co-chairs of the House Biofuels Caucus.

    The Act would authorize $500 million over 5 years for infrastructure grants for fuel retailers and direct the EPA Administrator to finalize a proposed rule to repeal E15 labeling requirements warning drivers about E15's potential impact on cars, which may confuse and deter drivers from using E15, a blend of gasoline with 15 percent ethanol. The bill would also direct the EPA Administrator to finalize provisions from the same proposed rule to allow certain existing Underground Storage Tanks (UST) to store higher blends of ethanol.

  • The Adopt GREET Act, which will direct the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to update its greenhouse gas modeling for ethanol and biodiesel, was sponsored by South Dakota Rep. Dusty Johnson (R) .

    The Adopt GREET Act would require the EPA to update its greenhouse gas modeling for ethanol and biodiesel by requiring the EPA to adopt the Argonne National Lab's Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy Use in Transportation (GREET) Model for both fuels. EPA would then be required to update its modeling every five years or report to Congress to affirm its modeling is current or otherwise explain why no updates were made. (Source: EPA, Telegraph, 8 Mar., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Biofuel,  Biodiesel,  Biofuel,  Renewable Fuels Infrastructure,  Renewable Fuel,  GREET,  EPA Legislation,  


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

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

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

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

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

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


    Flint Hills, Encina to Produce Renewable Fuels, Chemicals (Ind Report)
    Flint Hills, Encina
    Date: 2021-03-05
    Following up on our 17 Feb, 2021 report, The Woodlands, Texas-based Encina Development Group LLC and Wichita, Kansas-headquartered ethanol and ingredients producer Flint Hills Resources are reporting a nonbinding term sheet for the construction of a renewable chemicals and fuels-from- plastic waste facility in Corpus Christi.

    Flint Hills Resources, a Koch Industries subsidiary, will market the renewable aromatic products produced at the Encina Corpus Christi facility as well as work with its affiliates to market renewable aromatic products from other Encina U.S.-based plants. (Source: Encina Development Group, PR, 3 Mar., 2021) Contact: Encina, David A. Schwedel, Executive Director, (281) 210-0007, dschwedel@encina.com, www.encina.com; Flint Hills, www.fhr.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Flint Hills,  Encina,  Renewable Chemical,  Renewable Fuel,  


    Vivergo Rebooting UK WHeat-to-Bioethanol Plant (Int'l. Report)
    Vivergo Fuels
    Date: 2021-03-01
    Hull, UK-based Vivergo Fuels reports it will reboot it's shuttered wheat-to-bioethanol plant in Saltend, Near Hull, following the UK Government's recently announced increase in the country's renewable fuels blend rate from the present E5 to E10. At 420 million lpy, the facility was one of the UK's largest producer of bioethanol when it closed in 2018 due to "inaction over the future of renewable fuels as well as high wheat feedstock prices, low bioethanol prices and slow market uptake on biofuels."

    Vivergo Fuels was formed in 2007 as a joint venture between AB Sugar, BP and DuPont. The company was also one of the government's Northern Powerhouse partners. (Source: Vivergo Fuels, PR, Website, Feb., 2021) Contact: Vivergo Fuels, +44 01482 700850 www.vivergofuels.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Vivergo Fuels,  ,  Ethanol,  E10,  


    EPA Changes Course on RFS "Hardship" Waivers (Reg & Leg.)
    EPA, Renewable Fuel Standard
    Date: 2021-02-24
    In Washington, the US EPA reports it will support a January 2020 decision by the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in a Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) and farm groups lawsuit over "improperly granted" renewable fuel standard (RFS) "hardship" waivers granted to oil refineries under the Trump administration. The lawsuit is expected to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court this spring.

    The EPA under Trump issued 85 retroactive small refinery exemptions for the 2016-2018 compliance years, undercutting the renewable fuel volumes by a total of 4 billion gallons, according to the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA)

    As previously noted, "hardship waivers" were intended for refineries producing 75,000 bpd or less and suffered "disproportionate economic hardship" from the costs of RFS compliance. The waiver frees the refineries from an obligation to provide the EPA with biofuels credits proving compliance (Source: US EPA, 22 Feb., 2021)Contact: RFA, www.ethanolrfa.org

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


    Ag Processing Supports Iowa Biofuels Standard (Ind. Report)
    Ag Processing Inc
    Date: 2021-02-24
    In the Cornhusker State, Omaha-headquartered farmer owned Ag Processing Inc has announced its support for House Study Bill 185, the Iowa Biofuels Standard, an initiative that would support biofuel production and use in the state of Iowa. The legislation would establish biofuels standards for fuel sold in Iowa and provide tax credits and infrastructure support to biofuel blenders and retailers.

    According to the release, the biofuels standard establishes a minimum level of biodiesel to be blended in the state's diesel fuel pool, gradually increasing over time. Beginning in 2022, the legislation ensures that biodiesel comprises 11 pct of the diesel pool and provides tax credits for higher blends. The program expands to 20 pct biodiesel blends (B20) in future years.

    The legislation also establishes new retail income tax incentives for fuel marketers and provides funding for biodiesel projects through the Iowa Renewable Fuels Infrastructure Program. Financial support for renewable fuels would also be made available from the Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund. (Source: Ag Processing Inc., PR, 23 Feb., 2021) Contact: Ag Processing Inc., Troy Alberts, VP Refined Oils and Renewable Fuels, 402-496-7809, www.agp.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ag Processing,  Biofuel Blend,  


    EPA changes stand, sides with ethanol industry
    EPA
    Date: 2021-02-23
    DES MOINES — The federal government announced Monday that it will support the ethanol industry in a lawsuit over biofuel waivers granted to oil refineries under President Donald Trump’s administration. The Environmental Protection Agency said it is reversing course and will support a January 2020 decision by the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in a lawsuit filed by the Renewable Fuels Association and farm groups. The lawsuit is headed to arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court this spring. The appeals court concluded the EPA improperly granted exemptions to refineries that didn’t qualify. The EPA under Trump issued 85 retroactive small refinery exemptions for the 2016-2018 compliance years, undercutting the renewable fuel volumes by a total of 4 billion gallons, (15.1 billion liters) according to the Renewable Fuels Association. Roughly a month after President Joe Biden took office, his EPA reversed the federal government’s stand, saying the EPA agrees with the appeals court that the exemption was intended to operate as a temporary measure. (Source: US EPA, 22 Feb., 2021)

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