Return to Today's Publications

 

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


South Korea Aims for Net-Zero Emissions by 2050 (Int'l. Report)
South Korea Carbon Emissions
Date: 2020-03-20
In Seoul, the South Korean government has announced plans to be the first East Asion nation to adopt a Green New Deal and deliver net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, if reelected in the upcoming legislative elections. To that end, the government would institute a carbon tax, phase out domestic and overseas coal project financing, and make large-scale investments in renewable energy.

South Korea, the world's seventh-largest carbon emitter as well as the third-largest public coal financier, is home to energy-intensive industries such as automotive and steel and likely to remain heavily dependent on climate-wrecking coal in the immediate future. (Source: Various Media, EcoBusiness, Mar., 2020)

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


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 ,  


Notable Quotes on Antarctic, Greenland Ice Losses
Climate Change
Date: 2020-03-18
"If Antarctica and Greenland continue to track the worst-case climate warming scenario, they will cause an extra 17 centimetres of sea level rise by the end of the century. This would mean 400 million people are at risk at annual coastal flooding by 2100. These are not unlikely events with small impacts; they are already underway and will be devastating for coastal communities." -- Prof. Andrew Shepherd, University of Leeds, A.Shepherd@leeds.ac.uk, www.environment.leeds.ac.uk

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


Stony Brook Univ. Energy Management Platform Lauded (Ind. Report)
Smart Energy Decisions
Date: 2020-03-18
In the Empire State, Stony Brook University Office of Energy Management reports receipt of a 2020 Innovation Award from Smart Energy Decisions. The award was in recognition of the Office of Energy Management's in-house data analytics platform.

The platform pools data from 400 sensor points and utilises a visual heat map to assist visual analysis to detect electric power consumption and HVAC anomalies around the campus and deal with them efficiently. The Stoney Brook IoT programme has been in place since 2018. (Source: Stoney Brook University, CSO Mag., 17 Mar., 2020) Contact: Stoney Brook University, Tom Lanzilotta, Campus Sustainability and Energy Manager,www.stonybrook.edu; Smart Energy Decisions, www.smartenergydecisions.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Management,  Smart Energy Decisions,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Management,  


Marine BioEnergy Seaweed Biofuels Project Tests Continue (R&D)
Marine BioEnergy,DOE Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy (ARPA-E)
Date: 2020-03-18
Further to our 30 Nov., 2018 coverage, researchers at the University of Southern California Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies will carry out a project proposed by Marine BioEnergy Inc., a California-headquartered company focused on growing and developing Pacific kelp as a source of biofuel.

The Marine Bioenergy plan includes submersible drones dragging lines seeded with kelp plants in deep, nutrient-rich waters during the night then floating it back up to shallow waters to take advantage of the sunlight during the day. The kelp would then be harvested at sea and processed into biocrude, the basis for biofuel.

Under optimal conditions, giant kelp Macrocystis pyrifera, which is used to generate a biofuel, can grow up to three feet per day without fresh water, fertilizer, pesticides or fertile land. These attributes make kelp a viable potential substitute for traditional fuels, as it can be sustainably farmed, harvested and converted into biofuel.

Marine BioEnergy ran its first trial last year is tentatively scheduled to begin its next round of tests this April. (Source: DOE ARPA-E, Mar., 2020) Contact: DOE ARPA-E, Marc von Keitz, Program Dir., arpa-e.energy.gov; Marine BioEnergy Inc., Cindy Wilcox, Pres. Marine BioEnergy, www.marinebiomass.com; USC Wrigley Institute, Diane Kim, Associate Director , (310) 510-0811, www.usc.edu/wrigley

More Low-Carbon Energy News Marine BioEnergy,  DOE ARPA-E,  


Carbon Terminology Refresher (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Carbon Emissions
Date: 2020-03-16
From the Land Down Under, The Fifth Estate has offered the following brief clarifications of the plethora of commonly used carbon emissions related terms:
  • Net Zero Energy -- There's two ways of looking at this. The first is based on simple math, and means a building, precinct, process or region generates as much energy within its own boundaries or site as it pulls in from elsewhere over a specific period -- most often a year. The other definition is a building or precinct or region that generates 100 per cent of its own energy needs on site or within its boundaries.

  • Net Positive Energy -- When a building or precinct generates more energy than it uses and shares that energy through either a local microgrid or by sending it into the main grid, it becomes energy positive.

  • Carbon Negative -- Carbon negative is used for larger scales than individual buildings, such as precincts, regions, businesses or even entire nations. It means absorbing more carbon than all combined carbon emissions within the specific area or operation.

  • Carbon Neutral -- Carbon neutral is basically a balancing act where a building, business or region sequesters or offsets as much carbon as it emits.

  • Carbon Offsets -- All offsets are not created equal -- there are dirt-cheap offsets sloshing around the global carbon market from questionable projects in far-flung places. But not only are they scientifically and ethically questionable, they also will not meet the standards required for formal third-party carbon neutral certification. The best offsets deliver co-benefits beyond just sequestering carbon, such as improving biodiversity, increasing water quality or catchment protection, generating social benefits, local economic benefits or supporting Indigenous cultural practices and knowledge.

  • Operational Emissions -- Most carbon accounting undertaken for the purposes of carbon neutral certification focus on carbon emissions generated by the operation of a building, business or region. It's not just emissions from energy or fuel use though. The Greenhouse Gas Protocol defines three "scopes" or categories of carbon emissions as follows -- Scope 1 emissions are direct emissions from "owned or controlled sources" such as a fleet of vehicles, a power plant or a manufacturing plant. Scope 2 emissions are indirect emissions from the generation of energy used within a building, plant or region. Scope 3 emissions are all the indirect emissions in a business, process or region's value chain both upstream and downstream. This would include something like methane emissions from waste sent to landfill, or the emissions from energy used to make the widgets that a business procures then retails.

  • Embodied Carbon -- Basically, almost everything we use from a smartphone to a building, has embodied carbon. Embodied or upfront carbon refers to the emissions released during the manufacture and transport of building materials, and the construction as well the end-of-life-phases of built assets. (Source: Fifth Estate Australia, Mar, 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon,  Carbon Emissions,  


  • Resource Efficiency and Climate Change: Material Efficiency Strategies for a Low-Carbon Future (Ind. Report Attached)
    United Nations Environment Programme
    Date: 2020-03-16
    The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) International Resource Panel has just published a recent report titled Resource Efficiency and Climate Change: Material Efficiency Strategies for a Low-Carbon Future. Commissioned by the G7 countries, it shows that natural resource extraction and processing account for more than 90 pct of global biodiversity loss and water stress, and around half of global greenhouse gas emissions.

    According to the report, emissions from the material cycle of residential buildings in the G7 and China could be reduced by at least 80 pct in 2050 through a series of material efficiency strategies. A design with fewer or alternative materials, and more recycling of construction materials are among the most promising strategies, it says.

    Download Resource Efficiency and Climate Change: Material Efficiency Strategies for a Low-Carbon Future HERE. (Source: The United Nations Environment Programme, Mar., 2020) Contact: UN Environment, Martina Otto: martina.otto@un.org, www.unenvironment.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News UNEP,  Climate Change,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Cellulosic Biofuel Significantly Mitigate Climate Change (Int'l Study)
    Biomass. Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
    Date: 2020-03-11
    A recent long-term field study by researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and Michigan State University (MSU) has found cellulosic biofuels derived from switchgrass, giant miscanthus, poplar trees, maize residuals, restored native prairie, and a combination of grasses and vegetation that grows spontaneously following field abandonment, could significantly mitigate global warming by reducing carbon emissions.

    The study found when compared with petroleum only emissions, cellulosic ethanol was "78--290 better in reducing carbon emissions; ethanol was 204--416 pct improved, biomass powered electric vehicles powered by biomass was 74--303 pct cleaner and biomass-powered electric vehicles combined with CSS was 329--558 pct superior." The research will next assess other environmental and economic aspects of bioenergy crops.

    The study was conducted at Michigan State University's (MSU) Kellogg Biological Station and the University of Wisconsin's Arlington Research Station which is part of the U.S. DOE Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. Financial support was provided by the U.S. DOE Office of Science, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. National Science Foundation and Michigan State University AgBioResearch. (Source: American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, PR, EurekaAlerts, 9 Mar.,2020) Contact: American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. (212) 302-6443, info@aabgu.org, www.aabgu.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Cellulosic Ethnol,  Biomass ,  Climate Change,  Global Warming,  


    Syracuse Marriott Uses C-PACE Program for Energy Efficiency Upgrades (Ind. Report)
    C-PACE
    Date: 2020-03-11
    In the Empire State, the Marriott Downtown Syracuse Hotel it used the C-PACE program to fund almost $10 million in cost-effective energy efficient improvements including HVAC, LED lighting and other energy efficiency improvements.

    The C-PACE program allows building owners to finance qualifying energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements on via a voluntary assessment on their property tax bill. (Source: Marriott Downtown Syracuse, Syracuse University Press, WAER, 9 Mar., 2020) Contact: Marriott Downtown Syracuse, www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/syrmc-marriott-syracuse-downtown; C-PACE Alliance, Cliff Kellogg (202) 744-1984, ckellogg@c-pacealliance.com, www.c-pacealliance.com

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


    Neste Takes Stake in Renewable Hydrogen Specialist (Int'l, M&A)
    Neste,Sunfire
    Date: 2020-03-11
    Espoo, Finland-headquartered renewable diesel specialist Neste Corp. is reporting acquisition of a minority stake in Dresden, Germany-based Sunfire -- developer of a patented high-temperature electrolysis technology for the production of renewable hydrogen.

    Sunfire's Power-to-X platform enables the production of emission-free renewable hydrogen and conversion of CO2 into fuels, chemicals and materials.

    In addition to Neste's equity investment in Sunfire, both companies will work together to demonstrate the production of renewable hydrogen at Neste's refinery with Sunfire's high-temperature electrolyzer.

    Neste MY Renewable Diesel is a cost competitive, low-carbon fuel produced from 100 pct renewable and sustainable raw materials that cuts greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80 pct compared to petroleum diesel. (Source: Neste, Chemical Eng, 9 Mar., 2020, Contact: Neste, Peter Vanacker. Pres., CEO, +358 10 458 4128, www.neste.com; Sunfire, Nils Aldag, Managiung Dir., +49 351 896797-0, +49 351 896797-831 - fax, www.sunfire.de/en

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Neste,  Sunfire,  Hydrogen,  Renewable Hydrogen,  


    Canada GBC Updates Zero-Carbon Building Standard (Ind. Report)
    Canada Green Building Council
    Date: 2020-03-11
    In Ottawa, the The Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) reports it is zeroing in on carbon reduction with updates to its Zero Carbon Building (ZCB) Standard. Launched today, Version 2 is designed to accelerate adoption of zero carbon building practices and help Canada meet its climate targets while spurring innovation and job growth.

    Canada's buildings are a top contributor to carbon emissions, and updates to the ZCB Standard reflect the urgent need for change. Today, building operations represent 17 pct of Canada's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, or closer to 30 pct when embodied carbon from construction and materials are factored in.

    CaGBC's made-in-Canada ZCB Standard provides the industry with a zero-carbon approach that works for any type of new or existing building. Version 2 draws on learnings from over 20 real-world ZCB-projects. These projects demonstrate that the industry is ready to raise the bar on expanded requirements for embodied carbon and energy efficiency. At the same time, Version 2 aims to get more buildings to zero, faster, by providing more options for different design strategies and by recognizing high-quality carbon offsets when necessary.

    These updates balance the rigour needed to meaningfully eliminate carbon, while also being flexible enough for zero-carbon buildings to reach the mainstream. Since the ZCB Standard launched in 2017, CaGBC has proven through real-world projects and research, that zero- carbon buildings are technically and financially viable today -- across a wide spectrum of building types including schools, offices, multi-residential, commercial, and even industrial buildings. The updates provide the guidance for more owners and developers to build to zero now and as part of their plans for the future.

    ZCB Standard v2 provides two pathways for any type of building to get to zero-carbon. ZCB-Design guides the design of new buildings, as well as the retrofit of existing structures. ZCB-Performance provides a framework for verifying buildings have achieved zero- carbon and must be revisited annually.

    ZCB Standard v2 updates focus on these key components:

  • Embodied Carbon -- Projects must now reduce and offset carbon emissions for the building's life-cycle including those associated with the manufacture and use of construction materials.

  • Refrigerants -- ZCB Standard v2 encourages best practices to minimize potential leaks of refrigerants that, when released, can have significant short-term impacts on climate.

  • Energy Efficiency -- ZCB Standard v2 promotes the efficient use of clean energy with more stringent energy efficiency and air-tightness requirements.
  • Innovation -- ZCB-Design encourages innovation by requiring projects demonstrate two innovative strategies to reduce carbon emissions.

    (Source: Canada Green Building Council, PR, Mar., 2020) Contact: Canada Green Building Council, Peter Whitred, Senior Manager, Green Building Programs, Thomas Mueller, Pres. and CEO, (866) 941-1184, info@cagbc.org, www.cagbc.org; Zero Carbon Building Standard, www.CaGBC.org/zerocarbon

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Zero-Carbon,  Canada Green Building Council ,  Energy Efficiency,  


  • 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,  


    FPT Industrial Investigating Macauba Palm Biodiesel (Int'l, R&D)
    FPT Industrial
    Date: 2020-03-06
    FPT Industrial a global engine and powertrain brand of CNH Industrial N.V. reports it is invested in and exploring the possible use of Macauba Palm, which is common to Brazil, the Caribbean and South Florida, for the production of biodiesel transportation fuel.

    FPT Industrial's research was conducted at the Technical Center in Betim, Southeast of Brazil, with the main focus on its application as a fuel for agricultural tractors. Tests for trucks and buses, as well as power generators, are planned for the future. The tests produced biodiesel that met the standards established by the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP).

    The testing project was carried out in partnership with the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais (PUC Minas), the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) and Bchem Biofuels, using a FPT Industrial N67 Tier 3 engine fitted to Case IH and New Holland Agriculture tractors. During the tests, mixtures of 10 pct and 20 pct of Macauba biodiesel were used. The results showed performance and consumption comparable to Brazilian commercial diesel, with a reduction trend in terms of carbon monoxide (CO) and particulate matter (PM) emissions. (Source: FPT, CNH Industrial, PR Mar.,2020) Contact: FPT CNH Industrial, www.fptindustrial.com/global/en, www.cnhindustrial.com/en-us/Pages/homepage.aspx

    More Low-Carbon Energy News FPT Industrial,  Palm Oil,  Palm Biodiesel,  


    Orsted U.S. Offshore Wind Supports Montclair State University Clean Energy Center (Ind. Report)
    Orsted
    Date: 2020-03-06
    In the Garden State, Montclair State University is reporting Orsted U.S. Offshore Wind is investing $200,000 to support the school's Clean Energy and Sustainability Analytics Center (CESAC) -- a public research, education and technical assistance outreach center -- under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

    Boston-headquartered Orsted U.S. Offshore Wind operates the Block Island Wind Farm and has been awarded over 2,900 MW of capacity through six projects. In June, 2019, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities selected Orsted to develop the Garden State's first offshore wind farm 15 miles off the coast of Atlantic City, as previously reported. (Source: Montclair State University, PR, 3 Mar.,2020) Contact: Montclair University, Susan Cole, Pres., (973) 655-4000, www.montclair.edu; Orsted U.S. Offshore Wind, www.us.orsted.com/Wind-projects

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Orsted,  Offshore Wind,  


    FPInnovations Releases Solid Wood Bioheat Guide (Ind. Report)
    FPInnovations
    Date: 2020-03-04
    Pointe-Claire, QC, Canada-based is touting its newly released Solid Wood Bioheat Guide for Rural and Remote Communities in Ontario as a key source of information for using woody biomass for heating.

    According to the guide, the reliability, efficiency and versatility of modern bioheat systems allows for the supplementation or even replacement of current fossil fuel or electric heating systems. These systems can use local, sustainably sourced, economical, and renewable solid woody biofuels. Provincial laws require that Crown forests be sustainably managed following approved forest management plans that require harvested areas to be regenerated. This means that carbon emitted to create bioheat generated from solid woody biofuels is recaptured by the growing forest making bioheat a low-carbon heating system. Emissions from particles and volatile compounds are also low and on par with fossil fuel heating systems.

    Download the Solid Wood Bioheat Guide for Rural and Remote Communities in Ontario guide HERE. (Source: FPInnovations, Cdn, Biomass, 2 Mar., 2020, Contact: FPInnovations, Glen Prevost, Guide Author, (705) 358-4667, (514) 630-4100, glen.prevost@fpinnovations.ca, www.fpinnovations.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News FPInnovations,  Woody Biomass,  


    Enexor BioEnergy Launches Waste-to-Energy System (New Prod & Tech)
    Enexor BioEnergy
    Date: 2020-03-04
    Franklin, Tenn.-based Enexor BioEnergy is touting the release of its patented "Bio-200" Bio-CHP direct combustion system that converts various organic biomass waste into on-site energy.

    The Bio-200 is a small-scale -- 75 kW power, 125 kW thermal -- modular unit that provides 24/7 continuous renewable power. The hurricane-proof unit is ideally suited for renewable energy microgrids and can be installed and commissioned within one day. The unit, which is fueled by a blend of on-site or locally sourced organic materials, offsets as much as 2,200 metric tpy of CO2 emissions.

    The company's Energy-as-a-Service (EaaS) partnership model eliminates upfront customer capital-outlay and delivers immediate cost savings unlike typical on-site energy projects, according to the company website. (Source: Enexor BioEnergy, PR , EngineerLive, 3 Mar., 2020) Contact: Enexor BioEnergy, Lee Jestings, CEO, (615) 656-0762, info@enexor.com, www.enexor.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Enexor BioEnergy ,  


    University of Pittsburgh Commits to Carbon Neutrality (Ind. Report)
    University of Pittsburgh
    Date: 2020-03-02
    In the Steel City, the University of Pittsburgh reports it has committed to become carbon neutral on the Pittsburgh campus by 2037. Through partnerships, increased building and infrastructure efficiencies, expanded use of renewable energy sources and other measures, Pitt will build on the success of its ambitious Sustainability Plan and existing greenhouse gas emissions reduction of 22 pct between 2008 and 2017. Key initiatives to achieve this goal include:
  • Building Efficiency -- With 130 buildings, including 14 projects certified under U.S. Green Building Council standards, Pitt will continue pursuing its 50 pct reduction in energy use by 2030 in existing facilities. For new construction, the goal is an 80 pct reduction by 2030 in support of the 2037 neutrality goal.

  • Renewable Energy -- The University has committed to purchase at least 50 pct of campus electricity from renewable sources by 2030, including from a low-impact hydroelectric power plant in the Allegheny River that will come online by 2023.

  • Infrastructure Efficiency -- In 2009, Pitt built one of the most efficient steam plants in the nation which has helped reduce CO2 emissions to date. The University is also growing its current fleet of five zero emissions electric vehicles. Efficiencies in purchasing supply chains, materials diversion, greater utilization of active and shared transportation modes and offsets will also help Pitt to become carbon neutral.

  • Leadership and Collaboration -- Students, faculty and staff have embraced Pitt's commitment to sustainability and continue to develop new initiatives, many with funding support.

    The University's pledge exceeds the carbon reduction targets of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the City of Pittsburgh. Pitt's progress toward carbon neutrality will be shared via a newly created online "sustainability dashboard" updated by the University Office of Sustainability. (Source: University of Pittsburgh, PR 28 Feb., 2020) Contact: University of Pittsburgh, Office of Sustainability, Dr. Aurora Sharrard, Dir., (412) 624-5122, asharrard@pitt.edu, sustainability@pitt.edu, www.sustainable.pitt.edu


  • 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 ,  


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

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

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

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

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


    Gevo Wins Australian Queensland Waste-to-Biofutures Funding (Int'l)
    Gevo
    Date: 2020-02-28
    Englewood, Colorado-based biobutanol producer GEVO Inc. reports receipt of part of The Queensland Waste to Biofutures (W2B) Fund to support the development of waste to biofutures projects in Queensland, Australia.

    The W2B fund provides targeted funding for pilot, demonstration or commercially scalable biorefinery projects in Queensland that use conventional waste streams or biomass to produce bioenergy, biofuels and high-value bioproducts.

    For this project, Gevo is evaluating the most likely 2G biomass to carbohydrate conversion process to use in conjunction with its proven carbohydrate to low carbon biofuel process. (Source: GEVO Website, PR, 27 Feb.,2020) Contact: GEVO, Patrick Gruber, CEO, 303-858-8358, pgruber@gevo.com, www.gevo.com; Queensland Waste to Biofutures Fund, www.qtic.grantguru.com.au/grant/queensland-waste-to-biofutures-fund-w2b-fund-/

    More Low-Carbon Energy News GEVO,  Biobutanol,  Biomass,  Biofuel Feedstock,  


    ADM, Optimus Tech Tout Biodiesel Test Partnership (Ind. Report)
    Optimus Technologies,Archer Daniels Midland
    Date: 2020-02-26
    Chicago-headquartered biofuel pioneer Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) reports it will supply five trucks that will fitted with Pittsburgh-based Optimus Technologies' Vector fuel system, a technology that enables diesel engines to run on 100 pct sustainable biodiesel. Fuel for the test project will be from ADM's refinery in Mexico, Missouri.

    The trucks will be used in daily fleet operations for one year with each vehicle anticipated to travel 160,000 to 180,000 miles and reduce up to 500,000 pounds of CO2. Advanced monitoring protocols will compare the performance and results of the new technology with five other trucks comprising a control group operating on conventional diesel.

    While nearly all diesel engine manufacturers support at least 20 pct biodiesel (B20), the Optimus Vector System is designed to allow conventional diesel engines to run on 100 pct biodiesel in a wide range of climates. The Optimus Vector System biodiesel fuel conversion system is EPA-compliant for medium and heavy-duty diesel trucks.

    This new project is designed to evaluate its use for longer-haul over-the-road fleets, potentially opening a pathway to significantly higher volumes of biodiesel in the U.S. truck fleet. (Source: Optimus Technologies, ADM, World Grain, 21 Feb., 2020) Contact: Optimus Technologies, Colin Huwyler, CEO, 412.727.8228, www.optimustec.com; ADM, Juan Luciano, Pres., CEO, (312) 634-8100, Collin Benson, VP Bioactives, Jackie Anderson, ADM Media, (217) 424-5413, www.adm.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Forest Biomass,  Optimus Technologies,  Archer Daniels Midland,  Biodiesel,  


    Unpacking the Climate Potential of Energy Efficiency (Ind. Report)
    York University
    Date: 2020-02-26
    Estimates of the technologically and economically achievable potential for energy efficiency improvements in Canada are significant. Modelling by the International Energy Agency for example, suggests that under ambitious policy scenarios, Canada's GHG emissions could be reduced by approximately 200 million tpy of CO2e -- 28 pect of current emissions -- and with cumulative savings of $1.1 trillion between 2017 and 2050

    In addition to offering the potential to make major contributions to a low-carbon sustainable energy transition, energy efficiency improvements can reduce energy costs to consumers, avoid the adverse environmental and social impacts of new energy supplies, improve productivity, strengthen energy security and enhance the resilience of energy systems to the impacts of climate change.

    Despite their benefits, energy efficiency initiatives have struggled to achieve their full technological and economic potential to reduce to energy demand. These failures have been due to a range of market, institutional, financial, policy, regulatory, behavioural and informational barriers.

    In recent years, new challenges have emerged beyond these traditional and well-understood obstacles. Changes in policy direction, often flowing from changes in governments, have resulted in significant retrenchments, and in some cases wholesale dismantlings, of energy efficiency strategies in North America. The Government of Ontario's decision to terminate its "Conservation First" strategy in March 2019 was among the most dramatic of these developments, but far from unique.

    This study seeks to understand the dynamics behind these developments and to identify potential strategies and design principles to inform the development of more effective and resilient governance structures for energy efficiency in Canada. Specifically, the study examines a series of cases in which commitment and consensus around energy efficiency faltered, threatening the stability and, at times, the existence, of energy efficiency programming in a variety of Canadian (BC, Alberta, Ontario, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick) and the U.S. (Maine, Connecticut and Indiana) jurisdictions.

    Download the York University Unpacking the Climate Potential of Energy Efficiency study HERE. (Source: York University, Sustainable Energy Initiative, Feb., 2020) Contact: York University, sei.info.yorku.ca, www.yoku.ca

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


    EQTEC Upgrading Spanish Waste-to-Energy Facility for Biofuel Production (Int'l. Report)
    EQTEC,University of Extremadura
    Date: 2020-02-26
    Cork, Ireland-headquartered waste gasification-to-energy specialist EQTEC PLC is reporting receipt of a contract to upgrade the existing syngas research and development facility at the University of Extremadura in Badajoz, Spain.

    The university has received funding from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to support the testing of the production of biofuels from syngas using a Fischer-Tropsch process and unit.

    Under the contract, EQTEC will be responsible for purchasing, installing, commissioning and start-up of the Fischer-Tropsch unit, for which it has secured financing from CAIXA Bank in Spain. Installation is slated for completion in Q3, this year.

    The Fischer-Tropsch process is a catalytic chemical reaction in which compounds in syngas are converted into liquid transportation fuels. Following completion of this upgrade, EQTEC will be able to conduct tests using varied biomass and waste feedstocks, which will be processed into a clean syngas and then into sustainable biofuels, including biodiesel. (Source: EQTEC PLC, PR, Feb., 2020) Contact: EQTEC PLC, Dr. Yoel Aleman, CTO, +353) (0 )21 2409056, info@eqtecplc.com, www.eqtecplc.com; University of Extremadura, +34 924 28 93 00, www.unex.es

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Fischer-Tropsch ,  Biofuels,  Syngas,  Biomass Gasification,  


    Forest-Woody Biomass Carbon Benefits Stressed (Ind. Report)
    US Industrial Pellet Association
    Date: 2020-02-26
    As previously reported, the Richmond, Virginia-based not-for-profit US Industrial Pellet Association (USIPA) is lauding the National Association of University Forest Resource Programs (NAUFRP) for its letter signed by more than 100 scientists and researchers calling on policymakers to consider key fundamentals related to forest-woody biomass and the benefits of wood energy.

    The letter, which noted that the "carbon benefits of sustainable forest biomass are well established", cites a report from UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) which notes -- "In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit. Demand for wood helps keep land in forest and incentivizes investments in new and more productive forests, all of which have significant carbon benefits."

    Reviewing more than 30 years of scientific research on forest biomass utilization, scientists from Yale, Harvard, and Georgia to Washington, Idaho, Berkeley and others identified four fundamentals for science-based decision-making on biomass energy production:

  • The carbon benefits of sustainable forest biomass energy are well established.

  • Measuring the carbon benefits of forest biomass energy must consider cumulative carbon emissions over the long term.

  • An accurate comparison of forest biomass energy carbon impacts with those of other energy sources requires the use of consistent time-frames in the comparison.

  • Economic factors influence the carbon impacts of forest biomass energy. (Source: The US Industrial Pellet Association, 25 Oct., 2019) Contact: The US Industrial Pellet Association, Deth Ginter, Exec. Dir., J. Marcus, (804) 775.5894, JMarcus@theusipa.org, www.theusipa.org; National Association of University Forest Resource Programs, www.naufrp.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Forest Biomass,  Woody Biomass,  


  • 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,  


    ACEEE 2020 Utility Energy Efficiency Scorecard Released (Ind. Report)
    ACEEE
    Date: 2020-02-24
    According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy's (ACEEE) just released 2020 Utility Energy Efficiency Scorecard, the 52 largest U.S. electric utilities have dramatically increased their overall energy savings as they adopt innovative ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Utilities leading the way are National Grid Massachusetts and Eversource Massachusetts, which tied for first place for the second time, followed by San Diego Gas & Electric, Commonwealth Edison in Illinois, Baltimore Gas and Electric and Pacific Gas & Electric, in that order. Rounding out the top 10 are the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), DTE in Michigan, Portland General Electric, and Eversource CT in that order.

    The scorecard notes that, as a group, the utilities boosted their annual energy savings by 20 pct since 2015, saving almost 20 TWh of electricity in 2018 from programs administered that year -- enough to power 1.8 million homes.

    The report highlights the ways in which the utility landscape has transformed since 2015, the baseline for the 2017 scorecard. New technologies are emerging -- states, utilities, and other stakeholders are increasingly focused on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the important role of energy efficiency with more than 900 different efficiency programs in 2018, about 300 more than in 2015. Additionally, 32 utilities piloted new programs that involve smart thermostats, online marketplaces for energy-saving products, commercial energy efficiency financing, and integration of efficiency with other DERs such as demand response and storage.

    While overall energy savings increased, this upward trend was not universal, and seven utilities saw their energy savings decrease by more than 20 pct since 2015.

    The scorecard also found that, while there is increased focus on changing utility business models nationally, utilities are generally slow to change these models and are often reluctant to give customers access to energy usage data.

    The scorecard, which received no utility funding, increases the availability of utility-sector energy efficiency data to enable benchmarking and help utilities strengthen their programs. ACEEE focuses on the 52 largest electric utilities by retail sales volume, including all 51 utilities from its 2017 Scorecard, plus Tampa Electric.

    Download the 2020 Utility Energy Efficiency Scorecard at www.aceee.org/utility-scorecard. (Source: ACEEE, 21 Feb., 2020) Contact: ACEEE, Steven Nadel, Exec. Dir., www.aceee.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ACEEE,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Energy Storage Assoc, Clarion Announce Partnership (Ind. Report)
    Energy Storage Association
    Date: 2020-02-24
    Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Clarion North America Energy is reporting a strategic partnership with the U.S. Energy Storage Association (ESA), the national trade association for companies that develop and deploy the energy storage technologies that are key to modernizing the grid.

    The partnership, which involves a well-defined content program at multiple US events including, DISTRIBUTECH International and POWERGEN International, will bring forward thought-leadership and peer-to-peer discussion platforms around markets, policy and technology, furthering the ESA's focus to advance the adoption of competitive and reliable energy storage systems in the U.S, according to the release..

    By partnering with ESA, Clarion Energy North America events will increase and enhance coverage of energy storage and offer ESA members exposure to a broad range of energy education with an audience that is highly-interested in energy storage. ESA member companies will present and speak at Clarion's event content platforms, including Full Conference Summit and Expo Hall Knowledge Hub content, pre-conference workshops and symposiums. Collaborating with ESA will give event attendees the chance to participate in conversations with leaders who are advancing the technology and applications of energy storage, the release notes. (Source: Clarion North America Energy, PR, New Kerla, 21 Feb., 2020) Contact: Energy Storage Association, www.energystorage.org; Clarion North America Energy, MaryBeth DeWitt, Snr. VP, www.clarion-energy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Storage Association news,  Energy Storage news,  


    St. Joseph County Indiana Solar Farm Gets the Nod (Ind Report)
    Indiana Michigan
    Date: 2020-02-24
    Indiana Michigan Power (IMP) is reporting Indiana Utility Regulatory committee approval for a $30 million, 60,000 panel solar farm off Bittersweet Road in St. Joseph County, Indiana.

    The 210-acre project is expected to generate sufficient energy for roughly 2,700 homes when fully on line this coming fall. University of Notre Dame has committed to purchase 40 pct of the new solar farm's power production. Indiana Michigan presently operates 4 solar farms in Michigan. (Source: Indiana Michigan Power Website, WSBT, 22 Feb., 2020) Contact: Indiana Michigan Power, www.indianamichiganpower.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Indiana Michigan,  Solar,  


    Irish Energy Efficiency Gains Delivers Major Savings (Int'l.)
    Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland
    Date: 2020-02-21
    In Dublin, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) is reporting Ireland's 345 public bodies and 2,678 public schools have realized £1.1 billion in energy savings and avoided 4.6 million tonnes of CO2 emissions since 2009 due to a series of energy efficiency improvements.

    According to the SEAI, in 2018 the public sector was 27 pct more energy-efficient and on course to achieve its 33 pct energy efficiency target by the end of 2020.

    This is the second consecutive year of marked improved performance from the 345 public bodies and 2,678 schools that reported, up from 24 pct the previous year. For 2018, this enabled a further £206 million in avoided energy costs and 761,000 tonnes of avoided carbon dioxide emissions. (Source: Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, Energy Live, 20 Feb., 2020) Contact: Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, +353 1 808 2100, +353 1 808 2002 - fax, www,seai.ie

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    Co-Optima Offers Biofuel, Bioenergy R&D Funding (Funding, R&D)
    US DOE Co-Optima Initiative
    Date: 2020-02-21
    The US DOE Co-Optima Initiative is overseeing a Directed Funding Opportunity (DFO) to apply the unique, world-class capabilities of the consortium toward addressing specific challenges identified by applicants from industry and academia.

    The Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) National Laboratory consortium is jointly sponsored by the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office and Vehicle Technologies Office. Co-Optima focuses on developing new high-performance fuels that, when combined with advanced combustion approaches, can boost engine efficiency and cut emissions.

    The Co-Optima DFO is seeking proposals that overcome key technical challenges to accelerating adoption of new fuel-biofuel blend stocks from renewable resources, enabling higher efficiency and lower emissions in on-highway vehicles. For this DFO, biofuel blendstocks, biofuel production, bio-blendstock/biofuel property R&D is of particular interest and importance.

    Selected projects are anticipated to range from $200,000 up to $300,000 of Co-Optima National Laboratory assistance over the project duration of 12-18 months. Up to $2,000,000 will be available for this call and Co-Optima anticipates a total of 7-10 projects will be selected for funding. Industry partners will fund their own labor, materials, and other expenses directly, which contribute toward a 20 pct minimum cost-share requirement.

    Directed Funding Opportunity for Collaboration with National Laboratories details HERE. (Source: Co-Optima, PR, 18 Feb., 2020) Contact: DOE Co-Optima, www.cooptima.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Clean Fuel,  Low-Carbon Fuel,  Renewable Fuels,  Biofuel,  


    UMass, City of Lowell Commit to Renewables Initiatives (Ind. Report)
    UMass Lowell
    Date: 2020-02-21
    In the Bay State, the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Lowell and the city of Lowell have announced the Green Community Partnership -- an alliance committed to driving down the city's carbon footprint. The effort, which is being funded by Lowell philanthropist Nancy Donahue and numerous community partners, already has $50,000 available for joint university-community clean energy projects.

    A member of the American College & University Presidents' Climate Commitment, UMass Lowell has committed itself to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The city of Lowell has made substantial investments in the energy efficiency of its buildings resulting in a 31 pct reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.The city has also committed to using 100 pct renewable energy to the use of 100 pct clean and renewable energy.

    For more information about the Green Community Partnership HERE. (Source: UMass Lowell, PR, Contact: UMass Lowell, www.uml.edu, uml.edu/greencommunity

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Energy,  Energy Efficiency,  Carbon Emissions,  


    NC State Univ. Completes Energy Efficiency Upgrades (Ind. Report)
    North Carolina State University
    Date: 2020-02-21
    North Carolina State University in Raleigh is reporting the upgrading of all T12 fluorescent lights to LED light at Biltmore Hall and Pulp and Paper labs. The switch to LEDs is expected to save the school over 400,000 kW of electricity per year for an annual energy cost saving of $30,000.

    Other "green" improvements and upgrades include the installation of low-flow plumbing fixtures, lighting fixture-integrated occupancy sensors, thermal energy storage and water conservation capacity, and others. (Source: NC State University, Technician, 19 Feb., 2020) Contact: NC State University, Kerby Smithson, Energy Project Manager, 919-515-2011, www.ncsu.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  LED Light,  


    $30Mn Biofuel Plant Underway in Sarnia-Lambton Ontario (Ind. Report)
    Forge Hydrocarbons
    Date: 2020-02-19
    Further to our 27 Sept., 2019 coverage, Forge Hydrocarbons Corporation, a University of Alberta spin-out biofuel start-up, reports construction is underway on its 7.5 million gpy first-of-its-kind renewable fuels plant in Sarnia-Lambton, Ontario.

    The $30 million facility will recently purchased patented lipid-to-hydrocarbon technology developed by Dr. David Bressler at the University of Alberta. The technology takes waste fats and oils and turns it into renewable fuels, including jet fuel. (Source: Forge Hydrocarbon Technologies, PR, Blackburns, 19 Feb., 2020) Contact: University of Alberta in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences, Prof. Dr. David Bressler, 780-492-4986, dbressle@ualberta.ca, www.ualberta.ca; Forge Hydrocarbons, Tim Haig, Pres., 905-815-7786, thaig@forgehc.com, www.forgehc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Jet Biofuel,  Forge Hydrocarbons,  


    North Carolina Bioenergy Project Funding Announced (Funding)
    North Carolina Bioenergy Research Initiative
    Date: 2020-02-17
    The North Carolina Bioenergy Research Initiative and the New and Emerging Crops Program recently awarded $1 million in grants for 15 projects aimed at boosting bioenergy opportunities and crop production in the state.

    The following organizations received bioenergy-specific grants in the 2020 Bioenergy Research Initiative funding round: $33,212 to North Carolina State University (NCSU) Department of Horticultural; $122,594 to NCSU Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources for a 2.5-year project titled Sycamore: Sustainable Bioenergy-Improved Soil Health; $30,465 to NCSU Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources for continued work on Loblolly Pine Biomass and Economic Analysis; $80,738 to Appalachian State University Department of Sustainable Technology & the Built Environment for a two-year Biochar - Anaerobic Digestion project; and $74,382 to NCSU Cooperative Tree Improvement Program to extend a Loblolly Pine Biomass Genetics/Cropping Study. (Source: NC Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, PR, Feb., 2020) Contact: North Carolina Bioenergy Research Initiative, (919) 693-2483, (919) 693-6848 - fax, www.ncagr.gov/bioenergy

    More Low-Carbon Energy News North Carolina Bioenergy Research Initiative,  Bioenergy,  


    Clean Energy Fuels Delivers 143Mn Gal. of RNG in 2019 (Ind Report)
    Clean Energy Fuels
    Date: 2020-02-14
    Newport Beach, California-based Clean Energy Fuels Corp. is reporting it delivered 143 million gallons of Redeem™ Renewable Natural Gas (RNG)in 2019.

    In 2019, Clean Energy announced plans to exclusively offer zero-carbon1 Redeem at all of its fueling stations by 2025. At this pace Clean Energy would outdistance other alternative fuels, according to the release.

    Redeem was the first commercially available RNG vehicle fuel, derived from capturing biogenic methane that is produced from the decomposition of organic waste from dairies, landfills, and wastewater treatment plants, according to the release.(Source: Clean Energy Fuels, PR, 12 Feb., 2020) Contact: Clean Energy Fuels, Raleigh Gerber, 949-437-1397, raleigh.gerber@cleanenergyfuels.com,

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Clean Energy Fuels ,  RNG,  Renewable Natural Gas,  


    Novozymes Touts Innova Fit for Ethanol Production (Ind. Report)
    Novozymes
    Date: 2020-02-14
    Danish enzymes and microbes specialist Novozymes is reporting the launch of Innova Fit -- an advanced non-GM yeast that eliminates ethanol production constraints caused by conventional and basic yeasts. According to the release, Innova Fit:
  • Powers through high temperature excursions without sacrificing yield -- Higher yields during fermentation temperature excursions, up to 36 degree C/96 degree F, reducing variability and process upsets.

  • Expands throughput by fermenting high dry solids -- Developed to withstand the rigors of hard running plants, Innova Fit can ferment up to 36 pct dry solids while tolerating high ethanol titers in fermentation.

  • Increases ethanol yield up to 2 pct -- Operating in a wide variety of fermentation times, Innova Fit excels in fermentations between 55 and 65 hours. As a drop-in solution, Fit converts more sugar to ethanol versus other non-GM yeasts to improve plant profitability.

  • May reduce need for yeast nutritional supplements: While many yeasts use urea and yeast food to support fermentation, Innova Fit could significantly reduce these costly inputs.

    Since 2018, Novozymes has released four yeast solutions as part of its Innova platform. Yeast and its development are a strategic growth area where Novozymes will continue working with innovation partners in the industry. Its Innova yeast products are the result of a dedicated development partnership with Microbiogen to bring new yeast technology to the market.

    Australian-based Microbiogen is an industrial biotechnology company specializing in the development of improved, industrial yeast strains, according to the company website. (Source: Novozymes, PR, GreenCar Congress, 11 Feb. 2020) Contact: Novozymes, Brian Brazeau, VP Bioenergy Commercial, Peder Holk Nielsen, CEO, Michael Burns, Biorefining Business Development North America,(919) 496-6926, www.novozymes.com; Microbiogen, Geoff Bell, CEO, (02) 9418 3182 geoff.bell@microbiogen.com, www.microbiogen.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Microbiogen,  Novozymes ,  Yeast,  Ethanol,  


  • 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,  


    Mocean Developing Sub-Sea Wave Energy Power (New Prod & Tech)
    Mocean Energy
    Date: 2020-02-12
    Aberdeen, Scotland-headquartered Mocean Energy is reporting its collaboration with UK North Sea independent Chrysaor, subsea energy storage specialist EC-OG, and AUV developer Modus to assess the potential of Mocean Energy's Blue Star wave energy converter and EC-OG's HALO subsea energy storage system to sub-sea sub-sea applications.

    The project is being funded by the partners and the Oil and Gas Technology Centre (OGTC) in Aberdeen. If the initial work is successful, the partners will commit to a field trial using a Mocean Energy prototype offshore Orkney, northern Scotland, later this year. In 2019, Wave Energy Scotland agreed to supply £3.3 million ($4.27 million) to the company to construct and test a half-scale version of its technology at sea. (Source: Mocean Energy, PR, 10 Frb., 2020) Contact: Mocean Energy , Cameron McNatt, Managing Director, +44 (0)131 651 7959, hello@mocean.energy, www.mocean.energy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Mocean Energy.Ocean Energy,  Wave Energy,  


    WMU Scores $9.6Mn for Li-Ion Battery RED (R&D, Funding)
    Western Michigan University
    Date: 2020-02-12
    In Kalamazoo, Western Michigan University (WMU) is reporting receipt of $9.6 million in US DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy grant funding for a new sustainable lithium-ion battery R&D project entitled "Enabling Advanced Electrode Architecture through Printing Technique."

    The project focuses on developing cost-effective manufacturing process for better lithium-ion batteries for various applications. The project is being led by assistant professor Dr. Qingliu Wu of WMU's Department of Chemical and Paper Engineering. (Source: Western Michigan University, WKZ, 10 Feb., 2020) Contact: Western Michigan University, Dept. of Paper and Chemical Engineering, (269) 276-3500 www.wmich.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Battery,  Energy Storage,  


    INSTAAR Studies Permafrost Thaw, Climate Change (Int'l. Report)
    Climate Change,Colorado Institute of Arctic and Alpine Researc
    Date: 2020-02-10
    A study from the University of Colorado Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR) in Boulder has found the possibility of abrupt permafrost thawing will likely occur in less than 20 pct of permafrost frozen land. The study found the evidence is mixed as to whether this not-so-permanent, slowly thawing permafrost has started to vent significant quantities of methane or CO2.

    Global Permafrost covers an area almost equal to Canada and the United States combined, and holds about 1,500 billion tonnes or carbon -- twice as much as in the atmosphere and three times the amount humanity has emitted since the start of industrialization.

    According to the UN's scientific advisory body for climate change, the IPCC, global permafrost areas show a decrease of 24 pct by 2100. The IPPC also notes that 70 pct of permafrost could gradually disappear if fossil fuel emissions continue growing over the next 50 years and release 60 to 100 billion tonnes of carbon by 2300. This is in addition to the 200 billion tonnes of carbon expected to be released in other regions, according to the study. (Source: Arctic and Alpine Research, Nature, AFP, Feb., 2020) Contact: INSTAAR, Merritt Turetsky, (303) 492-6387, (303) 492-3287 - fax, www.colorado.edu › innovate › institute-arctic-and-alpine-research

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


    Heriot-Watt Touts New Carbon Capture R&D (Int'l. Report)
    Heriot-Watt University
    Date: 2020-02-10
    As previously reported chemical engineers from Heriot-Watt University in the UK are reporting a collaboration with international researchers to design materials that could synthesize new metal-organic framework materials (MOFs) -- porous crystals that combine metal nodes with organic linkers -- that can capture CO2.

    To that end, the research team conducted experiments that mimicked real industrial operations and compared the performance of their new materials with those that are currently commercially available.

    According to Dr Susana Garcia, Assoc. Dir., Heriot-Watt Research Centre for Carbon Solutions, "Instead of the conventional trial and error, we computer-generated 325,000 MOFs and identified the features of the best performers. We now have the tools to tailor-make a material that will separate carbon dioxide in the most economical way for a given source, like industrial emissions, and make it available for other purposes like carbon storage or as a resource for the chemical industry," Dr. Garcia noted. (Source: Heriot-Watt University, PR, Engineer Live, 17 Dec., 2019) Contact: Heriot-Watt University, Dr Susana Garcia, Assoc. Dir., Heriot-Watt Research Centre for Carbon Solutions, www.hw.ac.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Heriot-Watt University ,  Carbon Capture,  


    BGU Touting New Waste-to-Gas Technology (Int'l., New Prod. & Tech.)
    Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Laboratory for Clean Combustion
    Date: 2020-02-10
    Israeli Researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) Laboratory for Clean Combustion are touting a new gasification technology that uses the "unique chemical properties" of supercritical water -- heated to 374 degrees Celsius and pressurized to more than 219 atmospheres -- to actively decompose organic material into gases with a range of potential uses.

    Using the BGU system, organic components are dissolved by supercritical water into hydrogen, methane and carbon dioxide. Hydrogen and methane produced by dissolving organic materials can serve as fuel sources and feedstocks for the chemical industry, and hydrogen is particularly relevant to the automotive industry's efforts to replace gasoline. Accoding to the BGU researchers, the combination of unique properties of supercritical water and continued technological innovation will ultimately outperform existing waste-to-gas solutions.

    The BGU researchers are reportedly in discussions with two companies to develop a pilot facility and commercialize their technology. (Source: Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Jerusalem Post, 9 Feb., 2020) Contact: Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Dr. Efim Korytnyi, 972-8-6461111, in.bgu.ac.il

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Waste-to-Energy,  Waste-to-Gas,  


    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,  


    Heriot-Watt Univ. Funded for UK CCS Mapping Project (Int'l. Report)
    Heriot-Watt University
    Date: 2020-02-07
    In the UK, Heriot-Watt University reports its researchers led by Professor John Underhill are to map out the UK's best sites for carbon capture by studying the geology of depleted gas fields in the North Sea. The team will use data from the Oil and Gas Authority's (OGA) National Data Repository (NDR), which was opened up to access for the first time in 2019.

    Prof. Underhill believes the southern North Sea is one of the UK's most promising options for large-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS).

    The £1.4 million study, which is funded by the Oil and Gas Technology Centre's (OGTC) Subsurface Solution Centre and matched funding from industry and Heriot-Watt University, is intended to help policymakers determine the most suitable CCS sites. (Source: Heriot-Watt University Website, insider.co.uk, 5 Feb., 2020) Contact: Heriot-Watt University, Prof. John Underhill, Dr Susana Garcia, Assoc. Dir., Heriot-Watt Research Centre for Carbon Solutions, www.hw.ac.uk; Oil and Gas Technology Centre, +44 1224 063200, www.theogtc.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Heriot-Watt University,  CCS,  Carbon Storage,  Carbon Sequestration,  


    E15 Sales Surge After Removal of Regulatory Barrier (Report Attached)
    Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2020-02-07
    New analysis from the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) has revealed that around 500 million gallons of E15, a blend of 15% ethanol fuel, were sold across the US I 2019, setting a new record. The review, carried out by, extrapolated the Minnesota data nationally, finding that 499 million gallons of E15 were sold in 2019. This volume contained 75 million gallons of ethanol.

    The data also suggests that the impact of small refinery "hardship" waivers under the RFS took a toll on the industry. On a per-station basis, sales of E15 were lower in the first few months of 2019 than during the same period the year before. This change can be attributed to the fact that the EPA granted numerous exemptions under the RFS to small refineries, causing the price of RFS compliance credits (RINs) to fall. thus reducing the incentive for retailers to offer blends of fuel with higher ethanol content, reducing their ability to discount higher blends relative to gasoline.

    The full RFA analysis is HERE (Source: RFA, 4 Feb., 2020) Contact: RFA, Scott Richman, Economist, (202) 289-3835, www.ethanolrfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Renewable Fuels Association,  RFA,  Ethanol,  Ethanol Blend,  


    Durham County Council Commits £50Mn to Energy Efficiency (Int'l.)
    Durham County Council
    Date: 2020-02-07
    In the UK, the Durham County Council reports it plans to spend as much as £50 million over two years to improve energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions. The Council's plan includes:
  • Conversion of an additional 17,000 streetlights using energy-saving LEDs

  • The development of a scheme to harness heat from minewater as a form of renewable energy

  • Major energy efficiency upgrades to schools and other council buildings

  • Installation of solar panels in addition to already planned energy efficiency measures at the council's new HQ, subject to planning permission.

  • Raising the Council's existion emission reduction target from 60 pct to 80 pct by 2030. (Source: Durham County Council, Transport Network, 6 Feb., 2020) Contact: Durham County Council, +44 03000 26 0000, www.durham.gov.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Carbon Emissions,  LED Light,  


  • UK AI System Measures Commercial Bldg. Energy Efficiency (Int'l.)
    UWE Bristol
    Date: 2020-02-07
    In the UK, the University of West of England in Bristol (UWE Bristol) reports it is collaborative;y developing a system incorporating artificial intelligence (AI) to determine the energy consumption and cost efficiency of commercial buildings.

    The IoT-enabled Real-time Energy Analytics Platform (i-REAP) is a two-year £1.5 million collaborative R&D project funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The system will use data collected from a network of small sensors to paint an accurate picture of energy consumption at a number of commercial building test sites with a view to setting up a service to offer energy efficiency advice to businesses.

    The project is led by engineering firm TerOpta, which is developing Internet of Things (IoT) enabled sensors for i-REAP. Researchers from UWE Bristol's Big Data Lab will initially carry out a feasibility study in the buildings, assessing the heating layout, staff sitting arrangements, office structure, orientation of buildings and building facade, materials, as well as insulation. UWE will then install up to 80 IoT sensors inside and four outside each of the buildings. By collecting data over a period of six months, the researchers will be able to gather enough intelligence on the building to then give client advice on how the current building systems are functioning and how they could be improved by retrofitting for energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness. (Source: UWE Bristol, pbctoday, 6 Feb., 2020) Contact: UWE Bristol, Prof. Lukumon Oyedele, +4411732 83443, L.Oyedele@uwe.ac.uk, www.uwe,ac.uk

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


    NWO Earmarks €1.1Mn for Offshore Wind Study (Int'l Report)
    Dutch Research Council
    Date: 2020-02-07
    As part of its PhD@sea program, the Dutch Research Council (NWO) reports it has earmarked €1.1 million for research into the feasibility of novel technologies for large-scale offshore wind energy production, offshore storage and transport alternatives. The aim is to examine the technical challenges while taking into account explicit market, legal/regulatory and spatial planning considerations.

    The PhD@sea program, which focuses on cross-disciplinary research projects that can help realize the planning, operation, and maintenance of offshore wind farms, works with the University of Groningen, the University of Utrecht, Ocean Grazer B.V., Loyens & Loeff, New Energy Coalition, NOGAT, NOORDGASTRANSPORT, Vattenfall, Siemens Nederland, TNO, Dutch Energy Law Association NeVER, NOGEPA, and TenneT. (Source: Dutch Research Council, offshorewind.biz, 6 Feb., 2020) Contact: Dutch Research Council, +31 (0)70 3440640, +31 (0)70 3850971 - fax, nwo@nwo.nl, www.nwo.nl

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Offshore Wind,  


    Global Energy Efficiency in Commercial Buildings Market Size, Status and Forecast 2019-2025 (Report Available)
    QY Research
    Date: 2020-02-05
    QY Research is touting its Global Energy Efficiency in Commercial Buildings Market Size, Status and Forecast 2019-2025 report covering the global energy efficiency in commercial buildings market.

    According to the report, the global energy efficiency in commercial buildings market is expected to expand at a CAGR of 12.0 pct between 2019 and 2025. By the end of 2025, the global market value is projected to reach above $60 billion, an increase over its 2018 $25 billion mark.

    The report covers leading players in the global energy efficiency in commercial buildings market, including Johnson Controls, Logical Buildings, Siemens, Honeywell, Cylon Controls, Eaton Corporation, Spacewell, Carrier (UTC), Coolnomix, Schneider Electric, GridPoint, Fujitsu General, Technovator International, Emerson Electric, Danfoss, General Electric, Carel, Trane, Hitachi, and Bosch Thermotechnology.

    On the basis of product type, the market is segmented into energy management, lighting, and HVAC. The authors of the report have also segmented the global energy efficiency in commercial buildings market into schools, hospitals, stadiums, shopping malls, retain chains, offices, and hotels and others.

    Access report details and PDF report sample HERE. (Source: QY Research, PR, 29 Jan., 2020) Contact: QY Research, Inc., 626 295 2442, , www.qyresearch.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Eficiency,  


    Finns Launch Carbon-Neutrality by 2035 Roadmap (Int'l. Report)
    Finland Climate Change
    Date: 2020-02-05
    In Helsinki, the government of Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) has announced it will establish a muliti-million euro climate fund under the Finnish state-owned development and investment company VAKE. The initiative is part of the Marin government's long-awaited roadmap toward a carbon-neutral Finland by 2035. The fund will be targeted to combat the climate emergency, promote digitalization and expedite the transition to low-carbon industrial processes.

    The government also announced it will encourage "clean investments" by gradually lowering the electricity tax for manufacturing industries as of next year to the minimum level allowed in the European Union.

    The government also intends to increase carbon sequestration by three megatonnes by adopting a new climate programme for the land use, land-use change and forestry sector. The increase would account for less than 10 pct of the 35-megatonne change needed in the carbon balance to achieve carbon neutrality by 2035, according to the Finnish Climate Change Panel at the University of Helsinki.

    To meet its goal, Finland must cut its CO2e emissions from roughly 56.5 to 21.5 megatonnes by 2035. (Source: Finnish Climate Change Panel, Helsinki Times, 4 Feb., 2020) Contact: Finland Minister of the Interior, Maria Ohisalo, +358 295 480 171, +358 9 160 44635 - fax, www.intermin.fi/en/frontpage; Finnish Climate Change Panel, +358 50 4151201, www.ilmastopaneeli.fi

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Neutral,  Carbon Emissions,  CO2,  Climate Change,  Carbon Sequestration,  CCS,  

    Showing 1 to 50 of 1624.

    Go to page:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33