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Ireland Marine Institute to Study Blue Carbon (Int'l. Report)
Irish Marine Institute
Date: 2021-07-23
The Government of Ireland has tasked the Marine Institute -- the State agency responsible for marine research and innovation -- to undertake a collaborative research initiative aimed at investigating the climate-change mitigation potential of blue carbon and working towards creating an inventory that will assist the EU in meeting Ireland's climate-change objectives. Funding of up to €1.6 million has been earmarked for the project to run from 2021 to 2026.

The absorption and storage of atmospheric carbon dioxide in the world's oceans and coastal regions has been identified as one of the ways in which marine ecosystems can reduce the impacts of climate change. Launched in June 2020, Ireland's Programme for Government recognized the "the enormous blue carbon potential that the ocean has to offer in tackling climate change."

In preparation for the research programme, the Marine Institute commissioned Blue Carbon and Marine Carbon Sequestration in Irish Waters and Coastal Habitats, a synthesis report to review existing knowledge on blue carbon habitats and their role as carbon sinks in Ireland.

Download the Blue Carbon and Marine Carbon Sequestration report HERE. (Source: Marine Institute, PR, Afloat.ie, July , 2021) Contact: Irish Marine Institute, www.oar.marine.ie

More Low-Carbon Energy News Blue Carbon,  


Enchant Seeks Carbon Storage "Pore Space" Clarity (Ind. Report)
Enchant Energy
Date: 2021-07-19
In New Mexico, Enchant Energy is calling for state lawmakers to consider legislation to clarify "pore space" ownership and related issues.

Pore space -- the empty space between grains of rocks underground where the firm hopes to store carbon it would remove while running the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station with carbon capture technology -- starts just below the surface and can be used to sequester carbon dioxide by injecting the gas thousands of feet underground.

Enchant Energy has been working with the City of Farmington to retrofit the San Juan Generating Station with carbon capture technology after current operations end next year.

According to the company, pore space ownership is beneficial to the state by creating jobs, furthering economic development and generating taxes and payments from injection fees as well as defining ownership and conveyance without harming mineral rights. Montana, Oklahoma and Wyoming presently have pore space legislation. (Source: Enchant Energy, PR, Farmington Times, 17 July, 2021) Contact: Enchant Energy, Ciny Crane, CEO, 505-436-1828, www.enchantenergy.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Enchant Energy,  CCS,  Carbon Storage,  Carbon Sequestration,  


Fertoz Launching Carbon Sequestration Division (Int'l. Report)
Fertoz
Date: 2021-07-09
Melbourne, Australia-based phosphate developer and organic fertilizer manufacturer and supplier Fertoz reports it plans to raise $5 million (AUS) in a share placement to accelerate the development of its Fertoz Carbon division.

The new division will focus on carbon sequestration, consulting activities, trading and carbon implementation strategies using the company's organic fertilisers as a key input in improving soil health and carbon accretion. (Source: Fertoz, PR, Website, 8 July, 2021) Contact: Fertoz, +61 3 8 395 5446, (720) 413-4520 -- US Office, www.fertoz.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  Carbon Capture,  Carbon Sequestration,  


Iowa Carbon Sequestration Task Force Announced (Ind. Report)
Iowa
Date: 2021-06-25
In the Hawkeye State, Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) signed an executive order on Tuesday launching a task force to explore carbon sequestration and the opportunities it presents for further economic development in Iowa. Governor Reynolds will serve as the leader of the Carbon Sequestration Task Force that was recommended by her previously appointed Economic Recovery Advisory Board. Task force members will assist in formulating policy recommendations ahead of the 2022 legislative session.

Details on the Task Force are www.iowaeda.com/carbon-sequestration (Source: Office of the Governor, Sioux City Journal, 23 June, 2021) Contact: Office of Iowa Governor, 515 -281-5211, www.governor.iowa.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Sequestration,  


Carbon Removal Specialist Boomitra Raises $4Mn (Ind. Report)
Boomitra
Date: 2021-06-23
Silicon Valley, California-headquartered Boomitra. -- fka ConserWater -- a technology start-up working on removal of atmospheric carbon by using artificial intelligence in agriculture, reports having raised $4 million from Yara Growth Ventures, the VC arm of fertiliser major Yara International. Other investors include Chevron Technology Ventures, Jerry Yang, co-founder of Yahoo, Tom Steyer and Kat Taylor.

Boomitra's satellite and Artificial Intelligence-based technology directly measures soil carbon levels without using sensors or soil sampling which enables soil carbon sequestration to be scaled on a global level. It also enables farmers worldwide to participate and increase their incomes, according to the company.

Boomitra operates an international soil carbon market, where corporations and governments are able to get the lowest-cost internationally certified carbon removal credits and farmers are incentivised to increase soil organic carbon, sequestering CO2.

Boomitra works with ground partners across more than 2 million acres in countries such as Mexico, Kenya and India and is in the process of generating and certifying more than 10 million tonnes of carbon removal this year. (Source: Boomitra, PR, Website, 22 June, 2021) Contact: Boomitra, Aadith Moorthy, CEO, info @ boomitra .com, www.boomitra.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Removal,  Soil Carbon,  Boomitra,  


"One of the Most Ambitious (Climate Action Plans) in the Nation" Released (Ind. Report)

Date: 2021-06-23
In Maryland, Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich has released the county's Climate Action Plan that aims to reduce GHG emissions by 80 pct by 2027 and by 100 pct by 2035 compared to 2005 levels. The plan, which outlines 86 climate actions, is "one of the most ambitious climate plans in the nation for a local government", according to the release.

The main elements of the Climate Action Plan include:

  • Reduce Emissions in the Energy, Buildings and Transportation sectors -- The plan recommends actions that include increasing the use of and investment in clean, reliable and affordable energy; implementing code requirements related to energy efficiency, solar installations and net-zero standards and building energy performance standards for existing buildings; expanding public transit service, pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure and a shared micro-mobility network; and supporting community-wide adoption of electric vehicles.

  • Center Racial Equity and Social Justice -- The plan considers the racial equity and social justice implications of each climate action through the identification of equity-enhancing measures. The plan also assesses impacts on communities most vulnerable to climate hazards.

  • Address Residual Emissions and Carbon Sequestration -- The plan identifies nature-based carbon sequestration actions including retaining, managing and expanding forests, wetlands, grasslands and urban tree canopy. It also seeks to increase carbon in soils through improved agricultural practices.

  • Reduce Climate Risk -- This will be achieved through actions that enhance the resilience of the community and infrastructure assets, including repairing and upgrading stormwater drainage and management systems; updating green streetscape and green infrastructure standards; hardening emergency shelters and installing resilience hubs; and updating floodplain maps.

  • Identify Ways to Pay for Climate Action -- Implementing the actions in the plan calls for commitment from the public and private sectors while leveraging local, State and Federal government resources. It will be critical to mitigate the cost impacts to low-and moderate-income residents in particular to ensure that the most vulnerable residents are not adversely impacted.

  • Enhance Climate Governance -- This will be accomplished through actions that institutionalize climate change considerations within Montgomery County Government processes and decision making; measure and report on progress; and foster creativity, collaboration and innovation to implement climate solutions.

  • Engage the Community as Partners in Climate Action -- Residents will be involved in the implementation of the plan through a climate communications coalition; a Community Justice Academy in which community ambassadors work with neighbors and the County to co-create community-based solutions; and enhanced partnerships with municipalities. The plan increases opportunities for climate change education in the public school system and calls for a statewide coalition of local governments and youth groups focused on advancing ambitious State climate policy.

    Download the plan details HERE. (Source: Montgomery County, PR June, 2021) Contact: Montgomery County Maryland, Marc Elrich, Climate Action Plan, County Executive , www.montgomerycountymd.gov

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


  • Worley Tapped for Aemetis Carbon Zero Plant (Ind. Report)
    Aemetis
    Date: 2021-06-18
    Following up on our 30th April report, Cupertino, California-based renewable natural gas (RNG), renewable fuel and biochemicals specialist Aemetis, Inc. reports it has awarded an engineering services contract to Worley for the Aemetis Carbon Zero renewable jet and diesel plant in Riverbank, California.

    The Aemetis Carbon Zero renewable jet and diesel project is designed to "hydrotreat" renewable oils with hydrogen from orchard and forest wood waste. By utilizing hydroelectric electricity and carbon sequestration along with negative carbon intensity hydrogen, the Aemetis plant is expected to produce among the lowest carbon intensity renewable jet and diesel fuel in the world.

    Worley is providing engineering to implement Axens renewable jet and diesel technology at the Riverbank site. Axens's technology hydrotreats a wide range of lipids to produce low-density and high cetane renewable diesel and renewable sulphur-free jet fuel. The Axens technology produces renewable jet and renewable diesel in an integrated process. (Source: Aemetis, Website PR, 16 June, 2020) Contact: Worley, www.worley.com; Aemetis Biogas, Andy Foster, Pres., Aemetis, Eric McAfee, CEO, (408) 213-0940, emcafee@aemetis.com, www.aemetis.com; Axens, Patrick Sarrazin, Exec. VP, www.axens.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Axens,  Aemetis,  Worley,  RNG,  


    Blue Carbon, Climate Change Mitigation Study Launched (Int'l.)
    Ireland Marine Institute
    Date: 2021-06-16
    The of Government of Ireland has tasked the Marine Institute -- the State agency responsible for marine research and innovation -- to undertake collaborative research aimed at investigating the climate-change mitigation potential of blue carbon and working towards creating an inventory that will assist the EU in meeting Ireland's climate-change objectives. Funding of up to €1.6 million has been earmarked for the project to run from 2021 to 2026.

    The absorption and storage of atmospheric CO2 in the world's oceans and coastal regions has been identified as one of the ways in which marine ecosystems can reduce the impacts of climate change.

    Launched in June 2020, Ireland's Programme for Government recognized the "the enormous blue carbon potential that the ocean has to offer in tackling climate change."

    In order to prepare the ground for such a large-scale research programme, the Marine Institute commissioned Blue Carbon and Marine Carbon Sequestration in Irish Waters and Coastal Habitats, a synthesis report to review existing knowledge on blue carbon habitats and their role as carbon sinks in Ireland. Download the report HERE. (Source: Marine Institute, PR, Afloat.ie, June, 2021) Contact: Marine Institute, www.oar.marine.ie

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change Mitigation,  Blue Carbon,  Climate Change,  


    Aalto Studies Green Infrastructure to Cut Carbon Foot Prints (Int'l.)
    Aalto University
    Date: 2021-06-16
    A new study led by Finland's Aalto University is the first to map out how green infrastructure can be a resource for cities on the path to carbon neutrality. The study, done in collaboration with the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) and the University of Helsinki, charted the lifecycle phases of plants, soils and mulches to determine the basic considerations needed to create standards for products commonly used in green urban spaces. p> The study identified the existing carbon footprint standards, widely used in the construction industry, that would need development if applied to green infrastructure. To do so, they compared the flows of carbon in soils, mulches and plants over their lifespans. The team then tried to translate these carbon flows into the standardised reporting format used for conventional building products.

    The study recommendations provide a concrete basis for developing global and regional -- for example, European Union -- standards for green infrastructure. The aim is to ensure claims of carbon storage hold true, as well as eventually have a tool for landscape designers to help plan new areas or refurbishing existing urban spaces.

    The recommendations are particularly relevant for countries and regions like the Nordics, where nature has been traditionally integrated into urban landscapes. However, they can also help other areas meet their carbon targets.

    Researchers at Aalto University, together with consortium partners of the Co-Carbon project, are currently starting field tests to determine the exact carbon sequestration potential of plants at various stages of growth. While the carbon storage potential of trees is relatively well-known, the study is set to be the first to focus on plants and bushes, elements commonly used in urban landscaping. At Luke, researchers are developing a tool to model the changes in carbon storage of plants and soil at regional level due to land use changes. Such a tool could help planners target and maintain existing carbon storage in plants and soil. (Source: Aalto University, PR, Website, June, 2021) Contact: Aalto University, Dr. Matti Kuittinen, Dr. Matti Kuittinen, +358 5059 47990, matti.kuittinen@aalto.fi, www.aalto.fi; Natural Resources Institute Finland, Dr. Eeva-Maria Tuhkanen, Research scientist, +358 2953 26595, eeva-maria.tuhkanen@luke.fi, www.luke.fi

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Foot Print,  


    Alberta Establishing CCUS, Carbon Management Hubs (Ind. Report)
    ALberta
    Date: 2021-06-11
    In Edmonton, "The Government of Alberta sees carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) as an integral part of our environmental and economic future. Injecting carbon dioxide underground is a proven process and has occurred in Alberta for decades. However, as a means to address greenhouse gas emissions and recognize the environmental benefit of CCUS, a strong regulatory system must exist. The regulatory system is especially important with the large volumes of carbon dioxide that need to be captured and injected to meet global climate targets. The system must establish a high level of rigor that accounts for and demonstrates the permanent storage of every tonne of carbon dioxide.

    "Moving forward, the government will issue carbon sequestration rights through a competitive process, advancing the development of strategically located carbon storage hubs that will provide carbon sequestration services to a number of industrial facilities. The intent is to enhance Alberta's carbon management system by providing confidence to industry investors and Albertans that CCUS will be deployed in a responsible and strategic manner."

    Download the Carbon Sequestration Tenure Management document HERE. (Source: Gov. of Alberta, Energy Operations, May, 2021) Contact: Gov. of Alberta, Energy, carboncapture.energy@alberta.gov.ca, www.alberta.gov.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News CCS,  CCUS,  Carbon Emissions,  


    Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Initiative Launched (Ind. Report)
    Canadian Natural Resources
    Date: 2021-06-09
    On the Canadian prairies, Calgary-based Canadian Natural Resources, Cenovus Energy, Imperial, MEG Energy and Suncor Energy are touting the recent launch of the Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero initiative. The Initiative will work collectively with the Canadian federal and Alberta governments is to achieve net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from oil sands operations by 2050 to help Canada meet its climate goals, including its Paris Agreement commitments and 2050 net zero aspirations.

    Pathways vision is anchored by a major Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage (CCUS) trunkline connected to a carbon sequestration hub to enable multi-sector tie-in projects for expanded emissions reductions. The initiative pathways to address GHG emissions includes:

  • A core Alberta infrastructure corridor linking oil sands facilities in the Fort McMurray and Cold Lake regions to a carbon sequestration hub near Cold Lake via a CO2 trunkline. The trunkline would also be available to other industries in the region interested in capturing and sequestering CO2. There is also potential to link the infrastructure corridor to the Edmonton region.

  • Deploying existing and emerging GHG reduction technologies at oil sands operations along the corridor, including CCUS technology, clean hydrogen, process improvements, energy efficiency, fuel switching and electrification.

  • Evaluating, piloting and accelerating application of potential emerging emissions-reducing technologies including direct air capture, next-generation recovery technologies and small modular nuclear reactors.

    In addition to collaborating and investing together with industry, it is essential for governments to develop enabling policies, fiscal programs and regulations to provide certainty for this type of long-term, large-scale investment. This includes dependable access to carbon sequestration rights, emissions reduction credits (RECs) and ongoing investment tax credits. (Source: Canadian Natural Resources, PR, Website, 9 June, 2021) Contact: Canadian Natural Resources, Tim McKay, Pres., (403) 517-6700, Facsimile (403) 517-7350 , www.cnrl.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Oil Sand,  Carbon Emissions,  


  • UCLA Touting sCS2 Seawater Carbon Removal Tech.(R&D Report)
    UCLA
    Date: 2021-06-07
    Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) are developing a single-step carbon sequestration and storage (sCS2) technology that captures carbon from the atmosphere in a process that mimics the formation of seashells on the ocean floor. In lab experiments, the team tested a prototype that pulls in seawater and creates limestone and magnesite, the same materials created by mollusks to form seashells.

    Because the ocean and atmosphere are in a state of equilibrium, the ocean essentially acts as a sponge for the atmosphere's CO2. However, as it is already saturated it can't take any more. If CO2 is removed in large amounts from the ocean though, it will then suck more out of the atmosphere. This is the main idea behind the UCLA scientists' new technology, which is aimed at speeding up the process of turning CO2 into minerals in ocean water. The machine can either gather the seashell-like material for use on land, or it can release it back into the ocean. The seawater used in the machine flows back out to the ocean, where it will then absorb more CO2.

    A benefit of this method is that CO2 levels are 150 times more concentrated in seawater than they are in the air, meaning any method extracting CO2 from the ocean is more efficient. The sCS2 method also develops hydrogen as a commercial byproduct. The research notes that removing CO2 from the atmosphere is "first and foremost" an economic challenge, given the scale of the task, and that it would take approximately 1,800 of their sCS2 plants to remove 10 billion metric tpy of CO2 at a cost of trillions of dollars. Capturing 10 billion metric tpy of CO2 would require 1,800 of the devices.

    The research team's next step is to run real-world experiments to improve their technology by collect data they couldn't acquire in the laboratory. The e process has some advantages compared to other carbon-removal technology, including the fact that seawater already naturally takes up CO2 at a high concentration, 150 times the level in air. (Source: UCLA, PR, June, FastCo, 3 June, 2021) Contact: UCLA, Civil Engineering Prof. Gaurav Sant, www.samueli.ucla.edu/gaurav-sant

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Capture,  UCLA,  Hydrogen,  


    FACA Recommends USDA Carbon Bank Pilot Projects (Ind. Report)
    Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance
    Date: 2021-05-05
    The Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA) has developed the following specific recommendations for how the U.S. USDA should approach a potential carbon bank -- a voluntary policy mechanism to help reduce barriers that producers and landowners face to participating in voluntary carbon markets and adopting climate-smart practices.

    FACA recommends that USDA lay the foundation for a potential carbon bank by first developing a series of pilot projects aimed at:

  • Scaling climate solutions -- Pilot projects should help increase adoption of climate-smart practices that reduce, directly capture or sequester greenhouse gas emissions, and/or increase climate resilience. Pilots should deploy "critical climate infrastructure" to increase the capacity of farmers, ranchers and forest owners to adapt to climate change, while ensuring food and economic security.

  • Removing barriers to adoption -- Pilot projects should encourage the widespread adoption of climate-smart practices and critical climate infrastructure by removing barriers and making it easier for producers and landowners to adopt these practices.

  • Improving carbon accounting standards -- USDA should develop consistent and credible criteria to account for the carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas reduction benefits of climate-smart agriculture and forestry projects and practices.

  • Ensuring equitable opportunities -- Pilot projects must be developed with and provide equitable opportunities for minority, socially disadvantaged and small-scale producers.

  • Information gained from the pilots will serve two critical purposes -- First, it will help USDA build a durable foundation for a carbon bank that gains long-term bipartisan congressional support. Second, it will help USDA build confidence in how to verify the climate benefits delivered by specific practices and management approaches.

    According to the FACA, this approach will lay essential building blocks for a voluntary carbon bank that creates opportunities for all producers and landowners to participate in rapidly developing voluntary private markets and leverages private investment in agricultural and forestry climate solutions. As USDA develops a carbon bank, it must protect all existing funding for farm bill conservation and insurance programs, and it must ensure that a USDA-led carbon bank doesn't undermine voluntary private markets.

    The FACA consists of 70 member organizations representing farmers, ranchers, forest owners, agribusinesses, manufacturers, the food and innovation sector, state governments, sportsmen, and environmental advocates. These groups have broken through historical barriers to develop and promote shared climate policy priorities across the entire agriculture, food and forestry value chains, according to its website. (Source: FACA, Website PR, 3 Apr., 2021) Contact: FACA, www.agclimatealliance.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Voluntary Carbon Market,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  Carbon Bank,  Carbon Storage,  CCS,  


  • Qube's Methane Monitoring Alberta Regulator Approval (Ind. Report)
    Qube Technologies, Enhance Energy
    Date: 2021-05-03
    On the Canadian prairies, Calgary-based Qube Technologies Inc. reports the Alberta Energy Regulator has approved Qube's alternative leak detection and repair pilot program to detect and repair climate-warming methane leaks from the Oil and Gas industry.

    Qube uses low-cost, high-sensitivity sensors to continuously and autonomously measure a host of gases in real-time to detect emissions faster than traditional industry approaches. Qube analyzes field data with the help of artificial intelligence and, by combining gas measurements, atmospheric data, and other operational inputs, can locate and quantify different leaks by emission source and severity, according to the release.

    In collaboration with Enhance Energy and Highwood Emissions Management, Qube has become the first continuous monitoring technology to successfully demonstrate emission reductions effectiveness in the eyes of a regulator. Enhance is an Alberta-based energy company that specializes in using carbon sequestration to improve the recovery of energy resources in a sustainable fashion. To date, Enhance has sequestered over 1 million tonnes of CO2. (Source: Qube Technologies Inc., Website, PR, 3 May, 2021) Contact: Qube Technologies, Alex MacGregor, CEO, Alex.MacGregor@qubeiot.com, www.qubeiot.com; Highwood Emissions Management, Thomas Fox, Pres., Thomas@highwoodemissions.com, www.highwoodemissions.com; Enhance Energy, www.enhancenergy.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Methane news,  Methane Emissions news,  Methane Leak news,  


    Archaea Energy Renewable Natural Gas Platform Announced (M&A)
    Archaea Energy
    Date: 2021-04-09
    Carnegie, Pennsylvania- based Rice Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company focused on the energy transition sector, reports an agreement to combine Novi, Michigan-based Aria Energy LLC and Belle Vernon, Penna.-based biogas developer Archaea to create Archaea Energy, a renewable natural gas (RNG) platform. The transaction is expected to close in Q3 this year.

    New company highlights include:

  • The business combination is expected to create the industry-leading platform in the U.S. to capture and convert waste emissions from landfills and anaerobic digesters into low-carbon RNG, electricity, and green hydrogen.

  • Aria, a portfolio company of funds managed by the Infrastructure and Power strategy of Ares Management Corp is being acquired for $680 million and brings a comprehensive portfolio of operational LFG assets, best-in-class operating experience, and a deep inventory of greenfield LFG-to-RNG projects and electric-to-RNG conversion opportunities.

  • Archaea LLC is being acquired for $347 million and brings leading RNG technology professionals, a deep inventory of LFG-to-RNG projects -- including the world's largest RNG plant currently under construction (Project Assai) -- an innovative commercial strategy, groundbreaking low-cost carbon sequestration, and negative-carbon LFG-to-green hydrogen development projects currently in the design stage.

  • Pro forma for the transaction, the combined Company will have over $350 million of cash on the balance sheet, providing ample liquidity to fund its pipeline of development projects and bridging the combined Company to free cash flow generation starting in 2023.

    The combined Company will be headquartered in Cannonsburg, Penna. led by a majority-independent board consisting of executives Daniel J. Rice, IV, Kyle Derham, Kate Jackson, Joe Malchow, and Jim Torgerson of RAC; Nicholas Stork, CEO of Archaea; and Scott Parkes of Aria. (Source: Rice Acquisition Corp., PR, 7 Apr., 2021) Contact: Archea Energy, Nick Stork, CEO, info@archaea.energy, www.archaeaenergy.com; Aria Energy, Richard DiGia, CEO, (248) 380-3920, www.ariaenergy.com: Rice Acquisition Corp., www.ricepac.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News RNG,  Aria Energy,  Archaea Energy,  ,  


  • USDA Touts Carbon Sequestration Easements (Ind. Report)
    USDA
    Date: 2021-04-07
    In Washington, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service reports that over the past 28 years it has protected more than 5 million acres of wetlands, grasslands, and prime farmland -- an area the size of New Jersey -- in perpetuity through the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). ACEP helps landowners, land trusts, and other entities protect, restore, and enhance wetlands, grasslands, and working farms and ranches through conservation easements

    Wetland Easements -- totaling over 2.8 million acres nationwide -- improve water quality by filtering sediments and chemicals, reducing flooding, recharging groundwater, protecting biological diversity while Agricultural Land Easements protect productive working lands being converted to non-agricultural uses. Agricultural land easements total more than 1.9 million acres.

    Working with private landowners to protect, preserve and restore wetlands, grasslands, forests and farmlands is integral to USDA's efforts to build resiliency and reduce the impacts of climate change across the nation. Easements allow landowners to partner with NRCS to implement voluntary climate-smart management practices that maximize the amount of carbon sequestered from the atmosphere and stored in soils or plant biomass across these landscapes.

    The Biden Administration USDA is engaged in a "whole-of-government effort to combat the climate crisis and conserve and protect our nation's lands, biodiversity and natural resources including our soil, air and water." (Source: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, PR, 3 April, 2021) Contact: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Terry Cosby, Acting Chief, 202-690-7246, www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/site/national/home

    More Low-Carbon Energy News USDA,  Carbon Sequestration,  


    Bay State Governor Inks Climate Legislation (Reg. & Leg.)
    Mass. Climate Change
    Date: 2021-03-29
    Following up on our Jan. 6th coverage, Bay State Gov. Charlie Baker (D) has signed into law climate legislation committing Massachusetts to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, establish interim emissions goals between now and the middle of the century, adopt energy efficiency standards for appliances, authorize another 2,400 MW of offshore wind power and address needs in environmental justice communities.

    The new law requires that greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 be at least 50 pct lower than 1990 emissions, and that 2040 emissions be at least 75 pct lower and that 2050 emissions be at least 85 pct below 1990 emissions. The remaining 15 pct will be achieved through carbon sequestration and carbon banking.

    The bill also requires the Department of Public Utilities to consider emissions reductions on an equal footing as its considerations of power generation reliability and affordability within 90 days, that the governor appoint three green building experts to the Board of Building Regulations and Standards, and that the administration establish the first-ever greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal for the home energy efficiency program MassSave. (Source: Various Media, Sentinal Herald, 27 Mar., 2021)Contact: Office of Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, (617) 725-4005, www.mass.gov/governor

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Charlie Baker,  Climate Change,  MassSave,  


    Schlumberger, LafargeHolcim Announce CCS Collaboration (Int'l.)
    Schlumberger, LafargeHolcim
    Date: 2021-02-12
    Building materials firm LafargeHolcim and Schlumberger New Energy are reporting a partnership to explore the feasibility of capturing carbon at LafargeHolcim cement plants and storing it using Schlumberger's carbon sequestration technologies, according to various industry media. Rigzone report.

    According to a Schlumberger statement, a carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) feasibility study will focus on a pair of LafargeHolcim cement plants in Europe and North America. Schlumberger also noted its LafargeHolcim collaboration marks a step toward developing a blueprint for large-scale CCS deployment. (Source: Schlumberger New Energy, Rigzone, 10 Feb., 2021)Contact: LafargeHolcim Ltd, Magali Anderson, Chief Sustainability Officer, Stephanie Sulcer, Communications, 847 716 0368, stephanie.sulcer@lafargeholcim.com, www.lafargeholcim.com; Schlumberger New Energy, Ashok Belani, Exec. VP, www.slb.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News LafargeHolcim,  Schlumberger,  CCS,  


    Running Tide Touts Kelp Carbon Sequestration (Ind. Report)

    Date: 2021-02-10
    Portland, Maine based Running Tide Technologies, which began as an aquaculture operation focused on restoring oyster habitats -- is reporting its innovative approach to carbon sequestration -- "We're just fishing for carbon now, and kelp's the net."

    The company grows massive amounts of kelp seaweed on floating bouys. The kelp soaks up carbon, via photosynthesis, then after about seven months the mature kelp sink into the ocean floor where it will sequester carbon for thousands of years, according to the release.

    This spring, the company plans to deploy 1,600 buoys to demonstrate that in principle, the system could safely and economically be expanded to a global scale with millions of microfarms floating in the open sea, moving billions of tons of carbon from sky to ocean floor every year, according to the company release. (Source: Running Tide Technologies, MPR, 8 Feb., 2021) Contact: Running Tide Technologies, Marty Odlin, CEO, Adam Baske, Bus. Dev., media@runningtide.com, www.runningtide.com


    Marin Carbon Project Seeks to Slow Effects of Climate Change for Farmers (Ind. Report)
    Marin Carbon Project
    Date: 2021-02-01
    In the Golden State, response to the rapid pace of global climate change, the Marin Carbon Project (MCP) seeking to enhance carbon sequestration in rangeland, agricultural, and forest soils through applied research, demonstration and implementation in Marin County.

    To that end, the project is using compost, fertilizer and planting to increase the amount of carbon in the soil and has helped set up 200 carbon sequestration projects at 60 different Marin County farms.

    The Marin Carbon Project's vision is for the county's landowners and land managers to serve as stewards of soil health and to undertake carbon farming in a manner that can improve on-farm productivity and viability, enhance ecosystem functions and stop and reverse climate change. (Source: Marin Carbon Project, PR, NBC Bay Area, 28 Jan., 2021) Contact: Marin Carbon Project, www.marincarbonproject.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Sequestration,  Soil Carbon,  


    Fiji, World Bank Ink Forest Carbon Trading Agreement (Int'l.)
    Fiji,Forest Carbon Partnership
    Date: 2021-01-29
    In the South Pacific, Fiji has become the only Small Island Developing State in the Pacific to enter a carbon trade under a 5-year emissions reduction payment agreement with the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, a global partnership at the World Bank. The facility will unlock $26 million in results based payments for increasing carbon sequestration and reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.

    The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) is a global partnership of governments, businesses, civil society, and Indigenous Peoples focused on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, forest carbon stock conservation, the sustainable management of forests, and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries, activities commonly referred to as REDD+. The FCPF works with 47 developing countries across Africa, Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean, along with 17 donors that have made contributions and commitments totaling $1.3 billion. The FCPF supports REDD+ efforts through its Readiness and Carbon Funds.

    Fijian Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum noted "The emission reduction program area includes forest protection, planting and ustainable management of over 37,000 hectares spread over 20 districts on the islands of Viti Levu, Vanua Levu and Taveuni, with the potential to expand to other areas that express interest. The contracted volume of greenhouse gases that Fiji is expected to sequester from these forest activities in the next five years is 2.5 million tonnes, for which a result-based payment of $12.5 million will be paid upon verification by the World Bank."(Source: FBN News, 27 Jan., 2021) Contact: Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, www.forestcarbonpartnership.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News World Bank,  REDD+,  Forest Carbon Partnership,  Fiji,  Carbon Trading,  Reforestation,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change ,  


    Global Grasslands Contribute to Climate Warming (Study Attached)
    Climate Change,International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis
    Date: 2021-01-08
    Grasslands play a critical role in carbon sequestration. But a recent study -- Climate Warming from Managed Grasslands Cancels Cooling Effect of Carbon Sinks in Sparsely Grazed and Natural Grasslands -- found human activity is causing grasslands to become a source of greenhouse gas emissions.

    According to the USDA Climate Change Resource Center, grasslands cover approximately 25 pct of the earth's surface, contain nearly 12 pct of the land-based carbon stocks and are essential in supporting food and livestock production. Yet, citing the expansion of pasture lands and higher livestock numbers, researchers warn current management of grasslands is accelerating climate change.

    Until recently, natural and managed grasslands emitted and removed an equal amount of greenhouse gases, canceling each other out. Researchers from the Austria-based International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) investigated how these fluctuations in greenhouse gases have contributed to climate change in both managed pastures and natural grasslands, between the years of 1750 and 2012. The IIASA researchers found that the ability for natural and sparsely grazed grasslands to absorb more carbon has intensified while grasslands heavily managed by humans became a source of greenhouse gases, emitting similar quantities of greenhouse gases to that of croplands.

    While nearly half of all temperate grasslands and 16 pct of tropical grasslands have been transformed for agricultural or industrial use and conserving grasslands to preserve soil health and reduce emissions from managed grasslands could deliver a significant reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the study.

    Download the Climate Warming from Managed Grasslands Cancels Cooling Effect of Carbon Sinks in Sparsely Grazed and Natural Grasslands report HERE. (Source: Nature Communications, EcoWatch, 6 Jan., 2020) Contact: USDA Climate Change Resource Center, www.fs.usda.gov/ccrc; International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, www.iiasa.ac.at

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


    New Mass. Climate Bill Awaits Gov. Baker's Signature (Reg & Leg.)
    Massachusetts Carbon Emissions
    Date: 2021-01-06
    In Boston, the Massachusetts legislature has forwarded a bill overhauling the state's 2008 climate law to Governor Charlie Baker (D) for signature into law.

    The new bill requires a 100 pct carbon emissions reduction -- carbon neutrality -- by 2050 as opposed to the 2008 climate legislation requiring an 80 pct reduction of 1990 level emissions by 2050.

    If passed into law, the new bill would impose emissions sub-limits for certain sectors of the economy, specifically electric power, transportation, commercial heating and cooling, residential, industrial processes and natural gas distribution and service.

    The bill also calls for increased carbon sequestration and requires municipal lighting to purchase 50 pct of non-carbon-emitting electricity by 2030, increased energy efficiency, increased reliance on renewable energy, a five-year moratorium on allowing wood-burning facilities to qualify as "non-carbon emitting resources", increased support for electric vehicles, and other initatives and requirements. (Source: Various Media, MassLive, Jan., 2021)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Massachusetts Climate Change,  


    Irish Soil Carbon Observatory to Monitor Emissions (Int'l. Report)
    Ireland Soil Carbon
    Date: 2020-11-20
    In Dublin, the Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine, reports the Department is investing in the establishment of a National Agricultural Soil Carbon Observatory to monitor carbon emissions and removals across a range of Irish soils.

    The National Agricultural Soil Carbon Observatory will comprise up to 10 "Flux Towers" on agricultural systems across a range of soil types adding value to existing projects including; the industry co-funded SignPost farms and the Agricultural Catchments Programme. The Observatory will place Ireland at the forefront of EU carbon sequestration research and will enable Ireland to:

  • better quantify and model soil carbon emissions and sinks from agricultural land;

  • enable mitigation measures to increase carbon sequestration to be included in the national inventory;

  • participate in the EU ICOS (Integrated Carbon Observation System) network:

  • enable Ireland to benefit from the 2018 EU Effort Sharing Regulation. (Source: Gov. of Ireland, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, PR, 19 Nov., 2020) Contact: Ireland, Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, www.agriculture.gov.ie

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Storage news,  CO2 news,  Carbon Emissions news,  Soil Carbon news,  


  • Univ. Maine, NASA to Monitor Forest Climate Progress (Ind. Report)
    University of Maine, NASA
    Date: 2020-11-11
    The University of Maine Center for Research on Sustainable Forests is reporting receipt of $500,000 in grant funding for a three-year study to help NASA's Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation science team develop and test methods for mapping carbon deposits and biological changes across a large, complex swath of eastern forest.

    The researchers will use data from NASA's newly launched ecosystem LiDAR (Light Detecting and Ranging) instrument, orbiting the Earth on the International Space Station. Michigan State University and the University of Minnesota will also participate in the study and will add the LiDAR data to their "FORest Carbon Estimation" project aimed at understanding and predicting how forests respond to changes in climate.

    Maine's forest and associated industry currently offset 75 pct of the state's annual carbon emissions, according to recent estimates by Center for Research on Sustainable Forests researchers. Maine is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2045 through reduced emissions and innovative policies to increase carbon sequestration, according to a release. (Source: Univ. of Maine, Maine Biz, Nov., 2020) Contact: NASA, (301) 286-2000, www.nasa.gov; University of Maine Center for Research on Sustainable Forests, Aaron Weiskittel, Dir., 207-581-3794, www.crsf.umaine.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News NASA,  Climate Change,  GHG,  


    Louisiana Carbon Storage Project Awaits EPA Permits (Ind. Report)
    Gulf Coast Sequestration
    Date: 2020-10-23
    Louisiana-based Gulf Coast Sequestration LLC is reporting plans to create a 10,000 foot deep carbon sequestration project to store up to 80 million tons of CO2 between the Sabine River and Lake Charles, Louisiana.

    The company, which has applied for the necessary EPA Class VI UIC permits , believes the project will be "the largest geologic carbon capture sequestration project in the U.S. and one of the largest in the world", according to the release. (Source: Gulf Coast Sequestration LLC , Website PR, 20 Oct., 2020) Contact: Gulf Coast Sequestration LLC, Colin Williams, Bus. Dev., info@gcscarbon.com, www.gcscarbon.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Gulf Coast Sequestration ,  CCS,  


    Forest Carbon Works Raises $5Mn (Ind. Report, Funding)
    Forest Carbon Works
    Date: 2020-10-07
    Forest Carbon Works reports raising an additional $5M in growth capital from AXA Investment Managers Impact Fund: Climate and Biodiversity. The funds will be used to increase membership-based services throughout nation-wide.

    Forest Carbon Works delivers premium payments to landowners for long-term conservation and climate outcomes on properties as small as forty acres. As members of Forest Carbon Works, some landowners are already getting paid more than $50,000 each year. Membership payments are substantial because carbon credits generated using the platform are legally recognized by the first enforced cap-and-trade program in the United States.

    (Source: Forest Carbon Works, PR, 6 Oct., 2020) Contact: Forest Carbon Works , (415) 475-8966, inquire@forestcarbonworks.com, www.forestcarbonworks.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Credits,  Forest Carbon Works,  Carbon Sequestration,  Carbon Emissions,  


    Univ. of Houston Joins National CCUS Effort (Ind. Report)
    University of Houston ,Southern States Energy Board
    Date: 2020-09-21
    In the Lone Star State, the University of Houston Center for Carbon Management in Energy reports it is collaborating with the Southern States Energy Board -- a non-profit interstate compact of 16 southern states -- to promote the rapid deployment of carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) technologies.

    The collaborative work will be funded by a five-year, $3.5 million grant to the Southern States Energy Board (SSEB) from the U.S. DOE Office of Fossil Energy. The board is including Texas, and two territories, focused on energy and environmental issues.

    The Center for Carbon Management in Energy was launched as a University research center in 2019 to help industry reduce its carbon footprint and to find new business opportunities for carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases. SSEB's Carbon Management Program was created in 2003.

    SSEB's previous work in carbon management, including the Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership program and the regional CCUS as well workforce development focused on public, industry and education. (Source: Univ. of Houston, PR, 17 Sept., 2020) Contact: Univ. of Houston, Charles McConnell, Exec. Dir. Carbon Management and Energy Sustainability, 832-922-5799, www.uh.edu; Southern States Energy Board, Kenneth J. Nemeth, Exec. Dir., 770-242-7712, www.sseb.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News University of Houston ,  CCUS,  Southern States Energy Board,  


    CARB Supports Land-Based GHG Emissions Regulation (Reg. & Leg.)
    California Air Resources Board
    Date: 2020-09-18
    In Sacramento, California legislators are considering Assembly Bill 2954 that would regulate carbon sequestration and related programs on 'natural' and agricultural, grazing, and forest lands and thus reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) estimates emissions from natural and agricultural lands produce 8 pct of the state's GHG emissions.

    If passed into law, CARB would be required to set GHG emissions reductions and carbon sequestration targets on the state's working and natural lands by January 1, 2023. CARB would also be mandated to identify policies and practices to achieve its objectives, along with tracking methods for the state to monitor progress.

    Carbon sequestration practices such as mulching fields, reducing tillage, and planting ground-cover crops and others would be included in CARB's updated Scoping Plan.

    California has stated a goal of achieving net-zero GHG emissions standards statewide by 2045, meaning measures such as those proposed by this bill must be incorporated by the state's legislature. (Source: CARB, EHS Daily Advisor, 17 Sept., 2020)Contact: CARB, Richard Perry, CEO, Melanie Turner, Information Officer, (916) 322-2990, melanie.turner@arb.ca.gov, www.arb.ca.gov

    More Low-Carbon Energy News California Air Resources Board ,  CCS,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Sequestration ,  


    Ontario Forest Carbon Offset Agreement Announced (Ind. Report)
    AurCrest Gold,Blue Source Canada
    Date: 2020-05-13
    Further to our Aug, 2019 coverage, Toronto-headquartered AurCrest Gold Inc. is reporting an agreement with the Lac Seul First Nation (LSFN) and carbon offset developer Blue Source Canada ULC to develop a forest carbon project on the Lac Seul reserve northwest of Sioux Lookout, Ontario.

    On December 13, 2019, the Company announced an Emissions Reduction Benefits Management Agreement (ERBMA) with Lac Seul to develop forest carbon sequestration opportunities in the First Nation's territory in Northwestern Ontario. Under the terms of the ERBMA, AurCrest is the sole and exclusive agent for LSFN to manage and develop projects within LSFN traditional territory to harvest ERBs. AurCrest entered into the CDMA with Bluesource to provide the expertise associated with development and monetizing the carbon offsets.

    Bluesource helps forest owners evaluate opportunities and generate value in diverse carbon markets by developing and monetizing offsets on their behalf. (Source: AurCrest Gold Inc., PR, 11 May, 2020) Contact: AurCrest Gold Inc., Christopher Angeconeb, Pres., CEO, (807) 737-5353, christopherangeconeb@gmail.com, Ian Brodie-Brown, Dir. Bus. Dev., (416) 844-9969, ianbrodiebrown@gmail.com, www.aurcrest.ca; Blue Source Canada, (403) 262-3026, www.bluesource.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News AurCrest Gold,  Blue Source Canada,  Carbon Offset,  


    Reykjavik Announces Climate Change Related Funding (Int'l Report)
    Iceland
    Date: 2020-05-08
    In Reykjavik, the Icelandic government has announced several new environmental policies and proposals including grants totaling 550 million ISK ($3,750,000 US) to projects addressing climate change.

    Of the total 550 million ISK, roughly 200 million ISK will be invested in projects aiming to naturally store carbon dioxide long-term in order to reduce levels of greenhouse gases in the earth's atmosphere. Carbon sequestration is a key part of the government's plan to achieve the Paris Climate Agreement's terms.

    Additional grants totaling 75 million ISK will support the creation of new birch forests; 25 million ISK will address land reclamation projects; 60 million ISK for land quality recovery schemes; and 20 million ISK will be dedicated to wetland recovery.

    A further 300 million ISK will be used to reduce Iceland's energy consumption and 50 million ISK has been earmarked for the government's recently launched climate fund to support climate change research and projects raising awareness of the impacts of global warming.

    The release notes the government aims to reduce carbon emissions by 40 pct by 2030. (Source: : Iceland Minister for the Environment, Reykjavik Grapevine, 1 May, 2020) Contact: Iceland Minister for the Environment, Gudmundur Ingi Guobrandsson, www.government.is/ministries/ministry-for-the-environment-and-natural-resources

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


    Claification -- Woody Biomass, Carbon Emissions Notable Quote
    Woody Biomass
    Date: 2020-05-01
    "Mature trees do not stop absorbing carbon. It's just the opposite. Carbon sequestration actually accelerates as a tree grows older. 'Managed forests' is usually code for trees farms full of longleaf pine that are cut [down] frequently and absorb a lot less carbon than mature forests."

    "From an emissions standpoint, the UK would be better off burning coal and leaving those (older) trees standing as long as possible." -- Bill Moomaw, Biomass Energy Researcher, UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (Source: IPCC, Eco Business, Mongabay, 20 April, 2020)

    A Bioenergy & Alternative Fuels report subscriber noted the following:

    First, the 40 million acres, more or less, of managed southern pine plantations are loblolly pine not longleaf pine. These two pine varieties have important differences in growth rate and ecological values.

    Second, and more much importantly, mature pine forest do not 'accelerate' their storage as they mature. These are privately owned lands and the details of the site and management practices are very important, but the annually growth rate (carbon accumulation) on most pine sites slows after 15-20 years. The TOTAL carbon on the acre/hectare increase, but at a slower annual rate.

    Finally, and completely absent from these discussion that are typically led by scientist or environmental groups who do not have a clear understanding of the on the ground ownership and motivations of private landowners in the southern US, is that without a source of income some of these forest will be converted to some other uses, probably pasture, which has very limited carbon storage potential. In effect these EU experts are trying to shift the costs of carbon sequestration to private landowners. One can argue that if they want to sequester carbon in trees, and take on the additional risk of unplanned, large scale release from fire, disease or hurricane, that is fine, but they should pay the landowner for the carbon and the lost income.

    Editor's Note: We thank our reader for his input and clarification of our report.

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Woody Biomass,  


    Woody Biomass, Carbon Emissions Notable Quote
    IPCC
    Date: 2020-04-22
    "Mature trees do not stop absorbing carbon. It's just the opposite. Carbon sequestration actually accelerates as a tree grows older. 'Managed forests' is usually code for trees farms full of longleaf pine that are cut [down] frequently and absorb a lot less carbon than mature forests."

    "From an emissions standpoint, the UK would be better off burning coal and leaving those (older) trees standing as long as possible." -- Bill Moomaw, Biomass Energy Researcher, UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (Source: Eco Business, Mongabay, 20 April, 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions ,  


    Mature Tree CO2 Absorption Rate Questioned (Int'l. Report)
    Western Sydney University
    Date: 2020-04-20
    In the Land Down Under, a newly released study from Western Sydney University has found that mature forests may absorb significantly less carbon dioxide than previously thought, suggesting Earth may be closer to a climate change tipping point than previous models suggested.

    Reseacrhers led by Professor Belinda Medlyn, spent four years pumping roughy 38 pct more CO2 than would naturally be absorbed into an adult eucalyptus forest and then measured how much CO2 the trees could absorb. Initially the trees absorbed 12 pct of the CO2 but were unable to capture the additional CO2 to prevent it from re-entering the atmosphere. Current climate change models estimate that mature trees should absorb and capture approximately 12 pct of the CO2 in the atmosphere.

    The study found that although the trees could absorb the expected 12 pct, they were unable to retain the CO2 through sequestration and passed about half of the CO2 they had absorbed into the soil, where it was processed and then returned to the atmosphere via soil bacteria or small fungi on the forest floor. The other half of the carbon dioxide was released through the trees themselves. (Source: Western Sydney University, Lifesly, 17 April, 2020) Contact: Western Sydney University, Prof. Belinda Medlyn, Research Leader, www.westernsydney.edu.au

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Sequestration,  Carbon Storage,  Carbon Emissions,  


    Family Forest Carbon Markets Program Launched (Ind. Report)
    American Forest Foundation
    Date: 2020-03-30
    The American Forest Foundation (AFF), in partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC), is touting its introduced the Family Forest Carbon Program (FFCP). The program addresses barriers that deter family forest owners from participating in carbon markets while providing companies an opportunity to reduce their carbon footprint.

    The Family Forest Carbon Program offers a practice-based approach, where landowners are given incentive payments to implement science-based sustainable forest practices guaranteed to produce additional carbon sequestration. This unique, practice-based methodology takes into account the constraints of small forest ownership, yet is more credible and scalable, to allow small landowners to contribute at a landscape level. The program also provides a range of co-benefits that address biodiversity, forest health, water quality, ecosystem resilience and related issues.

    Download Family Forest Carbon Program details HERE . (Source: American Forest Foundation, Sustainable Brands, Mar. Apr., 2020) Contact: Family Forest Carbon Program, Tom Martin, President & CEO, 202-765-3472, tmartin@forestfoundation.org, www.forestfoundation.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Forest Foundation,  Carbon Credits,  ,  


    Soil Carbon Sequestration Investigated (Ind. Report)
    Carbon Sequestration
    Date: 2020-03-23
    According to a new study authored by Dr. Doborah Bossio of the Nature Conservancy and University of California-Davis, repairing, protecting and properly managing the ecosystem and the earths soil, the soil can absorb roughly 5.5 billion tpy CO2. The study found the soil's total potential carbon sequestration to be 23.8 gigaton of carbon dioxide -- an average of 5.5 billion tpy -- 40 pct of this potential is left to leave the existing land to itself.

    According to Bassio, "Much of the ongoing destruction in these ecosystems is the footprint of expanding agriculture. In other words, slowing or stopping this expansion is a very important strategy. So the restoration of the soil will be of great benefit to humanity. In this way, the quality of water, food production and resistance of crops will increase. The incentive structure in agriculture should be directed from payments to ecosystem services, food, water, climate and biodiversity, Bassio added. (Source: SOMAG, 22 Mar., 2020)Contact: UC Davis, Dr, Deborah Bassio, www.asi.ucdavis.edu/people/deborah-bossio; UC Davis, www.ucdavis.edu; Nature Conservancy,(703) 841-5300, www.nature.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Soil Carbon,  UC Davis,  Nature Conservancy,  ,  


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

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


    WA Legislation Aligns Timber Ind., Carbon Goals (Reg. & Leg.)
    Washington State
    Date: 2020-03-09
    Sitting in Olympia last Thursday, the Washington State Senate reported the near unanimous passage of House Bill 2528 recognizing the state's timber industry's efforts to reduce carbon emissions through reforestation and other management practices. The legislation also recognizes the role of forest products in carbon sequestration and directs the state Department of Commerce to promote markets for the state's forest products.

    Having been amended in the Senate, House Bill 2528 returns to the the Washington State House for full approval the on to the governor to be signed into law. (Source: The World, Various Media, chronicleonline. 7 Mar., 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Woody Biomass,  Reforestation,  Carbon Sequestration,  


    Consumers Energy Aims for Net-Zero Carbon Emissions (Ind Report)
    Consumers Energy
    Date: 2020-03-04
    In its 2019 Clean Energy Plan, Jackson, Michigan-headquartered Consumers Energy announced it aimed to reduce 90 pct of the carbon emissions it generates by eliminating the use of coal and working with customers to use energy more efficiently in an effort to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.

    Consumers previously committed to being coal-free by 2040 in its Integrated Resource Plan which included building 6,000 MW of new solar by 2030. The utility also launched a public outreach campaign focused on energy efficiency. The new commitment will supplement Consumers' existing plan to eliminate coal, expand renewable energy resources and help customers reduce their energy use. Consumers also may offset further emissions through strategies such as carbon sequestration, landfill methane capture or large-scale tree planting. (Source: Consumers Energy, PR, Grand Rapids Business Journal, Mar., 2020) Contact: Consumers Energy, Patti Poppe, CEO, (517) 788-0550, info@cmsenergy.com, www.ConsumersEnergy.com

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


    Hawaiian Reforestation Initiative Plants 500,000 Trees (Ind Report)
    Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative
    Date: 2020-02-26
    In the Aloha State, the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative (HLRI) is reporting the planting of 500,000 native trees in February as part of its effort to reduce the effects of climate change through carbon sequestration. The February plantings covered more than 1,200 acres of former pastureland on both Oahu and Hawaii Island.

    According to the release, over the 50-year lifetime of a single tree, it will produce $31,250 worth of oxygen and $62,000 worth of air pollution control. Each tree will recycle $37,500 worth of water and prevent $31,250 of soil erosion. This data suggests that one tree will produce a societal benefit of $162,000. (Source: Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, Big Island Now, 23 Feb., 2020) Contact: Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative , www.legacyforest.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Capture,  Reforestation,  Carbon Emissions,  


    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,  


    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,  


    Univ. Tenn. Peatland Carbon Processes Investigation Funded (Funding)
    University of Tennessee
    Date: 2020-01-27
    A UT microbiologist has received a portion of a $3.1 million grant from the US DOE to study how global warming could affect peatlands and their vast carbon stores in the future.

    Steven Wilhelm, the Kenneth and Blaire Mossman Professor of Microbiology, is part of a team led by Jean-Philippe Gibert, a food web expert and assistant professor of biology at Duke University. Wilhelm's co-investigators include David Weston and Dale Pelletier, staff scientists in the Biosciences Division of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Jonathan Shaw, professor of biology at Duke. In the three-year project, the group will study and model the effects of warming on the complex network of bacteria, protists, and viruses that interact with peat moss.

    Peat moss plays a key role in slowing climate change by keeping 370 million metric tpy of CO2 out of the atmosphere -- equivalent to the emissions from nearly half the car traffic in the US.

    Though peatlands cover just 3 pct of the Earth's surface they store twice as much carbon as all the world's forests. Over hundreds or thousands of years, Sphagnum and other peatland plants pull carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere as they grow, trapping the carbon inside layers of partially decayed plant material up to 20 feet deep. But warming trends could put that carbon storage at risk. Rising temperatures could thaw or dry out peat wetlands, making them more prone to decay and wildfires. Decomposing or burning plants mean the heat-trapping gas long locked up in peatlands could be released, accelerating the global warming process.

    To better predict the impacts of warming on peatlands and the carbon they contain, the team is studying a set of players they say are largely overlooked: microbes. Their previous work suggests that under future warming, the community of microbes and other tiny organisms that grow in and around peat mosses could shift balance, which could affect the ability of peatlands to sequester carbon. (Source: University of Tennessee, Knoxville, PR, 27 Jan., 2020) Contact: University of Tennessee, Karen Dunlap, 865-974-8674, kdunlap6@utk.edu, Amanda Womac , 865-974-2992, awomac1@utk.edu, www.utk.edu; Duke University, Robin Smith, (919-681-8057, robin.a.smith@duke.edu, www.duke.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Peatland,  Carbon Storage,  Carbon Sequestration,  Carbon Emissions,  University of Tennessee,  


    GTI Launching Hydrogen Fuel Tech Center (R&D, Ind. Report)
    Gas Technology Institute
    Date: 2020-01-27
    In Des Plaines, Illinois, the not-for-profit Gas Technology Institute (GTI), a research, development and training organization focused on natural gas and energy markets, is reporting the launch of a hydrogen fuel technology center.

    GTI focuses its R&D efforts on the generation of clean hydrogen using hydrocarbon fuels that incorporate carbon capture and/or carbon sequestration CCS) in a cost-effective manner. These technology efforts are directed at both large-scale hydrogen production using natural gas feedstock, and smaller distributed hydrogen production for transportation or remote power generation using either gaseous or liquid hydrocarbon fuels, according to the release.

    Additionally, GTI is partnered with private industry to develop, evaluate, and demonstrate technologies that further the use of hydrogen (H2) as a transportation fuel by delivering infrastructure, vehicle, engine, fuel dispensing, and system solutions for clean transportation fuel cell vehicles. (Source: GTI, Green Car Congress, 26 Jan., 2020) Contact: GTI, 847-768-0500 847-768-0501 - fax, info@gti.energy, www.gti.energy

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Gas Technology Institute ,  Alternative Fuel,  Hydrogen Fuel,  Alternative Fuel,  GTI,  ,  


    Blue Carbon For Our Planet Act on Capitol Hill (Reg. & Leg.)
    Blue Carbon
    Date: 2020-01-15
    U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) reports the Blue Carbon For Our Planet Act has been sent to the U.S. House Natural Resources; Science, Space, and Technology and the House Administration Committees. If enacted, the Act would create an Interagency Working Group on Coastal Blue Carbon and a national map of coastal blue carbon ecosystems and their sequestration potential, study the effects of environmental stressors on rates of carbon sequestration, improve protections for existing coastal blue carbon ecosystems and restore degraded ecosystems.

    Blue Carbon is the carbon stored in coastal ecosystems of mangroves, tidal marshes and sea grass meadows contain large stores of carbon deposited by vegetation and various natural processes over centuries. These ecosystems sequester and store more carbon per unit area than terrestrial forests. (Source: Florida Daily, IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme, 13 Jan., 2019) Contact: The Blue Carbon Initiative, www.thebluecarboninitiative.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Blue Carbon,  Carbon Sequestration,  Carbon Sink,  


    U.S. Public Lands GHG Limits Legislation Introduced (Reg & Leg)
    Greenhouse Gas,Center for Biological Diversity
    Date: 2019-12-18
    Bill Would Pause New Fossil Fuel Leasing, Tie Future Fossil Fuel Permits to Carbon Sequestration WASHINGTON— In Washington, House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.)has introduced legislation aiming to set an overall cap on greenhouse gas emissions from public lands and to achieve "net zero" emissions from public lands by 2040.

    The legislation would temporarily pause all new fossil fuel leasing on public lands until the Department of the Interior develops a comprehensive strategy to achieve "net zero" emissions on these lands.

    If interim benchmarks for greenhouse gas emissions reductions are not met by 2025, fossil fuel leasing, as well as drilling and other permits to develop fossil fuels on existing leases, would be curtailed until the bill's targets were achieved. Unfortunately the legislation fails to permanently end new fossil fuel leasing which would be allowed to continue even beyond 2040 if emissions resulting from federal lands fossil fuel use were sufficiently offset by carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), forest regrowth and other land-use changes, or by the deployment of large-scale renewable energy facilities on public lands.

    The federal government owns roughly 640 million acres, about 28 pct of the 2.27 billion acres of land in the United States. Four major federal land management agencies administer 610.1 million acres of this land (Source: Center for Biological Diversity, 17 Dec., 2019) Contact: Center for Biological Diversity, www.biologicaldiversity.org

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


    Sutdy Examines Farming as CO2 Absorber (Ind. Report)
    University of Virginia
    Date: 2019-12-11
    A recently released study from the University of Virginia notes that farming, agriculture and other land practices presently contribute around 11 gigatons to CO2 emissions per year -- roughly one quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. However, the study argues that the land could actually be converted into an absorber of carbon, given the right conditions.

    Among the measures recommended by the study were richer countries transitioning to plant-based diets and reducing food waste, while aiding poorer nations to curb deforestation and restore degraded land. If a concerted global effort was made, land could be absorbing three gigatons of carbon by 2050, turning one of our biggest liabilities into a helping hand in the fight against climate change. The study also recommends:

  • 95 pct reduction in deforestation and land degradation by 2050. This would include more robust conservation policies in developing tropical countries, as well as the conversion of coastal wetlands into protected areas and the prohibition of peatland burning.

  • 25 pct reduction in agricultural emissions by 2050. This would include introducing synthetic or organic fertilizers, enhancing the water-agriculture interface in places where rice cultivation is a primary industry and managing emissions from fermentation and manure.

  • 50 pct adoption of plant-based diets by 2050. This would involve encouraging a healthier diet through consumer campaigns and governmental policies, as well as the development of new foodstuffs to entice unconvinced consumers.

  • 50 pct reduction of current level of food waste by 2050. This would involve tightening up gaps in the supply chain, improving consumer awareness through advertising campaigns and enhancing refrigeration and distribution capabilities in the developing world.

  • Restoration of forests, coastal wetlands and drained peatlands. This would involve financing ecosystem services, improving in local and national conservation policies and investing in restoration practices.

  • Improving forestry and agroforestry management. This would include optimising current forestation conservation process and integrating agroforestry into lands currently used for agriculture and grazing.

  • Enhancing soil carbon sequestration capabilities. This would include controlling soil erosion, reducing tillage of the land and restoring degraded soils, as well as the application of biochar where appropriate.

  • Deploying bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) in developed countries. This would involve investing into the research and development of BECCS technologies and deploying them in relevant sites. (Source: University of Virginia, Environmental Technology, 1 Dec., 2019) Contact: University of Virginia, Stephanie Roe, Environmental Researcher, Report Lead Author, 434-924-7761, www.evsc.as.virginia.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon,  Carbon Storage,  


  • GCF Funds Climate Change Fight in Chile, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal (Int'l.)
    Green Climate Fund
    Date: 2019-11-15
    In South Korea, the Green Climate Fund (GCF) is reporting approval of $161 million in funding for climate resilient projects in Chile, Kyrgyzstan and Nepal. The project, which are supported by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), are aimed at building resilience and mitigating the effects of climate change.

    FAO supports countries to enhance their planning and capacities for climate change-related investments under the GCF Readiness and Preparatory Support Programme.

    In Chile, GCF has approved a new $63 million REDD+ Results Based Payment Funding Proposal to restore and conserve about 25,000 hectares of native forest. The project is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 1.1 million tons of CO2, while promoting afforestation in more than 7,000 hectares and the sustainable management and conservation of over 17,000 hectares of forest.

    Land-locked Kyrgyzstan will benefit from a $30 million GCF grant supplemented by another $20 million for a project aimed at increasing carbon sequestration through forest and pasture rehabilitation.

    In Nepal, GCF allocated nearly $40 million in grant funding to address forest degradation, flooding and soil erosion in the Churia hills region. The Nepal Ministry of Forests and Environment will contribute $8 million to the 7-year effort.

    The GCF supports developing countries efforts to respond to the challenge of climate change, limit or reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to climate change, and promote low-emission and climate-resilient development. (Source: UN Food and Agriculture Organization, PR, 13 Nov., 2019) Contact: UN Food and Agriculture Organization, +39 06 570 53625, FAO-Newsroom@fao.org, www.fao.org/home/en; Green Climate Fund, www.greenclimate.fund

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Green Climate Fund,  Reforestation,  Carbon Sequestration,  Climate Change,  


    Peatlands Carbon Content Double Previous Estimates (Ind. Report)
    Columbia University Earth Institute,
    Date: 2019-10-23
    According to a recently published Columbia University Earth Institute study published in Nature Geoscience, Northern peatlands may hold twice as much carbon as scientists previously suspected. The study findings suggest that peatland areas play a more important role in climate change and the carbon cycle than they're credited for.

    The report notes that global climate models, which scientists use to predict climate change and its impacts, rarely account for the carbon that peat and other soils absorb, store and release.

    Their new study incorporates 4,139 radiocarbon measurements from 645 peatland sites in northern Europe, Asia, and North America. But the main innovation is in how the researchers calculated the carbon storage in peatlands.

    The report notes researchershave calculated that northern peatlands hold 1.1 trillion tons of carbon rather than previous estimates of roughly 545 billion tons. The report concludes that peatlands are decaying faster and releasing more carbon as the planet's thermostat climbs. (Source: Columbia University, Earth Institute, 21 Oct., 2019) Contact: Columbia University Earth Institute, Prof. Jonathan Nichols, 212-854-3830, www.earth.columbia.edu

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Peatland,  CO2,  Carbon Sequestrartion,  Carbon Emissions,  Carbon Sequestration,  


    Santa Rosa Advancing Climate Change Program (Ind. Report)
    City of Santa Rosa
    Date: 2019-10-14
    As previously reported, in February the Santa Rosa City Council in Sonoma County, California appointed a climate action subcommittee to facilitate the implementation of a climate action plans. To that end, the subcommittee is now advancing significant policy changes focused on transportation, energy-efficient buildings, solid waste reduction and carbon sequestration.

    Sixty percent of Santa Rosa's GHG emissions come from motor vehicles. As Sonoma County prepares to extend Measure M -- a quarter-cent sales tax that has leveraged $5 of state and federal funding for every $1 of local transportation tax revenue -- the city needs to take a critical look at reliable and frequent public transit.

    With 29 pct of the city's emissions coming from inefficient building energy use, the subcommittee is recommending all city buildings join Sonoma Clean Power's "Evergreen" program, which delivers 100 pct renewable and local energy, promising an immediate 41 pct reduction in building emissions.

    The subcommittee has also advanced a comprehensive zero-waste plan that could reduce the city's GHG emissions by up to 9 pct. The city also maximized its recyclabling and composting efforts. The city is also exploring . (Source: City of Santa Rosa, Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 13 Oct., 2019) Contact: City of Santa Rosa, www.srcity.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  

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