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PEG Wins ENERGY STAR® Sustained Excellence Award (Ind. Report)
PEG LLC, ENERGY STAR
Date: 2021-04-14
Fairfax, Virginia-based energy efficiency, engineering, environmental, and management consulting firm PEG, LLC reports it has received the 2021 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year Sustained Excellence Award from the U.S. EPA and the U.S. DOE for the fifth consecutive year.

PEG specializes in building energy performance, green building program compliance, building diagnostics, environmental and code compliance, thermal performance, HVAC design and operation, and construction defect.

ENERGY STARĀ® is the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency, providing simple, credible, and unbiased information that consumers and businesses rely on to make well-informed decisions. Since 1992, ENERGY STAR and its partners helped American families and businesses avoid more than $450 billion in energy costs and achieve 4 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas reductions. (Source: PEG, LLC, PR, 13 Apr., 2021) Contact: PEG LLC, JoAnn Spence, President and CEO , www.pegenv.com: DOE ENERGY STAR, www.energystar.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News ENERGY STAR,  Energy Efficiency,  


Iowa Ethanol Production Down 500Mn Gallons in 2020 (Ind. Report)
Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2021-01-27
According to the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA), while biodiesel production in the Hawkeye State held steady in 2020, the state produced half a billion gallons less ethanol than just the year before. According to IRFA's annual economic impact study, ethanol and biodiesel production contributes nearly $4 billion in state gross domestic product (GDP) supports 37,000 direct and indirect jobs, and boosts Iowa household income by $1.8 billion. (Source: IRFA, PR, 22 Jan., 2021) Contact: IRFA, Monte Shaw, Ecex. Dir., (515) 252-6249, (515) 225-0781 -- fax, www.iowarfa.org

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


IRFA Opposing Zero Emissions Vehicle Legislation (Reg, & Leg.)
IRFA
Date: 2020-10-26
In Washington, the Zero Emissions Vehicles Act Legislation recently introduced in the House and Senate calls for restricting the sale of passenger vehicles capable of utilizing biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel by 2025 with a complete ban in 2035.

Iowa Renewable Fuels Association Executive Director Monte Shaw says the bill mandates electric cars but doesn't take into account electric cars don't have zero emissions. Shaw claims biofuels have a better carbon footprint with lower emissions than electric vehicles that are powered by coal and suggests the best way to cut emissions is to set reduction targets and let the fuel and vehicle market decide how to achieve those goals. (Source: IRFA, WNAX, 26 Oct., 2020) Contact: IRFA, Monte Shaw, Ecex. Dir., (515) 252-6249, (515) 225-0781 -- fax, www.iowarfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News IRFA,  Zero Emission Vehicle,  Transportation Emissions,  


Biofuels Industry Notable Quote
Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2020-08-17
"If we're going to keep this (biofuels) industry viable, we're going to need help from Congress." -- Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., Iowa Renewable Fuels Assoc., 17 Aug., 2020) Contact: IRFA, Monte Shaw, Ecex. Dir., (515) 252-6249, (515) 225-0781 -- fax, www.iowarfa.org

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


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

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

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


Pertamina Earmarks $2Bn for Geothermal Development (Int'l. Report)
Pertamina
Date: 2019-11-08
In Jakarta, Indonesian state oil and gas company PT Pertamina reports it will invest US$2 billion in the development of geothermal facilities in the coming six to seven years.

The plan is in line with the company's commitment to achieve a 23 pct renewable energy mix target by 2025 and in accordance with Energy Law No. 30 of 2007.

Pertamina will have an installed capacity of 670 gigawatts of electrical power from geothermal energy by 2020, raising to 100 gigawatts in 2025, according to a company release. (Source: Pertamina, Antara News, 7 Nov., 2019) Contact: Pertamina, Irfan Zainuddin, Pres., pge.pertamina.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Pertamina ,  Geothermal,  


IRFA Dumps on Trump EPA's RFS Proposal (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
Date: 2019-10-16
"The (Trump EPA) proposal today essentially asks Iowa farmers and biofuels producers to trust that EPA will do the right thing on SREs in 2021 when they have spent the last two years weaponizing SREs to unfairly undermine the RFS.

"It is unreasonable and counter productive to expect Iowans to put their faith in EPA to fix the SRE problem when they (EPA) were the ones who created the crisis in the first place." -- Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., Iowa Renewable Fuels Association.

Last week Shaw commented: "We welcome the (Trump RFS) proposal to restore integrity to the RFS. We will work with our champions and the White House to make sure the EPA's final rules ensure that a 15 billion-gallon RFS will actually be a 15 billion-gallon RFS. If that is accomplished, the integrity of the RFS will have been restored and President Trump's promise to protect and uphold the RFS will have been redeemed." Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., (515) 252-6249, www.iowarfa.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RFS,  Trump,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  


MORE Small Refinery "Hardship" Waivers Announced (Ind. Report)
EPA,RFS,Renewable Fuels Association,American Coalition of Ethanol
Date: 2019-08-12
On Friday the 9th, the Trump administration EPA, under the administration of former coal industry lobbyist Andrew R, Wheeler, granted 31 more controversial "hardship waivers" allowing refiners to ignore Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) ethanol blending requirements in what might be construed as the administration's and the agency's attempt to bury the RFS in blatant favor of Big Oil. The agency denied 6 waiver requests and left one additional waiver request undecided.

Needless to say, the President has yet again misled his supporters and the biofuels industry -- along with just about everyone else both domestic and foreign. In response, ethanol and biofuels players and industry organizations wasted no time in venting their rightful outrage.

"The Trump Administration's approval of 31 refinery exemptions from the Renewable Fuel Standard is just devastating news for our industry. With this action, President Trump has destroyed over a billion gallons of biofuel demand and broken his promise to Iowa voters to protect the RFS. The vast majority of these exemptions are not justified under the law. Since this news began to leak this afternoon, RFS credit prices have freefallen to nearly zero, destroying much of the incentive to blend an incremental gallon of ethanol." -- Monte Shaw, Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) Exec. Dir.,

"At a time when ethanol plants in the Heartland are being mothballed and jobs are being lost, it is unfathomable and utterly reprehensible that the Trump Administration would dole out more unwarranted waivers to prosperous petroleum refiners. Today's announcement comes as a total shock, as just two months ago Trump himself heard directly from Iowa farmers and ethanol plant workers about the disastrous economic impacts of these small refinery handouts. In response, he (Trump) told us he would 'look into it' and we believed that would lead to the White House and EPA finally putting an end to these devastating waivers. Instead, the Trump administration chose to double down on the exemptions, greatly exacerbating the economic pain being felt in rural America and further stressing an industry already on life support." -- Geoff Cooper, Pres., CEO, Renewable Fuels Association.

"EPA's refiner-win-at-all-costs oversight of the RFS is doing real damage to America's farmers and renewable fuel producers who are already suffering from trade wars and volatile markets. The RFS is supposed to ensure the use of ethanol and biodiesel increases from one year to the next, but 85 Small Refinery Exemptions later and over 3 billion waived gallons represents an enormous step backwards." -- Brian Jennings, CEO, American Coalition of Ethanol.

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. (Source: Various Media, AgPro, 9 Aug., 2019) Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., info@IowaRFA.org, (515) 252-6249, www.iowarfa.org; Renewable Fuels Association, www.ethanolrfa.org; American Coalition of Ethanol, www.ethanol.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  RFS,  "Hardship Waiver",  Ethanol Blend,  Renewable Fuels Association,  ,  


DOE SBIR Touts Sm. Business Innovation Research Funding (Funding)
DOE SBIR
Date: 2019-07-31
American small businesses received a near-$44 million boost from the U.S. DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, according to an SBIR release. Five buildings-focused, Phase II Release 2 grants awarded approximately $5 million to five small businesses. The projects, which are making advancements in building envelopes, building energy efficiency and modeling, and lighting, have already demonstrated a level of commercial feasibility for further innovations in the second phase of research. The five projects:
  • Innovations in Opaque Building Envelope Performance -- Lightweight and Thermally Insulating Nanowood -- (Inventwood LLC., College Park, Maryland) Inventwood LLC is using delignified wood to create a new, bio-derived cellulose thermal insulation material that could be used in window frames, exterior insulating cladding, or prefabricated panels for new building construction or retrofit applications.

  • Transparent Conductive Anodes for Solid-State Lighting -- Printed Anodes and Internal Light Extraction Layers on Flexible Glass to Create Cost-Effective High-Efficacy Bendable OLED Lighting Panels -- (OLEDWorks LLC, Rochester, New York) OLEDWorks LLC will further develop and commercialize a highly energy-efficient lighting product in the form of uniquely thin and beautiful curved sheets of light to accelerate organic light-emitting diode (OLED) market growth.

  • High Performance Substrate Embedded Microgrids for High-Efficiency, Flexible Organic Light-Emitting Diodes -- (Electroninks Inc, Austin, Texas) -- Electroninks Inc. is developing an alternative, transparent conductor for optical-electronic applications like touch sensors, displays, and OLEDs that significantly outperforms today's indium, tin, and oxygen (ITO) conductors.

  • Building Energy Modeling -- Portfolio-Level Energy-Efficiency Simulation (PLES) -- (Maalka, Brooklyn, New York) Maalka is extending its customizable framework for energy efficiency program development and management. The framework leverages the increasing availability of building energy data and DOE's open-source data standards and platforms and energy analysis tools (EnergyPlus, OpenStudio). The project targets the large and growing energy-efficiency program market of cities, utilities, larger owners, and energy service customers with a focus on supporting a move from individual energy conservation measures to packages and deep retrofits.

  • CAD-Integrated Web-Based Performance Simulation -- (Ladybug Tools LLC, Fairfax, Virginia) -- Ladybug Tools will use DOE's open-source EnergyPlus and Radiance tools, as well as OpenStudio's new elastic cloud capabilities, to deliver a greater range of analysis services (and subsequent revenue streams) for architects. Phase I of this project involved creating a working radiance-based daylighting simulation service; Phase II work will focus on energy simulation. (Source: U.S. DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Small Business Innovation Research, PR, July, 2019) Contact: SBIR, EERE.SBIR@ee.doe.gov, www.energy.gov/science/sbir/small-business-innovation-research-and-small-business-technology-transfer

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DOE SBIR,  Energy Efficiency,  Energy Management,  


  • Fairfax Launches Energy Efficient LED Light Exchange (Ind. Report)
    Energy Action Fairfax
    Date: 2019-05-20
    In the Old Dominion State, Fairfax County is touting the launch of its Energy Action Fairfax program aimed at increasing energy efficiency. The no-cost program collects incandescent light bulbs and exchanges them for energy efficient LED lights. The U.S. DOE notes that the Energy Star LED lights used in the exchange program use 75 pct less energy than incandescent bulbs and could save users around $75 per by replacing five incandescent light bulbs. (Source: Energy Action Fairfax, 18 May, 2019) Contact: Jessica Lavender, Fairfax County Senior Energy Analyst, Energy Action Fairfax, www.fairfaxcounty.gov/energy/energyactionfairfax

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


    IRFA, Iowa Ag. Sec. Challenge RFS Exemptions (Ind. Report)
    IRFA, RFS
    Date: 2019-04-22
    In a joint news conference last Wednesday, Monte Shaw, executive director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), and the Hawkeye State Secretary of Agriculture, Mike Naig, commented on the small-refinery "hardship" exemptions being considered by the EPA, saying the federal plans to make small refineries exempt from renewable fuel rules "would irreversibly undermine" the nation's Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).

    "We believe it is time for the EPA to address this threat to the Renewable Fuel Standard," Naig said, adding that over the last two years, the agency has granted waivers accounting for 2.6 billion gallons of ethanol or about 1 billion bushels of corn. "This happens at a time when our farmers and rural America can least afford it" he said adding there are currently 39 small-refinery exemption applications before the EPA. Refiners with a capacity of less than 75,000 bpd can receive a waiver as long as they can prove that complying with the Renewable Fuel Standard would cause "disproportionate economic harm."

    According to Shaw, the nearly 40 exemptions out there could "rip the heart out"of the Renewable Fuel Standard. "If you can justify granting a small-refinery exemption under today's circumstances -- where you can buy a Renewable Identification Number (RIN) for 8 cents, then what the EPA would really be saying is that it's always going to grant small-refinery exemptions, and the hope of ever having a true 15 billion-gallon RFS is dead," Shaw said.

    The Renewable Fuels Association noted overall U.S. ethanol consumption declined last year. The association also noted 48 small refinery exemptions approved last year by former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt as a main factor for the drop in ethanol use. (Source: Iowa RFA, PR, The Courier, 21 April, 2019) Contact: IRFA, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., info@IowaRFA.org, (515) 252-6249, www.iowarfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Monte Shaw,  RFA,  IRFA,  RFS,  "Hardship" Exemption,  


    Biofuels Contribute $5Bn to Iowa's GDP, says Report (Ind. Report)
    IRFA
    Date: 2019-03-22
    Contribution of the Renewable Fuels Industry to the Economy of Iowa, a recent study commissioned by the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) has found that biofuels contribute over $5 billion to the Hawkeye State's GDP, equivalent to 3 pct. The report also found the biofuels industry supports over 48,000 jobs in the state and adds over $2.5 billion to Iowa household incomes.

    The report was authored by John Urbanchuck, managing partner at ABF Economics.

    As we reported on 23 Jan., 2019, 2018 was a record year for ethanol production in Iowa with the state's ethanol production facilities producing 4.35 billion gallons -- 150 million gallons more than 2017 and 150 million gallons short of capacity. The Hawkeye State produces about 27 pct of total U.S. ethanol production. Iowa's two cellulosic ethanol and 41 corn ethanol plants use more than 1.3 billion bpy of corn. Iowa also produced a record 365 million gallons of biodiesel in 2018 (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Assoc., Mar., 2019) Contact: IRFA, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., info@IowaRFA.org, (515) 252-6249, www.iowarfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Iowa Biofuel,  Monte Shaw,  IRFA,  


    Iowa Sets Record Ethanol Production (Ind. Report)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-01-11
    The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association is reporting 2018 ethanol production in the Hawkeye State came in at 4.35 billion gallons in 2018, up slightly over 2017 production by still below the 4.5 billion gpy capacity of the states ethanol producers.

    The IRFA credits the increase to record ethanol exports, refinery exemptions to the Renewable Fuel Standard, and the trade dispute with China. Iowa's ethanol is projected to make up 27 pct of total U-S ethanol production.

    On Jan. 4 we reported the Iowa's 12 biodiesel plants produced a record-breaking 365 million gallons of biodiesel in 2018. The record production is due in part to the plummeting level of biodiesel imports following a verdict against Argentina and Indonesia for illegally subsidizing imports to the U.S. According to the IRFA, Iowa's biodiesel production is expected to make up nearly 20 pct of total U.S. production for 2018. The IRFA also emphasized that the state could do even more if the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) level for biodiesel was set to at least mirror projected U.S. biodiesel consumption and not undermined by small-refinery exemptions. (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Jan., 2019) Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., (515) 252-6249, info@irfa.org, http://iowarfa.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Ethanol,  Biodiesel,  Ethanol,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  


    IRFA Touts Iowa's 2018 Biodiesel Production (Ind. Report)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Association
    Date: 2019-01-04
    In a recent release, the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) notes that the Hawkeye State's 12 biodiesel plants produced a record-breaking 365 million gallons of biodiesel in 2018. The record production is due in part to the plummeting level of biodiesel imports following a verdict against Argentina and Indonesia for illegally subsidizing imports to the U.S.

    According to the IRFA, Iowa's biodiesel production is expected to make up nearly 20 pct of total U.S. production for 2018. The IRFA Shaw also emphasized that the state could do even more if the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) level for biodiesel was set to at least mirror projected U.S. biodiesel consumption and not undermined by small-refinery exemptions.

    Compared to 2017, there was a shift in feedstock usage across the state toward more soybean oil. Soybean oil increased its market share to nearly 81 pct while animal fat usage declined from 11 pct to nearly 5 pct. Corn oil continued to make up about 10 pct of feedstock while used cooking oil (UCO)increased to about 4 percent. (Source: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, KMA Land, 3 Jan., 2019) Contact: Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., (515) 252-6249, info@irfa.org, http://iowarfa.org

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


    Polls Find Growing Climate Awareness, Concerns (Ind. Report)
    Climate Change,American Communities Project
    Date: 2019-01-02
    According to surveys from the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication and the Fairfax, Virginia-based George Mason (University) Center for Climate Change Communication, 70 pct of Americans believe "global warming is happening" and 57 pct believe it is being caused primarily by human activities.

    In a similar NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, two-thirds of those surveyed say climate change is a serious problem and the nation needs to take action. Only 30 pct of survey participants said say we don't know enough yet or that we don't need to be concerned with climate change -- down 13 points from 1999.

    Of the survey participants, 71 pct of Democrats now say climate change is an urgent problem -- a 42-point increase since 1999 -- 47 pct of independent voters said they want climate change action while only 15 pct of Republicans see a need to deal with climate change -- unchanged since the same question was asked in 1999. (Source: Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, Meet the Press, NBC, Various Media, 30 Dec., 2018) Contact: Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, Anthony Leiserowitz, Director, climatecommunication.yale.edu; George Mason Center for Climate Change Communication, www.climatechangecommunication.org, www.gmu.edu

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


    Industry Comments on New RFS (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
    Iowa Renewable Fuels Association , National Biodiesel Board
    Date: 2018-12-05
    "Without reallocation of small-refinery exemptions, the numbers released today may look good on the outside, but just like the chocolate bunnies my children open up on Easter morning, they are hollow on the inside. While any increase is better than a flatline, these modest increases vastly underrate the potential of advanced biofuels." -- Monte Shaw, Exec. Dir., Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, (515) 252-6249, info@irfa.org, http://iowarfa.org

    "EPA's failure to properly account for small refinery exemptions will continue to destroy biodiesel demand. EPA recognizes that the biodiesel and renewable diesel industry is producing fuel well above the annual volumes. The industry regularly fills 90 percent of the annual advanced biofuel requirement. Nevertheless, the agency continues to use its maximum waiver authority to set advanced biofuel requirements below attainable levels. The method is inconsistent with the RFS program's purpose, which is to drive growth in production and use of advanced biofuels such as biodiesel." -- National Biodiesel Board, Donnell Rehagen, CEO, (800) 841-5849, www.biodiesel.org

    "Of the 418 million gallons of cellulosic biofuel called for in the RFS, the vast majority, 388 million gallons, are requested from biogas and that represents a 45 pct increase in production from the 2018 volumes." -- American Biogas Council, Patrick Serfass, Executive Director, (202) 640-6595, www.americanbiogascouncil.org

    "When the EPA continues to grant waivers and does not account for those volumes in this rule, domestic demand for our crop is lost, impacting farmers' livelihood and the economy of rural America." -- National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), Lynn Chrisp, (202) 326-0644, www.ncga.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News American Biogas Council,  NCGA,  ,  RFS,  Iowa Renewable Fuels Association,  National Biodiesel Board ,  


    Indonesia Considers Oil Refinery-to-Palm Biofuel Conversions (Int'l)
    Pertamina
    Date: 2018-10-10
    According to the Indonesian state-owned energy company Pertamina, the Indonesian government is partnering with the Italian energy company ENI to investigate the conversion of two of the country's older crude oil refineries into palm oil-based biofuels production facilities According to the Pertamina website, the 1930s vintage Plaju plant has an oil refining capacity of 133,700 bpd (bpd) and the equally aged Dumai plant has a capacity of 170,000 bpd.

    The initiative is intended to reduce Indonesia's dependence on imported energy, cut the country balance of trade and absorb the country's rising crude palm oil output amid sluggish global demand. Indonesia is the leading palm oil producer by far. (Source: Pertamina, Reuters, NTA, 9 Oct., 2018) Contact: Pertamina , Irfan Zainuddin, Pres., http://pge.pertamina.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Pertamina,  Palm Oil,  Biofuel,  

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