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    Italy's Enel is to invest around €400 mln in carbon capture and storage and is looking now for a suitable site to store CO2 underground. Enel's vision of coal's future is one in which coal is used to produce power, to produce ash and gypsum as a by-product for cement, hydrogen as a by-product of coal gasification and CO2 which is stored underground. Carbon capture and storage techniques can be applied to biomass and biofuels, resulting in carbon-negative energy. Reuters - October 22, 2007.

    Gate Petroleum Co. is planning to build a 55 million-gallon liquid biofuels terminal in Jacksonville, Florida. The terminal is expected to cost $90 million and will be the first in the state designed primarily for biofuels. It will receive and ship ethanol and biodiesel via rail, ship and truck and provide storage for Gate and for third parties. The biofuels terminal is set to open in 2010. Florida Times-Union - October 19, 2007.

    China Holdings Inc., through its controlled subsidiary China Power Inc., signed a development contract with the HeBei Province local government for the rights to develop and construct 50 MW of biomass renewable energy projects utilizing straw. The projects have a total expected annual power generating capacity of 400 million kWh and expected annual revenues of approximately US$33.3 million. Total investment in the projects is approximately US$77.2 million, 35 percent in cash and 65 percent from China-based bank loans with preferred interest rates with government policy protection for the biomass renewable energy projects. Full production is expected in about two years. China Holdings - October 18, 2007.

    Canadian Bionenergy Corporation, supplier of biodiesel in Canada, has announced an agreement with Renewable Energy Group, Inc. to partner in the construction of a biodiesel production facility near Edmonton, Alberta. The company broke ground yesterday on the construction of the facility with an expected capacity of 225 million litres (60 million gallons) per year of biodiesel. Together, the companies also intend to forge a strategic marketing alliance to better serve the North American marketplace by supplying biodiesel blends and industrial methyl esters. Canadian Bioenergy - October 17, 2007.

    Leading experts in organic solar cells say the field is being damaged by questionable reports about ever bigger efficiency claims, leading the community into an endless and dangerous tendency to outbid the last report. In reality these solar cells still show low efficiencies that will need to improve significantly before they become a success. To counter the hype, scientists call on the community to press for independent verification of claimed efficiencies. Biopact sees a similar trend in the field of biofuels from algae, in which press releases containing unrealistic yield projections and 'breakthroughs' are released almost monthly. Eurekalert - October 16, 2007.

    The Colorado Wood Utilization and Marketing Program at Colorado State University received a $65,000 grant from the U.S. Forest Service to expand the use of woody biomass throughout Colorado. The purpose of the U.S. Department of Agriculture grant program is to provide financial assistance to state foresters to accelerate the adoption of woody biomass as an alternative energy source. Colorado State University - October 12, 2007.

    Indian company Naturol Bioenergy Limited announced that it will soon start production from its biodiesel facility at Kakinada, in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The facility has an annual production capacity of 100,000 tons of biodiesel and 10,000 tons of pharmaceutical grade glycerin. The primary feedstock is crude palm oil, but the facility was designed to accomodate a variety of vegetable oil feedstocks. Biofuel Review - October 11, 2007.

    Brazil's state energy company Petrobras says it will ship 9 million liters of ethanol to European clients next month in its first shipment via the northeastern port of Suape. Petrobras buys the biofuel from a pool of sugar cane processing plants in the state of Pernambuco, where the port is also located. Reuters - October 11, 2007.

    Dynamotive Energy Systems Corporation, a leader in biomass-to-biofuel technology, announces that it has completed a $10.5 million equity financing with Quercus Trust, an environmentally oriented fund, and several other private investors. Ardour Capital Inc. of New York served as financial advisor in the transaction. Business Wire - October 10, 2007.

    Cuban livestock farmers are buying distillers dried grains (DDG), the main byproduct of corn based ethanol, from biofuel producers in the U.S. During a trade mission of Iowan officials to Cuba, trade officials there said the communist state will double its purchases of the dried grains this year. DesMoines Register - October 9, 2007.

    Brasil Ecodiesel, the leading Brazilian biodiesel producer company, recorded an increase of 57.7% in sales in the third quarter of the current year, in comparison with the previous three months. Sales volume stood at 53,000 cubic metres from August until September, against 34,000 cubic metres of the biofuel between April and June. The company is also concluding negotiations to export between 1,000 to 2,000 tonnes of glycerine per month to the Asian market. ANBA - October 4, 2007.

    PolyOne Corporation, the US supplier of specialised polymer materials, has opened a new colour concentrates manufacturing plant in Kutno, Poland. Located in central Poland, the new plant will produce colour products in the first instance, although the company says the facility can be expanded to handle other products. In March, the Ohio-based firm launched a range of of liquid colourants for use in bioplastics in biodegradable applications. The concentrates are European food contact compliant and can be used in polylactic acid (PLA) or starch-based blends. Plastics & Rubber Weekly - October 2, 2007.

    A turbo-charged, spray-guided direct-injection engine running on pure ethanol (E100) can achieve very high specific output, and shows “significant potential for aggressive engine downsizing for a dedicated or dual-fuel solution”, according to engineers at Orbital Corporation. GreenCarCongress - October 2, 2007.

    UK-based NiTech Solutions receives £800,000 in private funding to commercialize a cost-saving industrial mixing system, dubbed the Continuous Oscillatory Baffled Reactor (COBR), which can lower costs by 50 per cent and reduce process time by as much as 90 per cent during the manufacture of a range of commodities including chemicals, drugs and biofuels. Scotsman - October 2, 2007.

    A group of Spanish investors is building a new bioethanol plant in the western region of Extremadura that should be producing fuel from maize in 2009. Alcoholes Biocarburantes de Extremadura (Albiex) has already started work on the site near Badajoz and expects to spend €42/$59 million on the plant in the next two years. It will produce 110 million litres a year of bioethanol and 87 million kg of grain byproduct that can be used for animal feed. Europapress - September 28, 2007.

    Portuguese fuel company Prio SA and UK based FCL Biofuels have joined forces to launch the Portuguese consumer biodiesel brand, PrioBio, in the UK. PrioBio is scheduled to be available in the UK from 1st November. By the end of this year (2007), says FCL Biofuel, the partnership’s two biodiesel refineries will have a total capacity of 200,000 tonnes which will is set to grow to 400,000 tonnes by the end of 2010. Biofuel Review - September 27, 2007.

    According to Tarja Halonen, the Finnish president, one third of the value of all of Finland's exports consists of environmentally friendly technologies. Finland has invested in climate and energy technologies, particularly in combined heat and power production from biomass, bioenergy and wind power, the president said at the UN secretary-general's high-level event on climate change. Newroom Finland - September 25, 2007.

    Spanish engineering and energy company Abengoa says it had suspended bioethanol production at the biggest of its three Spanish plants because it was unprofitable. It cited high grain prices and uncertainty about the national market for ethanol. Earlier this year, the plant, located in Salamanca, ceased production for similar reasons. To Biopact this is yet another indication that biofuel production in the EU/US does not make sense and must be relocated to the Global South, where the biofuel can be produced competitively and sustainably, without relying on food crops. Reuters - September 24, 2007.

    The Midlands Consortium, comprised of the universities of Birmingham, Loughborough and Nottingham, is chosen to host Britain's new Energy Technologies Institute, a £1 billion national organisation which will aim to develop cleaner energies. University of Nottingham - September 21, 2007.

    The EGGER group, one of the leading European manufacturers of chipboard, MDF and OSB boards has begun work on installing a 50MW biomass boiler for its production site in Rion. The new furnace will recycle 60,000 tonnes of offcuts to be used in the new combined heat and power (CHP) station as an ecological fuel. The facility will reduce consumption of natural gas by 75%. IHB Network - September 21, 2007.

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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

GS CleanTech to produce biodiesel from corn ethanol co-product

GS CleanTech Corporation announced its execution of an agreement with Northeast Biofuels (NEB), to extract about 10 million gallons per year of crude corn oil from the distillers grain co-product from NEB’s new 114 million gallon per year dry mill ethanol plant scheduled to commence operations later this year.

Traditional ethanol processing converts each bushel of corn, which weighs about 54 pounds, into about 18 pounds of ethanol, 18 pounds of carbon dioxide, and 18 pounds of distillers dried grains (DDG), which contain about 2 pounds of fat. This corresponds to about 2.8 gallons of fuel production per bushel of corn. GS CleanTech's ambition is to increase this efficiency as much as possible by converting DDG into an additional stream of biodiesel.

The abundant DDGs have a low value as an animal feed (previous post). But scientists have been looking at potentially more interesting uses, and found applications as an organic fertiliser and herbicide, a solid biofuel for co-firing with coal, or a feedstock for biogas production. Others take the research a step further and see DDGs suitable for making green chemicals like polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) used for the production of biodegradable plastics (earlier post).

GS CleanTech thinks extracting the oil from the dried grains offers a commercially interesting opportunity for the production of biodiesel. It developed patent-pending 'Corn Oil Extraction Systems' (schematic, click to enlarge), engineered to help ethanol producers increase cash flows through the introduction of the new revenue stream. GS CleanTech provides extraction systems to participating ethanol producers at no cost to the ethanol producers in return for the long-term right to purchase the extracted corn oil at a per pound premium to its value when trapped in the distiller’s grains. GS CleanTech says its extraction technology also reduces overall plant emissions and utility costs by upwards of $1 million per year for a 100 million gallon per year ethanol plant that dries 100% of its distiller’s grains.

GS CleanTech has now partnered with NEB to demonstrate the technology. NEB is building its ethanol facility on the site of a former brewery at the 420-acre Riverview Business Park in Volney, NY, about 25 miles north of Syracuse. When the plant opens, it will annually produce 114 million gallons of corn ethanol and become the first large scale operating ethanol plant in New York State and the Northeast.

NEB and its on-site project participants, BOC Gases, and now GS CleanTech, will directly and indirectly employ approximately 100 workers, with an estimated 1,500-plus spin-off jobs created in agriculture, transportation and other sectors of the Upstate New York economy. Because of its strategic Upstate New York location, NEB will have low cost access to markets representing more than 2.3 billion gallons of potential ethanol demand in the Northeast US and Eastern Canada.
The best way to [defray risk] is to implement 'plug and play' technologies that enhance the yields and operating efficiencies of the traditional ethanol production process. Our corn oil extraction technology is the first of several technologies that meet that goal that we are bringing to market to meet that objective. - David Winsness, GS CleanTech’s President and Chief Executive Officer
GS CleanTech has commenced work on the NEB extraction systems and is targeting an early 2008 commissioning:
:: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: ::

GS CleanTech’s affiliated fuel production company, GS AgriFuels Corporation, previously announced its intention to finance, build and operate a 10 million gallon per year biodiesel facility adjacent to the NEB facility. This facility will be designed to convert corn oil into biodiesel, which GS AgriFuels intends to sell locally in New York. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority ('NYSERDA') previously awarded a $250,000 grant to support the construction of this biodiesel production facility.

GS CleanTech and GS AgriFuels have partnered in the full scale commercialization of their technologies. GS CleanTech provides technology-centric services in return for process engineering and plant construction sales, ongoing technology royalties and selected feedstock sales. GS AgriFuels provides all of the capital for the construction of the extraction and biodiesel production facilities and generates revenues through its ownership of the biodiesel production assets.

GS CleanTech and GS AgriFuels are both majority owned by GreenShift Corporation, a company devoted to facilitating the efficient use of natural resources.

GS CleanTech: overview of corn oil extraction systems, includig some pictures and a video of operational systems.

Biopact: Ethanol byproduct boosts crop yields, acts as herbicide - May 07, 2007

Biopact: Schmack Biogas to build biogas plant coupled to ethanol facility, fed by residues - September 24, 2007

Biopact: Steps to biorefining: new products from biofuel leftovers - August 10, 2007


rufus said...

Cattle Feeders in Nebraska have found that they get about 10% "Greater" weight gain from DDGS than from Corn. Just thought you'd like to know.

Also, removing the fat will, likely, increase the value of distillers grains as it will make them more flowable, and easier to digest.

The source of this information is an article linked in Domesticfuels.com.

8:41 PM  
Anonymous said...

Thanks Rufus, that's interesting info. I don't know much about the nutritional value of corn versus DDGs, let alone about the effects of low-fat DDGs on digestion. Will check it out!


10:04 PM  

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