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    Austrian bioenergy group Cycleenergy acquired controlling interest in Greenpower Projektentwicklungs GmbH, expanding its biomass operational portfolio by 16 MW to a total of 22 MW. In the transaction Cycleenergy took over 51% of the company and thereby formed a joint venture with Porr Infrastruktur GmbH, a subsidiary of Austrian construction company Porr AG. Greenpower operates two wood chip CHP facilities in Upper and Lower Austria, each with an electric capacity of 2 MW. The plants have been in operation since the middle of last year and consume more than 30,000 tonnes of wood chips and are expected to generate over €5 million in additional revenue. Cycleenergy - February 6, 2007.

    The 2008 edition of Bioenergy World Europe will take place in Verona, Italy, from 7 to 10 February. Gathering a broad range of international exhibitors covering gaseous, liquid and solid bioenergy, the event aims to offer participants the possibility of developing their business through meetings with professionals, thematic study tours and an international forum focusing on market and regulatory issues, as well as industry expertise. Bioenergy World Europe - February 5, 2007.

    The World GTL Summit will take place between 12 – 14th May 2008 in London. Key topics to be discussed include: the true value of Gas-to-Liquids (GTL) projects, well-to-wheels analyses of the GTL value chain; construction, logistics and procurement challenges; the future for small-scale Fischer-Tropsch (FT) projects; Technology, economics, politics and logistics of Coal-to-Liquids (CTL); latest Biomass-to-Liquids (BTL) commercialisation initiatives. CWC Exhibitions - February 4, 2007.

    The 4th Annual Brussels Climate Change Conference is announced for 26 - 27 February 2008. This joint CEPS/Epsilon conference will explore the key issues for a post-Kyoto agreement on climate change. The conference focuses on EU and global issues relating to global warming, and in particular looks at the following issues: - Post-2012 after Bali and before the Hokkaido G8 summit; Progress of EU integrated energy and climate package, burden-sharing renewables and technology; EU Emissions Trading Review with a focus on investment; Transport Climatepolicy.eu - January 28, 2007.

    Japan's Marubeni Corp. plans to begin importing a bioethanol compound from Brazil for use in biogasoline sold by petroleum wholesalers in Japan. The trading firm will import ETBE, which is synthesized from petroleum products and ethanol derived from sugar cane. The compound will be purchased from Brazilian petrochemical company Companhia Petroquimica do Sul and in February, Marubeni will supply 6,500 kilolitres of the ETBE, worth around US$7 million, to a biogasoline group made up of petroleum wholesalers. Wholesalers have been introducing biofuels since last April by mixing 7 per cent ETBE into gasoline. Plans call for 840 million liters of ETBE to be procured annually from domestic and foreign suppliers by 2010. Trading Markets - January 24, 2007.

    Toyota Tsusho Corp., Ohta Oil Mill Co. and Toyota Chemical Engineering Co., say it and two other firms have jointly developed a technology to produce biodiesel fuel at lower cost. Biodiesel is made by blending methanol into plant-derived oil. The new technology requires smaller amounts of methanol and alkali catalysts than conventional technologies. In addition, the new technology makes water removal facilities unnecessary. JCN Network - January 22, 2007.

    Finland's Metso Paper and SWISS COMBI - W. Kunz dryTec A.G. have entered a licence agreement for the SWISS COMBI belt dryer KUVO, which allows biomass to be dried in a low temperature environment and at high capacity, both for pulp & paper and bioenergy applications. Kauppalehti - January 22, 2007.

    Record warm summers cause extreme ice melt in Greenland: an international team of scientists, led by Dr Edward Hanna at the University of Sheffield, has found that recent warm summers have caused the most extreme Greenland ice melting in 50 years. The new research provides further evidence of a key impact of global warming and helps scientists place recent satellite observations of Greenland´s shrinking ice mass in a longer-term climatic context. Findings are published in the 15 January 2008 issue of Journal of Climate. University of Sheffield - January 15, 2007.

    Japan's Tsukishima Kikai Co. and Marubeni Corp. have together clinched an order from Oenon Holdings Inc. for a plant that will make bioethanol from rice. The Oenon group will invest around 4.4 billion yen (US$40.17 million) in the project, half of which will be covered by a subsidy from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. The plant will initially produce bioethanol from imported rice, with plans to use Hokkaido-grown rice in the future. It will produce 5 million liters per year starting in 2009, increasing output to 15m liters in 2011. The facility will be able to produce as much as 50,000 liters of bioethanol from 125 tons of rice each day. Trading Markets - January 11, 2007.

    PetroSun, Inc. announced today that its subsidiary, PetroSun BioFuels Refining, has entered into a JV to construct and operate a biodiesel refinery near Coolidge, Arizona. The feedstock for the refinery will be algal oil produced by PetroSun BioFuels at algae farms to be located in Arizona. The refinery will have a capacity of thirty million gallons and will produce 100% renewable biodiesel. PetroSun BioFuels will process the residual algae biomass into ethanol. MarketWire - January 10, 2007.

    BlueFire Ethanol Fuels Inc, which develops and operates carbohydrate-based transportation fuel production facilities, has secured capital liquidity for corporate overhead and continued project development in the value of US$15 million with Quercus, an environmentally focused trust. BlueFire Ethanol Fuels - January 09, 2007.

    Some $170 billion in new technology development projects, infrastructure equipment and construction, and biofuel refineries will result from the ethanol production standards contained the new U.S. Energy Bill, says BIO, the global Biotechnology Industry Organization. According to Brent Erickson, BIO's executive vice president "Such a new energy infrastructure has not occurred in more than 100 years. We are at the point where we were in the 1850s when kerosene was first distilled and began to replace whale oil. This technology will be coming so fast that what we say today won't be true in two years." Chemical & Engineering News - January 07, 2007.

    Scottish and Southern Energy plc, the UK's second largest power company, has completed the acquisition of Slough Heat and Power Ltd from SEGRO plc for a total cash consideration of £49.25m. The 101MW CHP plant is the UK’s largest dedicated biomass energy facility fueled by wood chips, biomass and waste paper. Part of the plant is contracted under the Non Fossil Fuel Obligation and part of it produces over 200GWH of output qualifying for Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs), which is equivalent to around 90MW of wind generation. Scottish & Southern Energy - January 2, 2007.

    PetroChina Co Ltd, the country's largest oil and gas producer, plans to invest 800 million yuan to build an ethanol plant in Nanchong, in the southwestern province of Sichuan, its parent China National Petroleum Corp said. The ethanol plant has a designed annual capacity of 100,000 tons. ABCMoneyNews - December 21, 2007.

    Mexico passed legislation to promote biofuels last week, offering unspecified support to farmers that grow crops for the production of any renewable fuel. Agriculture Minister Alberto Cardenas said Mexico could expand biodiesel faster than ethanol. More soon. Reuters - December 20, 2007.

    Oxford Catalysts has placed an order worth approximately €700,000 (US$1 million) with the German company Amtec for the purchase of two Spider16 high throughput screening reactors. The first will be used to speed up the development of catalysts for hydrodesulphurisation (HDS). The second will be used to further the development of catalysts for use in gas to liquid (GTL) and Fischer-Tropsch processes which can be applied to next generation biofuels. AlphaGalileo - December 18, 2007.

    According to the Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística (IBGE), Brazil's production of sugarcane will increase from 514,1 million tonnes this season, to a record 561,8 million tonnes in the 2008/09 cyclus - an increase of 9.3%. New numbers are also out for the 2007 harvest in Brazil's main sugarcane growing region, the Central-South: a record 425 million tonnes compared to 372,7 million tonnes in 2006, or a 14% increase. The estimate was provided by Unica – the União da Indústria de Cana-de-Açúcar. Jornal Cana - December 16, 2007.

    The University of East Anglia and the UK Met Office's Hadley Centre have today released preliminary global temperature figures for 2007, which show the top 11 warmest years all occurring in the last 13 years. The provisional global figure for 2007 using data from January to November, currently places the year as the seventh warmest on records dating back to 1850. The announcement comes as the Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Michel Jarraud, speaks at the Conference of the Parties (COP) in Bali. Eurekalert - December 13, 2007.

    The Royal Society of Chemistry has announced it will launch a new journal in summer 2008, Energy & Environmental Science, which will distinctly address both energy and environmental issues. In recognition of the importance of research in this subject, and the need for knowledge transfer between scientists throughout the world, from launch the RSC will make issues of Energy & Environmental Science available free of charge to readers via its website, for the first 18 months of publication. This journal will highlight the important role that the chemical sciences have in solving the energy problems we are facing today. It will link all aspects of energy and the environment by publishing research relating to energy conversion and storage, alternative fuel technologies, and environmental science. AlphaGalileo - December 10, 2007.

    Dutch researcher Bas Bougie has developed a laser system to investigate soot development in diesel engines. Small soot particles are not retained by a soot filter but are, however, more harmful than larger soot particles. Therefore, soot development needs to be tackled at the source. Laser Induced Incandescence is a technique that reveals exactly where soot is generated and can be used by project partners to develop cleaner diesel engines. Terry Meyer, an Iowa State University assistant professor of mechanical engineering, is using similar laser technology to develop advanced sensors capable of screening the combustion behavior and soot characteristics specifically of biofuels. Eurekalert - December 7, 2007.

    Lithuania's first dedicated biofuel terminal has started operating in Klaipeda port. At the end of November 2007, the stevedoring company Vakaru krova (VK) started activities to manage transshipments. The infrastructure of the biodiesel complex allows for storage of up to 4000 cubic meters of products. During the first year, the terminal plans to transship about 70.000 tonnes of methyl ether, after that the capacities of the terminal would be increased. Investments to the project totaled €2.3 million. Agrimarket - December 5, 2007.

    New Holland supports the use of B100 biodiesel in all equipment with New Holland-manufactured diesel engines, including electronic injection engines with common rail technology. Overall, nearly 80 percent of the tractor and equipment manufacturer's New Holland-branded products with diesel engines are now available to operate on B100 biodiesel. Tractor and equipment maker John Deere meanwhile clarified its position for customers that want to use biodiesel blends up to B20. Grainnet - December 5, 2007.

    According to Wetlands International, an NGO, the Kyoto Protocol as it currently stands does not take into account possible emissions from palm oil grown on a particular type of land found in Indonesia and Malaysia, namely peatlands. Mongabay - December 5, 2007.

    Malaysia's oil & gas giant Petronas considers entering the biofuels sector. Zamri Jusoh, senior manager of Petronas' petroleum development management unit told reporters "of course our focus is on oil and gas, but I think as we move into the future we cannot ignore the importance of biofuels." AFP - December 5, 2007.

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Monday, February 11, 2008

Indian sugar producer cogenerates 56MW of biomass power; obtains carbon credits under CDM

One of India's largest sugar producers, Dwarikesh Sugar Industries Ltd, has announced it started producing electricity from biomass at two plants in Fardipur in Bareilly district, and in Afzalgarh, Bijnore District, Uttar Pradesh. As a result of a €39/$56.7 million investment, the company will be able to supply more than 24 MW of green power to the Uttar Pradesh Power Corp Ltd (UPPCL), and fully meet its own power requirements. Besides sugar production, Dwarikesh now has a capacity to generate 56MW of renewable energy as well as 10.95 million liters/year of ethanol from molasses. The cogeneration project is registered under the UN's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).

By diversifying into green energy and biofuels, the project is seen as a major strategy to combat adverse cyclic conditions and uncertainties impacting the sugar industry. So-called 'flex-factories' (precursors to full fledged 'biorefineries') allow for the utilization of residues in the most optimal way, depending on prevailing market conditions, and guarantee multiple revenue streams.
The commencement of the cogeneration plants and their registration with UNFCCC adds an exciting dimension to the growth story of our group. The past one year has been very difficult and it required concerted effort on the part of all concerned within the organization and support and help of all our business associates to survive and beat the adversity. However the worst is behind us and we look forward to sustained growth and exciting times in future. - Vijay S Banka, CFO, Dwarikesh Sugar Industries
Announcing the start of the project today to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), the company said the cogeneration project was brought online on the 3rd February, when at its Dwarikesh Puram (DP) plant in Afzalgarh, Bijnore District, the power generation turbine was synchronized with the grid of UPPCL.

Power evacuation is 20 megawatts initially and will be gradually stepped up to achieve its rated capacity of 24 Megawatts. Power generated will be renewable and carbon neutral, as it will be generated from bagasse, the abundant biomass residue obtained from processing sugarcane. The project is registered with UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its CDM for the generation of Carbon Emission Reductions (CERs), which the company will now be able to sell.

The Dwarikesh Dham plant in Fardipur, Bareilly district is an encore of the DP plant in Afzalgarh and will also use biomass for power generation. It is equipped to supply more than 24 megawatts of green power to the grid of UPPCL. Power purchase agreements (PPA) are already executed with UPPCL for power supplies from these units for the next 20 years:
:: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: :: ::

The company is now equipped to export 56 megawatts of green power besides meeting all its captive requirements. Commencement of these projects are seen as 'giant steps' in the direction of optimizing use of byproducts and in combating adverse cyclic conditions impacting the sugar industry.

In the execution of above projects high pressure boilers & sophisticated turbines involving the latest technology and investment in excess of INR 225 crores (€39/$56.7 million) were deployed. The commencement of these projects would usher in a new era in the history of the company as new dimension will be added to the business model based on multiple streams of revenue, each contributing significantly to the top-line and the bottom-line. The move is paradigm shift in the business model of the company: from a business entity that originally made only sugar it has now transformed in to an entity producing fuels and green energy.

The company now has state of art facility to crush 21,500 metric tons of sugarcane every day, export 56 megawatts of power every hour and produce and sell 30,000 liters of ethanol/industrial alcohol everyday.

India is the second largest sugar producer in the world, with the state of Uttar Pradesh taking the bulk of the share (map, click to enlarge). The country has a substantial potential for the production of green electricity from bagasse and agricultural residues. Under its 11th Plan period (2007-2012), the government of India recently announced it aims to add 1,700 MW capacity through biomass and bagasse cogeneration in various states, including Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. The target consists of 500 MW from biomass projects and 1,200 MW from projects based on utilizing bagasse (previous post).

The total technical bioenergy potential from residues and energy crops in India is estimated to be around 66,880MW, more than wind, solar and small hydro combined (table, click to enlarge). In order to turn this potential efficiently into energy, an inter-ministerial initiative was recently launched: the production of a detailed atlas to accurately asses the nation-wide biomass resource base, including agricultural residues suitable for conversion into energy, which must allow the planning of the most optimal use of the resource (previous post).

Dwarikesh Group is a fast growing industrial group consisting of companies having a strong presence in diverse fields such as sugar manufacturing, financial services and information technology. The group's flagship company, Dwarikesh Sugar Industries Limited, is headquartered at Mumbai. The company's plants are located in Bijnor district of Uttar Pradesh, at Dwarikeshnagar (Najibabad) and Dwarikeshpuram (Afzalgarh). The company expects to commission its third plant by the beginning of the sugar season of 2007-08.

Dwarikesh: Giant steps in the direction of power generation - February 11, 2008.

Biopact: India to add 1700MW of biomass co-generation by 2012; 18,000MW potential from agro-residues - December 07, 2007

Biopact: India prepares 'Biomass Atlas' to map and tap bioenergy potential - November 26, 2007


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