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European Union agrees on renewable transport targets and palm oil ban

Biofuels Digest - Thu, 06/14/2018 - 7:46pm

In Belgium, negotiators from the European Parliament, Council and Commission agreed early Thursday morning on a new target for renewables in transport – a deal that clearly recognizes the importance of separating bad biofuels like palm oil from good ones like European ethanol.

The agreement sets a target of 14% renewables in transport by 2030. It would freeze the use of high-ILUC risk biofuels such as palm oil at current levels and phase it out by 2030, while capping crop-based biofuels at Member States’ 2020 levels, with a maximum of 7%. The agreement also sets an ambitious and much needed target for advanced biofuels.

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The Battle for Yeast Supremacy: DSM, DuPont, Novozymes and more

Biofuels Digest - Thu, 06/14/2018 - 4:58pm

FEW, the Fuel Ethanol Workshops, have come and gone for 2018 and the story this year was yeast. Specifically, a war on yield fermentation time, energy use and more. 

Let’s review the big gambits from the likes of DSM, DuPont Industrial Biosciences and Novozymes as they duke it out over market share in an era where corn ethanol gallons are, perhaps for the first time, unlikely to rise much for a while. With that, focus is shifting even more to efficiency and effectiveness. And this in a sector with margins that can be as thin as nanocellulose.

DSM’s eBOOST: consistent increased ethanol yield while significantly reducing

In Nebraska, Royal DSM introduced its eBOOST fermentation solution which in trials with ethanol producers has increased ethanol yields by up to 6% and reducing glycerol formation by up to 50 percent. It’s the latest salvo in a battle for value-creation taking place in yeast at the moment — an almost unprecedented wave of innovation by major companies launching commercially-scaled products in the 9,000 year history of yeast as an industrial product.

 

Developed by DSM’s Bio -based Products & Services business, eBOOST is available in dry and cream forms, is tailored, manufactured and commercially available in the United States. The solution includes yeast; a license to proprietary, patented technology; and technical service from DSM’s local team. Perhaps most importantly, it’s a drop-in replacement, with no special hardware upgrades, no retraining — and we hear that customers like the availability of a dry product.

One such trial took place with Corn Plus, an ethanol plant located in Minnesota, USA, that is owned and supported by more than 600 local shareholders. “In working with DSM, we saw a near 50 percent reduction in glycerol production — this is very significant,” said Mike Jerke, Corn Plus General Manager. “Beyond that, DSM provided a high level of attention to the technical side with people on site to guide us through the process. Having a vendor who is willing to deploy resources in this way is a good thing.”

DSM’s North American business director, Hans van der Sluijs, told the Digest that multiple trials have taken place with US ethanol producers, including both longer and shorter standard fermentation runs, but covered by confidentiality arrangements. He confirmed that up to 75 percent reductions in glycerol reduction could be seen ultimately from this technology, and that the technology has also seen higher than six percent yield gains in some lab tests. “We’re working all the time on innovation across our labs and with our customers,” with an aim at continual improvement in key performance indicators. But he cautioned about projecting specific numbers for productivity enhancement prior to a local trial, noting that “you would see substantial yield improvement, but our years of experience have taught us that that there are many local factors — the water, the climate, for example — that will impact the results.”

DuPont’s XCELIS gambit

In Delaware, building off the recent launch of its fuel ethanol platform DuPont XCELIS, DuPont Industrial Biosciences unveiled the first three products from the innovation hub – designed to increase yields, speed fermentation and reduce energy and chemical consumption.

  • DuPont SYNERXIA THRIVE GX: Next Generation in Yeast for the Fuel Alcohol Industry
  • DuPont DISTILLASE DXT: Advanced Glucoamylase Blend
  • DuPont OPTIMASH AX: Xylanase for Enhanced Liquefaction

So, this product enhancement set was broader than yeast, but yeast remained in the driver’s seat, even in this release. The new XCELIS platform also will feature an online partner community for the industry, GRAIN CHANGERS. This online community and innovative product offerings represent a new age for DuPont’s XCELIS biorefinery team. By improving performance, efficiency and fuel ethanol yields – and working hand-in-hand with customers – XCELIS helps ethanol producers reach their goals with new products, tools and technologies.

Visualization of the Technology

Higher yields, faster fermentation, reduced energy: The Digest’s 2018 Multi-Slide Guide to DuPont Industrial Biosciences’ XCELIS platform

Novozymes unveils Innova Drive yeast platform for starch-based ethanol

In February, we reported as Novozymes revealed its new yeast platform for starch-based ethanol, while also introducing the first product, Innova Drive. A completely new yeast strain, the product can reduce fermentation time by up to two hours compared to current yeasts.

The new yeast is also tougher, continuing to ferment in adverse conditions such as higher organic acids and temperatures. This stress resistance increases ethanol output and reduces operational costs.

During fermentation, Innova Drive produces a novel, higher-performing glucoamylase enzyme. The enzyme is twice as effective as glucoamylases produced by other yeast products in converting sugar into ethanol. And, when ethanol producers pair a specially designed, complementary Novozymes fermentation enzyme with Drive, the combined performance allows producers to maximize ethanol conversion and starch conversion efficiency.

We profiled the technology in Novozymes ignites Yeast Wars with breakthrough new strain, yield gain, time cut, here.

The Bottom Line

2018, it’s a feast for yeast, to say the least, with yields increased.

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Strategic Intent: The Digest’s 2018 Multi-Slide Guide to Corbion

Biofuels Digest - Thu, 06/14/2018 - 1:29pm

Corbion is a global market leader in lactic acid, lactic acid derivatives, and a leading company in emulsifiers, functional enzyme blends, minerals, vitamins and algae ingredients. In 2017, the company generated annual sales of € 891.7 million and had a workforce of 1,794 FTE. Corbion is listed on Euronext Amsterdam.

The company gave this illuminating overview of its promise and progress in its impressive range of biobased markets and sectors.

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Finland divests 5% for $1 billion of Neste to take advantage of bull run

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:11pm

In Finland, Reuters reports that the government’s stake in Neste fell to 44.7 percent after selling 5 percent of the company for around $1 billion, prompting criticism from the opposition for dropping below the majority shareholding level. The government said it wanted to take profits following a recent rally before losing out on the opportunity to cash out. The government says it doesn’t plan to divest further despite a law approved last year allowing it to fall to 33.4%.

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NRL signs JV with Chempolis and Fortum for Indian bamboo-based biorefinery

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:09pm

In India, Numaligarh Refinery Limited has taken a giant step forward by establishing a joint venture, Assam Bio-Refinery Pvt. Limited (ABRPL) with equity participation of M/s Chempolis Oy of Finland and M/s Fortum 3 B.V. of Netherland to build and operate the first of its kind Bio Refinery in India which would generate renewable green fuel-bioethanol, other valuable chemicals  and green power from bamboo biomass.

The joint venture agreement was signed in New Delhi recently by MD NRL S K Barua; Mr. Sanjay Aggarwal, authorised representative of Fortum 3 B.V. and CEO Chempolis Oy, Finland Mr. Tomi Honkala in the presence of officials from all the partner companies including Director (Tech) NRL Mr. B. J. Phukan and Head (Legal) Fortum India Pvt.Ltd.

The joint venture company incorporated on June 4, 2018 has three partners with major equity holding of 50% by NRL, 28% by Fortum 3.B.V. Netherland and 22% by Chempolis Oy, Finland.

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BASF to invest in LanzaTech an undisclosed amount

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:08pm

In Germany, BASF Venture Capital GmbH is to invest in LanzaTech. “LanzaTech offers a promising technology that allows currently unused industrial residue and waste streams to be recycled,” says Markus Solibieda, Managing Director of BASF Venture Capital. “We support our customers and society with chemistry that makes optimum use of available resources, and we are working to integrate sustainability increasingly in all our business processes. One part of this is investment in technologies that help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.”

“Investment from BASF will help us realize our goal of a Carbon Smart Future,” says Jennifer Holmgren, CEO of LanzaTech. “BASF’s expertise in creating sustainable chemistry that benefits society aligns with our carbon recycling vision, where we capture and reuse waste carbon to make useful everyday items, displacing fossil feedstocks and keeping the sky blue for all.”

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Indian oil minister wants to make ethanol easier to trade

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:07pm

In India, the oil minister is working to ease trading regulations that has kept oil marketing companies from sourcing enough ethanol from sugar mills to supply the 5% blending mandate nationwide. Tendering procedures and price have been among the complaints by sugar mills for the lack of purchases. Sugar mills are suffering from low global sugar prices, with many looking at ethanol production as an opportunity to increase economic viability, especially now that policy has been eased allowing for different feedstocks to be used.

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Copa-Cogeca says DG Agri wasn’t consulted sufficiently regarding REDII

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:06pm

In Belgium, the secretary general of Copa-Cogeca says that DG Agri has not been properly consulted regarding biofuels regulations, something that concerns that farmers unions greatly because of the opportunity provided by biofuels and the economic impacts likely if crop-based biofuels are phased out as expected. Farmers want the cap on cro-based biofuels to remain at 7% by 2030 while the Parliament wants it to fall to 3.8% while more focused is placed on advanced biofuels and green electricity.

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Growth Energy says E15 key to ethanol industry’s future

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 5:05pm

In Nebraska, Platts reports that Growth Energy says year-round E15 sales are key to the future viability of the ethanol industry. With an additional demand of 1.3 billion gallons over the next five years should the policy shift be implemented, it’s still not enough to compensate for the lost of 1.8 billion gallons from hardship waivers nor the RINs that could be generated if the Renewable Fuel Standard is reformed to allow generation from exports.

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Amyris teams with Portuguese universities to boost AI and use of wastes

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 4:59pm

In California, Amyris announced that it has executed an agreement for a significant project consortium in Europe with the Universidade Católica Portuguesa (UCP) Porto Campus and AICEP Portugal Global (AICEP). UCP is a university system, including the leading biotech school in Portugal, and operates 15 research centers. AICEP is an independent public entity of the Government of Portugal, focused in encouraging the best foreign companies to invest in Portugal.

The announcement is a follow up to the announcement Amyris made on January 17, 2018 regarding grants in both Europe and with the National Institute of Health, with the grant in Europe tied to the project consortium announced. The project goals entail collaboration in advancing the use of Amyris’s leading technology platform and capabilities to, among other things:

Explore means of using waste from fermentation to develop new products and applications from co-products. This valorization of co-products is expected to significantly reduce production cost and create additional sustainability in the production process.
Advance Amyris’s artificial intelligence (AI) and Informatics platform. This includes providing a cloud-based interface whereby universities and companies could utilize aspects of the company’s advanced platform to design genes for potential molecule development. Amyris would be positioned to take development and testing of marketable target molecules to the next level and commercial scale.

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French farmers back off from blockade as agri minister makes promises

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 4:58pm

In France, farmers have begun to end their blockades as oil refineries and depots that led to more than 100 stations running dry of fuel after the agriculture minister agreed to some of their demands. The blockade was to force Total to boost its use of domestic oils, preferably from rapeseed but also from used cooking oil, rather than importing palm oil for its La Mede biorefinery. The company agreed to use 50,000 metric tons of rapeseed for feedstock but farmers want that level increased.

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BASF invests in LanzaTech, ArcelorMittal’s underway on advanced fuels, Syngenta breaks 3B gallon mark, Leaf gets an accelerator: partnership frenzy in the bioeconomy

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 2:31pm

News that ArcelorMittal and LanzaTech broke ground on their €150 million waste-to-energy project in Belgium this week and that BASF has invested in the company adds to the LanzaTech-dominated week in Digestville.

But it shows also what smaller companies can do when they partner effectively – whether that means industrial giants like ArcelorMittal or BASF, technology accelerator schemes like Unreasonable Impact, or with the US ethanol industry.

And BASF, Lallemand, Leaf Resources and Syngenta’s Enogen corn are in the news this week in that way as well. It’s a showcase day for accelerating company fortunes through partnership.

Arcelor, LanzaTech break ground

First, to LanzaTech’s massive project. ArcelorMittal has begun construction of new premises at its site in Ghent, Belgium, to house a pioneering new installation which will convert carbon-containing gas from its blast furnaces into bioethanol. If proved successful, the new concept has the potential to revolutionize blast furnace carbon emissions capture and support the decarbonization of the transport sector. 

This is the first installation of its kind on an industrial scale in Europe and once complete, annual production of bioethanol at Ghent is expected to reach around 80 million liters, which will yield an annual CO2 saving equivalent to putting 100,000 electrical cars on the road. The new installation will create up to 500 construction jobs over the next two years and 20 to 30 new permanent direct jobs. Commissioning and first production is expected by mid-2020.  Funding was obtained from various sources, including the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program, to carry out further research and development and scale up the project 

The application of this microbial gas conversion system significantly advances ArcelorMittal’s carbon capture and storage (CCS) and carbon capture and utilization (CCU) capabilities and enhances steel’s role in the circular economy. ArcelorMittal’s long-term aspiration is to become a zero-waste business, with all materials used or generated during steel production recuperated, treated and reused in the production chain or becoming the raw materials for other industries. 

Reaction from AM and L-T

“We are excited that after several years of research and engineering, we are now progressing with the largest project of its kind within the ArcelorMittal group. This is the first application of a viable new business case where re-use of carbon is possible at large scale. We will achieve significant carbon reduction and we hope that this will lead us to a lower carbon economy,” says Carl De Maré, vice president of Technology Strategy at ArcelorMittal. “This new Carbon Smart technology illustrates ArcelorMittal’s commitment to transforming steel production and it will also further strengthen steel’s standing in the circular economy, particularly compared to other higher carbon metals like aluminium.” 

“Single use carbon must become a thing of the past,” said Jennifer Holmgren, CEO of LanzaTech. “In order to succeed in decarbonizing our economy, we will need the commitment of large companies and governments from around the world to ensure carbon reuse is part of the solution. This facility in Europe embodies the key principles of the circular economy and drives to a zero-waste steel production world. We are excited to work with ArcelorMittal and are grateful for the support of the European Commission.” 

BASF invests in LanzaTech 

In Germany, BASF Venture Capital is investing in LanzaTech, the Digest has learned.  BASF Venture Capital GmbH (BVC) was founded in 2001 and has offices in Europe, the U.S., China and Israel. The aim of BVC is to generate new growth potential for BASF by investing in new companies and funds. The focus of investment is on chemical products and new materials, software and services as well as innovative and digital business models in the broader field of chemistry. Terms were not disclosed by the partners.

LanzaTech’s technology is now being deployed at commercial scale in the steel industry where carbon monoxide from residual gases (off-gases) can be converted into ethanol. Ethanol can be used as the raw material for the production of diesel, gasoline or jet fuel and as a precursor to plastics and polymers. The company’s product portfolio includes additional biochemicals besides ethanol, such as chemical specialties and intermediates, that can be used as raw materials in other chemical production processes. The technology is also potentially suitable for treating and recycling waste streams in the chemical industry and for municipal waste disposal. 

Reaction from BASF, L-T

“LanzaTech offers a promising technology that allows currently unused industrial residue and waste streams to be recycled,” says Markus Solibieda, Managing Director of BASF Venture Capital. “We support our customers and society with chemistry that makes optimum use of available resources, and we are working to integrate sustainability increasingly in all our business processes. One part of this is investment in technologies that help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.” 

“Investment from BASF will help us realize our goal of a Carbon Smart Future,” says Jennifer Holmgren, CEO of LanzaTech. “BASF’s expertise in creating sustainable chemistry that benefits society aligns with our carbon recycling vision, where we capture and reuse waste carbon to make useful everyday items, displacing fossil feedstocks and keeping the sky blue for all.” 

Leaf Selected for Accelerator Programme ‘Unreasonable Impact’ 

Meanwhile, Leaf Resources has been selected by Unreasonable Impact, a global partnership between Barclays and Unreasonable Group focused on scaling up ventures that have the potential to solve major environmental and societal problems while creating the jobs of tomorrow. Leaf is the only Australian company – as well as the only bioeconomy company – chosen for the current programme, focused on the Asia-Pacific region.  

Unreasonable Impact has forged partnerships with some of the world’s largest institutions and brands, and its programmes are focused on solving the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Leaf Resources was chosen thanks to its innovative Glycell process and biodegradable recyclable packaging product LeafCOAT. When implemented, these processes and products can significantly contribute to several of the  Leaf is well-positioned to support United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. such as SDG 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure), SDG 12 (responsible consumption and production) and SDG 13 (climate action).

Unreasonable Impact aims to rapidly scale up entrepreneurial companies which address key environmental issues while possessing highly profitable business models and an ability to create thousands of new jobs. The initiative is a first-of-its-kind, international accelerator network and the programme is launching in the UK, the USA and Asia. The second Asia-Pacific programme will run this June as an intensive ten-day accelerator designed to support growth stage ventures across China, Hong Kong, India, Japan and Singapore. Unreasonable Impact will assist selected ventures with valuable resources, mentorship, funding opportunities and a global support network. 

Reaction from LR

“The selection of Leaf Resources for the Unreasonable Impact accelerator programme is further evidence of our growing environmental and business credentials. As our Malaysian project moves closer to being implemented, the credibility of Leaf as a major international force for environmental good, with the appropriate commercial upside, is growing. It is further testament to the hard work done by the Leaf team and an unwavering commitment to making it happen.”

BASF and Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits ink enzymes, yeast partnership 

In California and Georgia, BASF Enzymes and Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits signed a marketing and sales collaboration agreement aimed at the US ethanol market.  BASF will use its enzyme portfolio for applications in liquefaction and fermentation in order to maximize fermentation performance. LBDS will use its TransFerm yeast product line that provides increased ethanol yields and reduces the need for glucoamylase addition. 

Reaction from BASF, LBDS

“Collaborating with LBDS is a key milestone in our efforts to better serve our customers with increased-value to their bottom line,” said Dirk Daems, Director of Operations, BASF. “LBDS’s leading yeast technology and expertise in fermentation is the perfect complement to our high-performance enzyme portfolio and technical support in the field.” 

“Being able to bring to market the best liquefaction enzymes in the world, coupled with our TransFerm yeast products, will generate even more value for our customers through increased efficiencies,” said Angus Ballard, President of LBDS. “We are very excited to be teaming up with BASF and their innovative enzyme technology, to make this vision a reality.” 

Syngenta hits 3 billion gallon, 30 plant mark for Enogen corn

In Minnesota, Syngenta now has agreements in place with more than 30 ethanol plants with a combined production capacity of approximately 3 billion gallons. As new plants come on board, Syngenta expects ethanol produced with Enogen corn enzyme technology to be approximately 2.5 billion gallons during 2018 alone.

Farmers who grow Enogen corn are eligible to earn an additional premium per Enogen bushel. During 2018, Enogen corn is expected to generate approximately $28.5 million of additional revenue for local growers contracting with plants using Enogen grain through per-bushel premiums. Numerous trials have shown that Enogen hybrids perform equal to or better than other high-performing corn hybrids.2

The robust alpha amylase enzyme in Enogen grain significantly reduces the viscosity of corn mash and eliminates the need to add a liquid form of the enzyme. This breakthrough reduction can lead to unprecedented levels of solids loading, which directly contributes to increased throughput and yield potential, as well as critical cost savings from reduced natural gas, electricity and water usage. Enogen corn also enables ethanol plants to gain corn market knowledge from mid-year corn estimates.

Reaction from Syngenta

“Enogen corn is adding value for ethanol plants, corn growers and rural communities,” said Jeff Oestmann, head, Bio-fuels Operations – Enogen at Syngenta. “Across a growing number of ethanol plants, Enogen corn is helping to fuel enzyme innovation. Syngenta is committed to the success of the U.S. ethanol industry and to helping ethanol plants adopt the best enzyme strategy.”

The Bottom Line

We’ve said for some time that networking like crazy is the key to the advanced bioeconomy. The world is attempting the most ambitious change in its energy and industrial system in history — far exceeding the Industrial Revolution in speed and scope — and no one can do it alone. Robust technologies must find effective routes to market through robust partnership — the days of vertically-integrated companies that can “do it all” appear to be over or at least sharply numbered. LanzaTech. ArcelorMittal, Leaf, Syngenta, BASF, LDBS and Unreasonable Impact are showing us the way this week. 

Categories: Today's News

Strategic Intent: The Digest’s 2018 Multi-Slide Guide to Archer Daniels Midland

Biofuels Digest - Wed, 06/13/2018 - 1:47pm

Archer Daniels Midland Company is one of the world’s largest agricultural processors and food ingredient providers, with approximately 31,000 employees serving customers in more than 170 countries. The company sports a global value chain that includes approximately 500 crop procurement locations, 270 ingredient manufacturing facilities, 44 innovation centers and what is billed as “the world’s premier crop transportation network” — the company has made substantial investments in the US ethanol industry as well as advanced biobased chemicals and materials.

ADM recently made this deck available, illuminating its promise and progress towards its strategic goals.

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Inventure Renewables implements Mixed Super Critical Fluid technology at Chinese Wilmar biodiesel plant

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:20pm

In Alabama, Inventure Renewables has announced the successful implementation and nearly year-long operation of its Mixed Super Critical Fluid technology at a Wilmar International processing plant in Jiangsu province, China. The technology is being used to produce FAME for oleochemicals and biodiesel from a wide range of vegetable oil feedstocks.

“The launch of the plant in Taizhou, China is a validation of our MSCF technology’s scalability to a commercial level,” said Mark Tegen, chief executive officer of Inventure. “The plant is an example of the end-to-end, customized solutions Inventure provides for agribusiness.”

“Inventure has worked closely with us throughout the integration of their technology at our Jiangsu plant,” said Rahul Kale, Group Head of Oleochemicals and Biofuels at Wilmar International Limited. “We are beginning to realize tangible returns from the use of Inventure’s technology.”

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Royal DSM introduces eBOOST™ to boost ethanol yields

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:19pm

In New Jersey, Royal DSM introduced eBOOST, a complete solution for ethanol producers seeking higher yield and significantly reduced glycerol production in starch conversion processes. The launch took place at the annual Fuel Ethanol Workshop (fuelethanolworkshop.com) in Omaha, Nebraska, USA (11-13 June 2018). Developed by DSM’s Bio-based Products & Services business, the solution includes yeast; a license to proprietary, patented technology; and technical service from DSM’s local team.

To establish the comprehensive viability of this solution, DSM undertook several full-scale application trials. The trials demonstrated that the solution enables a step change in performance for the ethanol market, increasing ethanol yields up to 6% and reducing glycerol formation more effectively than other industry-standard yeast products. This superior performance was demonstrated during continuous use over extensive periods, resulting in clear benefits to plant owners and managers looking to improve their plant economics and reduce energy consumption to make them more competitive and profitable.

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Brazilian mills hit hard during recent truckers strike

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:19pm

In Brazil, Reuters reports that sugar mills could have processed 13 million metric tons more cane during the last half of May were it not for the truckers strike that also kept more than 300,000 tons from being exported or supplied to the local market. Ethanol production fell to 1.74 billion liters during the period compared to 2.07 billion liters during the first half of the month. Ethanol continues to be more economically viable for mills than sugar production so they are likely to continue favoring ethanol during the next crushing period.

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Construction of Bharat Petroleum’s 2G ethanol plant to begin by August

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:17pm

In India, construction of Bharat Petroleum Corporation’s $148 million cellulosic ethanol plant in Bargarh is set to begin in July or August following delays due to the Odisha authorities failing to grant the land required for the facility. The plant is expected to use straw and other biomass as feedstock. It is one of several cellulosic plants planned by oil marketing companies to help produce enough ethanol to satisfy the future 22% ethanol blending mandate.

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NATSO launches Alternative Fuels Council

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:15pm

In Washington, NATSO Inc. on June 12 launched a new business venture known as the Alternative Fuels Council (NATSOAltFuels.com) to help fuel retailers leverage the resources necessary to learn about and incorporate alternative fuels into their supply offerings.

The Alternative Fuels Council will work with members of the truckstop and travel plaza community and other fuel retailers to navigate the litany of state and federal fuel regulations, and to utilize available government incentives for alternative fuels, including the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The Alternative Fuels Council will also help its partners implement profitable strategies related to alternative fuel supply options and fuel infrastructure.

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Kansas ethanol plant fire leads to evacuation of neighboring houses

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:14pm

In Kansas, residents four miles north and four miles west of the EGE Products ethanol plant near Minneola were evacuated Tuesday following a fire that broke out and took four hours to get under control. Local fire officials were concerned smoke, especially chemicals potentially present in the smoke, could cause health problems for people nearby. Fewer than 10 homes were evacuated, however. No cause of the fire or what damage was caused has been reported as of yet.

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Researchers find way to improve electron transfer in enzymatic biofuel cells

Biofuels Digest - Tue, 06/12/2018 - 7:13pm

In Asia, team of researchers with members from institutions in Singapore, China and the U.K. has found a way to improve electron transfer in enzymatic biofuel cells. In their paper published in the journal Nature Energy, they describe their technique and how well it works. Huajie Yin and Zhiyong Tang with Griffith University in Australia and the National Center for Nanoscience and Technology in China, offer a News & Views piece on the work done by the team in the same journal issue.

Enzymatic biofuel cells are, as their name implies, a type of fuel cell based on enzymes as catalysts instead of expensive metals. Because of their potential, scientists have been eager to find ways to overcome problems that have inhibited commercial applications—they are expected to be much cheaper to make than those now in use.

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