Location just west of Canvey Island named as BA / Solena plant to make jet fuel from London urban waste

A site for the project, by BA and Solena, to convert landfill waste into jet fuel has finally been announced, after long delays. The site will be in the Thames Enterprise Park, a regeneration project just east of London on the Thames estuary (a few miles west of Canvey Island). The site includes the redundant former Coryton Oil Refinery. Work on building the GreenSky facility is expected to start in 2015 and be completed in 2017.  BA is providing construction capital and has committed to purchasing all the jet fuel produced by the plant, around 16 million gallons a year, for the next 11 years at market competitive prices. BA is hoping that this 2% contribution to its fuel consumption will give it green credibility, and it will claim it cuts its carbon emissions.  In reality, if liquid fuels can be made from urban waste, there is no reason why aviation needs to be the user of them – especially as aviation intends to greatly increase its total fuel consumption in coming decades.  Liquid fuels that can genuinely be considered “sustainable” could be used by any other consumer.  If aviation appropriates these “sustainable” fuels, and uses increasing amounts of fuel, the net effect is that other users have to use high carbon fuels. No net benefit. Other than in (flimsy) green PR terms for BA. 
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The concept of producing energy and biofuels from urban waste is not new, and is not unique to BA or Solena.  

See http://www.biofuelstp.eu/waste.html  for other examples, and

Enerken urban solid waste  and

urban waste to methane  and 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biofuel  to give just a few.


 

BA clears Essex waste-to-fuel plant for take off

Solena Fuels and British Airways confirm for Essex plant capable of turning landfill waste into green jet fuel

By James Murray (Business Green)

16 Apr 2014

Various grounded British Airways airplanes

A world-leading clean tech plant capable of turning landfill waste into green jet fuel, raising the prospect of a new era of lower carbon aviation is to be developed – on an industrial estate in Essex.

British Airways and green fuels specialist Solena Fuels announced today that will move forward with long-standing plans to develop the state-of-the-art GreenSky facility at the Thames Enterprise Park on part of the site of the former Coryton oil refinery in Thurrock, Essex.

The companies said the site was selected because it has excellent transport links and existing fuel storage facilities, which will be able to hold some of the estimated 120,000 tonnes of fuel the facility will produce each year.

The project is now expected to employ 1,000 workers during construction and a further 150 permanent staff once it comes online in 2017.

According to Solena Fuels, the facility will process 575,000 tonnes of municipal waste typically destined for landfill using a patented gasification technology and Velocys Fischer-Tropsch conversion process to turn the material first into a synthetic gas and then into a liquid fuel. The site is expected to produce 120,000 tonnes of “clean burning liquid fuels” each year, including 50,000 tonnes of jet fuel that BA has agreed to acquire at market competitive rates.

Willie Walsh, chief executive of British Airways’ parent company IAG, said the project underlined the company’s commitment to developing lower carbon aviation technologies.

“We are always striving to reduce our impact on climate change and this first-of-its-kind project marks a significant step for the aviation industry,” he said in a statement. “The construction of the GreenSky London fuel facility at Thames Enterprise Park will lay the foundations for British Airways to reduce its carbon emissions significantly. The sustainable jet fuel produced each year will be enough to power our flights from London City Airport twice over with carbon savings the equivalent of taking 150,000 cars off the road.”

A spokesman for the company confirmed that the new facility would deliver substantial carbon savings. “The use of the biojet fuel will result in a net reduction of CO2 for British Airways equivalent to a reduction of 120,000 tones of jet fuel or approximately the same as 3,500 flights on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner from London to New York,” he said in an emailed statement. “In addition, the GreenSky facility will produce biodiesel, the use of which will result in a net reduction of CO2 equivalent to 120,000 tonnes of diesel or approximately the same as taking.”

However, the company did not disclose the precise level of the carbon savings that can be expected from the fuel compared to conventional jet fuels.

The project still faces a number of challenges in terms of securing full planning permission and finalising the requisite funding arrangements, but Solena Fuels expressed confidence that work at the site would get underway in around 12 months’ time.

“We are excited to help British Airways achieve its sustainability goals by providing an innovative solution to produce drop-in jet fuel,” said Robert Do, president and chief executive of Solena Fuels. “We anticipate starting construction of the site in approximately 12 months after all the requisite permits and agreements have been obtained.”

He added that further facilities could be in the pipeline, as part of a long term partnership with BA. “We are looking forward to successfully building GreenSky London and partnering with British Airways on additional facilities in the United Kingdom,” he said.

The companies did not disclose details on the full scale of the investment required in the new plant, but Gabriel Buck, head of CAPEX financing solutions at Barclays, which is advising on the project, said that it represented an attractive proposition for investors. “This is undoubtedly a unique and ground breaking project,” he said. “The economic and environmental fundamentals will, we believe, be attractive to investors from both a debt and equity perspective. The project debt structure has been identified with preliminary agreements in place with an Export Credit Agency who are not only providing the guarantees but also the funding. We are now focused with the project team on getting all aspects of the funding structure completed.”

The news, which comes just two weeks ahead of the 2014 Global Sustainable Aviation Summit in Geneva, represents a further boost to the fledgling green aviation sector. BA is one of a number of airlines leading R&D efforts designed to scale up the use of biofuels in the aviation sector, with companies such as Virgin and Lufthansa also investing heavily in the development of sustainable fuels made from waste and algae.

http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/2340159/ba-clears-essex-waste-to-fuel-plant-for-take-off

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Boost for British Airways and Solena waste-to-jet fuel GreenSky project as location of facility is confirmed

Map showing area (north bank of estuary, a few miles west of Canvey Island)
Boost for British Airways and Solena waste-to-jet fuel GreenSky project as location of facility is confirmed | Solena,GreenSky

An architectural impression of the GreenSky facility (graphic: British Airways)

Wed 16 Apr 2014 (GreenAir online)

The British Airways and Solena project to convert landfill waste into jet fuel has received a major boost with the announcement of the location chosen for the facility. The site will be in the Thames Enterprise Park, a regeneration project just east of London on the estuary of the River Thames that includes a former oil refinery. Work on building the GreenSky facility is expected to start in 2015 and employ around 1,000 workers in the construction, which is due to be completed in 2017, and create up to 150 permanent jobs when operational. British Airways is providing construction capital and becoming a minority shareholder in the $500 million GreenSky project. The airline has committed to purchasing all the jet fuel produced by the plant, around 16 million gallons a year, for the next 11 years at market competitive prices, currently worth around $550 million.

“We are always striving to reduce our impact on climate change and this first-of-its-kind project marks a significant step for the aviation industry,” said Willie Walsh, Chief Executive of British Airways’ parent company IAG. “The construction of the GreenSky London facility will lay the foundations for British Airways to reduce its carbon emissions significantly. The sustainable jet fuel produced each year will be enough to power our flights from London City Airport twice over with carbon savings the equivalent of taking 150,000 cars off the road.”

The brownfield industrial site in Thurrock, Essex is situated in the northern Thames Gateway and is said to have good transport links and existing fuel storage facilities. Part of the site had been occupied by the former Coryton Oil Refinery, which had been redundant for years before its sale in 2012, and the rest had originally been held as refinery expansion land. The assets of the refinery were acquired by a consortium comprising Vopak, Shell and Greenergy and rebranded as a joint venture named Thames Oilport. The venture is looking to develop a refurbished terminal for the bulk importation and blending of fuels and redevelop the rest of the site for renewable energy and power generation projects such as GreenSky.

“This is an ideal site for a biofuel initiative like Solena’s and we are very pleased to be associated with it. It is located on the Thames with fuel storage and fuel pipelines and good road, rail and jetty infrastructure,” said Andrew Owens, Chief Executive of Greenergy. “Thames Enterprise Park’s main goal is to provide regeneration of the former Coryton oil refinery following its closure. The facility proposed by British Airways and Solena is exactly the type of high profile technology project both we and Thurrock Council want to attract to the site, particularly given the number of skilled jobs provided.”

Advice on the financing of the GreenSky project is being provided by Barclays. “This is undoubtedly a unique and ground-breaking project. The economic and environmental fundamentals will, we believe, be attractive to investors from both a debt and equity perspective,” said Gabriel Buck, Head of CAPEX Financing Solutions at Barclays. “The project debt structure has been identified with preliminary agreements in place with an Export Credit Agency who are not only providing the guarantees but also the funding. We are now focused with the project team on getting all aspects of the funding structure completed.”

GreenSky will take around 575,000 tonnes of annual post-recycled waste, normally destined for landfill or incineration, for conversion into 120,000 tonnes of clean-burning liquid fuels, including 50,000 tonnes of jet fuel, using Solena’s patented high-temperature plasma gasification technology. This converts the waste into synthetic gas, which is then converted into liquid hydrocarbons using third-party technologies that include cleaning and conditioning of the gas, a Velocys Fischer-Tropsch conversion process, hydrocracking and electric power production. Solena says it has completed the initial engineering design and with its partners is now starting the next engineering phase of the facility.

“We anticipate starting construction of the site in approximately 12 months, after all the requisite permits and agreements have been obtained,” said Robert Do, CEO of Solena Fuels. “We are looking forward to successfully building GreenSky London and partnering with British Airways on additional facilities in the United Kingdom.”

British Airways’ Head of Environment, Jonathon Counsell, told a seminar at the recent World Bio Markets event that the airline is expecting annual savings of up to 145,000 tonnes of CO2 from using GreenSky fuels. “We are doing this to help reduce our carbon emissions, not to get a source of cheap fuel. It’s very much a demonstration plant for us. If we can prove this works commercially then we will build a number of them in the UK – potentially up to six – at this scale or even bigger,” he said.

Further details of the airline’s sustainable biofuel plans and the GreenSky facility are expected to be revealed by Counsell and Walsh at the Global Sustainable Aviation Summit in Geneva later this month.

 

Links:

British Airways – One Destination

Solena Fuels

Thames Enterprise Park

Velocys

http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1850

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Related GreenAir Online articles (GreenAir is very thorough on this subject):

British Airways pledges 10-year offtake agreement as GreenSky project with Solena gathers momentum
Lufthansa turns to algae and municipal solid waste in quest for new sources of sustainable jet biofuel
Solena signs agreements with US and international airlines to supply jet biofuels in northern California
Solena signs agreements with US and international airlines to supply jet biofuels in northern California
Solena jet biofuel project with British Airways on track, says CEO, as the airline seeks further supplies for engine testing
British Airways partners with Solena to build Europe’s first sustainable biojet fuel production facility
Solena and Rentech to partner on synthetic fuel technology for Europe’s proposed first sustainable jet fuel facility
Alitalia becomes the latest airline interested in partnering with Solena on a municipal waste to jet fuel project
Qantas and Solena to explore feasibility of a waste to jet biofuel production plant in Australia
Qantas agrees to a second Australian alternative jet fuel venture – this time with algae company Solazyme

Read more »

Norwegian airport operator Avinor to invest heavily in national aviation biofuel production

Norway’s state-owned airport operator and air navigation services provider Avinor has said it will contribute up to $16.5 million equivalent over a 10-year period to help develop an aviation biofuel sector in Norway.  Avinor said that its alleged “carbon neutral growth” could only be achieved if biofuels are a key part of the solution.  Norwegian advocates of aviation biofuel say biomass for producing biofuels should be reserved for the transport sector, in particular aviation, where there are few alternative options to fossil fuels. They claim aviation is key in getting tourist money into Norway, and regional development – and for some reason, they should be getting whatever biofuel is available, claiming “This is a matter of both social responsibility and benefit to society.” The Norwegian aviation industry may be aware that they are seen as high carbon, but appear not to comprehend that if aviation claims any genuinely low carbon fuels, that merely means some other sector  is likely to have to use higher carbon fuel instead.  Not everything can use renewably sourced electricity. The carbon emissions are merely shifted elsewhere, for aviation to try to look “green.”
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Norwegian airport operator Avinor to invest up to $16.5 million to support national aviation biofuel production

Mon 24 Mar 2014  (GreenAir online)

Norway’s state-owned airport operator and air navigation services provider Avinor has pledged to contribute up to 100 million Norwegian kroner ($16.5 million) over a ten-year period to help develop an aviation biofuel sector in the country. Announcing the move at an Avinor conference, ‘Fly with Norwegian biofuel in 2020’, the organisation’s CEO said the advent of new and more energy-efficient aircraft would not be enough as the industry works towards carbon-neutral growth, and biofuels would have to be a key part of the solution. Petter Heyerdahl, Associate Professor at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU), told the conference that biomass for producing biofuels should be reserved for the transport sector, in particular aviation, where there are few alternative options to fossil fuels.

Dag Falk-Petersen, CEO of Avinor, which operates 46 airports in the country, including Oslo, stressed aviation played a crucial role in an increasingly global industry and in regional development and tourism in Norway.

“Avinor will be a driving force, and over a ten-year period we are prepared to contribute up to 100 million kroner to various projects and reports that can help to realise biofuel production for Norwegian aviation,” he told the conference. “This is a matter of both social responsibility and benefit to society.”

Torbjørn Lothe, Director General of the Federation of Norwegian Aviation Industries (NHO Luftfart), believed aviation no longer had the same legitimacy in the eyes of the population that it had enjoyed some decades ago.

“One can discuss how fair it is that aviation is picked on as an environmental sinner, but we have to show that aviation is forward looking through what we do,” he said, adding the industry supported the ‘polluter must pay’ principle.

However, he was unhappy with what he saw as a high level of domestic charges that distorted competition, and said society was best served by industry having the latitude to implement effective measures to reduce its impact. “To operate more energy efficiently is in any event a goal for an industry where fuel represents 30-40% of the operating costs for airlines,” he said.

Over 1,500 biofuel flights conducted so far had shown there was no need for technical adjustments to aircraft, he said, adding: “Norwegian airlines will buy biofuels when they are available in the required quantities and at a competitive price.”

NMBU’s Petter Heyerdahl argued there was not enough biomass in the world to replace fossil fuels and even if it was all used to produce biofuel, it would only cover half of current fuel consumption. “Such a degree of utilisation is completely unrealistic,” he said. “That’s why we must reserve biomass for transport purposes.”

A year ago, Avinor published a report on a study it commissioned from consultancy Ramboll on the potential for a sustainable aviation biofuels sector in Norway.

The aviation fuel arm of Norwegian oil producer Statoil recently announced a partnership agreement with SkyNRG to develop an aviation biofuel supply chain in the Nordic region (see article).

http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1839

 

Links:

Avinor

NHO Luftfart

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)

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Read more »

Developments of “sustainable” jet fuels continue ponderously, hoping to ramp up supply

In a thorough over-view of current progress by various airlines and biofuel companies across the world, GreenAir Online goes through the main initiatives. In London, it is possible that the British Airways and Solena plant, to make jet fuel from London’s rubbish, might start to be built in 2015, though a site has not yet been announced.  KLM is hoping to do flights from Amsterdam starting in May using biofuels produced by the ITAKA consortium – a Europe-wide collaboration of interests involving Airbus, Embraer, Neste Oil, SkyNRG, Manchester Metropolitan University and others.  This was intended to use camelina grown in Spain as the main source of biomass for the fuel but this has proved “challenging”. Used cooking oil is therefore likely to be the source of the fuel for the May flights. There are initiatives in the Middle East with Etihad working with Boeing, Honeywell UOP, Safran and the Masdar Institute.  In Abu Dhabi, there is an initiative developing the Integrated Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (ISEAS) that grows salt-water tolerant Salicornia halophyte plants for use as biomass to produce fuels. And there are others – still expensive, still experimental, still not actually “green” or “sustainable.”
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Development of sustainable jet fuels moves towards next phase of new technology pathways and ramping up supply

21 Mar 2014 (GreenAir online)

The early excitement of demonstration flights and subsequent approvals for the use of some types of biofuel blends on passenger flights has given way to the less headline-grabbing ‘hard yards’ of establishing supply chains to provide airlines with cost-competitive and sustainable fuels.

New technology pathways are expected to be certified for commercial aviation use within the next year that will see innovative synthetic jet fuels reach the market. The recent disclosure that green diesel may become a blending source for jet fuel is another important step.

The challenge now is to move beyond one-off projects towards a continuous supply of jet biofuels using standard fuel logistics at airports. The recent Bio Jet Fuel conference at the World Bio Markets in Amsterdam brought together the aviation and biofuel sectors to discuss progress.  

GreenAir reports from the event on the latest developments in Europe and further afield.

According to British Airways’ Head of Environment, Jonathon Counsell, a 20-acre (8ha) site in east London has been selected for its GreenSky project with Solena and an announcement is expected within weeks. Getting the required planning permission had proved “extremely challenging,” he said.

GreenSky will convert around 600,000 tonnes of [London’s?]  municipal waste into 50,000 tonnes of biojet and 50,000 tonnes of biodiesel annually, and will meet BA’s total fuel needs at London City Airport.

“We are doing this to help reduce our carbon emissions, not to get a source of cheap fuel,” said Counsell, who expects annual savings of up to 145,000 tonnes of CO2. “It’s very much a demonstration plant for us. If we can prove this works commercially then we will build a number of them in the UK – potentially up to six – at this scale or even bigger.

“The economics is driven by a current UK landfill tax of about £80 per tonne.  Within a 25-mile radius of the proposed plant there is some 10 million tonnes of available municipal waste. We do not want to pay a premium for this fuel so there are financial instruments built into the agreement to protect us from any price risk.”

Under its 10-year contract with Solena, BA will purchase all the fuel – worth $500 million at today’s prices – produced by the plant. “This has been critical to attracting investors,” said Counsell. “The downside is the significant capital investment, around $500 million. To de-risk the project it also requires world-class partners.”

The upside of the technology, he said, were GHG life-cycle savings of up to 95%, methane savings and no ILUC (indirect land use change) issues.

Construction is to start by early next year [2015] that will take two years, with production starting in 2017, forecasts Counsell. Around 1,000 construction jobs and 200 operational roles are envisaged.

Counsell was critical of a lack of interest by the UK government over aviation biofuels. “It is apparent to us that some governments are very supportive of their aviation industry and others are less,” he said. “What we need from our government is regulatory support and a level playing field with biodiesel.”


Artist’s impression of GreenSky plant:

Linden Coppell, Head of Sustainability at Etihad Airways, reported encouraging findings from the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium in which the airline is partnering with Boeing, Honeywell UOP, Safran and the Masdar Institute. In Abu Dhabi, the initiative is developing the Integrated Seawater Energy and Agriculture System (ISEAS) that grows salt-water tolerant Salicornia halophyte plants for use as biomass to produce sustainable fuels.

Research findings have shown they have low lignin and high sugar content and so are easier to process into biofuel than other feedstocks. As well as sustainable aviation biofuel and other fuels, they show potential for the production of high value bio-based chemicals. Since 97% of the planet’s water is in the seas and about 20% of its land mass is desert, she said the concept could be applied to many arid regions of the world.

Another local project, BIOjet Abu Dhabi, involving Boeing, Etihad, Masdar and various oil refining interests, was launched recently and a roadmap initiative to drive a sustainable aviation biofuel industry in the emirate is to commence next month, reported Coppell.

Ignaas Caryn, Innovation and Corporate Venturing Director for KLM, said it was important to reach the next stage in the development of aviation biofuels, namely the constant supply of such fuels and developing the entire supply chain for their production at a price competitive with their fossil equivalent.

He reported that KLM will be undertaking flights from Amsterdam starting in May using biofuels produced by the ITAKA consortium – a Europe-wide collaboration of interests coordinated by Spanish government aeronautical organisation Senasa and involving Airbus, Embraer, Neste Oil, SkyNRG, Manchester Metropolitan University and others. This is the first major aviation biofuel supply chain to be undertaken in Europe.

KLM signed an offtake agreement with ITAKA in late 2012. The basis of the project was to use camelina grown in Spain as the main source of biomass for the fuel but Caryn reported that this has proved “challenging” in the early stages, due partly to bad weather in the growing season and also farming inexperience when scaling up production of the feedstock. Used cooking oil based biofuel is therefore the likely source for the May flights. A second batch of ITAKA fuel is expected to be available by the end of this year when, he hopes, “lessons will have been learned”. Demonstrating the supply chain works and is continuous will be crucial, he added.

Further afield, KLM is in a partnership with the Brazilian Biojetfuel Platform alongside airline GOL. The initiative aims to establish a sustainable jet fuel industry in the country with research and development activity in several regions of the country.

KLM is also involved in the BioPort Holland supply chain initiative that brings together SkyNRG, Neste Oil, Schiphol Group, Port of Amsterdam and the Dutch government. Caryn said it would pave the way for more bioports in different regions of the world. During the World Bio Markets event, BioPort Holland was presented with the Sustainable Bio ‘Collaboration of the Year’ award.

Also during the event, sustainable aviation biofuel supplier SkyNRG, which has championed the bioport concept, announced a long-term cooperation agreement with Norway’s Statoil Aviation, the leading aviation fuel supplier in Northern Europe, to supply jet biofuel through a bioport in the region.

“We foresee that working with SkyNRG will accelerate our strong ambitions to supply the Nordic countries with significant quantities of sustainable jet fuel,” said Thorbjörn Larsson, Vice President of Statoil Aviation. “We want to ensure we can meet the short and long term future demand from customers, airports and authorities.”

In the short term, there is an acceptance by the two parties that the fuel will have a cost premium but, said SkyNRG CEO Dirk Kronemeijer, the aim is to accelerate supply and demand for sustainable jet fuel that is also affordable. The first projects in the Nordic region are expected to be announced soon.

The Lufthansa burnFAIR project involving around 1,200 commercial flights using biofuel blends between Frankfurt and Hamburg along with research into various production pathways finished at the end of 2013, reported Alexander Zschocke, the airline’s Aviation Biofuel Project Manager. A German-language final report with key results is due out in May, he said, and will be made available to any interested party.

Echoing KLM’s Caryn, he believed it was now time to move towards the use of biofuels as part of routine operations involving standard fuel logistics. This will be trialled for the first time this year as part of the ITAKA project and is expected to become operational practice at Los Angeles International Airport in 2016.

However, one issue that arose during the burnFAIR project, revealed Zschocke, was the variance in properties found in different samples of conventional jet kerosene, which has implications for biofuel blending.

To date, only HEFA (hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids) and Fischer-Tropsch derived fuels have been ASTM approved for commercial aviation use in blends of up to 50%. The next fuel to be approved – by the middle of this year, understands Zschocke – is farnesane, a plant or cellulosic sugar-based biofuel developed by US company Amyris in cooperation with French oil giant Total. The fuel is expected to be blended with conventional jet kerosene at a maximum ratio of 10%. Although some synthetic fuels awaiting ASTM approval will require no blending with conventional kerosene, these are some way off into the future, he said.

“For the time being, consideration of blending requirements is therefore indispensable when setting up a bio-kerosene supply chain,” he said. “Blending is key. The process itself is not rocket science – the issue is the properties of the conventional kerosene.”

Blended fuels must meet the same specification requirements as conventional kerosene plus some additional ones, he said, particularly concerning fuel density and aromatics content. “What we didn’t realise was how little is known generally about the properties of conventional kerosene and statistical data is almost non-existent.”

So Lufthansa went to airports throughout Germany to ask for certificates for fuel deliveries over a one-year period. “We took some key parameters that were relevant from a blending and emissions perspective and found some wide differences,” reported Zschocke. “For example aromatics content, which is specified at a minimum 8.4% for synthetic fuels, ranged from 5.9% to 25.5%, so even using a drop of this fuel would render it out of spec even though it is being used in Germany without any problems.”

The sampling found, in the main, that kerosene produced by German refineries had low aromatics content compared to imported fuel. However, the imported fuel was found to have a higher content of sulphur, which has negative environmental impacts. “There are therefore side effects which have to be taken into account,” warned Zschocke.

Lufthansa is now coordinating a blending study with the German Armed Forces Research Institute for Materials, Fuels and Lubricants (WIWeB) that is being financed by the European Commission as part of the European Flightpath 2020 aviation biofuel initiative. The study, which is conducting laboratory analysis of blending behaviour on a range of synthetic fuels, will conclude in the second half of this year and a report is to be published by the Commission.

Zschocke also revealed that aireg, the German aviation biofuel association, is to cooperate with its US counterpart CAAFI in efforts to streamline ASTM certification for new technology pathways. He said the number of pathways awaiting approval was “piling up” and putting pressure on engine manufacturers because of the amount of analysis and time required for testing the fuel from each pathway. “We need to improve and speed up the process,” he said.

Virpi Kröger, Manager of Renewable Aviation Fuel for Finnish company Neste Oil, advised the aviation industry to start with biofuel blends as low as 2% initially as this would significantly lower the price premium to around just 3% higher than conventional jet kerosene at today’s prices. A 2% blend would provide easier access to around one million tonnes of renewable fuel at an EU level and would also encourage investment in production, she suggested.

Willemijn van der Werf, Global Sustainability Director of LanzaTech, reported the company’s alcohol-to-jet fuel process is likely to be certified for commercial airline use within the next 12 months. Its Shougang bioethanol demonstration plant in China was granted sustainability certification by the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) last October. A more recent life-cycle analysis study by sustainable energy consultancy E4Tech concluded the LanzaTech bioethanol achieved a 76.6% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over fossil fuel.

The recent disclosure (see article) by Boeing that green diesel, also known as renewable diesel, could prove a potential source of jet biofuel was described by the company’s Sustainable Biofuel Strategy Director, Darrin Morgan, as “a very substantial new development.”

He said green diesel had been found to be close enough in jet fuel properties to HEFA fuels and could work as a blending stock. However, because it did not quite meet freeze point requirements, it could only be used in lower blends but otherwise would likely meet or exceed HEFA specifications. He said support from the US FAA and aircraft and engine OEMs, which are central to the ASTM approval process, had been positive.

Morgan revealed testing of the fuel, including by the FAA, was currently underway and a research report would be released “in the not too distant future”. He said the fuel had already undergone nine months of “diligent” analysis and expected the fuel to be balloted by the relevant ASTM committee within a year.

“As an OEM, we have been hearing from many people that it’s difficult to go through all the hurdles to make jet biofuels,” he said. “This is us doing the job of making it easier to get into our market. It’s not easy to get a consensus on a new jet fuel specification but we, along with the US government, the FAA and other OEMs, are putting our shoulders into it. This can lower the barrier to entry significantly.”

There are currently around four biorefineries in the world producing upwards of 800 million gallons of green diesel. Increasing that to one billion gallons would represent around 1.5% of global demand if all green diesel was, hypothetically, to be used for jet fuel, said Morgan.

“It would be a significant milestone if we can get biofuels to 1% of the total jet fuel demand, especially from where we were just five years ago.”

Next year’s World Bio Markets will be held again in Amsterdam from March 10 to 12, 2015.

http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1838

Link:

World Bio Markets 2014

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British Airways + Solena plant to make jet fuel from London’s rubbish – announcement soon?

GreenAir online gives an update on the anticipated biofuel plant (costing around $500 million)  to be built in east London, to produce diesel and jet fuel.  GreenAir says that according to British Airways’ a 20-acre (8ha) site has been selected for its GreenSky project with Solena and an announcement is expected within weeks. Getting the required planning permission had proved “extremely challenging.”  GreenSky will convert around 600,000 tonnes of London  municipal waste into 50,000 tonnes of biojet and 50,000 tonnes of biodiesel annually, and will – they hope – meet BA’s total fuel needs at London City Airport.  BA hope they can claim annual carbon savings of up to 145,000 tonnes of CO2. “It’s very much a demonstration plant for us. If we can prove this works commercially then we will build a number of them in the UK – potentially up to six – at this scale or even bigger.”  “The economics is driven by a current UK landfill tax of about £80 per tonne, so the scheme hopes to get the rubbish cheaply – saving councils the landfill tax.  Under its 10-year contract with Solena, BA will purchase all the fuel produced by the plant. They hope to start building in early 2015 and start producing fuel in 2017.
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21.3.2014

GreenAir online reports on the planned British Airways + Solena plant to make jet fuel out of London’s rubbish

Extract from longer GreenAir online article, covering other sources and schemes of aviation biofuel  – longer article at   http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1838

……
The recent Bio Jet Fuel conference at the World Bio Markets in Amsterdam brought together the aviation and biofuel sectors to discuss progress.   GreenAir reports from the event on the latest developments in Europe and further afield.

According to British Airways’ Head of Environment, Jonathon Counsell, a 20-acre (8ha) site in east London has been selected for its GreenSky project with Solena and an announcement is expected within weeks. Getting the required planning permission had proved “extremely challenging,” he said.
GreenSky will convert around 600,000 tonnes of [London’s?]  municipal waste into 50,000 tonnes of biojet and 50,000 tonnes of biodiesel annually, and will meet BA’s total fuel needs at London City Airport.

“We are doing this to help reduce our carbon emissions, not to get a source of cheap fuel,” said Counsell, who expects annual savings of up to 145,000 tonnes of CO2. “It’s very much a demonstration plant for us. If we can prove this works commercially then we will build a number of them in the UK – potentially up to six – at this scale or even bigger.

“The economics is driven by a current UK landfill tax of about £80 per tonne.  Within a 25-mile radius of the proposed plant there is some 10 million tonnes of available municipal waste. We do not want to pay a premium for this fuel so there are financial instruments built into the agreement to protect us from any price risk.”

Under its 10-year contract with Solena, BA will purchase all the fuel – worth $500 million at today’s prices – produced by the plant. “This has been critical to attracting investors,” said Counsell. “The downside is the significant capital investment, around $500 million. To de-risk the project it also requires world-class partners.”

The upside of the technology, he said, were GHG life-cycle savings of up to 95%, methane savings and no ILUC (indirect land use change) issues.

Construction is to start by early next year [2015] that will take two years, with production starting in 2017, forecasts Counsell. Around 1,000 construction jobs and 200 operational roles are envisaged.

Counsell was critical of a lack of interest by the UK government over aviation biofuels. “It is apparent to us that some governments are very supportive of their aviation industry and others are less,” he said. “What we need from our government is regulatory support and a level playing field with biodiesel.”


Artist’s impression of GreenSky plant:

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http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1838


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Earlier:

 

Solena partnership with BA to produce jet fuel from London municipal waste – delayed over 2 years?

10.9.2012In 2010 it was announced that Solena and BA would build a plant to produce jet fuel in London. Solena hoped the new aviation fuel would be produced from several types of waste materials destined for landfill. The airline said it plans to use the low-carbon fuel to power part of its fleet beginning in 2014. In 2010 they said the self-contained plant will likely be built in east London. It’s expected to convert 551,000 tons of waste into 16 million gallons of green jet fuel each year. However, the timetable has slipped. There is no planning application yet.  It seems they hope for “notice to proceed” in 2013.  One website said the project will start in 2nd quarter of 2014 and end 2nd quarter 2016.  Oxford Catalysts were selected to supply the modular Fischer-Tropsch technology . There has been no planning application yet at Rainham Marshes. The timetable seems to have slipped by at least 27 months.http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=457.

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 See earlier:
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Is the Solena / British Airways plan for jetfuel from London domestic waste greenwash?

16 March 2012

Damian Carrington, of the Guardian, discusses the potential benefits of the plant in East London that is to be built by 2015 by Solena, to turn London’s household waste into jet fuel. It will also produce some electricity.  British Airways is pushing ahead with a plant that aims to turn half a million tonnes of Londoner’s household rubbish into 50,000 tonnes a year of jet fuel. Damian says: ” I’ll let you decide if this is greenwash or not: here’s some of the details.” BA’s Jonathan Counsel says ”We accept we are a significant source of emissions, and growing,” he says. “Taking action is about earning our right to grow.” Boeing says the industry wants to get 1% biofuel into the global jet fuel supply by 2015,  which equates to 600m US gallons a year. And more if it can.  Why should this household waste go to aviation fuel, rather than energy for other uses?

 

(Someone commented on this article that – as the location of the  plant is still unknown – “One of the construction mags indicated that it was “Rainham Marshes” and I gather there is already a convenient Veolia landfill site there on the Thames shore.” ??

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=1539  including earlier news on Solena / BA.

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British Airways partner with Solena to convert trash into jet fuel

By 

February 16, 2010

British Airways and Washington, D.C.-based bioenergy firm the Solena Group announced on Monday a partnership to establish Europe’s first sustainable jet-fuel plant and convert trash into jet fuel.
The new fuel will be derived from waste biomass and manufactured in a new facility that can convert several types of waste materials destined for landfill into aviation fuel.The airline said it plans to use the low-carbon fuel to power part of its fleet beginning in 2014.The self-contained plant will likely be built in east London. It’s expected to convert 551,000 tons of waste into 16 million gallons of green jet fuel each year.Quick hits about the savings:

  • The plant offers lifecycle greenhouse gas savings of up to 95 percent compared to fossil-fuel derived jet kerosene.
  • The project will reduce the volume of waste sent to landfill.
  • The plant itself will be CO2 neutral, and will emit oxygen, plus small quantities of nitrogen, argon, steam and carbon dioxide.
  • The only solid waste product is an inert vitrified slag material, which can be used as an alternative to aggregates used in construction.
  • Tail gas can be used to produce 20MW of excess electricity for export to the national grid or converted into steam to be used in a district heating system.

The green fuel will be produced by feeding waste into a patented high temperature gasifier that produces BioSynGas, or biomass-derived synthetic gas. Using a process known as Fischer Tropsch, the gas is converted into biofuels to produce biojet fuel and bionaphtha.

Bionaphtha is used as a blending component in gasoline, as well as a feedstock for the petrochemicals industry.

The resulting fuel would make all of British Airways’ flights at nearby London City Airport carbon-neutral, and is the equivalent of taking 48,000 cars off the road per year, BA says.

British Airways has signed a letter of intent to purchase all the fuel produced by the plant, which will be built by Solena.

“This unique partnership with Solena will pave the way for realising our ambitious goal of reducing net carbon emissions by 50 per cent by 2050,” said British Airways chief executive Willie Walsh in prepared remarks. ” We believe it will lead to the production of a real sustainable alternative to jet kerosene. We are absolutely determined to reduce our impact on climate change and are proud to lead the way on aviation’s environmental initiatives.”

http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/smart-takes/british-airways-partner-with-solena-to-convert-trash-into-jet-fuel/4282

 

 

 

 

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Heathrow Terminal 2 to be powered by woodchip biomass – with dubious and extravagant “green” claims

Heathrow airport, and the planes that fly to and from it,  is one of the highest emitters of carbon in the country. Its emissions are larger than several smaller countries. Yet the airport is now trying to be “green” by doing various things to reduce the emissions in the airport itself. The latest is having a biomass boiler for its Terminal 2 which is part of a green-washing campaign, with the airport trying to overcome its negative environmental impacts.  Heathrow claim this will be the “UK’s biggest biomass boiler, and that it will cut the airport’s CO2 emissions by 34% against 1990 levels (the Terminal was not built then …). The boiler is meant to provide 2MW of electricity, hot water and cooling for data centres, and save up to “13,000 tonnes of CO2” per year.  Heathrow says Woodchip supplier LG Energy  won the 15-year contract with Heathrow on the condition that it would provide all of the biomass from a 100-mile radius around the airport.  Some 75% of it will come from just 50 miles away, including from London’s Wetlands Centre in Barnes, as well as Richmond Park. LG Energy claims the sale of the timber is enabling more conservation work to be done, so benefiting more habitat and more biodiversity.  Biomass, on a large scale, not carefully, locally sourced is likely to be very far from sustainable.
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UK’s biggest biomass plant prepares for Heathrow take-off

Environmentalists may be wary of the airport’s expansion plans, but Heathrow is about to take a big step towards cutting its carbon emissions

By Jessica Shankleman (Business Green)

17 Mar 2014

Deep in London’s vast Richmond Park, deer roam, bats roost, even stag beetles scurry among the soil. And then every few minutes the serenity is broken as a plane glides low in the sky towards the nearby Heathrow Airport.

Such is the level of frustration felt by many locals over the noise, air pollution and traffic congestion created by the giant transport hub that its expansion plans have become a key election issue, with local Richmond MP Zac Goldsmith threatening to quit the Conservative Party if it backs a third runway in its next manifesto.

The debate may have died down temporarily, but the government’s Committee on Climate Change (CCC) is set to revive it this summer when it reports on the impact of the plans on the UK’s climate commitments.

CCC chief executive David Kennedy has already warned that the cost of long-haul flights would need to rise by up to £200 to curtail demand and stay within the UK’s carbon emissions targets.

With one of the UK’s biggest planning battles on their hands, Heathrow executives have swiftly realised that if they do want to expand the airport, they have to demonstrate they can run it in a responsible manner, tackling as many of the negative environmental impacts as possible, while also maximising economic and social benefits for the area.

As such, when Heathrow throws open the doors of its new Terminal 2 (T2) in June, it will be fitted to high energy efficiency standards and will be powered, heated, and cooled by the UK’s biggest biomass boiler.

The 10MW biomass combined cooling and heating plant (CCHP) costs around £8.5m and is expected to play a major role in helping Heathrow meet its target of cutting carbon emissions by 34 per cent against 1990 levels, by meeting 20 per cent of T2’s energy needs, including 2MW of electricity, hot water and cooling for data centres.

The boiler is already meeting a low level of demand from the builders of T2, but once the new hub is operating at full pelt, with 20 million passengers passing through the gates each year, it is expected to save Heathrow 13,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions a year compared with a scenario where it burnt only gas and bought grid electricity.

Matt Gorman, director of sustainability for Heathrow, says curbing harmful environmental impacts will be a key plank of the airport’s future growth plans. “Heathrow is a big busy international airport and needs energy, so we set out clearly our commitment to power it in the most environmentally sustainable way in order to play our role in meeting the government’s carbon reduction targets,” he tells BusinessGreen.

He also dismisses concerns that the biomass plant risks acting as a green sheen on Heathrow’s otherwise carbon heavy expansion plans. “It’s absolutely clear that air travel brings real benefits and there’s particular demand to emerging economies and Heathrow serves those particularly well,” he says. “It’s also clear that aviation has environmental impacts and if we are to be successful in growing, we need to be able to tackle those. We studied these issues very carefully when we submitted our proposals to the independent commission that’s been set up to look at airport capacity.”

Significantly, woodchip supplier LG Energy only won the 15-year contract with Heathrow on the condition that it would provide all of the biomass from a 100-mile radius around the airport. In fact, three-quarters of it will come from just 50 miles away, including from London’s Wetlands Centre in Barnes, as well as Richmond Park.

Mark Lebus, managing director of LG, says the scheme is already creating benefits to the local environment, by ensuring that many previously unmanaged woodlands are now better looked after. “The introduction of this system here has a direct link to rural benefit in terms of the management of woodlands,” he tells BusinessGreen. “Over half the woodlands in the country are not being managed and we have direct links to more than 70 estates in this area – a lot of which are now coming back into woodland management as a result of this project.”

One such area is Richmond Park, which is now using the money from the sale of timber to manage parts of the park that previously lay untouched and were said to have been failing to maximise their biodiversity potential.

The Royal Parks has already chopped down and delivered hundreds of unwanted Turkey Oaks that were planted in the 1950s, when postwar Britain was desperate for timber. But in fact, the oaks are thought to do more damage than good to wildlife habitats, creating shade that prevents undergrowth sprouting.

In place of the Turkey Oak, the Park is replanting Holly and Hazel trees designed to encourage more bats, insects, and other wildlife to the area.

Adam Curtis, assistant manager for Richmond Park, says the programme is already delivering benefits, as more insects and shrubbery have appeared where the canopy of the Turkey Oaks once stood.

“[Without this deal with LG Energy] the area would have stayed as it was or we would have had to found the money to do the work,” he said. “The Turkey Oaks would have continued to suppress the light on the rest of the woodland, shading out our veteran trees that are actually suffering from living in the shade.”

LG Energy’s broad array of potential woodland to source from means that it never demands too much from one area and ensures the biomass can all be certified by the Forestry Stewardship Council, addressing concerns that demand for biomass could fuel unsustainable deforestation.

Heathrow’s multi-million pound investment in the largest project of its kind to date has already been applauded by some green groups, such as WWF, which commended its clear contribution to increasing habitat diversity.

However, the reaction of Heathrow’s most vocal environmental critics to this innovative green project remains to be seen.

http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/analysis/2334149/uks-biggest-biomass-plant-prepares-for-heathrow-take-off

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Comment:
There are some very real concerns about Heathrow getting into dependence on biomass, provided on a large scale.
Provided they can genuinely obtain local wood and timber products from within a 50 or 100 mile radius of Heathrow, and they are thus paying for conservation work to be done – well and good.
However, much of the timber from local conservation projects may already have a use closer to where it is cut.  Much of this sort of wood is sold locally to people who heat their homes with wood, using wood burning stoves, or even wood fires.  There is no great benefit in  Heathrow taking this and claiming to be so “green” if it merely displaces the need for less sustainable wood elsewhere, by increasing the overall demand for energy.
Any other burner of biomass will not be able to use the material that Heathrow is taking, so other users may be forced to look further afield for their supplies.  It is not possible, in a joined up and very inter-linked world, to isolate out a particularly green and virtuous source of feedstock – this has indirect impacts on other users.
Biomass power stations produce emissions to the air, and there will be increased levels of NOx and particulates. Heathrow already has problems with its poor air quality, due not only to the aircraft on the ground, and in the 1000 feet of their climb or descent, but also the road vehicle traffic associated with the airport.
The air quality standards for power stations burning biomass are still being developed, and there are inconsistencies in the way controls operate for smaller biomass burners.
If the airport was able, in future, to use electricity from the grid – which steadily decarbonises over the coming decades – its carbon emissions from its use of electricity will decline over time.  But if it is tied in to using a biomass boiler, its carbon emissions will remain constant – and will not benefit from more use of wind, solar or wave/tidal energy in future.
If Heathrow finds it cannot, or chooses not to, source its wood fuel locally in future years, and instead finds it cheaper or easier to buy wood pellets from abroad, the carbon emissions may then be very high indeed. There is a considerable problem of power stations such as Drax importing wood pellets from felled, old, valuable forests in south east USA, doing huge environmental and biodiversity damage, yet still being able to claim to be “green.”
Article copied below, from the Ecologist, about the inadequate “sustainability” standards for biomass at present, the many loopholes and the unsatisfactory nature of any controls on this booming industry.
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Biofuel and biomass ‘sustainability standards’ are pure greenwash

By Almuth Ernsting (Co-Director of Biofuelwatch)

10th March 2014 – The Ecologist

Who and what are biofuel sustainability standards designed to benefit? They are meant to safeguard forests and communities, writes Almuth Ernsting – but their real purpose is to protect the biofuel industry …

“Since there are no checks, no enforcement and no regulator, standards are quite simply an invitation to fraud.”
“>On its way to Drax? A loader picking up trees from a clearcut for Enviva near the Ahoskie mill, North Carolina. Photo: Dogwood Alliance.
On its way to Drax? A loader picking up trees from a clearcut for Enviva near the Ahoskie mill, North Carolina. Photo: Dogwood Alliance.

Sustainability standards are our Government’s and the EU’s answer to any critique of their subsidies and incentives for industrial biomass and biofuels. Energy companies tend to like them, too.

Rainforests being cut down for palm oil biofuels? No worries – EU biofuel standards don’t allow any support for biofuel crops grown on recently deforested land.

Slow-growing trees being cut down for pellets to be burned in power stations, pumping even more carbon into the atmosphere than burning coal instead would do? No cause for concern: from next year, subsidies will only be paid if biomass reduces carbon emissions by at least 60% compared to coal.

Don’t worry, it’s all ‘sustainable’

Drax getting pellets from a company that makes them out of clearcut ancient swamp forests in the southern US? Well, Drax’s policy says it’s all sustainable.

Better still, from next April, they’ll even need to prove it complies with some voluntary certification scheme or another, regardless of whether it actually has been certified.

Small farmers being evicted for our biofuels? Hmm, that would come under social standards and the EU hasn’t actually introduced any of these.

Don’t worry though – there’s a good chance the biofuels will certified through some voluntary scheme which says people shouldn’t be evicted.

Carbon standard? Any wood will do …

EU biofuel sustainability and greenhouse gas standards were introduced in the UK in 2011 and the Government has proposed biomass standards from April 2015 – although they have so far delayed introducing them twice.

Both biofuel and proposed biomass standards have been heavily criticised as inadequate: Both ignore all indirect impacts; those for biomass ignore the carbon emissions from cutting down and burning trees and the length of time it takes for new trees to possibly re-absorb that carbon; biofuel standards entirely ignore human rights and the right to land, food and water.

As for the proposed biomass sustainability standards, all they say is that wood must meet the criteria of one of several controversial voluntary certification schemes, not even requiring formal certification.

Additionally, carbon standards are proposed, but those ignore most of the carbon emissions associated with biomass burning. The Government’s impact assessment expects wood from absolutely any source to meet those standards.

A remarkable admission

In theory – and with the right political will – much stricter and more comprehensive standards could be introduced, though European NGOs have been campaigning in vain for years to get biofuel standards amended so as to take indirect land use change into account.

But would stricter standards really keep destructive biofuels and biomass out of the country? Or are there deeper problems with the concept of standards?

Hidden away in a recent Government consultation about the impacts of the UK’s biofuel mandates and standards – the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) – is a very striking admission:

Following RED [EU Renewable Energy Directive – which includes biofuel-related targets and standards] implementation the Administrator noted that the volumes of used cooking oil (UCO) derived biofuel being reported as coming from the Netherlands were implausibly high based on the population size.”

An obvious explanation – fraud

In other words, companies had declared using vast quantities of Dutch used cooking oil in biofuels and it would have been quite impossible for Dutch people to eat enough chips to end up with that much waste vegetable oil.

So what they declared to be “used cooking oil from the Netherlands” must have been something else – for all we know, it may have been palm oil from clearcut Indonesian rainforests.

The background to this scam is that since 2011, biofuels from waste have counted double towards biofuel targets, so using – or claiming to use – these has become more profitable.

If companies had planned this fraud a bit better they could have classed their biofuels as used cooking oil from many different countries rather than just from one small one – then no questions would have been asked.

But who’s bothered?

Not that any company has been penalised for lying about biofuel supplies. And this leads back to one of the most fundamental problems with such standards.

Companies love standards because they are a market mechanism, not regulation. This means there is no independent authority that checks where their wood or biofuels are actually coming from or stops them from using anything in particular.

All that’s required of them is to pay another company – a consultancy of their choice – to give them a piece of paper to say their wood, palm oil or whatever else they are using is“sustainable”.  And if one consultancy was to refuse, they can shop around for another.

Clearcut swamp forests in southern US

Pellet producers in North America expect that if the UK introduces biomass standards, energy companies might only need a letter from the forest owner to say that their forest was sustainably managed.

90% of forests in the southern US (where a lot of the wood burnt by Drax and E.On comes from) are privately owned and many of those landowners are profiting greatly from the new demand for pellets.

According to the US conservation NGO Dogwood Alliance, 75% of the wood in swamp forests that are now being clearcut is unsuitable for sawmills but used for pellet production.

So without the demand for pellets, there would be no incentive for forest owners to clear, rather than selectively log, those forests. But which forest owner will be honest enough to admit that their logging is unsustainable if this means foregoing lucrative income from pellet sales to the UK?

The intention is to ‘secure support’

Verification and regulatory enforcement alone would not resolve the problems with standards. After all, a hugely unsustainable demand for wood or biofuels can never be made ‘sustainable’ by simply assessing individual shipments of them.

Such an approach would merely lead to companies selling palm oil or wood from land deforested a long time ago to Europe for bioenergy and at the same time cutting down more forest for plantations aimed at other markets.

But since there are no checks, no enforcement and no regulator, standards are quite simply an invitation to fraud.

Yet while standards fail to prevent forest destruction, human rights abuses and worsening climate change linked to biofuels and biomass, they offer tangible benefits to energy companies.

One of official policy objectives behind the proposed UK biomass standards is to help secure the support of local government, NGOs and the public for proposed new bioenergy developments.

Giving biofuels the green light – no matter what

This is not simply achieved through greenwashing: In February 2011, Secretary of State Eric Pickles approved an application for a large palm oil power station in Avonmouth, overruling Bristol City Council’s decision to reject the plans as unsustainable and high-carbon.

In his decision, Pickles laid out rules which have since been communicated to planning authorities:

  • Biofuel and biomass power station applications cannot be rejected on grounds of wider sustainability or climate change impacts;
  • planners can merely impose a condition that developers must comply with government standards.

The existence or even the mere promise of future standards is thus being used to ensure that power stations get the green light regardless of whether they burn palm oil or wood from clearcut ancient swamp forests.

http://www.theecologist.org/blogs_and_comments/commentators/2305634/biofuel_and_biomass_sustainability_standards_are_pure_greenwash.html

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22.1.2014 (Architects Journal)  on Terminal 2

Sustainability

– 20% of Terminal 2’s energy needs will be from renewable sources
– 40.5% less CO2 emissions than a building built to 2006 building regulations
– 1,000m² square metres of photovoltaic panels on the building’s canopy
– 12MW biomass boiler heater
– Wood used to power the boiler is sustainably sourced, FSC approved timber
– The first phase will potentially save around 13,000 tonnes of CO2 a year compared to the use of natural gas and grid electricity
– Extensive glazing means more natural light. As well as glazed walls, north-facing skylights in the roof will provide glare-free daylight without heat gain (which would mean more air conditioning)

http://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/news/daily-news/luis-vidals-25bn-heathrow-terminal-2-overhaul-to-open-in-june/8657822.article

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China’s CAAC has granted Sinopec a license allowing aviation biofuel to be made from rapeseed, palm oil & soybean oil

China’s oil refiner, Sinopec, has been given a license allowing commercial use of its aviation biofuel by airlines.  There was a biofuel test flight in 2013 using fuel made from from hydrotreated palm oil and recycled cooking oil.  Sinopec said it can now produce bio-jet fuel from a wide range of raw material feedstock, including rapeseed oil, palm oil and soybean oil ( which competes with human and animal food).  Sinopec started research on aviation biofuel in 2009, and its application for commercial use was accepted by CAAC in early 2012. Sinopec can produce 3,000 tonnes of the fuel per year, from rape seed, cotton seed and waste cooking oil.  The company is considering joining with private enterprise in planting, collecting and processing these source oils, as well as getting waste cooking oil from McDonald’s. Sinopec claims their biofuels generate 45% less CO2 than conventional fuels.  China is the world’s largest oil importer and 58.1% of its 2013 came from imports.China is now the 2nd largest consumer of aviation fuel, consuming nearly 20 million tonnes per year. Its jet fuel demand is estimated to be expanding by 10% every year, while the global average is less than 5%. The production costs of aviation biofuel remain at least 2 – 3 times those of crude oil.
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China approves aviation biofuel for commercial use

Feb. 14, 2014
by Katie Cantle (ATW – Air Transport World)

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has granted Sinopec, China’s top oil refiner, a license allowing commercial use of its aviation biofuel in an effort to cut carbon emissions.

The license, the first of its kind to Sinopec, allows the company’s No.1 aviation biofuel to be used by airlines.

CAAC Flight Criteria Department director Xu Chaoqun said the development is a significant breakthrough for the country’s research, production and application of aviation biofuel.

Sinopec started research on aviation biofuel in 2009 and CAAC accepted its application for commercial use in early 2012.

Sinopec can produce 3,000 tonnes of biofuel oil a year from materials such as plant seeds and recycled cooking oil. The regulator noted Sinopec will work to diversify biofuel sources, lower production costs and push forward commercial application of the fuel.

Biofuel is gaining popularity in China. Last April, China Eastern Airlines operated a test flight in Shanghai powered by No.1 aviation biofuel and the fuel went through several rounds of additional strict tests before it received approval. In addition, Air China became the nation’s first carrier to test a flight partly powered by biofuel, the result of a collaboration between PetroChina and Honeywell UOP’s green jet fuel in October 2011.

Industry analysts said the commercial viability of biofuel for use in jets still faces tough challenges because the treatment process of producing biofuel will push the cost up higher than regular fuel refinery.

http://atwonline.com/eco-aviation/china-approves-aviation-biofuel-commercial-use?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AtwDailyNews+%28ATW+Daily+News%29

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China’s aviation biofuel goes into commercial use

lXinhua,
February 12, 2014  (China.org)

China started commercial use of aviation biofuel on Wednesday, in a bid to ease fuel pressure and cut carbon emissions.

China’s top oil refiner, Sinopec, was given a license allowing commercial use of its aviation biofuel, said the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

The license, the first of its kind, permits Sinopec’s No. 1 Aviation Biofuel to be used by airlines, some of which have showed willingness to cooperate with the refiner.

Xu Chaoqun, deputy head of CAAC’s Flight Criteria Department, said the development is a significant breakthrough for research, production and use of aviation biofuel.

The development also makes China the fourth country in the world to produce aviation biofuel, after the United States, France and Finland.

Sinopec started research on aviation biofuel in 2009, and its application for commercial use was accepted by CAAC in early 2012.

Last April, a test flight in Shanghai powered by the biofuel was a success, and the fuel went through several rounds of more strict tests before it was given the green light.

Sinopec can produce 3,000 tonnes of such oil a year, from materials like rape seed, cotton seed and wasted cooking oil.

The refiner is also considering joining with private enterprise in planting, collecting and processing materials, after working with McDonald’s to collect cooking oil.

“Aviation biofuel is one of the major trends in global aviation,” said Xu. “With our research on aviation biofuel, we have built a set of technological standards, and will have a bigger say in international carbon emission reduction.” ‘ Research showed that carbon dioxide generated by biofuel is 45 percent or less than that produced by conventional fuel.

The International Air Transport Association forecast that 30 percent of aviation fuel will be biofuel by 2020, and a few western airlines have been testing commercial flights with biofuel since 2008.

China is the world’s largest oil importer and 58.1 percent of its 2013 supply relied on imports.

With an annual consumption of nearly 20 million tonnes, China has become the second largest aviation fuel consumer and demand is estimated to be expanding by 10 percent every year, while the global average is less than 5 percent.

By contrast, the country has abundant biofuel-refining resources: vast areas of oil-rich plants and a huge amount of wasted cooking oil.

However, analysts said there may be a long way to go until large-scale application of aviation biofuel due to costs.

Xu Hui, vice director of Sinopec’s Science and Technology Department, said the production costs of aviation biofuel are two to three times those of crude oil.

He said some three tonnes of wasted cooking oil can generate one tonne of biofuel, and collecting cooking waste suitable for refining is expensive.

Refiners and airlines have to split the cost, and the final price will be determined by the market based on emission-cutting efforts and an application scale, according to Xu with Sinopec.

“The most important thing for now is to diversify biofuel sources and upgrade technology,” said CAAC’s Xu.

http://www.china.org.cn/business/2014-02/12/content_31460807.htm

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Boeing hoping to convert “green” diesel into jet fuel and BIOJet Abu Dhabi launched to produce UAE jet biofuels

Boeing is now aiming to use biofuels currently put into so-called “green” diesel into aircraft fuel. One Boeing official called the revelation a “major breakthrough” in the industry’s quest to wean itself off fossil fuels and reduce CO2 emissions.  It is, in reality, nothing of the sort. Immense amounts of biofuel are already grown, most of it competing with food crops, to put into road vehicle engines. There will not be sufficient land area on which to feed humanity, as well as its road vehicles, and now aviation getting into the act, in order to get some “green” PR benefits. Boeing says “Unlike some other alternative fuels, green diesel is already being produced on a relatively large scale and, with current government subsidies, is cost-competitive with traditional jet fuel, called Jet-A.”  In practice all sources of oils and fats which could genuinely be classed as sustainable have alternative markets already. If aviation takes these, the other users will be forced to use less “sustainable” fuels through knock-on effects. In addition a new initiative to support an aviation biofuel industry in the United Arab Emirates, BIOjet Abu Dhabi,  has been announced one day after Etihad Airways conducted a demonstration flight with a Boeing 777 powered in part by the first UAE-produced biokerosene from an  unspecified “innovative plant biomass-processing technology.” 
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Boeing research shows green diesel’s high-flying possibilities

January 14, 2014
By Gregory Karp (Chicago Tribune)

New research by Boeing Co. shows that so-called green diesel, a fuel blend made from oils and fats that’s already used in trucks and other ground transportation, can be used to power aircraft too, the Chicago-based aviation giant announced Tuesday.

One official called the revelation a “major breakthrough” in the industry’s quest to wean itself off fossil fuels and reduce harmful emissions.

“Green diesel is one small step in total aviation fuel capacity, but it’s one giant leap forward in the commercialization of sustainable aviation biofuels,” said Julie Felgar, managing director of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Environmental Strategy and Integration.

Unlike some other alternative fuels, green diesel is already being produced on a relatively large scale and, with current government subsidies, is cost-competitive with traditional jet fuel, called Jet-A, Boeing said.

“To date, we have been working on a number of pathways, and we’ve even gotten approval for biofuels, but we haven’t been able to do the supply-demand quotient yet,” Felgar said.

By contrast, green diesel is already a proven fuel alternative that flies, economically, she said. There is already a supply, and the price is right.

“We started to cast our net wide, and we realized we really needed to take a good look at what was being used in ground transportation, because that would help us get the economics right,” she said. “It’s like an innovation ecosystem where you start down one path and then start running down bunny trails. And sometimes you find that pot of gold at the end of a bunny trail.”

Green diesel, made from such materials as recycled animal fat, used cooking oil and inedible corn oil, has half the carbon emissions of fossil fuels. And it would allow airlines, cargo carriers and military, for example, to use the same alternative fuel blend in their trucks and their planes.

Boeing officials are hoping the fuel can get regulatory approval this year for aircraft use. If approved, the fuel could be blended directly with traditional jet fuel and does not require modifications to aircraft engines. It can be blended with traditional jet fuel in a ratio of up to 50 percent, Felgar said.

Commercial aviation and the U.S. military consume 20 billion gallons of jet fuel a year. The cost of jet fuel, nowadays the biggest operating cost for airlines, has tripled since 2000, making it a major issue for carriers.

The aviation industry has proved in tests that it can fly airplanes safely and efficiently on fuels made from cornhusks or algae or many sources other than crude oil. But adoption of so-called biofuels to fly jets ultimately comes down to economics.

In the case of green diesel, also called renewable diesel, its wholesale cost is competitive with petroleum jet fuel at about $3 a gallon, including U.S. government incentives. And green diesel plants around the world, including two in Louisiana, have the capacity to produce 800 million gallons — not near enough to meet the demand of the aviation industry but ahead of other alternative fuels.

Green diesel isn’t the only answer among alternative fuels but it accelerates the evolution, Felgar said. “A few years ago, people said this was a complete longshot,” she said. “We still have a lot of work to do, but it will be an easier road to travel.”

The topic of alternative fuels for aviation has been a hot one in the Midwest, in part because so many local companies and organizations are involved with the topic.

The world’s second-largest airline, United Airlines, and the world’s largest aircraft-maker, Boeing, are both based in Chicago and part of the Midwest Aviation Sustainable Biofuels Initiative, as is Chicago-based Clean Energy Trust and Honeywell UOP, a leader in aviation biofuel technologies headquartered in Des Plaines. Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont chairs the group’s advisory council. Solazyme Inc. has a Peoria plant that produces oil from algae, and LanzaTech of Roselle has a process that converts waste gas, from steel mills for example, into fuel.

In June, the Midwest Aviation Sustainable Biofuels Initiative announced a number of steps toward developing aviation biofuels. For example, the Chicago Department of Aviation, which operates O’Hare International and Midway airports, and United Airlines pledged to identify ways to develop alternative fuels, focusing on converting waste streams in the Chicago area into jet fuel. And Honeywell UOP, United and Boeing will provide funding for Purdue University to research ways to convert corn stover — leaves and stalks left in fields after a harvest — into jet fuel.

United Airlines last year signed a three-year deal to buy 15 million gallons of biofuel from a commercial-scale plant near Los Angeles operated by AltAir Fuels. The biofuel is planned to be used on United flights departing from the carrier’s Los Angeles airport hub this year.

gkarp@tribune.com

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2014-01-14/business/chi-boeing-green-diesel-20140113_1_green-diesel-jet-fuel-aviation-industry

 

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Boeing Joins New BIOjet Abu Dhabi Team to Grow Biofuel Supply Chain in United Arab Emirates

 20.1.2014 (Enviro aero)

– Collaboration focuses on research, feedstock production and refining capability

– Announcement follows Etihad 777 biofuel demonstration flight in Abu Dhabi

 

Etihad Airways, Boeing, Takreer, Total and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology today announced they will collaborate on a new initiative – BIOjet Abu Dhabi: Flight Path to Sustainability – to support a sustainable aviation biofuel industry in the United Arab Emirates.

BIOjet Abu Dhabi will engage a broad range of stakeholders to develop a comprehensive framework for a UAE biofuel supply chain, including research and development and expanded investment in feedstock production and refining capability in the UAE and globally.

BIOjet Abu Dhabi was announced one day after Etihad Airways conducted a demonstration flight with a Boeing 777 powered in part by the first UAE-produced biokerosene from an innovative plant biomass-processing technology. The biofuel was partially converted from biomass by Total and its partner Amyris. Takreer, a wholly owned subsidiary of Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (ADNOC), did the final aviation biofuel distillation, adding the UAE to a handful of countries that have produced and flown on their own biokerosene.


The Masdar Institute’s Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium, funded by Etihad Airways and Boeing, is currently researching and developing salt-tolerant plants that would be raw material for the same refining processes to produce renewable fuel.

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, said, “In collaboration with our key partners, our goal is to support and help drive the commercialisation of sustainable aviation fuel in Abu Dhabi, the region and also globally. We have made some important first steps in this process and our continued focus will be to develop further initiatives such as this which will facilitate the availability of sustainable aviation biofuels for Etihad Airways in the coming years.”

The Etihad Airways demonstration flight and announcement of BIOjet Abu Dhabi were held in the run-up to Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and the World Future Energy Summit, hallmarks of UAE leaders’ commitment to sustainable energy development. BIOjet Abu Dhabi: Flight Path to Sustainability is aligned with the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, which seeks to develop sustainable energy sources to diversify the UAE economy and increase workforce opportunities for Emiratis.

Jeffrey Johnson, President of Boeing Middle East, said: “With further commitment and investment, the UAE, a global leader in commercial aviation, is well-positioned to lead efforts to make our industry more sustainable. Boeing, which works with partners around the world to advance sustainable biofuel development, sees great opportunity for BIOjet Abu Dhabi to have a positive impact in the UAE and globally.”

Jasem Ali Al Sayegh, Chief Executive Officer of Takreer, said: “Takreer is proud to have been involved in refining this product at its Abu Dhabi research centre. We support the concept of using biofuel as a sustainable aviation fuel for a cleaner future in line with ADNOC’s sustainability policy. We see this strategy as complementary to our future plans in meeting the rapid growth in demand for jet fuel in the country and the region in view of the expansion of the operations of airlines here.”

Bernard Clément, Senior Vice President of Total New Energies, added: “As a long-lasting partner of Abu Dhabi and responsible oil and gas producer, Total is proud to participate in the BIOjet Abu Dhabi initiative, and to assist the Emirate in the diversification of its energy mix. This demonstration flight – the first of its kind in the Middle East – illustrates the capacity of Total to integrate, as of today, aeronautical biofuels in a concrete and reliable way. Improving energy efficiency and leveraging the potential of renewables have become fully embedded in Total’s business model with concrete achievements in biofuels as well as in the solar sector.”

Dr Fred Moavenzadeh, President of Masdar Institute, said: “The collaboration for BIOjet Abu Dhabi reflects our partners’ commitment to sustainable biofuel, a concept that is currently being implemented from our side through the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium. We remain focused on identifying commercially viable means for the production of sustainable aviation fuel and welcome the new initiative that will pave the way for faster adoption of such fuel by the industry. With our expertise, we will continue our contribution towards offering clean energy solutions for the benefit of all stakeholders.”


Etihad Airways is an airline industry leader in supporting the development of lower-carbon renewable fuels. A member of the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group (SAFUG), the airline operated the Gulf region’s first biofuel flight in January 2011 with a Boeing 777 delivery from Seattle to Abu Dhabi powered by a blend of petroleum-based and certified plant oil-based jet fuel.

http://newswire.enviro.aero/newswire/2014/jan/20/boeing-joins-new-biojet-abu-dhabi-team-to-grow-biofuel-supply-chain-in-united-arab-emirates

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Branson keen to get jet biofuels from waste CO2 – though it could be put to other, non aviation, uses

LanzaTech has a joint venture facility in China, which is aiming to produce future supplies of biofuel for its partner airline, Virgin Atlantic. LanzaTech has a patented fermentation technology that transforms CO or CO2 gases generated by the steel industry into bioethanol, using GM “proprietary”micro-organisms – algae. The bioethanol can then be converted into jet fuels, and other platform chemicals. The waste CO2 could alternatively be used to produce plastics, or fuels for road vehicles, or animal feed. Aviation fuel is only one of the options. Waste CO2 from factories, power stations etc could also be ducted to greenhouses and used to boost production of vegetables and other foods, as well as using the waste heat. Richard Branson and others have been keen to promote this waste CO2 as a “low carbon” fuel for the aviation industry in future. However, it would appear that this waste CO2 could perfectly well be put to other uses, and indeed, diverting it to aviation prevents it being used to produce animal food, which in turn would produce human food. The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) has certified LanzaTech’s joint biofuel venture facility in China, and Richard Branson has said the LanzaTech process is “a major breakthrough in the war on carbon.”
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Virgin Atlantic hails RSB certification of LanzaTech’s Chinese venture to convert waste gases into sustainable jet fuels

Virgin Atlantic hails RSB certification of LanzaTech's Chinese venture to convert waste gases into sustainable jet fuels | Virgin Atlantic,LanzaTech,RSB

LanzaTech’s Dr Jennifer Holmgren and Virgin’s Sir Richard Branson

 

Mon 25 Nov 2013  (GreenAir online)

The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB), the preferred sustainability standard of major airlines for jet biofuels, has certified LanzaTech’s joint venture facility in China, which is aiming to produce future supplies of sustainable fuels for its partner airline, Virgin Atlantic.

LanzaTech’s patented fermentation technology transforms CO or CO2 gases generated by the steel industry into bioethanol, [using GM micro-organisms] which can then be converted into low-carbon jet fuels, and other platform chemicals. The facility is the first RSB-certified biofuel plant in China and the first anywhere in the world to receive certification for industrial carbon capture and utilisation.

Virgin’s President, Sir Richard Branson, has described the LanzaTech process as a major breakthrough in the war on carbon.

The RSB certification has been awarded to Beijing Shougang LanzaTech New Energy Science & Technology Company, LanzaTech’s joint venture formed in 2011 with Shougang Jingtang Iron and Steel United Company and the Tang Ming Group.

Using the RSB methodology and assumptions based on commercial production, it is estimated that ethanol from the process may reduce life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions by 60% compared to petroleum fuels.

“The joint venture uses a process that creates a sustainable biofuel and does so by efficiently re-using greenhouse gases that would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere,” said Peter Ryus, CEO of RSB Services. [ie. the CO2 is being used to produce chemicals using photosynthesis by “proprietary microorganisms”] “This solution, which does not impact the food chain or land use, meets the RSB principles and practices, and serves as an example of how continued innovation in the industry will lead to sustainable biofuels in the future.”

Dr Jennifer Holmgren, LanzaTech’s CEO, said the certification was “an incredibly important step” and she expected commercial production to go online in 2014. “In addition, we trust this certification will help accelerate the acceptance of biofuels made through carbon capture technologies and serve to showcase the possibilities opened up by thinking of carbon emissions as an opportunity, not just a problem.”

LanzaTech estimates that its technology can apply to 65% of the world’s steel mills, re-using up to 150 million tonnes of CO2 and offering the potential to provide 19% of the world’s current jet fuel demand. In addition, the joint venture partners anticipate local air quality can also be improved by materially reducing NOx and particulate emissions.

Virgin Atlantic, which announced a partnership with LanzaTech in October 2011, is planning to start using the sustainable jet fuels on flights from China.

Craig Kreeger, the airline’s CEO, said the partnership was a key part of its sustainability programme. “Beyond our significant fleet upgrades and our comprehensive fuel efficiency programme, this breakthrough opportunity to pioneer away from fossil fuels offers us the best possible chance of substantially reducing the carbon emissions associated with our flying programme. Key to that has always been ensuring that any new fuel meets the highest possible sustainability standards, and we view RSB as the gold standard scheme to help us to achieve this.”

Sir Richard Branson added: “RSB’s certification is a crucial step to ensure this revolutionary new fuel will meet the highest possible environmental standards and will result in a radical reduction in our carbon footprint.”

http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1791

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Waste CO2 could be source of power

August 15, 2013 (Climate News Network)

By Tim Radford

Emissions from power stations could provide a future fuel source. Image: Jorge Royan via Wikimedia Commons

Scientists suggest emissions from power stations could be used to generate more electricity
Image: PDTillman via Wikimedia commons

 

Dutch scientists have thought up a new use for all the carbon dioxide that pours from the chimneys of fossil fuel-burning power stations: harvest it for even more electricity.

LONDON, 15 August –They could, they argue, pump the carbon dioxide through water or other liquids and produce a flow of electrons and therefore more electricity. Power-generating stations release 12 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide every year as they burn coal, oil or natural gas; home and commercial heating plants release another 11 billion tonnes.

This would be enough, they argue, to create 1,750 terawatt hours of extra electricity annually: about 400 times the output of the Hoover dam in the US, and all without adding an extra gasp of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. So the exhaust from one cycle of electricity production could be used immediately to deliver another flow of power to the grid.

They make the claim in a journal called Environmental Science and Technology Letters, which is published by the American Chemical Society, and the claim rests on a 200-year-old technique pioneered by Sir Humphry Davy and Michael Faraday: electrolysis.

Harvesting energy from waste

Behind the reasoning is a simple proposition, that every chemical event involves some exchange of energy. In a solution, this movement of energy involves electrons, and ions that migrate to cation or anion electrodes. In a mix of two different solutions, the final mixture has an energy content lower than the sum of the two original solutions: since energy cannot be created or destroyed, therefore there must be some energy available for exploitation.

Bert Hamelers of Wetsus, a centre for water excellence in the Netherlands, and colleagues from Wageningen University report that they used porous electrodes and flushed carbon dioxide into water to get their flow of current: the gas reacted with the water to make carbonic acid, which in the electrolyte became positive hydrogen ions and negative ions of the bicarbonate HCO3. As the pH of the solution gets higher, the bicarbonate becomes a simple carbonate and the higher the CO2 pressure, the greater the increase of ions in the solution.

In their experiment, they found that as they flushed their aqueous electrolyte with air, and alternately with CO2, between their porous electrodes, a supply of electricity began to build up. Since the air that comes from the chimneys of fossil fuel-burning power stations contains anything up to 20% of CO2, even the emissions represent a potential for more power.

They found they could get even more power if instead of a water solution they used an electrolyte of monoethanolamine. In experiments, this delivered an energy density of 4.5 mW a square metre.

The irony is that this electrical energy is already potentially available at the top of the power station chimney, because on release one “solution” of greenhouse gas in air immediately mixes with a different-strength solution in the air all the time.

Nobody of course has a way of harvesting this power directly, but an old-fashioned experiment with electrodes in a laboratory shows that huge quantities of potential power are being lost every day, in unexpected ways.

Graphene batteries

It would require huge investment – and a great deal of engineering ingenuity – to turn greenhouse emissions into yet more electricity, but such research is a reminder that scientists everywhere are looking for clever new ways to power the planet.

Dan Li, a materials engineer at Monash University in Australia, reports in the journal Science that he and his team have developed a graphene-based supercapacitator that is compact, and can be recharged quickly, but can last as long as a conventional lead-acid battery.

That means it could be used to store renewable energy, power portable electronics or drive electric vehicles. Graphene is a new wonder material, a variant of graphite or carbon organised into layers just one atom thick. “It is almost at the stage of moving from the lab to commercial development”, says Li.

http://www.climatenewsnetwork.net/2013/08/waste-co2-could-be-source-of-power/

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Dutch aubergine grower pipes carbon dioxide into greenhouses

Having a chemical plant sited next door to your plantation isn’t what the average farmer might want for his crop.

By Alix Rijckaert, in Terneuzen for AFP

14 Dec 2009

Jan van Duijn, however, walks proudly through his greenhouse, a vast glass and metal structure spread out over five hectares (12.3 acres) where millions of aubergines are doing very nicely thank you.

He’s happy because thanks to a deal with a supplier, he’s getting hot water piped in from the factory, which produces ammonia, to maintain the temperature at a constant 68 degrees F (20C).

The chemical site, five kilometres (three miles away), also supplies carbon dioxide which helps his aubergines grow more abundantly.

“We’re pioneers in a way,” van Duijn said, while admitting that what drove him to try this business model was cost.

The water from the Yara factory, where it is used as a coolant, flows along underground pipes and into his greenhouse at a temperature of 90 degrees C.

There it is circulated in pipes between the rows of aubergines, sharing its heat among the beds of rockwool they grow in, before being pumped back to the factory as coolant again.

Similarly, CO2 released during the manufacture of ammonia is injected into the greenhouse to stimulate growth.

“It’s the basic principle of photosynthesis,” van Duijn said. Combined with water and light, the plants convert the carbon dioxide into organic compounds, releasing oxygen as a side product.

The level of CO2 inside is three times higher than outside, giving a crop yield that according to van Duijn is two to three times greater.

He reckons the project will produce 2.5 million kilogrammes (5.5 million pounds) of aubergines a year, adding to the millions he already cultivates under glass on his land in the southern Netherlands.

Their temperature is monitored and adjustable by computer, said van Duijn, who employs 10 people in summer and 30 in winter at Terneuzen.

Using CO2 in greenhouses is a common practice in the Netherlands but it is rarely so closely tied to industry.

The Netherlands, Europe’s top exporter of horticultural products cultivated under glass – think tulips – has 10,000 hectares under cover producing flowers, fruits, vegetables and other plants.

According to the horticultural association LTO Glaskracht they produced 5.2 megatonnes of CO2 last year – around 63 per cent of the agricultural sector’s total emissions.

Meanwhile, keeping greenhouses at the right ambient temperatures accounted for eight to 10 per cent of the country’s natural gas consumption.

“It’s the first time residual heat is being reutilised on a large scale for a private, commercial venture,” said Jacob Limbeek, the commercial director of WarmCO2, the company supplying the water and carbon gas.

He said that the system allows for a 90 per cent reduction in fossil fuel energy use compared with traditional greenhouses, which are heated by oil or natural gas.

Van Duijn, whose energy bill for the new greenhouse accounts for 20 per cent of fixed costs against 25 per cent for the standard version, struck a deal with WarmCO2 that set prices for the next 15 years.

“That gives us a certain security,” he said. “Our competitors have no idea what their energy bills will be like from one year to the next, they depend on oil prices, gas prices and exchange rates.”

WarmCO2, which also supplies greenhouses producing tomatoes and peppers, is aiming eventually to pipe CO2 to 168 hectares under glass at Terneuzen.

The sector, which is also experimenting with solar panels and geothermal energy, has committed itself to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent by 2020 from its 1990 level, according to LTO Glaskracht.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/expat/expatnews/6808988/Dutch-aubergine-grower-pipes-carbon-dioxide-into-greenhouses.html

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and

Greenhouse to utilize CO2, waste heat from adjacent ethanol plant

January 4, 2013

Across the road from Greenfield Ethanol-Chatham, construction on Truly Green greenhouses is ongoing. The innovative project will utilize the waste heat and CO2 from the 195 MMly ethanol plant in Chatham, Ontario, Canada, to grow a whopping 22 million kilograms of fresh juicy tomatoes yearly, when completed.

Angelo Ligori, ethanol plant manager described it as a rare opportunity to harness the CO2 released in the ethanol process to grow food. The ethanol plant will update its older technology, which currently doesn’t include waste heat recovery or a thermal oxidizer. The new technology will condense stack heat through a series of exchanger systems, allowing the ethanol plant to supply hot water to the greenhouse. The water will then be returned to the ethanol plant through an expanded cooling water loop. “Once this project gets done, our energy footprint will be significantly reduced, so it’s a win-win,” he told Ethanol Producer Magazine.

……….. and it continues …..

http://ethanolproducer.com/articles/9426/greenhouse-to-utilize-co2-waste-heat-from-adjacent-ethanol-plant

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and another agricultural example of using waste CO2 at

http://hydroponics.com.au/issue-52-adm-turning-waste-into-growth/

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And waste CO2 used to grow better tomatoes:

Cornerways Nursery benefits from its location close to the Wissington sugar factory. More than two hundred and forty miles of piping carries hot water from the factory’s Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant around the glasshouse, to maintain the balmy temperatures which suit tomato plants. This hot water would otherwise be destined for cooling towers, so the scheme ensures that the heat is used productively.

Another benefit is the productive use of waste carbon dioxide from the sugar factory, which tomatoes use during photosynthesis. At Cornerways, carbon dioxide (a by-product from the CHP boiler) is pumped into the enormous glasshouse to be absorbed by the plants, rather than vented into the atmosphere as waste emissions.

http://www.britishsugar.co.uk/tomatoes.aspx

 

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Bio CCS Algal Synthesis test facilities are being trialed at Australia’s three largest coal-fired power stations (Tarong, Queensland; Eraring, NSW; Loy Yang, Victoria) using piped pre-emission smokestack CO2 (and other greenhouse gases) as feedstock to grow oil-rich algal biomass in enclosed membranes for the production of plastics, transport fuel and nutritious animal feed.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_capture_and_storage#Carbon_dioxide_recycling_.2F_Carbon_Capture_and_Utilization_.28CCU.29

 

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Earlier:

Branson hoping for 50% “sustainable” aviation fuels by 2020 (8 years ahead)

5.12.2011     .Guardian article about Richard Branson and his hopes for aviation being able to use biofuels for perhaps 50% of their fuel by 2020.  This is based on the hope that biofuels, from algae in particular, will be very low carbon. There is a lot of unfounded optimism about what biofuels’ or other (not defined) “sustainable” fuels’) carbon emissions will be, now  cheap they will be, and how fast they can be scaled up to industrial quantities. Branson’s aim is not to cut overall emissions, but get cheap fuel for airlines, so they can continue to grow – and thus postpone the day when the industry actually starts to be responsible for its environmental impact.http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/?p=375which says: The five leading alternative jet fuel companies identified by Carbon War Room are Lanzatech, SG biofuels, AltAir, Solazyme and Sapphire.

 

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Aviation industry going to biofuels made from alcohols, some from food crops

14.9.2011

Jet fuel can be made by combining two alcohol molecules. The aviation biofuel
industry can see there will be a time delay in getting fuel from jatropha, camelia
etc but it could produce fuel from alcohol faster. Some from corn or sugar cane,
as well as non-food crops and woody biomass. Aviation accounts for 12% of the
fuel used by the entire transport sector. Global aviation fuel demand may reach
7.6 million barrels/day in 2012, up from 6.8 m barrels in 2007.

 

 

Read more »

Boeing & South African Airways partnership for future aviation biofuels

Boeing has signed an agreement with South African Airways (SAA) to launch development of a “sustainable” aviation biofuel chain in Southern Africa – the first in Africa.  They are looking to research new developments in technology that they believe will enable the conversion of biomass into jet fuel, which they hope will reduce aviation CO2 emissions. The new partnership will research “feedstocks and other organic sources” (they do not say what – but unlikely to be jatropha as banned in SA) in South Africa to begin developing a biofuel supply chain for airlines within the region, but there is no projected date when the first fuel might be produced. Boeing and SAA say new developments in technology will enable the conversion of biomass into jet fuel in a more sustainable manner without competing with other sectors for food and water resources. “The World Wildlife Fund-South Africa will monitor and ensure compliance to sustainability principles that would ensure that fuel is sustainable and would lead to genuine carbon reductions.”
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Boeing & SAA Partner for Aviation Biofuels

Posted on 
 by   (Domestic Fuel)

Boeing and South African Airways (SAA) have announced a partnership to develop and implement a sustainable aviation biofuel supply chain in Southern Africa, a first for the continent. The companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding for sustainable aviation biofuel supply chain development at The Corporate Council on Africa’s 9th Biennial U.S.-Africa Business, attended by executives from leading U.S. and African firms and government representatives from several countries.

South African Airways Plane

This collaboration between Boeing and SAA is part of the companies’ broader efforts to support environmental sustainability for the airline’s operations and the commercial aviation industry overall, in addition to advancing South Africa’s social and economic development.

“South African Airways is taking the lead in Africa on sustainable aviation fuels and, by setting a best practice example, can positively shape aviation biofuel efforts in the region,” said Ian Cruickshank, SAA Head of Group Environmental Affairs. “By working with Boeing’s sustainable aviation biofuel team, which has a history of successful partnerships to move lower-carbon biofuels closer to commercialization, we will apply the best global technology to meet the unique conditions of Southern Africa, diversify our energy sources and create new opportunities for the people of South Africa.”

Boeing has collaborated extensively with airlines, research institutions, governments and other stakeholders to develop road maps for biofuel supply chains in several countries and regions, including the United States, China, Australia and Brazil. The aerospace company’s plan to work with SAA is the first such project in Africa.

“Sustainable aviation biofuel will play a central role in reducing commercial aviation’s carbon emissions over the long term, and we see tremendous potential for these fuels in Africa,” said Julie Felgar, managing director of Environmental Strategy and Integration, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “Boeing and South African Airways are committed to investigating feedstocks and pathways that comply with strict sustainability guidelines and can have a positive impact on South Africa’s development.”

Boeing and SAA believe that new developments in technology will enable the conversion of biomass into jet fuel in a more sustainable manner without competing with other sectors for food and water resources. The World Wildlife Fund-South Africa will monitor and ensure compliance to sustainability principles that would ensure that fuel is sustainable and would lead to genuine carbon reductions.

Aviation biofuel refined to required standards has been approved for a blend of up to 50 percent with traditional jet fuel. Globally, more than 1,500 passenger flights using biofuel have been flown since the fuel was approved.

http://domesticfuel.com/2013/10/11/boeing-saa-partner-for-aviation-biofuels/

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.Boeing and SAA say new developments in technology will enable the conversion of biomass into jet fuel in a more sustainable manner without competing with other sectors for food and water resources. The World Wildlife Fund-South Africa will monitor and ensure compliance to sustainability principles that would ensure that fuel is sustainable and would lead to genuine carbon reductions.

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It appears the growing of jatropha is currently banned in South Africa, due to its toxicity and invasiveness. http://www.bioenergywiki.net/Jatropha

Read more »

EADS and Rolls Royce considering the concept of a hybrid electric-biofuel plane ??

EADS (European aerospace, defence etc) and Rolls Royce say  they are developing  the concept of the first “hybrid” airliner propelled by a combination of electricity, and algae- derived biofuel. They claim it would produce 75% less CO2 than a conventional airliner, and work in a similar way to hybrid cars, such as the Prius. While all electric planes would not be able, at best, to carry a couple of passengers, there might be the potential for hybrid planes to carry more. EADS’ “E-Thrust” project would give the plane propulsion by 6 electric fans along the back of its wings. Its engine (using liquid fuel, perhaps biofuel)  would generate electrical power, which would be stored in a large lithium battery [the sort that caused the Dreamliner such problems with overheating] in the aircraft’s fuselage. The aim is for the plane to use liquid fuel plus battery power to take off and climb, and then for the battery to get some charge back while cruising.  The plane would then glide in to land, generating more electrical energy to top up the battery for the extra power it will need for the landing. Many decades ahead, if it works at all?

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eConcept – EADS’s Hybrid-Electric Airliner

Posted by Graham Warwick

Jun 24, 2013

Anxious to assure us it is not entirely anchored in the now by Airbus, EADS at Paris unveiled a distributed hybrid-electric propulsion concept it is working on with engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce. The idea is similar to the turboelectric distributed propulsion (TeDP) work under way at NASA. EADS Innovation Works has incorporated the initial E-Thrust distributed propulsion configuration into its eConcept vision for a 2050-timeframe airliner.

Concepts: EADS Innovation Works 

 

The EADS IW concept uses a single large turbine engine to generate electricity to power six ducted fans that provide thrust. This allows propulsive and thermal efficiency to be optimized separately. The turbine engine can be optimized for thermal efficiency (turning fuel into shaft power) while the ducted fans increase effective bypass ratio and therefore propulsion efficient (turning shaft power into thrust).

The single turbine engine is embedded in the tail so that it ingests the fuselage boundary layer and re-energizes the wake to reduce drag. It has a long exhaust duct to minimize noise and allow for particle filtration. The electric fans have a combined bypass ratio exceeding 20:1 (more than twice today’s engines) and are integrated into the wing to reduce drag and noise.

As with NASA’s TeDP, superconductivity is key to the concept. The turbine engine drives a hub-mounted superconducting motor. Power is extracted, and cryogenic coolant is circulated through the motor, via structural stator vanes behind the fan that recover thrust from the swirling air.

EADS’s concept includes advanced lithium-air batteries for energy storage. For take-off and climb, the turbine and batteries power the ducted fans. In the cruise, the turbine powers the fans and recharges the batteries. During the gliding descent, the windmilling fans generate regenerative power to top up the batteries. On landing, the turbine powers the fans. At all times, the batteries have sufficient energy to power the aircraft if the turbine fails.

EADS IW, with Rolls-Royce and Cranfield University, is working on the Distributed Electrical Aerospace Propulsion (DEAP) project funded by the UK Technology Strategy Board. Rolls and EADS IW also are working with Magnifye and Cambridge University on a programmable alternating-current superconducting machine – described as a powerful, lighter and lower-loss design incorporating high-temperature superconducting coils embedded in a lightweight epoxy structure.

http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.aspx?plckPostId=Blog:7a78f54e-b3dd-4fa6-ae6e-dff2ffd7bdbbPost:ec33bef8-5e12-43e8-8ea0-518eebfe0eb3

 

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EADS Examines Electric And Hybrid Propulsion To Further Reduce Aircraft Emissions

Paris/Le Bourget,,  16 June 2013

Will electric propulsion become an alternative for fossil fuel also in the aviation industry? EADS is evaluating different approaches and is demonstrating a number of initiatives in the field of electric and hybrid propulsion at the Paris Air Show 2013. These projects are part of the Group’s commitment to develop technologies that further reduce aircraft carbon dioxide emissions.

The Group has not only developed and built an electric general aviation training aircraft in cooperation with Aero Composites Saintonge (ACS), called E-Fan but EADS has also engineered together with Diamond Aircraft and Siemens an updated hybrid electric motor glider, the Diamond Aircraft DA36 E-Star 2. EADS has also cooperated with Rolls-Royce on a smarter future distributed propulsion system concept. These three projects are known as ‘E-aircraft’ projects.

The development of innovative propulsion system concepts for future air vehicle applications is part of EADS’ research to support the aviation industry’s environmental protection goals as spelled out in the ‘Flightpath 2050’ report by the European Commission. This roadmap sets the target of reducing aircraft CO2 emissions by 75%, along with reductions of Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) by 90% and noise levels by 65%, compared to standards in the year 2000. EADS Innovation Works (IW), the corporate research and technology network of EADS, is developing and continuing to explore innovations in the field of environmentally friendly propulsion, in order to provide technology bricks for the operating divisions.

E-Fan: electric aircraft in progress

Two years after the first electric aerobatic plane and the smallest manned aircraft in the world with four electric engines, the all-electric Cri-Cri, the teams at EADS IW and Royan-based ACS (Charente Maritime, France) have gone a step further with E-Fan, a fully electric general aviation training aircraft.

“The introduction of the E-Fan electric aircraft represents another strategic step forward in EADS’ aviation research. We are committed to exploring leading-edge technologies that will yield future benefits for our civil and defense products,” said Jean Botti, Chief Technical Officer (CTO), at EADS.

The two-seat E-Fan has undergone a very intensive development phase of only eight months. It features two electrical engines driving shrouded propellers. Total static engine thrust is about 1,5 kN, with the energy being provided by two battery packs located in the wings. The length of the aircraft is 6.7 meters with a wingspan of 9.5 meters. It is the first electric aircraft featuring ducted fans to reduce noise and increase safety. Another innovation is the main landing gear. It allows electrical taxiing on the ground without the main engines and in addition provides acceleration during take-off up to a speed of 60 km/h. To guarantee a simple handling of the electrically powered engines and systems, the E-Fan is equipped with an E-FADEC energy management system.

“We believe that the E-Fan demonstrator is an ideal platform that could be eventually matured, certified to and marketed as an aircraft for pilot training,” explained Botti. EADS IW is developing the electrical and propulsion system together with partners like ACS, which is building the all-composite structure, the mechanical systems and conducted the aerodynamic studies. The French innovation institutes CRITT Matériaux Poitou-Charentes (CRITT MPC) and ISAE-ENSMA, as well as the company C3 Technologies have been responsible for the construction and production of the wings. The engagement of these companies is also an investment in French infrastructure, jobs and know-how. Furthermore, electrical engineering experts from Astrium and Eurocopter helped out with their expertise in testing the battery packs while the livery was designed by Airbus. The E-Fan project is co-funded by the Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile (DGAC, the French civil aviation authority), the European Regional Development Fund (FEDER), the French Government (Fonds FRED), the Région Aquitaine and the Département Charente-Maritime of France.

World’s first serial hybrid electric aircraft, Diamond Aircraft DA36 E-Star 2, developed further

In addition to the development of the E-Fan, EADS is also demonstrating hybrid propulsion systems. One of them is in the Diamond Aircraft DA36 E-Star 2 motor glider first introduced at the Paris Air Show 2011. The two-seater has been updated with a lighter and more compact electric motor from Siemens, resulting in an overall weight reduction of 100kg. Electricity is supplied by a small Wankel engine from Austro Engine with a generator that functions solely as a power source. EADS IW prepared the battery packs, which are installed in the wings.

Propulsion gets smarter

Since 2012, EADS IW has been working together with Rolls-Royce within the Distributed Electrical Aerospace Propulsion (DEAP) project, which is co-funded by the UK’s Technology Strategy Board. The project researches key innovative technologies that will improve fuel economy and reduce exhaust gas and noise emissions by having a distributed propulsion system architecture. In this architecture, six electricallypowered fans are distributed in clusters of three along the wing span and housed with a common intake duct. An advanced gas power unit provides the electrical power for the fans and for the re-charging of the energy storage.

“The idea of distributed propulsion offers the possibility to better optimize individual components such as the gas power unit, which produces only electrical power, and the electrically driven fans, which produce thrust. This optimises the overall propulsion system integration,” explained Sébastien Remy, Head of EADS Innovation Works. “The knock-on effect we expect thanks to the improved integration of such a concept is to reduce the overall weight and the overall drag of the aircraft,” he said. During the Paris Air Show, EADS IW exhibits can be viewed at the EADS Pavilion at the end of chalet row A. CTO Jean Botti will conduct a Media Tour to explain the exhibits and technologies on Tuesday, 18 June at 13:30.

About EADS

EADS is a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2012, the Group – comprising Airbus, Astrium, Cassidian and Eurocopter – generated revenues of € 56.5 billion and employed a workforce of over 140,000.

http://www.eads.com/eads/int/en/news/press.20130616_eads_e-aircraft.html

 

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Jean Botti, chief technical officer of EADS, said such an aircraft could be ready to take to the skies within 18 to 20 years.

The E-Thrust proposal is part of a project that has received £523,000 from the Technology Strategy Board, the government’s innovation agency, and has also involved engineers from Cranfield University in Bedfordshire.

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