Business Briefs

By Ron Kotrba | January 03, 2018

Biodiesel produced by Renewable Energy Group Inc. and purified with CynerSorb—a surface-functionalized diatomaceous earth from Imerys—helped skipper Phil Sharp of the U.K. take third place out of dozens of participants in this year’s Route du Rhum yacht race in the Class40 category. The solo transatlantic race began in early November at St. Malo in Brittany, France, and ended at Pointe-à-Pitre on the island of Guadeloupe, part of the French West Indies in the Caribbean Sea. Sharp’s sailboat, the Imerys Clean Energy, features a suite of renewable energies, including solar photovoltaic, a hydrogenerator and B100 for auxiliary power. Imerys also provided abrasives on the solar panels installed on the deck, which offer anti-slip properties and increase their durability. Winning ocean races while emitting zero carbon emissions is Sharp’s mission carried out through the Energy Challenge—a high-performance ocean racing project centered on energy efficiency. The project focuses on demonstrating the performance advantages of clean technologies.

The South Carolina Biomass Council held an award ceremony Nov. 15 on the grounds of its 2018 Biomass Project of the Year Award recipient, Green Energy Biofuel, in Warrenville, South Carolina. Green Energy Biofuel won the award in recognition of its new GEB3 plant, an idled 40 MMgy biodiesel plant that was acquired and retooled by Green Energy Biofuel. According to co-owner Bio Joe Renwick, while the new facility will be able to produce biodiesel, it will mainly process raw used cooking oil into high-quality feedstock for distribution to biodiesel producers along the East Coast and Mid-Atlantic regions. SCBC chairman Crad Jaynes and fellow award winner Tim Adams of the South Carolina Forestry Commission, who won the 2018 Advocate of the Year Award, in addition to State Rep. Ronnie Young, and Green Energy Biofuel staff, friends and family were in attendance. A tour of the GEB3 facility and a catered lunch followed.

Crown Iron Works has broken ground on its new global headquarters to support the 140-year-old company’s commitment to growth and innovation. Crown’s new 68,000 square-foot facility in Blaine, Minnesota, will accommodate a 37 percent increase in global headquarters staff and fuel technological advancements for the company and its customers through its state-of-the-art innovation center featuring a 15,000 square-foot pilot plant—triple the size of its current pilot plant. The official ribbon cutting took place Oct. 31. Crown’s global headquarters and innovation center will serve as a world-class resource to leading global manufacturers within the oilseed processing industry. It is designed to harness the creativity and ingenuity of Crown’s team to develop innovative solutions and technologies for customers around the world. Mortenson Construction is developing the $12 million facility with a $1.2 million business subsidy from the city of Blaine to promote economic development in the community.

BQ-9000-certified biodiesel marketer and distributor Targray has opened a new terminal in West Fargo, North Dakota. Targray’s Fargo Biodiesel Terminal, a 24/7 fuel distribution center, serves wholesale fuel buyers throughout the Fargo-Moorhead area. The new terminal will provide local fuel retailers, distributors and fleet managers with greater access to biodiesel. “The Fargo terminal is an important addition to our national biodiesel distribution network,” said Samy Cozma, a biofuels trader with Targray. Cozma added that the new terminal would also help address the increased demand for biodiesel in Northwest Minnesota, stemming from the state’s recently amended mandate. On May 1, 2018, Minnesota began requiring that all diesel fuel sold in the state during the “summer months”—April through September—contain at least 20 percent biodiesel. The minimum content for the remainder of the year is 5 percent. Targray is one of the largest, fastest-growing suppliers of biodiesel in the U.S.

Neste Corp. and specialty chemicals company Clariant have signed an agreement to partner in developing and making new sustainable material solutions accessible to a variety of industries. The companies will start replacing fossil-based ethylene and propylene used in Clariant’s hot-melt adhesives with monomers derived from Neste’s renewable diesel. Later, Clariant and Neste will develop other sustainable additive solutions derived from renewable raw materials for plastics and coatings applications, which will help other companies increase their biobased offerings. Gloria Glang, a vice president at Clariant, said, “For the society, our environment and future generations, it is our responsibility to improve sustainability performance and reduce our carbon footprint and dependency on crude oil. As a result of Clariant’s partnership with Neste, we can progress our goal to become a true sustainable solution provider in the additive market.”

In October, Woolley Fuel celebrated its 10th year as a distribution location providing high-quality biodiesel to consumers across New Jersey. Woolley Fuel was started in 1924 by two brothers Herbert and Norman W. Woolley Sr. Their desire was to start a coal company similar to their father’s and found potential in Maplewood, New Jersey. The brothers built an energy company that is now approaching its 95th year and is still evolving. Woolley Fuel President Norman Woolley Jr. created a whole new market when he made his company the first in the state to offer biodiesel to the public. Woolley Fuel started with just B5 blends and now due to demand is selling B30 to customers. Along with biodiesel, Woolley is also a major player in the Bioheat sector, providing heating oil to northeastern New Jersey residents. Heating oil has been a part of the Woolley family since nearly the beginning. For 90 years, Woolley has delivered top-notch oil and plans to continue this business model for many more years to come.

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