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DOE launches Clean Fuels & Products Shot

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By Erin Voegele

May 24, 2023

Chemicals

The U.S. Department of Energy on May 24 launched the Clean Fuels & Products Shot, which aims to significantly reduce GHG emissions from carbon-based fuels, including though the increased use of biomass and waste feedstocks.

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The White House OMB has opened a public comment period as part of a federal effort that aims to improve how to identify, classify and measure bioeconomy manufacturing, technology and products, including biobased fuels, chemicals and materials.

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CHAR Technologies Ltd. has signed an MOU with the First Nations co-operative Lake Nipigon Forest Management Inc. to collaboratively develop, build, own and operate a wood waste and residues to RNG and biocarbon facility in Ontario.

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The U.S. DOT's Federal Railroad Administration is seeking information on the potential uses and options for disposal or repurposing used creosote-treated railroad ties (CTRTs), including processing via a pyrolysis process to create biochar.

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West Biofuels LLC has broken gournd on a critically needed 3-megawatt (MW) bioenergy plant in Burney, California, that will convert forest waste and sustainably sourced wood to renewable electricity, heat, and biochar.

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Lakeview RNG, a wholly owned subsidiary of Next Renewable Fuels, has acquired assets associated with the Red Rock Biofuels development in Lake County, Oregon, and announced plans to convert the project to RNG and clean hydorgen production.

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Gevo Inc. and LG Chem Ltd. announced on April 12 that they have entered into a joint development agreement to develop bio-propylene for renewable chemicals using Gevo's ethanol-to-olefins (ETO) technology.

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The DOE has launched an initiative that aims to help industry and universities leverage the Feedstock-Conversion Interface Consortium's capabilities to help solve real-world problems that the bioenergy and bioproduct industries are facing.

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The USDA ERS in March published a report that aims to help increase the value of animal manure for farmers. The document, in part, describes existing and emerging technologies that can inrease the value of manure, including anaerobic digestion.

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The USDA is making $1.055 billion in grants available under the Rural Energy for American Program to help agricultural producers and rural small businesses invest in renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements.

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Reps. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa; Kim Schrier, D-Wash.; and Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, on March 17 reintroduced the Biochar Research Network Act. Compansion legislation is pending in the U.S. Senate.

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The Canadian Infrastructure Bank on March 27 awarded a $277 million loan to a joint-venture partnership between Shell, Suncor, Proman and the government of Quebec that will enable construction of a biorefinery based on Enerkem technology.

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The U.S. Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration has announced its Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee will hold a hybrid meeting on April 4 in Washington, D.C.

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The U.S. Department of Energy on March 21 announced $14 million in funding to support and optimize the production of affordable biofuels and biochemicals while significantly reducing carbon emissions.

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President Joe Biden has proclaimed March 21 as National Agriculture Day. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and EPA Administrator Michael Regan issued comments recognizing the ag community for it work to provide the U.S. with food, fuel and fiber.

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The U.S. DOE has announced $590 million to renew its four existing Bioenergy Research Centers. This funding will help support the DOE's research into the next generation of sustainable, cost-effective bioproducts and bioenergy.

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Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, on March 9 reintroduced the bipartisan Biochar Research Network Act. The bill directs the USDA to study the effectiveness of biochar, a carbon-rich material produced from biomass.

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The USDA on March 8 kicked off the inaugural National Biobased Products Day and highlighted the accomplishments of people and organizations working to improve sustainability within the federal government.

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On the inaugural National Biobased Products Day, the Agriculture Energy Coalition released a letter to Senate and House Agriculture Committee leaders urging them to preserve funding for Farm Bill energy title programs.

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Ancient biochar method revamped for modern challenges

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By June Breneman, University of Minnesota Duluth

February 28, 2023

The University of Minnesota Dulth's Natural Resources Research Institute is conducting a demonstration project that transforms wildfire fuel into carbon-sequestering, soil-enhancing biocarbon material.

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Origin Materials Inc. on Feb. 23 held a fourth quarter earnings call, discussing progress with the development of the company's first commercial-scale facility, a newly launched biofuel initiative and a new partnership with Avantium.

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The U.S. Department of Energy announced $25.5 million in funding to enable the sustainable use of domestic biomass and waste resources, such as agricultural residues and algae, to produce low-carbon biofuels and bioproducts.

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The U.S. Department of Energy on Jan. 30 awarded $131 million for 33 carbon management projects. At least four of the funded projects specifically address carbon capture related to bioenergy and biofuels.

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CHAR Technologies Ltd. has completed Phase 1 of the Thorold Renewable Natural Gas & Biocoal project with the initial production of biocoal. The company is now focusing on Phase 2, which will boost produciton capacity.

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Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has proposed to increase funding for the state's Minnesota's Bioincentive Program, which aims to spur private investment in the production of advanced fuels, renewable chemicals and biomass thermal energy.

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Origin Materials Inc. on Jan. 27 announced the mechanical completion of Origin 1, a commercial-scale sustainable materials production facility located in Sarnia, Ontario. The company also recently announced progress with financing for Origin 2.

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DOE: National labs research better uses for CO2

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By U.S. Department of Energy

January 23, 2023

Carbon dioxide fuels global warming but scientists from multiple national labs are finding new ways to repurpose it to produce a myriad of valuable products, such as fuels, chemicals, plastics and materials from carbon resources.

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Yosemite Clean Energy was selected to receive two $500,000 Forest Biomass to Carbon-Negative Biofuels grants from the California Department of Conservation. The grants support two biomass-to-hydrogen projects the company is developing.

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Bain Capital Private Equity has completed an equity investment in EcoCeres Inc., an innovative biorefinery company that converts waste-based biomass into a wide spetrum of biofuels, biochemicals and biomaterials.

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Raven SR Inc., Chevron New Energies, and Hyzon Motors Inc. on Jan. 9 announced they are collaborating to commercialize operations of a green waste-to-hydrogen production facility in Richmond, California.

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