Major Stories

European Climate Policy and the Bioeconomy – Missed Opportunities or Muddling Through?

European Climate Policy and the Bioeconomy – Missed Opportunities or Muddling Through?

September 29, 2020 |

Between politics and pandemic one could be forgiven for not closely following Europe’s bioeconomy. But as we scan the globe for bio-economy green shoots, we are noticing some interesting – and disconcerting – activity “across the pond”. Today we look to Europe and try to pluck the signal from the noise in Brussels amid promising […]

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New tech converts natural gas to hydrogen at scale anywhere and Plastic-eating enzyme ‘cocktail’ heralds hope for plastic waste

New tech converts natural gas to hydrogen at scale anywhere and Plastic-eating enzyme ‘cocktail’ heralds hope for plastic waste

September 29, 2020 |

It’s Tuesday and we’ve got two hot-off-the press technologies making news today. And if that isn’t enough Ts in one sentence, they also hit the target in terms of solving today’s tough trials. Converting otherwise wasted natural gas into high-value hydrogen and acetylene In Florida, Transform’s patented commercial-scale microwave plasma reactor system accelerates hydrogen infrastructure […]

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Bioeconomy News Worth Sharing 9/25/20: Hemp Renewable Diesel, Steelanol, EVs, how oil & gas looks at biofuels

Bioeconomy News Worth Sharing 9/25/20: Hemp Renewable Diesel, Steelanol, EVs, how oil & gas looks at biofuels

September 28, 2020 |

Renewable hemp diesel – who says there’s no hope in dope, or rope? Steven Fance shred this update on Emerald. Björn Heijstra shared this account from Nikkei.com of how the Chinese Steel industry is pivoting towards a fuel business based on LanzaTech technology. Jigar Shah shared this article from CleanTechnica looking deeper into the economics […]

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Scotland’s opportunity to grow a new clean, sustainable economy

Scotland’s opportunity to grow a new clean, sustainable economy

September 28, 2020 |

By Mark Bustard, CEO at Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC) Special to The Digest The idea of a net zero carbon emissions and zero waste economy isn’t as far-fetched as some may think. The key promise of a bio-based economy is that we can grow the sources of raw materials for every day products. Industrial […]

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Switching to switchgrass – will DOE and USDA funding turn switchgrass into a Rockstar biofuel feedstock?

Switching to switchgrass – will DOE and USDA funding turn switchgrass into a Rockstar biofuel feedstock?

September 27, 2020 |

Australian rock band AC/DC was on a roll with several record hits like ‘Back in Black’ and ‘For Those About to Rock We Salute You’ in the early 1980s, until that is, the ‘Flick of the Switch’ in 1983 that some rock critics say was the beginning of the end for them and a “commercial […]

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8-Slide Guides

Low-Carbon Drop-In Transportation Fuels: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Gevo

Low-Carbon Drop-In Transportation Fuels: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Gevo

September 29, 2020 |

There’s a new generation of low carbon, drop-in transportation fuels and Gevo is targeting jet fuel, gasoline blendstocks, diesel and more with their “Whole Gallons, Net Zero” vision. Patrick Gruber, CEO of Gevo, shared this illuminating presentation at ABLC Digital 2020 that looked at the impact of COVID-19, where the renewable fuels market stands, Gevo’s 2nd […]

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Biomass Pretreatment Innovations: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Forest Concepts

Biomass Pretreatment Innovations: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Forest Concepts

September 28, 2020 |

At ABLC Digital in July, Jim Dooley, Chief Technology Officer at Forest Concepts shared this illuminating presentation on the latest innovations in biomass pretreatments, how they maximize flowability, their crumbler solutions that can handle any moisture content and a wide range of materials, how they minimize energy consumption, advanced drying technologies, and more.

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Hydrothermal Liquefaction Waste to Fuel: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Bio2Oil

Hydrothermal Liquefaction Waste to Fuel: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Bio2Oil

September 27, 2020 |

Bio2Oil takes biomass to crude oil, like our planets process, just faster. Their technology can convert sewage sludge, municipal solid waste, industrial waste biomass, and other biomass streams into fuel. While they have a continuously operating pilot plant currently, they plan on commercial rollout in Q1 2022. Ib Johannsen, CEO of Bio2Oil, shared this stimulating presentation recently […]

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Fermentation Tech: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits

Fermentation Tech: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits

September 27, 2020 |

From fermentation ingredients to fermentation technology for fuel alcohol and distilled beverage production, Lallemand Biofuels & Distilled Spirits has an interesting story and even more interesting path ahead. Check out this slide guide from a recent DigestConnect webinar on how the convergence of the two worlds of yeast and enzymes can have implications for chemicals, advanced foods […]

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5 Opportunities to Create Sustainable Growth: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Sustainability Leaps for Europe

5 Opportunities to Create Sustainable Growth: The Digest’s 2020 Multi-Slide Guide to Sustainability Leaps for Europe

September 24, 2020 |

VTT just released this short report on 5 unique opportunities Europe has to accelerate sustainability and what they call “exponential hope.” From biotech in food production to optimizing material usage for sustainable resource consumption, dive into VTT’s views on how to create entire paradigm shfts that lead to leaps in productivity and sustainability, and more.

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The Latest World News

Study shows COVID-19 led to $8B in losses for ethanol producers

Study shows COVID-19 led to $8B in losses for ethanol producers

September 29, 2020 |

In Washington, as Congress and the administration continue negotiations on another potential COVID-19 relief package, a new study by university economists finds that ethanol producers will experience roughly $8 billion in losses this year due to the pandemic’s impact on world fuel markets. The study, conducted by economists from the University of Florida and Arizona […]

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Cielo closes final tranches of private placement

Cielo closes final tranches of private placement

September 29, 2020 |

In Canada, Cielo Waste Solutions Corp. has raised CDN$1,619,000 in gross proceeds in the final tranches of its private placement offering of convertible debenture units initially announced on March 30, 2020. A total of CDN$4,694,642 was raised in all tranches of the offering. Net proceeds of the offering are being used to scale-up production of […]

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Palm oil-gasoil spread at nine-year low making discretionary blending impossible

Palm oil-gasoil spread at nine-year low making discretionary blending impossible

September 29, 2020 |

In Malaysia, Bloomberg reports that the palm oil-gasoil spread is grown to its largest since 2011 at around $350 per metric ton but soared past $400 earlier this month, making the vegetable far too expensive for discretionary biodiesel blending and risking Malaysian and Indonesian attempts to boost their blending mandates. The countries are seeking to […]

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UK’s Jet Zero Council publishes members and key aims

UK’s Jet Zero Council publishes members and key aims

September 29, 2020 |

In the UK, the pioneering partnership between government and the aviation sector to fast-track zero-emission flight has taken its next step forward with the publication of the group’s members and key aims. Following the first meeting of the Jet Zero Council earlier in the summer, representatives from the UK’s leading aerospace, aviation and technology sectors […]

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Indian sugar mills have until October 15 to submit ethanol project proposals for soft funding

Indian sugar mills have until October 15 to submit ethanol project proposals for soft funding

September 29, 2020 |

In India, the Press Trust of India reports the government has given sugar mills until October 15 to submit proposals for new ethanol production capacity and take advantage of the soft loans announced in June 2018. Only 68 projects have been funded so far because of the weak balance sheets of many sugar mills but […]

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R&D News

Chinese researchers discover mycovirus can help rapeseed plants

Chinese researchers discover mycovirus can help rapeseed plants

September 29, 2020 |

In China, researchers have discovered that a fungal virus (also called a mycovirus) can convert deadly fungal pathogens into beneficial fungus in rapeseed plants. Once transformed, the fungus boosts the plant’s immune system, making the plant healthier and more resistant to diseases. These findings, published on September 29 in the journal Molecular Plant, indicate that […]

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ISU researchers pushing forward with pennycress domestication research

ISU researchers pushing forward with pennycress domestication research

September 28, 2020 |

In Illinois, Illinois State University researchers in the School of Biological Sciences are genetically modifying pennycress as part of a multistate, multi-institutional effort funded by a five-year, $10 million USDA grant and a $13 million Department of Energy grant. The researchers are attempting to transform the plant into a commercially grown cover crop that would […]

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Scientists offer companies novel biobased chemistry for greener polyurethane

Scientists offer companies novel biobased chemistry for greener polyurethane

September 27, 2020 |

In Colorado, through a novel chemistry using nontoxic resources like linseed oil, waste grease, or even algae, scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory developed a groundbreaking method for producing renewable polyurethane without toxic precursors. It is a breakthrough with the potential to green the market for products ranging from footwear, to automobiles, to mattresses, […]

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Georgia Institute of Technology researchers upgrading lignin bio-oil to hydrocarbons

Georgia Institute of Technology researchers upgrading lignin bio-oil to hydrocarbons

September 24, 2020 |

In Georgia, a new low-temperature, multi-phase process for upgrading lignin bio-oil to hydrocarbons could help expand use of the lignin, which is now largely a waste product left over from the production of cellulose and bioethanol from trees and other woody plants. Using a dual catalyst system of superacid and platinum particles, researchers at the […]

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Researchers find monocultures negatively impact terrestrial water cycle

Researchers find monocultures negatively impact terrestrial water cycle

September 23, 2020 |

In the UK, the global spread of vast forest plantations and agricultural monocultures are turning once diverse landscapes into areas of land supporting single plant species, with profound implications for our terrestrial water cycle, according to new research. A new paper published in Nature Geoscience, and written by a global collaboration of interdisciplinary researchers studying […]

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Policy & Policymakers

Department of Commerce drops review of anti-dumping duties on Indonesian biodiesel

Department of Commerce drops review of anti-dumping duties on Indonesian biodiesel

September 29, 2020 |

In Washington, the Department of Commerce (Commerce) is rescinding the administrative review of the antidumping duty (AD) order on biodiesel from Indonesia for the period of review (POR) April 1, 2019 through March 31, 2020, based on the timely withdrawal of the request for review. On April 1, 2020, Commerce published a notice of opportunity […]

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RFS Integrity Act welcomed after passing House vote

RFS Integrity Act welcomed after passing House vote

September 28, 2020 |

In Washington, Growth Energy applauded the inclusion of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Integrity Act in clean energy legislation (H.R. 4447) that passed the U.S. House on Friday. The RFS Integrity Act, authored by Chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Agriculture Collin Peterson (D-MN), along with Reps. Dusty Johnson (SD-At Large), Dave Loebsack (IA-04), […]

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Brazil to cut carbon credit goals for fuel distributors

Brazil to cut carbon credit goals for fuel distributors

September 27, 2020 |

In Brazil, Argus Media reports that Brazil’s hydrocarbons regulator ANP will reduce individual carbon credit targets for fuel distribution companies for 2020, after it halved the industry’s overall pre-pandemic target as a result of the economic slowdown. “Brazil’s energy policy council CNPE slashed the overall 2020 target for the sale of Cbios – financial instruments […]

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President Trump trying to woo Midwest voters by finally implementing Wishlist

President Trump trying to woo Midwest voters by finally implementing Wishlist

September 24, 2020 |

In Iowa, with less than six weeks until the presidential election, Reuters reports President Trump is in a hurry to make good on his promises to the ethanol industry in order to secure the Midwest. The wish list by the ethanol industry presented by Iowa senators at a meeting with the president in September 2019 […]

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Grain Farmers of Ontario concerned about land use restrictions under Clean Fuels Standard

Grain Farmers of Ontario concerned about land use restrictions under Clean Fuels Standard

September 23, 2020 |

In Canada, Grain Farmers of Ontario has deep concerns about the current Clean Fuels Standard (CFS) proposed by the Canadian government and is opposed to the criteria for land use, asking for transparency around carbon numbers and any certification processes. The CFS currently contains restrictions on land use, which will discourage farmers from planting and […]

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Other Recent Articles

China pushing forward with ethanol but E10 unclear

China pushing forward with ethanol but E10 unclear

September 29, 2020 |

In China, Agence France Presse reports that the country to move forward with its ethanol expansion plans for 2020 with an eye towards promoting large-scale cellulosic ethanol production using straw and forestry waste but no mention was made of the E10 mandate originally planned and later put on hold. Huge corn harvests back-to-back have left […]

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Not enough fish in the sea: Start-up works to culture sushi-grade salmon

Not enough fish in the sea: Start-up works to culture sushi-grade salmon

September 28, 2020 |

In San Francisco, Wildtype is working to grow sushi-grade salmon in a lab amid dangerously depleted ocean populations and factory farming beset with pest problems. The startup gives salmon cells nutrients, sugars, salts, amino acids and growth factor to “grow” salmon tissue in its lab. “This is applicable to other species than the salmon that we […]

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Mosa Meat raises $55 million to ramp up cultivated beef capacity

Mosa Meat raises $55 million to ramp up cultivated beef capacity

September 28, 2020 |

In the Netherlands, lab-grown meat start-up Mosa Meat has raised $55 million to boost capacity at its Maastricht plant and obtain regulatory approval in new markets. “In the next 3 years, we aim to scale up to one industrial-sized production line, work with regulators to demonstrate the safety of cultivated meat, and introduce the first […]

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Porsche experiments with renewable body components

Porsche experiments with renewable body components

September 28, 2020 |

In Germany, iconic sports car maker Porsche is expanding its use of natural materials to include body parts made from linseed and balsa wood. Porsche tells autoblog.com that the 718 Cayman GT4 uses natural materials in the front apron, rear apron, front spoiler, front lid, rear lid, mudflaps and air diffuser. Balsa composites hardened with […]

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Renewable sneaker pioneer Allbirds closes massive funding round

Renewable sneaker pioneer Allbirds closes massive funding round

September 28, 2020 |

In San Francisco, green sneaker pioneer and household name Allbirds has closed a $100-million financing, which it will use to enter new product categories, amp up sustainable material innovation, support international growth, and add brick-and-mortar stores. “Business can be a force for positive change, and this additional capital will allow us to further our mission […]

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PETA birthday gift meant to pressure Sophia Loren to swear off fur

PETA birthday gift meant to pressure Sophia Loren to swear off fur

September 28, 2020 |

In the United Kingdom, Peta U.K. and sustainable fashion brand Stella McCartney have sent Sophia Loren a biobased fur coat for her 86th birthday—with the hopes that the gift will push the actress and glamor icon to “choose compassion” and swear off animal-based fur fashion. The coat was made from KOBA, a biobased faux fur […]

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