Meghan Sapp – Biofuels Digest The world's most widely-read advanced bioeconomy daily Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:49:01 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Brazilian June ethanol exports up 75% vs 2019 thanks to weak Real Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:49:01 +0000

In Brazil, Platts reports data from the Secretariat of International Trade, or SECEX, shows June ethanol exports were 75% higher on the year at 298.84 million liters. More than 43% of the total volume was exported to the US while South Korea received the bulk of the remaining volume at around 82 million liters. The Brazilian real’s weakness against the dollar has encouraged ethanol exports together with the need to reduce supplies in light of lower demand due to COVID-19.

Amazon Air teams with Shell Aviation on SAF buy contract Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:47:54 +0000

In Washington state, Amazon Air has secured up to six million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) supplied by Shell Aviation and produced by World Energy. With this twelve-month deal, Amazon Air, in its short history, is prioritizing sustainability by bringing SAF into our air operations. World Energy and Shell collaborated to develop a SAF solution to enable businesses to decarbonize aviation. Amazon Air then worked with Shell Aviation to secure the fuel, which will be added to the existing fuel supply at select airports where we operate, to be used by our partners and other carriers. When SAF is used, it has the power to reduce carbon emissions by replacing up to six million gallons of conventional aviation fuel with a sustainable alternative. Amazon Air’s investment in SAF will help to reduce carbon emissions from our operations, while also building confidence in the sustainable fuel industry.

Earlier this year, Amazon trialed SAF on two flights originating from Washington, to Arizona and Connecticut.

CropEnergies sees ethanol demand improving as COVID-19 quarantines ease Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:46:58 +0000

In Germany, Reuters reports that CropEnergies says it expects that as countries ease COVID-19 quarantines ethanol demand will rise again. Its Q1 ethanol production remained steady on the year at 208,000 cubic meters but falling prices related to the sudden drop in demand due to the pandemic forced down its Q1 operating profit by 46% and net profit by 25%. But even though the company expects the situation to improve in the near-term, it wouldn’t hazard a guess as to what financial results for the year might be as there are still too many uncertainties.

Chevron teams with Clean Energy Fuels on Adopt-a-Port RNG initiative Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:45:18 +0000

In California, Chevron announced that it is partnering with California natural gas retailer Clean Energy Fuels Corp. on Adopt-a-Port, an initiative that provides truck operators serving the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach with cleaner, carbon-negative renewable natural gas (RNG) to reduce emissions.

For its part, Chevron will provide funding for Adopt-a-Port and supply RNG to Clean Energy stations near the ports. Chevron’s funding will allow truck operators to subsidize the cost of buying new RNG-powered trucks. Clean Energy, meanwhile, will manage the program, including offering fueling services for qualified truck operators.

Truck operators participating in the program, which supports the ports’ Clean Trucks Program and Clean Air Action Plan, agree to fuel up at the Clean Energy stations supplied with Chevron RNG. Truck operators and their import and export customers will help local communities by reducing smog-forming NOx emissions by 98 percent compared to diesel trucks while also eliminating climate pollutants.

Ethanol production seen within 10% of normal in Texas Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:44:19 +0000

In Texas, local TV news reports that an agricultural economist estimates ethanol production is within 10% of where it should be this time of year despite the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. With travel restrictions easing up and people getting back on the road, ethanol demand is expected to continue to rise with production rising along with it. The state’s corn condition ratings are good to excellent but continued heat and increased dryness could impact yields.

UK-based Green Fuels to develop Oman’s first biodiesel plant Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:43:17 +0000

In Oman, the Zawya news agency reports UK-based Green Fuels is entering in a joint venture to develop the country’s first biodiesel facility. The facility will use used cooking oil as feedstock and is expected to be operational by Q2 2021 with construction expected to begin soon. The biodiesel plant will be located at Khazaen Economic City due to its logistical hub for major roads and ports. The local government has also established significant economic incentives to attract local and foreign investors to the area.

WSU-Tri Cities leads lignin-based SAF research project Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:42:16 +0000

In Washington state, researchers are producing and testing a group of hydrocarbon molecules made from lignin, a waste material from biofuel production, as a new biojet fuel that could replace petroleum-based fuels and lead to greater performance and reduced emissions. The team including a Washington State University Tri-Cities researcher with colleagues from the University of Dayton, Phonon Energy, Inc., Polykala Technologies LLC, and Mercurious Biorefining, Inc. recently received  a $100,000 grant from the Joint Center for Aerospace Technology Innovation (JCATI) to conduct first-round testing on viability of molecules known as mono-, di- and tricycloparaffins, which they can source from lignin.

RFA tells EPA its air quality modeling and analysis is flawed Wed, 08 Jul 2020 21:40:54 +0000

In Washington, in comments submitted Tuesday to the Environmental Protection Agency, the Renewable Fuels Association expressed support for the Agency’s proposal to determine that no additional measures are necessary to mitigate “potential adverse air quality impacts” associated with the Renewable Fuel Standard. However, RFA’s comments also challenged the flawed air quality modeling and analysis conducted by EPA to inform the proposed determination.

Earlier this year, EPA completed an “anti-backsliding study” to determine whether the RFS would adversely impact air quality. After considering the results of the study, the Clean Air Act requires EPA to either promulgate new regulations to mitigate any adverse impacts on air quality or to determine that no such measures are necessary.

In May, EPA proposed that no additional mitigation measures are necessary to mitigate adverse air quality impacts. While RFA supports that determination, the anti-backsliding study conducted by EPA often misrepresents ethanol’s air quality impacts.

According to multiple independent third-party reviews, the MOVES2014 model used by EPA to estimate the exhaust emissions of ethanol-gasoline blends is fatally flawed due to its use of manipulated input data and unreliable “adjustment factors” and equations. RFA’s comments recommend several options for improving EPA’s evaluation of emissions related to ethanol-blended fuels and the association offers to “…work constructively with the Agency to complete a more meaningful assessment of ethanol’s air quality impacts.”

Greenlane Biogas to upgrade Brazilian sugar mill’s biogas to RNG Tue, 07 Jul 2020 20:39:42 +0000

In Canada, Greenlane Biogas North America Ltd., has signed a $1.8 million contract with Grupo Cocal, a Brazilian sugar mill operator that refines sugar and produces ethanol biofuel from sugarcane. Greenlane will supply its Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) biogas upgrading system for this first-of-its-kind renewable natural gas (RNG) project.

The Greenlane supplied system will process and upgrade biogas created from the anaerobic decomposition of byproducts from Cocal’s sugar refining and ethanol production process into clean RNG. The RNG will be used, in part, to displace diesel fuel in Cocal’s commercial operations and vehicle fleet and provide a clean low-carbon supply of RNG for the local gas grid. This is expected to be the first commercial-scale pipeline injection RNG project in the Brazilian sugar cane industry.

EU ethanol supplies seen tight later in the year due to feedstock challenges Tue, 07 Jul 2020 20:38:40 +0000

In the UK, ICIS reports that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to significant increases in ethanol demand for hand sanitizers, with some markets like France and Germany seeing demand rising 10-fold. As a result, there are concerns that industrial and beverage ethanol will be too tight through the end of 2020. With concerns about drought and impacts from the lack of neonic pesticides after their ban came into place this season, sugarbeet and wheat feedstocks are likely to shrink and in turn reduce the availability for ethanol production.