5 Everyday Products Made from Biomass

A article by US DOE

plane fuel bioenergy

1. Fuel

Each time you fill up at the gas station, you are likely pumping biofuels into your tank. More than 97% of gasoline in the United States contains some ethanol, a renewable, domestically produced fuel made from different plant materials. Ethanol is typically blended with gasoline to increase octane and cut down on air pollution. It also plays a role in reducing our dependence on imported oil, extending the supply of U.S. gasoline, and stimulating the economy. In 2016 alone, the production of more than 15 billion gallons of ethanol put more than $22.5 billion into the pockets of Americans and supported nearly 340,000 U.S. jobs. Additionally, cellulosic ethanol is becoming available. In 2016, 3.8 million gallons were sold.

The aviation industry is also taking biofuels to new heights. Most major airlines are now blending renewable fuels into many routine commercial flights. Government and industry initiatives likeFarm to Fly 2.0 aim to increase the U.S. supply of these drop-in biofuels that could help reduce costs for airlines.

cosmetics bionergy blog

2. Cosmetics and Perfumes

Biobased feedstocks can be used to produce a range of personal care products, such as skin cream, shampoo, mascara, and more. For example, the acetone in your nail polish remover can be produced by fermenting plant sugars, while the palmitic acid that gives your hair that glossy shine after you condition is one of the most common saturated fatty acids found in microorganisms and plants. Public demand has renewed industry interest in biobased cosmetics, and innovations in biotechnology are making these products cheaper and more efficient to manufacture. The personal care ingredients market size is projected to reach $17.3 billion by 2022, with biobased resources likely to take up a significant segment of the industry.

food additives bioenergy photos

3. Food Additives and Nutritional Supplements

Algae are big-time oil producers capable of generating up to 5,000 gallons of oil per acre. The oil collected from algae can be converted into renewable fuels or used in a variety of applications. For example, a number of nutritional supplement brands are extracting omega-3 fatty acids, typically found in fish oils, directly from algae. In addition, some food flavors can also trace their source back to biomass. Lignin, an organic substance that gives plants their strong structural support, can be converted into renewable chemicals for the flavor industry. Spero Energy developed a process that sustainably breaks down woody biomass and converts lignin into chemicals that can be used to flavor smoky-tasting foods like barbecue chips.

detergents bioenergy photo

4. Detergents and Cleaning Products

The power of detergents and cleaners lies in their ability to remove unwanted material from a soiled surface. They owe this unique characteristic to two classes of chemicals—surfactants and solvents—both of which can be produced from biomass. These biobased chemicals are found in laundry detergents, spray cleaners, and other cleaning products. For example, Procter & Gamble and DuPont announced plans to use cellulosic ethanol as a solvent in one of their laundry detergents, Tide Coldwater Clean.

DuPont has received funding from BETO to work with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to research its conversion technology. This led to DuPont constructing the world’s largest cellulosic ethanol plant in Nevada, Iowa. The ethanol for Tide Coldwater Clean is sourced from this facility, which works with 500 local growers to establish a high-quality, cost-effective, and sustainable supply of corn stover (corn cobs, leaves, and stalks) to repurpose more than 7,000 tons of agricultural waste.

plastics bioenergy photo

5. Plastics and Other Materials

Biobased plastics can provide the same variety and reliability of traditional plastics but are manufactured from renewable, plant-based material. Many companies are already starting to integrate these new materials into their product lines. For example, BETO funded Virent Inc’s BioForming™ technology to convert plant material into a synthetic substance that can be used to produce clothing fibers and containers for liquids. Now, Coca-Cola, is using this technology to offer consumers its 100% renewable and recyclable PlantBottle™.

Biobased plastics may even help cut down on waste. Many companies, such as Mango Materials, are working to develop biodegradable/compostable biobased plastics that will break down more quickly and decay into natural materials.

Biobased chemicals, products, and fuels represent an opportunity to produce renewable and sustainable U.S.-manufactured products. They offer the same performance as their traditional counterparts, and thanks to advances in scientific innovation, they are being produced more cost effectively and efficiently—helping to promote a more prosperous future.

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Wind power is the nation’s number one source of renewable generation capacity.

A post regarding

How Do Wind Turbines Survive Severe Storms?

Wind power recently surpassed 82,000 megawatts of total installed capacity, making it the nation’s number one source of renewable generation capacity.

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Guangzhou International Solar Photovoltaic Exhibition August 16th-18th, 2017 (PV Guangzhou 2017 )

PV Guangzhou 2017
PV Guangzhou 2017 will be held in China Import and Export Fair Pazhou Complex from August 16 to 18, 2016. Preparing 350 exhibitors with 20,000sq.m, there will exhibit photovoltaic cells, PV project and system, photovoltaic power, photovoltaic production equipment and material. With support of 300 international media and 30 CCTV-based mass media, PV GUANGZHOU is dedicated to creating the most influential Solar Photovoltaic trading platform in Asia.

Exhibition Contents:
Photovoltaic production equipment:
Silicon rod silicon block silicon ingot production equipment:
a full set of production lines, ingot furnace, crucible, growth furnace and other related equipment

Silicon wafer production equipment:
a full set of production lines, cutting equipment, cleaning equipment, testing equipment, and other related equipment

Battery production equipment:
a full set of production lines, etching equipment, cleaning equipment, diffusion furnace and covered equipment / deposition furnace, screen printing press, other furnace equipment, test instrument and separator, battery plate other related equipment

Solar panels/modules production equipment:
a full set of production lines, test equipment, glass cleaning equipment, tie lines / welding equipment, laminated machine

Film version of the battery production equipment:
amorphous silicon cells, the copper indium gallium selenium battery CIS / CIGS, CdTe cadmium telluride film battery, battery DSSC Dye-sensitized

Production technology and research equipment
Photovoltaic cells:
photovoltaic cell manufacturers, solar modules’ manufacturer, solar modules’ installation company.

Related PV components:
batteries, chargers, controllers, converters, recorder, inverter, monitor, support systems, tracking systems, solar cables

PV raw material:
silicon material, silicon ingots / silicon block, silicon, glass packaging, packaging film and other raw materials

PV project and system:
photovoltaic systems integration, solar air-conditioning systems, rural photovoltaic power generation system, solar tesing and control system, solar heating systems project, solar and photovoltaic project management and process control software, as well as its program system.

Solar products: 
solar street lamp, lawn lamp, yard lamp, beacon lights, agricultural insecticide lamps, chargers, lights, traffic warning lights and other solar information display screen.

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Special Issue on Recent Innovations in Electrical, Electronics and Communication Systems (RIEECS2017)

The 1st International Conference on Recent Innovations in Electrical, Electronics and Communication Systems (RIEECS 2017) will be held at the Graphic Era University, Dehradun, India on October 28-29, 2017. This conference provides an exceptional platform for exchange of ideas and discuss the utmost solutions, scientific results and methods in solving stimulating problems among interested researchers, students, developers, and practitioners in the areas of electrical, electronics and communication engineering.  The organizing committee partners with us, and some of the papers selected by the conference committee will have an opportunity to submit extended versions of their papers to the special issue of Trends in Renewable Energy.

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A&I Metadata Feed Standard Agreement with CNKI Scholar

We offically signed the A&I Metadata Feed Standard Agreement with CNKI Scholar.

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Data sharing agreement with Informatics (J-Gate) signed

We officially signed the data sharing agreement with Informatics (J-Gate). And the articles published in Trends in Renewable Energy will be indexed in J-Gate, which is an electronic gateway to global e-journal literature and launched in 2001 by Informatics India Limited.

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Our deposit policy and the journal title registered with RoMEO

We registered the deposit policy of our journal ‘Trends in Renewable Energy’ (ISSN: 2376-2136, online ISSN: 2376-2144) in SHERPA/RoMEO. We are considered as a a RoMEO green publisher, and ‘Trends in Renewable Energy’ is a RoMEO green journal.

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Green Energy Features Big Among Trump’s Top 50 Infrastructure Projects

Forbes news this early morning: A list emerged this week; it appears to have been prepared for then President-elect Trump, and is titled: “Priority List: Emergency & National Security Projects.” It’s 50 pages for 50 infrastructure projects — quick facts on a host of highways, bridges, powerlines and airports, the construction of which would naturally make America greater, cost $140 billion, and require enough engineering and construction work to keep the equivalent of 24,000 people employed for 10 years.

Surprisingly, the list contains no mention of a Great Wall on the Mexico border, nor the Keystone XL or Dakota Access pipeline projects. The one pipeline project on the list is the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which would move natural gas from Pennsylvania’s Marcellus shale down to the Southeast. Owned by Dominion Resources, Duke Energy and Southern Company, the pipeline would cost about $5 billion and provide 10,000 job years.

The rest of the energy infrastructure projects are surprisingly green and may give a glimmer of hope to renewable energy fans worried about the potential for Trump to roll back the Clean Power Plan and promote coal and oil over the likes of wind and solar.

More details from the original post at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/christopherhelman/2017/01/27/green-energy-features-big-in-trumps-top-50-infrastructure-projects/#329dd2364503

At FESP, we will keep monitoring the energy policy changes. Have a good weekend!

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An America First Energy Plan


Energy is an essential part of American life and a staple of the world economy. The Trump Administration is committed to energy policies that lower costs for hardworking Americans and maximize the use of American resources, freeing us from dependence on foreign oil.

For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule. Lifting these restrictions will greatly help American workers, increasing wages by more than $30 billion over the next 7 years.

Sound energy policy begins with the recognition that we have vast untapped domestic energy reserves right here in America. The Trump Administration will embrace the shale oil and gas revolution to bring jobs and prosperity to millions of Americans. We must take advantage of the estimated $50 trillion in untapped shale, oil, and natural gas reserves, especially those on federal lands that the American people own. We will use the revenues from energy production to rebuild our roads, schools, bridges and public infrastructure. Less expensive energy will be a big boost to American agriculture, as well.

The Trump Administration is also committed to clean coal technology, and to reviving America’s coal industry, which has been hurting for too long.

In addition to being good for our economy, boosting domestic energy production is in America’s national security interest. President Trump is committed to achieving energy independence from the OPEC cartel and any nations hostile to our interests. At the same time, we will work with our Gulf allies to develop a positive energy relationship as part of our anti-terrorism strategy.

Lastly, our need for energy must go hand-in-hand with responsible stewardship of the environment. Protecting clean air and clean water, conserving our natural habitats, and preserving our natural reserves and resources will remain a high priority. President Trump will refocus the EPA on its essential mission of protecting our air and water.

A brighter future depends on energy policies that stimulate our economy, ensure our security, and protect our health. Under the Trump Administration’s energy policies, that future can become a reality.

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Making Sense of President Trump’s Contradictory Energy Plan

Original post at http://www.hcn.org/articles/making-sense-of-president-trumps-energy-plan/. It can be said that the new energy policy agenda will be a fatal blow for the future of new energy development in the United States. All government departments, companies and academic institutions will be under the new program to re-adjust their plans for the next 4-8 years to adapt to this new energy development to abandon the current situation as soon as possible. The following is the original press release, hoping to help understand the new President’s plan to restore traditional energy.

Open the Whitehouse.gov website since President Donald Trump took over and the first item under top issues is his America First Energy Plan. While short on details, the new president’s blueprint is chock full of contradictions and outdated assertions about the status of America’s energy supply.

The President’s plan is brief and vague and doesn’t include citations to research backing up his assertions. Usually presidents and even candidates would accompany their policy blueprints with background materials. Such details may yet be forthcoming from the Trump administration. Without them, it’s difficult to thoroughly analyze the new president’s vision. Still, now that he’s president, Trump’s pronouncements – even if vague – warrant vetting. Academic energy experts say even the broad outlines of the president’s plan reveal inconsistencies and basic misunderstandings of the state of the nation’s energy economy.

Trump starts out by vowing to erase President Barack Obama’s 2013 Climate Action Plan, which included the Clean Power Plan, designed to slash greenhouse gases from the electricity sector by 30 percent, and an array of other Obama initiatives, such as accelerating siting of renewable energy on public lands; controlling leaks of methane, a potent greenhouse gas; and shrinking the federal government’s own greenhouse gas footprint. Trump also singles out the Waters of the U.S. regulation, which Obama’s EPA called its Clean Water Rule, as one he will undo. Trump declares that deleting these rules will increase workers’ wages by $30 billion over 7 years. It’s unclear how he does this math; several independent researchers have found a net gain in jobs from the Clean Power Plan, for instance.

The biggest contradiction is Trump’s vow to revive the coal industry while also boosting natural gas production. Low-priced natural gas is the biggest factor in coal’s sharp decline, according to several energy experts from universities around the country. So more gas production should only lower prices more, further reducing the demand for coal. “Sooner or later the administration will have to recognize they cannot help all fossil fuels, and that in the case of natural gas or coal, it is one or the other,” says Robert Godby, an associate professor at the University of Wyoming and director of the Center for Energy Economics and Public Policy.

Coal trains near North Antelope Rochelle Mine, Wyoming.
Kimon Berlin/CC Flickr

It’s difficult to envision what Trump could do to effectively bring back coal. He could try to diminish competition from ever-cheaper renewable sources of electricity, by setting even higher tariffs on Chinese solar panels or persuading Congress to cancel tax benefits for renewable power. But the surge of solar and wind in red states, as well as in blue states, has created jobs and powerful Republican backers of these tax incentives. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, for instance, takes credit for securing the tax incentives and wind provided nearly a third of Iowa’s electricity in 2015, a larger share than any other state. Some analyses show solar jobs exceeded oil and gas jobs starting in 2015. Even without federal tax incentives, there still would be strong demand for new renewable energy. States like California and Oregon have ambitious renewable energy requirements, aiming to get half of their electricity by 2030 and 2040, respectively. Trump also could try to get congressional support for enormous subsidies for coal, but he has given no indication that he plans to do so. “It’s a hollow promise,” says Susan Tierney, a Colorado-based energy expert for Analysis Group. “The market has moved way beyond coal.”

Another apparent contradiction in Trump’s energy plan is his support for clean coal. The technologies that would make coal cleaner by capturing the carbon dioxide that contributes to climate change are still very expensive. Requiring the installation of such equipment would make the prospect of burning coal even less attractive to utilities.

Increasing drilling in federal lands also gets prominent mention in Trump’s energy plan. He pledges to “take advantage of the estimated $50 trillion in untapped shale, oil, and natural gas reserves, especially those on federal lands that the American people own.” Under Trump, agencies could open some lands now closed to drilling, but analysts are skeptical that would translate into much more drilling. Trump frequently cited a study by the conservative think tank Institute for Energy Research during his campaign. It calculates that opening federal waters and lands for drilling would lead to an infusion of tens of billions of dollars for the first seven years just from the exploration it would encourage. But a recent report by the Congressional Research Service finds that companies are selective in choosing where they want to drill, so opening public lands to drilling may not lead to a lot more actual drilling on those lands.

Energy analyst Amy Myers Jaffe says industry pays lip service to wanting more access to public land but currently has more than enough leased acres to drill elsewhere. “So unless prices were much higher, going to some new area is not likely attractive especially if they have to add surface equipment and pipeline connections,” says Jaffe, executive director for energy and sustainability at University of California, Davis.

Lifting barriers to drilling on public land will not be that easy anyway, says John Freemuth, a public policy professor at Boise State, in Idaho. He remembers meeting with President George W. Bush’s Bureau of Land Management chief, Kathleen Clarke, early in her tenure. At the time, Freemuth was on a BLM advisory board, and she asked the panel how to re-engineer the National Environmental Policy Act to increase oil and gas production. “They tried, but they found themselves in court a lot,” recalls Freemuth. Despite efforts to streamline permitting, under Bush, the average length of time to approve an application for permit to drill actually grew between 2005 to 2008 from 39 days to 134 days. Since then, the resistance to drilling in the American West has grown. In the early 2000s, most opponents were trying to preserve scenic landscapes and habitat for fish and wildlife. During the Obama years, concerns about climate change grew and now activists also oppose drilling in an effort to keep fossil fuels in the ground.

The BLM is required to conduct lengthy environmental review and seek public comment before opening lands to drilling. Opponents to drilling can stall projects by tying up the agency in court. So, for the Trump administration to accelerate oil and gas drilling on federal lands it likely would have to rewrite regulations, which usually takes years, or get a gridlocked Congress to overhaul bedrock laws like the National Environmental Policy Act. “I’m not sure how they’re going to do this. Right now they’re talking at the myth level rather than the fact level,” Freemuth says.

Trump also presents an outdated picture of the state of American energy security. His energy plan states: “President Trump is committed to achieving energy independence from the OPEC cartel and any nations hostile to our interests.” Under President Obama, though, dependence on OPEC oil largely came to an end. “We already have broken the link to the OPEC Cartel on oil,” says Tierney. In 2015, the United States imported only a quarter of its petroleum—the lowest level since 1970. Less than a third of imports were from OPEC countries, according to the Energy Information Agency.

Trump wraps up his energy plan promising “responsible stewardship of the environment,” and to return EPA to its “essential mission of protecting our air and water.” Harrison Fell, an associate professor for resource economic policy, says this is another irony: Trump began his plan by vowing to eliminate Obama’s Climate Action Plan, the centerpiece of nation’s efforts to rein in greenhouse gases, and Clean Water Rule, intended to safeguard waters and wetlands from being polluted or filled in by construction or industry. “It appears his administration’s energy policies are as contradictory as ever.”

Correspondent Elizabeth Shogren writes HCN’s DC Dispatches from Washington. 

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