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Biogas

Regional Biosolids Drying with Power Oxidation

Napa, California – Lee Lundberg, PE will be presenting a white paper coauthored by him and Kevin Best, RealEnergy at the Air and Waste Management Association (AWMA) 110th annual event “Bridging Environment, Energy and Health” event on Wednesday June 7, 2017 in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.

Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) generate residue that can be dewatered to a total solids content of 20-25% solids.  The residue is referred to as Class A or Class B biosolids, depending on the level of stabilization provided at the WWTP. Class B material is often driven 50-100 miles to a landfill disposal site or to agricultural sites for spreading (weather permitting).  As regulations are limiting landfill and spreading, some material goes to composting facilities for further processing to a Class A pathogen free product that can be used freely as a soil amendment or low grade organic fertilizer.  On-site or regional biosolids processing to Class A are proposed here.

Past practices to further stabilize biosolids (or raw sludge) have included incineration, which results in a permanent destruction of the nutrient rich material in exchange for a little electricity today.  This practice yields an ash product, which has some limited beneficial uses.  Sometimes, ash contains elevated heavy metal levels which limit its use and require it to be landfilled.  But after several generations of synthetic fertilizer use (from natural gas), soil tilth is often depleted and in need of the recycling of macro and micronutrients in biosolids.

Andritz, RealEnergy and Dresser Rand, a Siemens Company – Recycling as a Service

Public policy in the USA is driving several environmentally sustainable solutions for biosolids including landfill diversion and processing to Class A for beneficial reuse.  Like several other sustainable public policies (solar pv and natural gas transportation fuels) […]

Why Microgrids are a Key Part of an Energy Management Strategy

Microgrids are exploding in popularity.

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The Two CHPs

August 1, 2016 By Carl Weinschenkhttp://www.energymanagertoday.com/the-two-chps-0125920/
Combined heat and power is a good deal: It is a fine way to drastically reduce waste and derive two uses from a single investment.

Combined heat and power (CHP, also known as cogeneration), is familiar to energy managers and building owners. The U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) last week posted a very interesting article that digs more deeply into various types of CHP systems and the industries that most often benefit from each.

The post says that there are two types of CHP: topping cycles and bottoming cycles. The difference is explained very well by The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Topping cycle approaches use fuel first to generate electricity or mechanical power in a “prime mover” such as a gas turbine or reciprocating energy. Exhaust energy is captured and used for a secondary purpose, such as heating or cooling the facility.

Bottoming cycle systems – which the piece says also is known as “waste heat to power” – heat first is used “to provide thermal input to a furnace or other high temperature industrial process,” with a portion of the heat used for a secondary purpose. This, typically, is a waste heat boiler/steam turbine system, the post says.

The EIA piece has a very interesting chart depicting the industries using CHP and, further, the breakdown between bottoming and topping cycle approaches. In general, bottoming cycle are use in a slightly wider number of industries (chemical; paper, primary metal; petroleum and coal products; food, nonmetallic mineral; crop production; wood product and miscellaneous).

However, topping cycle approaches produce far more energy where they are used. For instance, in the chemical sector, last year bottoming cycle CHP only produced about 1 GW of […]

USDOE Launches CHP Accelerator

16/05/2016
By Tildy Bayar
Associate Editor – Decentralized Energy

The US Department of Energy has launched a programme designed to accelerate the uptake of combined heat and power (CHP) in the nation.

As part of the national Climate Action Plan, the Better Buildings Initiative aims to make commercial, public, industrial and residential buildings 20% more energy-efficient over the next decade.

Under its rubric, the new Better Buildings Combined Heat and Power for Resiliency Accelerator, announced last week, aims to boost investment in CHP projects across the country. In collaboration with states, communities, utilities and other stakeholders, the project plans to examine how resiliency planners perceive CHP, identify technology or information gaps that could be barriers to adoption, and develop CHP plans for communities.

So far, 21 utilities, states, counties and cities have signed on to participate, including the states of Missouri, Massachusetts, Maryland and Utah; the cities of Boston, New York, Hoboken and Pittsburgh; and utilities Tennessee Valley Authority and the Long Island Power Authority, as well as Pennsylvania’s Public Utilities Commission.

Northeast coast utility National Grid has joined the initiative and says it will ‘work to support and expand the consideration of combined heat and power technologies for improved efficiency and enhanced resiliency’.

‘The impact of Superstorm Sandy demonstrated the urgent need to design and build more resilient energy systems,’ said Ken Daly, president of National Grid New York. ‘Our partnership with the Better Buildings Combined Heat and Power Resiliency Accelerator helps address that need, aligns with National Grid’s initiative to improve the resiliency of our infrastructure, and provides customers across our service area in New York and New England with more choice when it comes to energy management solutions.’

‘Advanced technologies like combined heat and power will enable the achievement of […]

LA Scrapping Food Waste

Food waste is the single biggest contributor to U.S. landfills, according to the EPA. While some American cities focus on composting, Los Angeles is testing a program to pick up food scraps and convert it to usable energy

http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/watch/throwing-waste-on-the-scrap-heap-345254467813

Renewable Natural Gas (Biogas) Carbon Credits >$100/Ton

Carbon credit prices breached a $100/ton average for the first time in January 2016.

The Low Carbon Fuel Standard, a California regulation to reduce the carbon intensity of fuels sold in California by ten percent by 2020, is one of the measures adopted by the Air Resource Board, pursuant to Health and Safety Code Sections 38500-38599 (AB 32) to reduce greenhouse gases in California. It is designed to help clean the air, protect the environment, and drive the development of clean, low-carbon fuels to improve California’s energy security and energy independence.

http://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/credit/20160209_jancreditreport.pdf

Value Far Beyond Demand Charge Reduction

Peak demand reduction is only one of many value streams for behind-the-meter storage, a new study finds.

by Katherine Tweed
October 07, 2015

In the U.S., behind-the-meter energy storage is mostly sold to offset commercial peak demand charges. The business case works today in states such as California and New York, but it also leaves most of the battery’s value on the table, according to a new report from Rocky Mountain Institute.

RMI’s meta review of the value of energy storage, pulling from many previous studies, found that batteries dispatched solely for demand reduction are only used for about 5 percent to 20 percent of their useful life. RMI identified 13 distinct services for customers and grid operators, but when it comes to stacking those, there is immense variation in the final cost-benefit depending on assumptions and inputs such as local utility regulations and wholesale market mechanisms.

The report was written not just to validate what progressive states like New York, California and Hawaii are doing, but also to show what’s possible in other states.

“Valuing batteries is not as simple as looking at just solar or looking at retail or wholesale grid costs,” said Jesse Morris, manager of the electricity practice at RMI. “A lot of regulatory changes need to happen.”

To better capture the complexity, the RMI study modeled four primary use cases for batteries: commercial demand-charge management in San Francisco; distribution upgrade deferral in New York; residential bill management in Phoenix; and solar self-consumption in San Francisco.

Three of those use cases, which were paired with secondary services such as ancillary services, resource adequacy or time-of-use optimization, were revenue-positive by a small margin. The New York use case was the exception.

The study found that in […]

Views from Napa Valley: A Peak at California’s Low Carbon Fuels Program

By Michele Rubino, Special to The Digest

A few years ago, when it was fashionable to consider California a failed State with a bankrupt, dysfunctional government and outrageously high taxes (only the latter is actually true), the State of Nevada started running ads in different California media markets to convince businesses to relocate. The response was swift. Within days, counter-ads were on air stating “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. What happens in California makes the world spin”

It is with the same sense of excitement that I am once again witnessing California’s global leadership in energy and environmental policies and markets. With the backdrop of Napa’s rolling hills and spectacular wineries, a diverse group of professionals – ranging from carbon traders to power companies, gas utilities, integrated oil companies, independent refiners and petroleum distributors and retailers, technology and project developers across energy production, distribution and efficiency – got together this week to discuss the future of California’s sprawling climate change policy. The event: the Argus California Carbon and LCFS summit.

The topic is a complex one. It all started with AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. AB 32 is now implemented covering the entire economy in California. Markets for carbon allowances and offsets are established and in full swing. The law is unmistakably driving change and investment in the private sector, creating and shifting revenues, profits and wealth, redefining winners and losers across multiple industries. It is also generating billions of dollars in cap-and-trade auction proceeds into the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF).

Predictably, lobbyists representing a multitude of industries are making their claims to these funds (and the biofuels industry needs to make its own). As is always the case in energy […]

California finalizes 50%-by-2030 renewables mandate

California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed Senate Bill 350 (SB 350) into law, officially moving the state to a 50% renewables by 2030 mandate, the Los Angeles Times reports.

SB 350 also mandates a 50% energy efficiency increase for existing California buildings by 2030, giving state energy agencies the authority to review existing programs, alter regulations and rechannel funding to achieve the higher efficiency mandate.

Heavy lobbying by the oil and auto industries forced State Sen. Kevin de León (D), who authored the bill, to remove a requirement calling for a 50% cut in petroleum use by 2030. But Brown declared he will exercise executive power through the state’s Air Resources Board to regulate petroleum use.

California just cemented its position as a leader in the renewable energy sector. Gov. Jerry Brown (D) declared the law will make a positive mark on an emerging “climate catastrophe” while mending the health impacts of air pollution.

“This is going to be a long march to transition the entire modern world to a decarbonized future,” Brown said. “It’s important, and we’re doing it in California.”

The 50% renewables mandate will be implemented by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for investor-owned utilities, and by the California Energy Commission for municipal utilities. Each utility must submit a procurement plan for review by the authorizing agency.

California’s investor-owned utilities are well on their way to meeting the state’s previous 33% renewables by 2030 mandate, PV Magazine reported. Utility officials and energy analysts have told Utility Dive the companies are capable of meeting a 50% renewables goal by 2030 despite the challenges associated with the goal.

There is, deep within the text of SB 350, “a full codification of the 2030 and 2050 climate targets” which […]

California Air Resources Board Votes To Re-Adopt Low Carbon Fuel Standard

On September 25, 2015, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted to readopt the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS), and require a ten percent reduction in carbon intensity of transportation fuels by 2020. The LCFS targets were originally frozen due to a legal challenge. To address the court’s ruling, CARB solicited public testimony before readopting an updated version of the LCFS. The modified LCFS includes protection against possible price spikes, an improved process for earning LCFS credits, and a streamlined application process for alternative fuel producers.