April 2009

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Business Briefs

Propel's Clean Fuel Point in Rocklin, Calif./PHOTO: PROPEL FUELS

Business & People



Managing Ethanol Risk

By Jerry Gulke

Renewable energy credit prices are on the rise as ethanol blend economics remain poor and the year-end reporting date looms. EPM talks with Clayton McMartin, president of Clean Fuels Clearinghouse, about renewable identification number credits, industry consolidation, and the oil industry's 800-pound gorilla, Valero Energy Corp., which can no longer be ignored.

A diverse group of people pooled their expertise to design an advanced fractionation system specifically for the ethanol industry that maximizes food-grade production and product yields.

By Megan Skauge, Ryan C. Christianson, Anna Austin, Erin Voegle, Hope Deutscher, Susanne Retka Schill, Ron Kotrba, Rona Johnson, Dave Nilles, Jessica Sobolik and Bryan Sims

Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway Co. locomotives prepare to haul tank cars from the 420 MMgy Archer Daniels Midland Co. ethanol plant in Cedar Rapids, Iowa./PHOTO: CEDAR RAPIDS & IOWA CITY RAILWAY CO.

The Ethanol Line

By Ryan C. Christiansen

Regional and short line railroads continue to upgrade their operations to move ethanol.

The new administration faces the historic challenge of guiding the nation through one of the most severe economic downturns in its history. During the campaign, hope and change were the pillars of President Barack Obama's message. Industry leaders share their expectations of the new administration with EPM.

Pictured is the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission headquarters in Washington, D.C./PHOTO: KEVIN ROCHE JOHN DINKELOO AND ASSOCIATES LLC

Coming Clean

By Bryan Sims

Whether, and to what extent, businesses should disclose climate change risks in their U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings is gaining the attention of a number of stakeholders, including those in the ethanol industry.

This trailer tipper is used to dump trailers that are not self-unloading. /PHOTO: WESTERN OREGON WOOD PRODUCTS

Wood Pellet Prowess

By Anna Austin

The owner of Western Oregon Wood Products discusses his wood pelletizing process with Biomass Magazine, as a prelude to the tour of his Banks, Ore., facility at the upcoming 2009 International Biomass Conference & Expo.

Pressure-treated and painted, or what is commonly referred to as "dirty" wood, is often off limits for productive reuse and relegated to landfills. Stakeholders in the construction and demolition industries talk about the politics and economics holding back the potential these prolific waste streams possess in the renewable energy sector and, more importantly, what can be done to make use of this resource.


Barrels of Biogas

By Ryan C. Christiansen

There has never been a prohibition against innovation. Breweries, distilleries and related industries are using biomass and waste to produce renewable energy.

The National Biodiesel Board's annual conference was held in San Francisco, where cable cars, biodiesel and cultural diversity have long been a mainstay.


Obama's Energy Team

By Erin Voegele

President Barack Obama is challenged with guiding the U.S. through one of the most severe economic downturns in its history, and his energy policies are expected to be a cornerstone of his strategy. Industry leaders share their expectations for the new administration with Biodiesel Magazine.

Seaport Biofuels Vice President of Finance Travis Paulson, left, and President Randy Thomas/PHOTO: SEAPORT BIOFUELS

Beneficial Blending

By Kris Bevill

Fuel dispensers that offer up to three different blends of biodiesel are relatively new to the retail market. Although the concept is simple, the blender pumps have been slow to catch on. Biodiesel Magazine talks to the experts about whether the dispensers will increase the market for biodiesel, and what obstacles are preventing their widespread use.

Producing sustainable biofuels will require conservation tillage practices and much more.


Microbial contamination is a significant concern for fuel ethanol producers. Proper cleaning guidelines and control strategies will help avoid potential yield losses and the production of unwanted organic acids.

Don't follow the one-size-fits-all approach to ethanol loading racks or corn delivery systems. Increase profits while providing workers safe access.

The complete replacement of a fuel delivery system provided a Louisiana paper manufacturing facility with the biomass-based renovation it needed.

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