The environmental problems, our solutions, your opportunity.
Air, water, & soil pollution from fossil fuels
Health risks: respiratory disease, cancer, premature death; also neurological, cardiovascular, liver, kidney, immune system, and reproductive system effects
from sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), mercury, smog-forming volatile organic compounds (VOCs), carbon monoxide (CO), particulate matter (PM), and various air toxics such as benzene, 1,3-butadiene, formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, acrolein, polycyclic organic matter (POM), naphthalene, and diesel particulate matter.
Exposure to airborne toxics includes breathing contaminated air, eating fish from polluted water, consuming meat, milk, or eggs from animals fed contaminated crops, and drinking contaminated water.
- Global warming/disruptive climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions (primarily CO2 and methane)
- Contamination of waterways, shorelines, and groundwater from industrial discharge, acid rain, oil spills, mine acid, power plant tailing ponds, etc.
- Ocean acidification: dissolving coral reefs, decline of marine life, loss of biodiversity caused by excess CO2 absorption
Oil drilling, refining, shipping, burning gasoline in motor vehicles
- 38 reported oil spills in U.S. in past 15 years, including Deepwater Horizon (BP) and Hurricane Katrina-related
- Environmental impacts of shale oil and shale gas extraction, known as fracking, are being studied by the U.S. EPA. Impacts vary from well-water contamination in Pennsylvania to earthquakes in Oklahoma linked to pumping wastewater into deep wells.
- 139 oil refineries operate in U.S., most build before 1975. Air and water pollution are difficult to monitor and document by the EPA, in part because refineries have hundreds of emission points and equipment leaks are a major contributor with ageing facilities.
- 24 oil trains exploded, caught fire, or derailed in U.S. and Canada in past decade.
- Gasoline contains about 200 chemical compounds.
EPA says: “Motor vehicles are responsible for nearly one half of smog-forming volatile organic compounds (VOCs), more than half of the nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, and about half of the toxic air pollutant emissions in the United States…and now account for 75 percent of carbon monoxide emissions nationwide.”
Coal mining, strip mining, mountaintop removal, coal washing, coal-burning in industry and power stations, waste ash disposal
- Coal burning releases carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and mercury compounds.
- Coal washing in mines can contaminate waste water with heavy metals.
- Pollutants build up in water used for power plant boilers and cooling systems and contaminate soil around plant for years to come.
From the EPA regarding greenhouse gas emissions:
Electricity production (31% of 2013 greenhouse gas emissions) – Electricity production generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions. Approximately 67% of our electricity comes from burning fossil fuels, mostly coal and natural gas.
Transportation (27% of 2013 greenhouse gas emissions) – Greenhouse gas emissions from transportation primarily come from burning fossil fuel for our cars, trucks, ships, trains, and planes. Over 90% of the fuel used for transportation is petroleum based, which includes gasoline and diesel.
Natural gas is a fossil fuel, primarily methane, but also containing ethane, propane, and heavier hydrocarbons along with small amounts of nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen sulfide. When burned in power stations to generate electricity, the emissions from natural gas-fired boilers and furnaces include nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon dioxide (CO2), but in lower quantities than burning coal. SO2 and mercury emissions negligible. Methane can be emitted when natural gas is not burned completely.
Integrated multi-technology platforms, with Inbicon biomass conversion technology as the enabling centerpiece, produce cellulosic ethanol to replace gasoline and high-purity lignin to replace coal.
Inbicon’s unique value-adding features:
- CO2-neutral process
- Flexible feedstock (straws, stover, bagasse)
- Extensive experience in biomass handling
- Low water consumption – waste water is treated and recycled as process water
- Only water and steam for pre-treatment – no chemicals or acid
- High cellulosic ethanol yield (mixed-sugar fermentation)
- High-quality lignin
- Enzyme and yeast supplier flexible (3 leading companies certified)
- Integrated or stand-alone refinery option
- Green and storable fuels
- Only high-value products from the process
DONG Energy owns Inbicon biomass refinery technology and provides the Inbicon process guarantees.
DONG Energy: 6500 people, $10 billion revenues, 18% owned by Goldman Sachs. Headquartered in Denmark, it is a leading Northern European energy group.
|2003||First Pilot plant|
|2005||Second pilot plant, 10x larger|
|2009||First Inbicon Biomass Refinery, 4x larger, opens in Kalundborg, Denmark|
|2010-2014||For 5 years at Kalundbord, Inbicon process was repeatedly demonstrated: tested, refined, optimized, and proven during more than 15,000 hours of operation and data collection|
|2009-2015||12x model developed (1320 ton/day biomass), revised, optimized, ready for commercial projects|
Renewable product solutions:
Grain-ethanol from existing facilities:
Used in place of gasoline, ethanol made from grain cuts greenhouse gas emissions (CO2) by 34%, toxics by 13%, carbon monoxide by 30%, and fine particulate matter (PM) by 50%.
Cellulosic ethanol from our biomass refineries:
Cellulosic ethanol is a 2-carbon alcohol identical to grain ethanol. Its molecular formula is CH3CH2OH.
Air-quality gains are identical to those described above, plus lower carbon-intensity scores for cellulosic ethanol made from wheat straw and corn stalks.
“Some fuels—such as those made from cellulosic biofuels—can reduce [auto] emissions by 80 percent compared to gasoline.”
—The Union of Concerned Scientists
Lignin from our biomass refineries:
To replace coal, Inbicon’s process yields a high-purity lignin, a solid renewable biofuel with this high-value characteristics:
- High burning value, comparable to Powder River Basin coal
- High quality, clean, lowest sulphur content
- Ready to use with no further purification
- Lower corrosive properties than straw
- Pellets highly resistant to water and humidity
- Very durable
- Easily stored and transported
- Proven large-scale at DONG Energy power plants
Leading a team-of-teams coalition, New Energy Investors is financing, developing, designing, engineering, constructing, and managing biomass refineries in order to turn them into low-carbon, high-profit, sustainable businesses.
Achieving project success creates confidence and support among lawmakers, regulators, the general public, and investors. This in turn generates greater investment, which finances more and more projects, which multiplies our power to create economic growth, break fossil-fuel monopolies, ensure greater energy diversity and fossil-free choice, enhance national energy security, leading to cleaner air and water for future generations.
Investment-grade returns on New Energy Biomass Refinery projects.
By focusing single-mindedly on refining biomass, New Energy can practice three-dimensional investing, which creates financial, societal, and environmental rewards. Investors reap handsome profits, rural communities see economic revitalization, and everyone benefits from not only cleaner air and water, but also atmospheric healing from reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Research sources: EPA, EIA, Union of Concerned Scientists, RFA, Wikipedia, USDA, DONG Energy, and Leifmark’s proprietary findings.