EPA eases several gasoline-related regulations in response to COVID-19 pandemic

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is easing several gasoline-related regulations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. First, EPA intends to provide additional flexibility to the marketplace to transition from winter-grade, high volatility gasoline to summer-grade low vapor pressure gasoline. Due to the steep fall-off in gasoline demand as a... Read more →


For the past four years, the Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) National Laboratory consortium has focused research efforts primarily on turbocharged (boosted) spark-ignition (SI) engines for light-duty vehicles. This research involves identifying the fuel properties and engine parameters that mitigate knock and emissions, while maximizing boosted SI efficiency and... Read more →


A sudden drop in miles traveled by car in the US triggered by wide-spread social isolation measures will have immediate ramifications for gasoline demand. IHS Markit analysis finds that US gasoline demand could fall by as much as 4.1 million barrels per day (MMb/d) during the COVID-19 response period. The... Read more →


BASF launched Fourtune—a new Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) catalyst product for gasoil feedstock. Fourtune is the latest product based on BASF’s Multiple Framework Topology (MFT) technology. It has been optimized to deliver superior butylene over propylene selectivity while maintaining catalyst activity and performance. MFT technology decouples catalyst acid site density... Read more →


The Methanol Institute (MI) released two new reports on the use of methanol as a safe, efficient and clean alternative fuel for cars, trucks and buses. SGS Inspire prepared a report for the Methanol Institute titled “Methanol: Properties and Uses,” providing an explanation of the main physical and chemical properties... Read more →


Preem has chosen Haldor Topsoe’s HydroFlex renewable fuel hydrotreating technology to produce clean renewable diesel and jet fuel at its Gothenburg refinery in Sweden. The 16,000 barrels-per-day unit will have a yearly production capacity of approximately one million cubic meters of fuels which corresponds to about 25% of Sweden’s estimated... Read more →


Neste, the world’s leading producer of renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel produced from waste and residue raw materials, has agreed to acquire 100% of Mahoney Environmental (Mahoney), a collector and recycler of used cooking oil in the United States, and its affiliated entities. The transaction is subject to the... Read more →


The California Air Resources Board (CARB) Executive Officer has certified the 2020 annual update to the carbon intensities (CI) of the lookup table pathways for a) California Average Grid Electricity Used as a Transportation Fuel in California and b) Electricity Supplied under the Smart Charging or Smart Electrolysis Provision. The... Read more →


Researchers from the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics and the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences have developed a photocatalyst for the selective decarboxylation of fatty acids to produce diesel- and jet-range molecules under mild conditions (30 °C, H2 pressure ≤0.2 MPa). A photocatalytic decarboxylation strategy for the production of alkanes from... Read more →


Leading short sea ro-ro operator UECC and sustainable marine biofuel pioneer GoodFuels have launched a joint trial of GoodFuels Bio-Fuel Oil (MR1-100 or BFO) on UECC’s ro-ro vessel M/V Autosky. The three-month trial will test 3,000 metric tonnes of sustainable biofuel on the 140m, 2080 vehicle carrier. The biobunkering, which... Read more →


Finnair and Neste have signed a new agreement which will “gradually and considerably” increase Finnair’s use of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in its operations. The new partnership will be a key contributing factor in Finnair’s long-term target of carbon neutrality. Sustainable aviation fuels—assuming large-scale availability—could be a key part of... Read more →


Gevo secures funding from Queensland Waste to Biofutures (W2B) Fund

Gevo, Inc. has been awarded part of The Queensland Waste to Biofutures (W2B) Fund to support the development of waste to biofutures projects in Queensland, Australia. The W2B fund provides targeted funding for pilot, demonstration or commercially scalable biorefinery projects in Queensland that use conventional waste streams or biomass to... Read more →


Researchers led by Prof. WANG Feng at the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have reported that photocatalytic decarboxylation is an efficient alternate pathway for converting biomass-derived fatty acids into alkanes under mild conditions of ambient temperature and pressure. This finding was published in... Read more →


By investing in R&D and performing fundamental studies of the different carrier systems and their properties, Topsoe has developed a new and more robust carrier system. This system forms the basis for the new TITAN series of steam reforming catalysts. The series, launched earlier this month at the Nitrogen+Syngas Conference... Read more →


US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced the Agriculture Innovation Agenda, a department-wide initiative to align resources, programs, and research to position American agriculture to better meet future global demands. Specifically, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) will stimulate innovation so that American agriculture can achieve the goal of increasing... Read more →


Researchers develop organic semiconductor photocatalyst with enhanced hydrogen evolution

Currently, most hydrogen evolution photocatalysts (HEPs) are made from single-component inorganic semiconductors. These can only absorb light at ultraviolet wavelengths—constituting less than 5% of the solar spectrum—which limits their efficiency. However, photocatalysts formed from a single organic semiconductor typically suffer from inefficient intrinsic charge generation, which leads to low photocatalytic... Read more →


The US Department of Energy (DOE) plans to provide up to $100 million over five years for research on artificial photosynthesis for the production of fuels from sunlight. (DE-FOA-0002254) The funding will support the establishment of one large or possibly two smaller DOE Energy Innovation Hubs: integrated multidisciplinary, multi-institutional research... Read more →


The US Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Co-Optima initiative is overseeing a Directed Funding Opportunity (DFO) to apply the unique, world-class capabilities of the consortium toward addressing specific challenges identified by applicants from industry and academia. The Co-Optimization of Fuels & Engines (Co-Optima) National Laboratory consortium is jointly sponsored by the... Read more →


A team of researchers from Canada and the US has developed a system that quickly and efficiently converts carbon dioxide into simple chemicals via CO2 electrolysis. The researchers combined a copper electrocatalyst with an ionomer [polymers that conduct ions and water] assembly that intersperses sulfonate-lined paths for the H2O with... Read more →


NextChem, an Italian renewable energy technology company, is partnering with Kansas-based Saola Energy to support the production of renewable diesel from vegetable oils and residual fats. NextChem and Saola Energy will combine their relative knowhow and expertise to deliver a comprehensive solution to the marketplace. NextChem will be the licensor... Read more →


Researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, collaborating with the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), have developed a mild and scalable synthesis route for a molybdenum carbide nanoparticle that can convert CO2 into fuel. The particles can be produced at an industrial scale at a... Read more →


Oberon Fuels, a producer of ultra-low-carbon, renewable dimethyl ether (rDME) transportation fuel, and SHV Energy, the world’s largest distributor of propane fuel, are partnering to accelerate the use of renewable DME to reduce the carbon footprint of transportation fuel. With only a 20% blend of rDME, propane’s carbon intensity (CI)... Read more →


Proposed CA LCFS pathways for corn starch ethanol with carbon capture and sequestration: as low as 37 gCO2e/MJ

North Dakota-based Red Trail Energy (RTE), which since 2007 has operated an ethanol production facility with annual production of about 60 million gallons per year, is proposing sequestration of CO2 produced from starch fermentation to lower the overall carbon intensity of the fuel for the California Low Carbon Fuel Standard... Read more →


With the common goal to further implement 5-HMF in various materials and chemical applications, AVA Biochem AG in Zug, Switzerland has entered into a Joint Development Agreement with the Michelin Group. AVA Biochem developed, patented and piloted a novel hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) process for the conversion of industrial sugars into... Read more →


Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) has received a five-year, $25-million contract from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide testing and analytical services related to vehicle emissions and fuel efficiency. SwRI will conduct emissions characterization and technology assessment under the “Testing and Analytical Services for Regulation of Motor Vehicles, Engines,... Read more →


UPS enters into RNG supply agreements with Kinetrex and TruStar; up to 80M gallon equivalents

UPS has entered into multi-year renewable natural gas (RNG) agreements with Kinetrex Energy and TruStar Energy. Together, these two contracts will supply UPS with up to 80 million gallon equivalents (GEs) of RNG over the terms of the agreements. The use of RNG is a very important part of UPS’... Read more →


Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists have identified a suite of technologies to help California to become carbon-neutral—and ultimately carbon-negative —by 2045. To achieve the goal of carbon-neutrality, California will likely have to remove on the order of 125 million tons per year of CO2 from the atmosphere. In the... Read more →


Building on its $2-million investment for an ongoing feasibility study with Northwest Advanced Bio-Fuels (NWABF), Delta has entered into one of the largest airline offtake agreements of its kind to purchase sustainable aviation fuel, if produced, from NWABF. The NWABF process uses the gasification of woody biomass to produce syngas... Read more →


ASTM International has approved and published a sixth pathway for the production of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The latest annex to the SAF specification, D7566, establishes criteria for the production and use of catalytic hydrothermolysis jet fuel (CHJ), a type of synthetic kerosene. Catalytic hydrothermolysis to jet fuel. Wang et... Read more →


Prometheus CEO outlines tech advances that could make CO2-to-fuels renewable gasoline and jet price-competitive with fossil fuels

In a commentary in the journal Joule, Rob McGinnis, founder and and CEO of Prometheus, a company that is developing technology to remove carbon dioxide from the air and turn it into fuels, discusses the technology advances that could lead to the potential price-competitiveness of renewable gasoline and jet with... Read more →


CARB moves forward with third-party verification for Low Carbon Fuel Standard

California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) has supported an innovative revolution in alternative fuels. Those fuels have replaced more than 2.5 billion gallons of petroleum fuel in the past 12 months, providing Californians with cleaner alternatives. The California Air Resources Board has released a list of CARB-certified, third-party verifiers who... Read more →


The results of a new analysis by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) show that, when combined with a trend toward higher methane leakage and combustion slip, there is no climate benefit from using liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel—regardless of the engine technology. LNG is becoming... Read more →


Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), with colleagues at Yale University, have developed a photochemical process to convert acetone derived from plants (bio-acetone) into a mixture of polycyclic alkanes, the high energy density of which is appropriate for high-perfomance aviation applications. A paper on the work appears in the... Read more →


A new study by University Maritime Advisory Services (UMAS) and Energy Transitions Commission (ETC) prepared for the Global Maritime Forum for the Getting to Zero Coalition, estimates that the cumulative investment needed between 2030 and 2050 to halve shipping’s CO2 emissions amounts to approximately $1-1.4 trillion—an average of $50 billion... Read more →


Neste, the world’s largest producer of renewable diesel and renewable jet fuel refined from waste and residues, will deliver renewable jet fuel (sustainable aviation fuel, SAF) to Zurich Airport during the World Economic Forum 2020 in Davos, Switzerland. This is the first time SAF is available in Switzerland. Neste MY... Read more →


In 1982 there were over 250 operating crude oil refineries in the United States; that number declined to 132 by 2019, according to data from the US Department of Energy (DOE). Meanwhile, the total distillation capacity of all refineries combined increased from a low of 14.4 million barrels per calendar... Read more →


USDA seeking input on new higher ethanol blend sales infrastructure incentive program

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) is seeking public input to help with the creation of the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP), a new program that will expand the availability of domestic ethanol and biodiesel by incentivizing the expansion of sales of renewable fuels. The USDA is exploring options... Read more →


MISC Berhad, Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI), Lloyd’s Register and MAN Energy Solutions will work together on a joint development project (JDP) for an ammonia-fueled tanker to support shipping’s drive towards a decarbonized future. The creation of the alliance has been motivated by the partners’ shared belief that the maritime industry... Read more →


Researchers at the University of Michigan, McGill University and McMaster University have developed a binary copper−iron catalyst for photoelectrochemical CO2 reduction toward methane. The work, presented in a paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), offers a unique, highly efficient, and inexpensive route for solar fuels synthesis.... Read more →


A Rutgers-led team has developed a new biomass pretreatment process that could make it much cheaper to produce biofuels such as ethanol from plant waste and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. The approach, featuring an ammonia-salt-based solvent that rapidly turns plant fibers into sugars needed to make ethanol, works well... Read more →


Researchers have created a plasmonic photocatalyst consisting of a Cu nanoparticle antenna with single-Ru atomic reactor sites on the nanoparticle surface that proves ideal for low-temperature, light-driven methane dry reforming—one pathway for the production of syngas. Researchers from Rice, UCLA and the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), describe the... Read more →


Shell Aviation, World Energy collaborate to increase supply of sustainable aviation fuel; SAF to Lufthansa at SFO

Shell Aviation and World Energy are collaborating to develop a scalable supply of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The agreement is intended to be a multi-year collaboration, with both companies acknowledging that the path to lower carbon emissions in aviation requires long-term commitment and collaboration. As part of the collaboration, Shell... Read more →


JetBlue to go carbon neutral on all domestic flights by offsetting emissions starting in 2020; flying with SAF from SFO

JetBlue will offset carbon dioxide emissions from jet fuel for all domestic JetBlue flights beginning in July 2020, making it the first major US airline to take this measurable step toward reducing its contribution to global warming. JetBlue also announced plans to start flying with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) in... Read more →


Researchers at the Université de Sherbrooke, Canada, with colleagues at the Université de Toulouse, France, have developed a process for the direct production of levulinates from cheap residual lignocellulosic biomass using an affordable homogeneous catalyst. A paper on their work is published in Fuel. In Canada, the lumbering industry produces... Read more →


Greenlane secures new US$6.3M biogas upgrading contract for landfill gas to RNG project in California

Canada-based Greenlane Biogas North America Ltd., a subsidiary of Greenlane Renewables Inc., has secured a new US$6.3-million biogas upgrading contract with a customer in California, whose name is being withheld at this time for confidentiality reasons. Engineering work will begin immediately on the California-based landfill project. Order fulfilment will begin... Read more →


Researchers at EPFL have patented a new concept that could cut trucks’ CO2 emissions by almost 90%. The EPFL system captures CO2 directly in the trucks’ exhaust system and liquefies it in a box on the vehicle’s roof. The liquid CO2 would then be delivered to a service station and... Read more →


Sweden launches inquiry on how to ban sales of new gasoline and diesel cars and phase-out fossil fuels

The Government of Sweden has launched a study to offer proposals on how to implement a ban on sales of new gasoline and diesel cars, and the timeline for the phase-out of fossil fuels. The final report is to be presented by 1 February 2021. Sven Hunhammar will chair the... Read more →


Trillium opening two California CNG stations fed by renewable natural gas in 2020

Trillium, one of the US’ leading providers of alternative fuels systems and renewable fuels, is adding two new public compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling stations to its network of California locations. The alternative and renewable fuel provider designed and built CNG stations at two Love’s Travel Stops located in Lost... Read more →


The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized a rule that establishes the required renewable volumes under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program for 2020, and the biomass-based diesel volume for 2021. The EPA is committed to ensuring a net of 15 billion gallons of conventional biofuel is blended in 2020.... Read more →