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Garbage to Gold: Putting Waste Conversion At the Center of the Clean Fuel Market

Garbage to Gold: Putting Waste Conversion At the Center of the Clean Fuel Market

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Published by johnribar
Waste-to-Energy

As Seen In

WasteAdvantage
The Advantage in the Waste Industry

Garbage to Gold: Putting Waste Conversion At the Center of the Clean Fuel Market
Wesley Bolsen
As the U.s. explores new technologies to transform our energy supply and reduce our dependence on foreign oil, one of the most exciting clean energy solutions has the potential to transform the waste handling industry as well. Cellulosic ethanol, a clean burning advanced biofuel, can be derived from a wide variety of renew
Waste-to-Energy

As Seen In

WasteAdvantage
The Advantage in the Waste Industry

Garbage to Gold: Putting Waste Conversion At the Center of the Clean Fuel Market
Wesley Bolsen
As the U.s. explores new technologies to transform our energy supply and reduce our dependence on foreign oil, one of the most exciting clean energy solutions has the potential to transform the waste handling industry as well. Cellulosic ethanol, a clean burning advanced biofuel, can be derived from a wide variety of renew

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Published by: johnribar on Dec 31, 2011
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10/27/2013

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Waste-to-Energy
Garbage to Gold: Putting Waste ConversionAt the Center of the Clean Fuel Market
Wesley Bolsen
 As the U.s. explores new technologies
to
 
transorm
 
our energy supply and reduce ourdependence on oreign oil, one o the most excitingclean energy solutions has the potential to transormthe waste handling industry as well.Cellulosic ethanol, a clean burning advanced biouel,can be derived rom a wide variety o renewable, non-ood sources, including municipal solid waste (MSW)and agriculture waste. While technologies that turnwaste into electrical power have been around ordecades, this new technology can turn trash into aproduct with a much higher value: uel-grade ethanol.Best o all, the technology is ready today.Advanced biouels have the ability to reduce ourdependence on oreign oil while creating economicgrowth in an environmentally sustainable way.Companies are already producing uel at semi-commercial volumes in plants across the country.The technology is “shovel” ready. However, in orderor these benefts to be realized, the industry needsenduring government policy to help motivate privateinvestment in commercial acilities.
An EnvironmentallyBenefcial Technology
Waste-to-uel technology is one o the mostenvironmentally benefcial technologies available todayto reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In act, by usingtrash to produce energy, we divert it rom traditionallandflls where it could otherwise emit 24 times its ownweight in CO
2
and methane during decomposition.Instead o having the Not-In-My-Backyard (NIMBY)principle or sighting a new landfll, communities willfght or the waste-to-uels biorefnery to be in theircounty, adding hundreds o millions in constructiondollars and long-term jobs to the community.
 AdvAnced biofuelshAve the Ability to reduce ourdependence onforeign oil
  wa mw  amaaa wa
.
22
 
WasteAdvantage Magazine November 2010
Coskata’s integrated bio-renery produces eedstock fexible ethanol in Madison, PA.
Images courtesy o Coskata.
 As Seen In
 
 
This technology has the potential not only toimprove our environment, but also to revitalizethe nation’s economic strength and energy security.Advanced biouels oer the ability to displace 30percent o oil imports over the next two decades withthe production o 90 billion gallons o American-made,renewable uels. They can also result in the creationo nearly one million new green jobs and billions o dollars in economic impact across the country.The widespread adoption o cellulosic ethanoltechnology can lead to enormous economic growthor the waste industry. In act, the advanced biouelsindustry has the potential to transorm the actual valueo waste as a commodity by turning it into a principaleedstock source. This kind o sustained growth cancreate thousands o jobs. No other renewable industrycan provide this level o domestic job growth.The undamental question is this: “Why wouldwe burn agricultural waste, or bury municipalwaste, when we can turn it into a clean burninguel?” Instead o sending our trash to a landfll orincinerator, it can become one o the primary resourcespowering America’s cars. With this new technology,we convert MSW into a product that can make aproound economic and social impact. Renewable ueltechnology is no longer something that will revitalizeonly rural America. By using a variety o biomass,including MSW, it makes clean burning uel availableoutside every one o our major cities.
Changing the Way o Thinking
The problem is that many states and municipalitiesstill classiy gasifcation o waste material asincineration. This is based on a undamentalmisunderstanding o the technology, which hasnothing to do with the dirty incinerators o thepast. Incineration involves burning solid waste inhighly oxygenated environments, and releasing largequantities o CO
2
and methane into the atmosphere.Gasifcation happens in the absence o oxygen—so instead o burning, the waste decomposes into asynthetic gas that we can then convert into uel,without releasing harmul emissions or byproducts.Modern synthesis gas conversion technologies are alsomore efcient than creating electrical power romwaste, taking advantage o more o the carbon inMSW during the conversion process.
Pending Legislation
Coskata encourages you to contact yourCongressman or Senator to tell them thatyou support legislation that will move forwardcommercial cellulosic biofuel facilities in America. H.R. 5142, the GREEN JOBS Act of2010, introduced by Representative AllysonSchwartz (PA) in the House of Representatives,and S. 3338, the Advanced Biofuel Investment Act of 2010, introduced by Senator Bill Nelson(FL) in the Senate, were introduced this year.These bills would allow cellulosic companiesto choose a refundable 30 percent InvestmentTax Credit (ITC) for cellulosic biofuels, spurringinvestment that will lead to facilities. Also, any future energy legislationintroduced in Congress must includemechanisms to enable advanced biofuels tocommercialize and allow the country to beginreducing our dependence on foreign oil whileproviding meaningful reductions in greenhousegas emissions and creating jobs.
 Additional Resources
• Coskata Inc.
: www.coskata.com
• Advanced Biofuels Association
:www.advancedbiofuelsassociation.com
• Biotechnology Industry Organization
:www.bio.org
Coskata engineers starting up the eedstock fexible process at the company’s integrated bio-renery.
 
WasteAdvantage Magazine November 2010
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