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Text Version   RSS   Subscribe   Unsubscribe   Archive   Media Kit          July 23, 2014

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New technique could help to lower cost of next-generation biofuels
Phys.Org
According to the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, world temperatures could rise to threatening levels within 30 years if fossil fuels continue to be incinerated at current rates. Alternative fuels can be derived from sustainable organic sources using intensive refinement methods, known as bioprocessing. To encourage this technology's proliferation, Swiss scientists have developed a method for streamlining biofuel production using chemical engineering to consolidate fundamental stages in the production chain.
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Feds splinter 'plastic wood' claims
ConsumerAffairs
"Plastic wood" is getting to be a popular product with suburban homeowners looking for cheap, long-lasting material to use in decks, benches, picnic tables and so forth. Even better, much of the plastic wood on the market claims to be made mostly — or even entirely — from recycled material. The only problem with this claim is that it often isn't true, the Federal Trade Commission charges.
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Need for bigger timber leads to scarcer pilings
The Associated Press via The Washington Times
A severe shortage of timber pilings, crucial for construction on the coast, is complicating life for homebuilders who are lamenting about longer and longer waits for supply, as demand for new houses and vacation properties surges. Not long ago, builders could get 12-inch-by-12-inch timber pilings in a matter of days. Now it can take months, and the problem will get worse before it gets better, industry observers say.
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Global biofuel output expansion to slow by 2023
Reuters
Global biofuel output should expand in the period to 2023, mostly boosted by increasing demand, higher crude oil prices and government policies, but the rise should be lower than in the past decade, the FAO and OECD said recently. The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in a joint report said they expected ethanol and biodiesel output to reach 158 billion liters and 40 billion liters respectively by 2023.
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Sustainability study: Wood and paper industries getting greener
Woodworking Network
The U.S. wood and paper industries are continuing to make strides to be better environmental stewards of the planet, according to the 2014 Sustainability Report just released by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA). The AF&PA said the 32-page report captures significant measurable progress that the wood products, pulp, paper and packaging industries are making toward achieving Better Practices Better Planet 2020 sustainable goals across the value chain.
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Proposed constitutional amendment in Ohio would benefit biomass
Biomass Magazine
A political action committee in Ohio is one step closer to getting a constitutional amendment on the state ballot that would provide funding for clean energy initiatives over a 10 year period. Biomass energy is among the sectors that would benefit from the program.
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Oilseed straw assessed as possible biofuel
Labmate Online
Researchers at the Institute of Food Research investigating the convertion of surplus annual straw stock from oilseed rape into biofuel, have been discovering insights into how the process could be made more efficient, as well as how the straw itself could be improved. For straw stock to be turned into a biofuel, a pre-treatment stage is necessary to enable enzymes to convert complex carbohydrates into a glucose form suitable for fermentation into ethanol.
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South Greensburg halts timbering project in park, will craft forestry plan
Tribune-Review
South Greensburg, Pennsylvania, had no forestry plan in place before loggers began cutting trees in the community park, according to a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. “They started timbering. When we became aware, we contacted the municipality, and they stopped,” Chris Novak said. “They're working with us to have the necessary plan, with a forester involved,” she said.
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Dutch architecture firm claims to have created the world's 1st 'bio façade'
Global Construction Review
A Dutch architecture firm claims to have created the world’s first “bio façade”. The small building is clad with panels made from hemp and bio resin. Studio Marco Vermeulen, who designed the new gas receiving station located at a food industrial park in New Prinsenland, The Netherlands, says the development of plant-based materials is important for the construction industry because oil-based materials will become scarce.
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E-Pellets acquires Georgia mill for wood pellet production
Biomass Magazine
E-Pellets Group LLC recently acquired the formally boarded up Louisiana Pacific OSB mill in Athens, Georgia, to convert it into a wood pellet production facility. The facility is expected to produce 450,000 metric tons annually by August 2015. The wood pellets will be exported to the E.U. to be used as an alternative to coal as fuel in power plants.
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Construction starts on world's largest post-combustion carbon capture project
IEEE Spectrum
Carbon capture and sequestration has made more headlines over the years for steps back than for steps forward. There have been a number of high profile projects that have been shelved or scaled down; American Electric Power, for example, cancelled big plans for a $668 million facility in West Virginia, and the flagship FutureGen plant has now taken the form of a much diminished retrofit in Meredosia, Illinois.
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