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December 08, 2006

Comments

brian hans

another benefit that was not mentioned in the article is that perennial grass farming necessarily reduces ATM CO2.
why? because C4 perennial grasses have a fiberous root system that sluffs off carbon into the soil. so even tho the feedstock that is processed into fuel is carbon neutral, y/y there is more carbon in the soil under these grasses. which means that errosion is not only eliminated but soil structure and fertility is increased.
trees and traditional ag farming both reduce soil carbon. in essence, biomass from trees and/or ag is NOT carbon neutral. only grass farming (that im aware of) is carbon negative.

tho the problem with grasses is that the processing the grass into energy has been inefficient in the past. cellulosic ethanol will help that but this still isnt our savior. a better conversion technique needs to be developed before grass farming can really take off.

D's Eco Friendly Gifts

Carbon neutral has recently become a hip new phrase. Industries are one of the largest producers of carbon dioxide so hearing about a company that will use carbon neutral oil is great news for global warming. There are now even companies that can neutralize the carbon used for example when travelling. All of this is progress that our environment desperately needs.

Paul Dietz

Note how much better this grows in the tropics. If biomass energy really takes off (that is, really is economically competitive), then I expect the tropical areas will be the low cost producers. Indeed, if the US is concerned about volatility in the face of supply disruptions then reducing oil demand in the tropics is nearly as good as reducing it at home.

Shame about all the tropical rain forests that may get cut down, though.

Cyrus

Because plants' respiration rates increase dramatically with temperature, the ideal climate for net photosynthesis gets a lot of light, has a stable moderate temperature, and sufficient water. Tropical highlands are the ideal. For many crops, the tropical lowlands are outperformed by the maritime subtropics.

Michael Cain

It is worth noting that, absent one silly US law, many of these odd contenders for producing biomass would already be out of the running. Industrial hemp requires minimal fertilizer and no pesticides or herbicides. Total biomass production is about 27 tons/acre in temperate climates, of which 3 tons or so will be high-quality fiber (usable for cloth, paper, rope/twine) and another ton of which will be high-quality seed (press it for oil, use the residue as animal feed). Annual cellulose yield per acre is higher than anything else you can grow. Although if you're going the pyrolysis route you probably don't care about cellulose vs other biomass as much.

In a high-cost energy future, especially transportation energy, it seems to me that it makes a lot more sense to grow a crop where 20% of the biomass meets other needs and 80% can be used for energy.

Demesure

I don't understand why they don't burn directly the reeds in the electricity plant instead of using the intermediary stage of producing oil by pyrolysis. Each added stage would mean a decrease in yield. Besides, a more complex process means more cost and maintenance.

BTW: strange that there are environmental groups to oppose this kind of project. I wonder what they really want ???

Michael Cain

I don't understand why they don't burn directly the reeds in the electricity plant instead of using the intermediary stage of producing oil by pyrolysis.

There is one group that says, "We don't have an energy problem, we have a liquid transportation fuel problem." They believe that there is plenty of energy in aggregate, and that we can use it to manufacture gasoline and diesel so people don't have to replace their cars.

There is another group that says "We have an energy problem." Given the relative end-to-end efficiency of electricity in cars vs ICEs, these people would favor burning stuff to directly produce electricity. While there are many details, the comparison between electricity and ICEs favors electricity by about 2:1 and is dominated by the thermal efficiency of electricity generation at 40% in today's plants versus 20% in ICEs. But an "electric car" solution clearly requires that everyone replace their car.

The first group says, "You don't have adequate affordable storage technology." The second group says, "You haven't shown that your processes are net-energy producers and scale to truly large sizes." Myself, I simply believe that we have a total available energy problem (at least through the next 10-50 years) and cannot afford to disregard the 2:1 advantage.

Paul Dietz

I don't understand why they don't burn directly the reeds in the electricity plant instead of using the intermediary stage of producing oil by pyrolysis.

Biomass ash is fairly alkaline stuff (lots of potash), so corrosion may be a problem. I know this is an issue with the slag in biomass gasifiers. Granted, 'bio-oil' is not all that friendly itself; you aren't going to be able to easily use it as fuel for vehicles.

Transportation cost is also an issue with biomass. They may be planning to pyrolyze close to the points of production and transport the liquids to a central generating facility.

Paul Dietz

Wait, I see they are planning to use a gas turbine. Pyrolysis is a substitute for gasification, not for direct combustion. Of course you can't just feed raw biomass into a combustion turbine.

pelinoc

"I don't understand why they don't burn directly the reeds in the electricity plant instead of using the intermediary stage of producing oil by pyrolysis."

All plant matter contains lots of moisture, which makes a burn very inefficient. Extracting the oil from the plant matter means you take the moisture out. You end up with much less volume and mass to transport, as already pointed out in a previous post, and you have a material which will burn hotter and more efficiently.

Bear

If we are to use grasses as bio-fuels then we need to use the best .Arundo is the very best all around .I ask that you visit our site and see why Arundo is the king of grasses for bio-fuels and beyond.
You only plant it one in our life times .
We can get two cuttings a year in USA southren states at 20 plus tons an acre TWICE A YEAR!
Once cut and made into pellets it can make many items
It makes the cleanest paper it needs no chemicals to bleach it for whiteness
Leafs alone can be used for cattle and deer feed !
You can produce bio plastics as well
Dry wall can be made from it have you priced drywall today ?
As a co-fire product when charred into a cake becomes the cleanest buring fuel at ovar 8000 kelvin
www.IPEnergy.net

Barry Ayres

If we are to use grasses as bio-fuels then we need to use the best .Arundo is the very best all around .I ask that you visit our site and see why Arundo is the king of grasses for bio-fuels and beyond.
You only plant it one in our life times .
We can get two cuttings a year in USA southren states at 20 plus tons an acre TWICE A YEAR!
Once cut and made into pellets it can make many items
It makes the cleanest paper it needs no chemicals to bleach it for whiteness
Leafs alone can be used for cattle and deer feed !
You can produce bio plastics as well
Dry wall can be made from it have you priced drywall today ?
As a co-fire product when charred into a cake becomes the cleanest buring fuel at ovar 8000 kelvin
www.IPEnergy.net

Omar Villegas

Please help me. Does anybody know how much energy can be obtained from 1 metric ton of Arundo Donax?. By means of fuel oil - fast pyrolysis.
Thanks for your help!

Leonard E Wheeler  MPA REM

this plant according to peer reviewed science is used to remove heavy metals from toxic water. That heavy metal is contained in this plant and will be an issue in the ash and the pyrolysis process

Joe Cain

Where in Florida is this being grown,and by whom exactly? Has anyone contact information for BIG?

Joy Towles Ezell

Biomass Investment Group, Inc.
200 Ridgefield Court, Suite 211
Asheville, NC 28806
828-665-8352 (O)
828-665-8353 (F)
http://www.egrassamericas.com/index.html

Joy Towles Ezell

Biomass Investment Group, Inc.
200 Ridgefield Court, Suite 211
Asheville, NC 28806
828-665-8352 (O)
828-665-8353 (F)
http://www.egrassamericas.com/index.html

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Anyone who wants to grow healthy plants should know that location is one of the most important factors that governs successful growth of plants. Most people buy a plant, go out into the garden, dig a hole somewhere, and place the plant in the soil: and when the plant fails to grow, they blame the nursery or soil. Site selection is vital if you want your plants to grow and thrive. Choosing the best site can save a lot of frustration and headaches.

Single Father

very interesting information, you have excellent sources!!!
Charles

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hello friend this information about Arundo donax for electricity, I think that another benefit that was not mentioned in the article is that perennial grass farming necessarily reduces ATM CO2.
why? because C4 perennial grasses have a fiberous root system that sluffs off carbon into the soil. so even tho the feedstock that is processed into fuel is carbon neutral, y/y there is more carbon in the soil under these grasses. which means that errosion is not only eliminated but soil structure and fertility is increased.

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I don't understand why they don't burn directly the reeds in the electricity plant instead of using the intermediary stage of producing oil by pyrolysis.

Maria Cavallo

That was a great idea for they made a new machine that will convert an energy. And it seems that we also need a lot of plants for the disposal waste of the machine and the plants are very useful in that situation. Is there any idea that would be share. By the way, this was a great information and thanks for this.

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That would be a good idea since we could consume lots of energy.

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Found another great article on this blog not that long ago so I am not surprised that I found another great one.

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