Michigan

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Bioenergy > United States > Michigan


Information about biofuels and bioenergy in the United States state of Michigan.

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  • 7 states fight California rule over ethanol carbon scores 19 March 2012 by Adam Belz for USA TODAY: "A California rule assigning higher carbon scores to fuel produced outside the state has drawn the ire of the ethanol industry and the Midwestern states that produce most of the ethanol in the U.S."
    • "At least seven states — Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota— are opposing California's effort to enforce the mandate, which critics say threatens the renewable fuels business in the nation's grain belt."
    • "In December, a federal judge blocked California's Air Resources Board from enforcing the regulation, which encourages refiners to blend gasoline with ethanol produced in Brazil or California. The California rule considers Midwestern ethanol to have a larger carbon footprint. The judge said the rule unconstitutionally interferes with interstate commerce. California officials are appealing the decision."
    • "The rule hinges on the concept of indirect land use change, Thorne said. The idea is that if farmers in the U.S. sell their grain for ethanol, farmers in other parts of the world must grow more corn for the food supply, pumping more carbon into the atmosphere, he said."
    • "Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning, who said the regulation threatens $1.3 billion in annual ethanol sales from his state alone, called the indirect land use change a 'highly controversial and undeveloped theory,' in a brief signed by attorneys general from five other states."[1]
  • Rethinking Life-Cycle Fuel Regulations, 20 August 2011 by Forbes: "In the most recent issue of Climatic Change, one of the resident geniuses that populate the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment, Dr. John DeCicco, argues that attempting to regulate fuels using a lifecycle analysis (LCA)-based approach—as is currently done by California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard and the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard—is an exercise in futility for purposes of gaging environmental effectiveness."
    • "Instead, in 'Biofuels and carbon management,' DeCicco proposes a method using annual basis carbon (ABC) accounting to track the stocks and flows of carbon and other relevant greenhouse gases (GHGs) throughout fuel supply chains."
    • "ABC accounting would avoid an automatic credit of biogenic carbon in biofuels, and minimize and accumulation of carbon debt due to indirect land-use change, he says."
    • "Upon reflection, policy is best defined using current-period accounting of carbon stocks and flows, ideally with direct, measurement-based, verifiable tallies of GHG emissions from the production and use of all fuels and feedstocks."[2]
  • New Study Assesses Wood For Biofuels, 17 May 2011 by DomesticFuel.com: "Today a new study evaluates the promise of wood waste biofuels by reviewing 12 technologies and 36 projects that convert wood to fuels including ethanol, butanol, diesel, gasoline, and jet fuel."
    • "According to Forisk Consulting and the Schiamberg Group, the authors of the 'Transportation Fuels from Wood: Investment and Market Implications of Current Projects and Technologies,' biofuels derived from wood waste will fail to substantively contribute to the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS2) either this year or through 2022."
    • "According to co-author Dr. Bruce Schiamberg of the Schiamberg Group, major technical hurdles will disrupt commercialization for the majority of the technologies."
    • "The study finds an on average 11 year gap between estimated commercialization and actual full-scale production."
    • "The report also looked at the impact of biofuel development on US timber markets and found that they would be minimal with the highest potential for wood waste coming from Alabama, California, Michigan, Mississippi, and Tennessee."[3]
  • Hoping for a Green Renewal, Mich. City Will Turn Sewage to Fuel, 2 November 2009 by the Washington Post: Flint, Michigan, "and local Kettering University have teamed up with a Swedish company to turn Flint's municipal sewage into fuel for its bus fleet while reducing or ending the need to incinerate sewage sludge."
    • "The company, Swedish Biogas International, received a $4 million grant from Michigan's Centers of Energy Excellence program to develop the biogas system, which officials hope will begin powering buses by next summer. Producing methane from sewage, landfills and manure is common in the United States, but the gas is more often burned onsite to produce electricity rather than compressed and purified for use by vehicles."
    • "In Sweden -- where high gasoline taxes forced investment in alternative fuels years ago -- buses, trains and 6 percent of private vehicles run on biogas made from sewage, restaurant and slaughterhouse waste, and other organic sources."
    • "Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf ceremonially broke ground on the biogas plant in Flint on Sept. 26."[4]

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