IRENA and ADFD Announce Funding for 6 Renewable Energy Projects in Developing Countries

by Zachary Shahan.

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) just announced funding for six renewable energy projects in six separate developing countries.
The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) have announced funding for six renewable energy projects in six developing countries.

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The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) just announced funding for six renewable energy projects in six separate developing countries. ADFD is providing about $41 million in loans for these projects, while the total combined project costs come to over $80 million.

“The remainder will come from other sources such as national contributions, banks, development partners or financial institutions,” an IRENA press release notes.

Here’s a quick summary of the projects in total:

  • “The projects selected will provide energy to over 300,000 people and numerous businesses.”
  • “In total, 35 megawatts (MW) of energy capacity will come online, along with 4 million litres of biodiesel production per year.”
  • “Projects funded in the first round of the facility were selected by ADFD from a shortlist recommended by IRENA, which evaluated the technical and commercial merit and the socio-economic benefits of the projects. Projects had to be transformative, replicable and innovative, improve energy access and address energy security.”

“Out of all those applications, 19 project applicants were asked to submit full project proposals, which 16 did. ADFD ultimately selected six projects for funding in the first cycle.”

A quick summary of the six projects is as follows:

IRENA CEO Adnan Z Amin noted in response to a question at the press conference that there’s actually a myth that there “aren’t enough bankable renewable energy projects” in the developing world. Actually, there’s a great number of them. Applications for 82 potential projects totaling over $800 million were submitted in this funding round, showing a lot of potential in this sector.

Mr. Amin also noted that Masdar* deserved recognition for leading the way in the MENA region and inspiring clean energy awareness, as well as the atmosphere for renewable energy to develop.

These first 6 projects are ready for immediate implementation (that was one of the criteria for successful applicants). Other requirements were that projects had to be chosen from all continents, from various renewable energy technologies, and of course had to be very well planned.

The next funding cycle starts this afternoon, and there are already 70 projects waiting to apply for funding in this round. In total, ”the UAE has committed the sum of USD 350 million, in concessional loans through the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), to finance renewable energy projects in developing countries.”

*Full disclosure: Masdar has covered my trip to Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, where this announcement was just made. Keep up to date with my covered from throughout the week on our Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week channel.

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This article, IRENA & ADFD Announce $41 Million For 6 Renewable Energy Projects In Developing Countries, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

Zachary Shahan is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy for the past four years or so. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he’s the Network Manager for their parent organization – Important Media – and he’s the Owner/Founder of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to ZacharyShahan.com and click on the relevant buttons.

With plastics made from waste CO2, who needs tar sands oil?

by Tina Casey.

The company NewLight Technologies first came across our radar last year, when it announced a system for making plastic (almost) out of thin air. Instead of using petroleum, the feedstock is the airborne carbon emitted by sewage treatment plants, landfills, power plants, and other industrial sites, so in addition to reducing the need for petroleum, the system also captures and recycles greenhouse gas emissions.

How’s that for a nice sustainability twofer? Now that NewLight Technologies is a star – just last month it made headlines in USAToday – let’s see what they’re up to now.

Plastic bowls (cropped) by mmaier.
Plastic bowls (cropped) by mmaier.

Carbon Capture For Plastic Products.

When we first met NewLight Technologies the company was using the name AirFlex for the plastic produced by its carbon capture system, which now goes by the name AirCarbon™.

According to NewLight, AirCarbon™ is the performance equivalent of a range of plastics that includes polypropylene, polyethylene, and polystyrene.

AirCarbon also lends itself to various manufacturing processes including extrusion, blown film, fiber spinning, and injection molding.

To top it off, AirCarbon plastic is biodegradable and recyclable, and to top that off, Newlight cites a third party verified cradle-to-grave analysis demonstrating that AirCarbon is a carbon-negative material:

AirCarbonTM is an independently-verified, cradle-to-grave (including all energy inputs, transportation, and end-of-life) carbon-negative material, quantifiably reducing the amount of carbon in the air in every ounce of AirCarbon we make.

Turning Greenhouse Gases Into Plastic.

The NewLight system took years of hard slogging to develop but the basics are relatively simple. Emissions are funneled into a  patented conversion reactor and carbon and oxygen are separated out, then reassembled into long chains of molecules called polymers, aka plastic.

If this starts ringing some bells, you might be thinking of our old friends over at LanzaTech. Back in 2010 the company announced a system for making plastic with waste gas from industrial sites and other sources, and just last fall it won a $4 million Department of Energy grant to scale up its system.

Both LanzaTech and NewLight have caught the eye of sustainability leader Virgin. LanzaTech has teamed with Virgin Atlantic to capture waste gas for jet fuel, and according to USA Today  NewLight expects to pair with Virgin Mobile for making cell phone cases.

Meanwhile, the Wisconsin institutional furniture products company KI, which has a soup-to-nuts sustainability focus of its own, will also be among the first US companies to incorporate AirCarbon into its products.

Keystone XL Who?

Getting back to that tar sands oil thing, not too long ago President Obama said that approval of the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline would be contingent on its benefit to the US.

As the approval process winds up to a climax, it would be helpful to keep in mind the contrast between a process that helps manufacturers and other US businesses monetize their waste while reducing harmful airborne pollutants, and a massive new piece of fossil fuel infrastructure that imposes new risks on existing communities while creating just a handful of permanent jobs.

Psst, wanna keep up with all the latest clean tech news from CleanTechnica? Subscribe to our newsletter.

This article, Who Needs Tar Sands Oil When We Have AirCarbon?, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

Tina CaseyTina Casey specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Tina’s articles are reposted frequently on Reuters, Scientific American, and many other sites. You can also follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.

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Waste-To-Energy Plant To Be Constructed In Nottinghamshire

by Nicholas Brown

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Artists impression of the Bilsthorpe plant.Image Credit: Waste2Tricity Website.

At the site of the old Bilsthorpe Colliery, a new(ish) idea will be put to use. That is a synthesis gas generator. This plant will collect waste from Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, and surrounding areas to convert it into synthesis gas (also called syngas) via plasma gasification. This gas will then undergo a purification process before using it to generate electricity for exportation into the internal electricity grid. This is an alternative to the more traditional waste-to-energy approach of rubbish incineration (setting fire to piles of rubbish).

This is one of multiple forms of waste-to-energy power plant technologies which have been on the rise.

This facility will process up to 97,000 tonnes of feedstock annually (feedstock is raw material to be fed into an industrial process), and it can generate 16.6 MW of energy. It can both directly accept feedstock or prepare it itself using the materials recycling facility.

This facility consists of the following key components:

  • Materials Reception, Storage and Handling Facilities.
    including Material Recycling Facility.
  • Oxygen Production Unit.
  • Plasma Gasification Plant.
  • Syngas Processing System.
  • Power Generation.

There is a renewable energy option for all countries, including cloudy countries such as Britain, and waste is one such option that is abundant in literally every country on Earth. Countries with cloudy weather can not only enjoy low-emissions power from such power plants, and energy security, but they can divert waste from landfills in the process.

Apart from that, this facility is intended to be fuel cell–ready, and accommodate a 1 MW bank of alkaline fuel cells for AFC Energy. These fuel cells will be powered by hydrogen produced from syngas. Efficiency above 55% is expected. This will be deployed by Waste2Tricity in the future.

Follow me on Twitter @Kompulsa.

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This article, Waste-To-Energy Plant To Be Constructed In Nottinghamshire, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

Nicholas Brown has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, geography, and much more. My website is: Kompulsa.

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The Power Of Rubbish: It’s Quite Good

by Nicholas Brown – Special to JBS News

Almost every time you eat, you dispose of rubbish consisting of either peels, fruit cores, crusts, ends, seeds, shells, etc. When you mow your lawn, you produce grass clippings. Wouldn’t it be nice to put all that to some use?

Using anaerobic digestion, these materials can be decomposed to produce useful substances, including (but not limited) to biogas, which contains methane, carbon dioxide, and other gases. Methane is a renewable, highly energy dense (55.5 MJ/kg, or 15.4 kWh/kg), and relatively clean fuel which can power various types of heaters and electricity generators.

BC Bioenergy Network, which works with organizations keen to pilot and demonstrate new technologies, has proudly announced that Harvest Power has officially switched on a plant which generates this biogas using grass clippings and kitchen waste from Metro Vancouver. It is called The Energy Garden. It is located in Richmond, BC, and is now North America’s largest anaerobic digestion plant.

The Energy
Soil and mulch loading ramp at The Energy Garden. Image Credit: Harvest Power.

Annually, it can convert up to 40,000 tonnes of apple cores, pizza crusts, and grass clippings into useful products, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 10,255 tonnes.

This plant generates enough electricity to power 900 homes per year, plus, it provides hundreds of thousands of tonnes of soil for farms and gardens. To put the cherry on top, it burns the methane that would otherwise have been released into the atmosphere if the garbage went to landfills. Methane’s greenhouse effect is 20 times greater than that of carbon dioxide!

Could a power plant be any more resourceful than that? Maybe, but this is hard to beat.

The Energy Garden was recently added to KMPG’s list of 100 leading global industrial projects.

About the Author

Nicholas Brown has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, geography, and much more. My website is: Kompulsa.