Fiberight: A Deep-Dive Into Trash To Find Cash

by Jim Lane. Biofuels Digest This week Fiberight secured $70 million for a municipal solid waste center that should be in operation by this May. The high-tech facility will convert 180,000 tons of trash each year from more than 100 Maine towns into biofuel at a 144,000-square-foot steel frame facility that began construction last July. We visually profile the technology and company in our Multi-Slide Guide here. The underlying facility is what’s known as a Dirty MRF, or materials recovery facility. That’s where the receiving happens and the sortation begins — and the process of recovering value back from the waste stream begins. The bottom line...

Global Resource Corporation: Needed Technology; Unanswered Questions About Management

On July 3, The Energy Blog told us about a process of turning old tires back into valuable oil and gasses.  Given the problems of Peak Oil and plastic waste which can mimic almost anything in the environment, I was intrigued, and I had the feeling that other watchers of the alternative energy space would be, too.  After a quick review to make sure that the technology was based on sound science (I believe it is, although that is no guarantee that it can be commercialized), and a search for information about their governance policies and a board list...
fishing gear waste-to-energy

List of Waste-to-Energy Stocks

Waste-to-energy stocks are publicly traded companies whose business involves using municipal or other waste as a feedstock to create fuel or electricity.  Organic matter and plastics in a waste stream can be converted to fuel and/or electricity chemically, by means of pyrolysis, biologically such as in anaerobic digestion, or by incineration.  Alternatively, energy from waste can be captured from natural processes, such as in the collection of methane gas from landfills. Attis Industries, Inc. (ATIS) Babcock & Wilcox Enterprises, Inc. (BW) Blue Sphere (BLSP) Capstone Microturbine (CPST) China Recycling Energy Corp. (CREG) Clearford Water Systems Inc. (CLI.V) Covanta Holding Corp. (CVA) Darling Ingredients (DAR) MagneGas Corporation (MNGA) Neste Oyj (NEF.F, NESTE.HE, NTOIF, NTOIY) N-Viro...
MagneGas treatment installation

Plasma Arcs For Pig Waste

This week MagneGas (MNGA:  NASDAQ) announced new work completed toward plans to enter the commercial pork sector with a proprietary manure processing and disposal solution.  Management held a meeting with the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to discuss MagneGas technology to treat agriculture waste and the state’s required environmental permit protocols.  MagneGas aims to sell to pig farmers equipment based on its innovations. The company wants to help pig farmers address environmental problems cause by manure accumulation with its proprietary waste sterilization process.  Handling pig waste using conventional methods can be costly, but failure to...

Another Look at the Algonquin Power Income Fund

Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA The Algonquin Power Income Fund (AGQNF.PK) has been one of my star performers in an excellent year.  Is it still a good investment at these prices?  Since I recommended the Algonquin Power Income Fund (AGQNF.PK/APF-UN.TO) in January as a renewable energy income stock for 2009, the company is up 69%, in addition to the C$0.02 monthly dividend, worth approximately another 8% through August on the US$1.82 purchase price, making it the second-best performing of my ten picks (after Cree, Inc (CREE).)  However, since the major basis for my recommendation at the time was the...
Diamond Green Diesel

Darling’s Renewable Diesel Diamond

In July 2013, Darling Ingredients (DAR:  NYSE) and its joint venture partner Valero Energy (VLO:  NYSE) commissioned the largest facility in North America to convert waste animal fats into renewable diesel.  The facility was strategic located adjacent to Valero’s petroleum refining installation in Norco, Louisiana. At the time the facility was capable of pumping out 12,000 barrels of renewable diesel per day that could be dropped directly into Valero’s distribution network and blended with fossil fuel.  Even at that production level the facility showed promise to deliver strong dividends back to its owners.  The partners named their venture Diamond Green Diesel and celebrated the unparalleled achievement. The two partners in Diamond Green...
zero waste-to-landfill

Covanta Accelerating Zero-Waste-to-Landfill

Last week Covanta (CVA:  NYSE) opened a new materials processing facility in Indianapolis, increasing waste handling capacity by 500%.   The waste handler has been in operation in the community for three decades, collecting and processing over 2,100 tons of solid waste every day to steam energy in a waste-to-energy incinerator.  Citizen Thermal Energy buys the steam to heat the buildings of its commercial customers. The new materials processing facility increases Covanta’s waste handling capacity.  The company is targeting manufacturers in the Indianapolis area that are still sending wastes to landfills.  Covanta wants to collect more waste as well as attract waste types unique to manufacturers that need...

Global Resource Corporation and Mobilestream Oil

This is the text of an email I received from a reader of my article on Global Resource Corporation (GBRC.PK).  He has reason to suspect that things are much worse than just the weak governance issues I uncovered. I have been posting on Investors Hub as a result of family members being stung for a substantial purchase of Mobilestream Oil (MSRM.pk), now being converted to Global Resource stock. A poster gave me the link to your interesting article about Global and your problems contact Jeff Andrews. I am trying to contact Mr...

Waste Management: Biogas with a Dividend

by Debra Fiakas CFA The biogas industry has attracted a number of new entrants.  Blue Sphere (BLSP:  OTCQB) described in the recent post “Turning Potato Peels to Power” and RDX Technologies (RDX: TO, described here) are both newcomers to the biogas power generation.  Both companies show much promise and will likely grow dramatically over the next few years.  Shareholders are counting on the stock prices to follow. Investors who are less interested in the big growth play and more interested in stability and current income are not left out.  There are larger, more...

Covanta Turns Ash Collector

Well into the early 1900s ash collectors plied the streets of America’s cities, picking up ash buckets left at curbs and stoops by households and businesses.  The ash collectors sold as much as possible for brick making and soil improvement.  The rest went to the handiest dumps. Since then large utilities have taken over the job of heating and lighting buildings.  Coal-fired power plants have become the largest producers of ash.  The American Coal Ash Association reports that 53 million metric tons of coal cash were generated in 2013, of which 23 million metric tons were re-used for cement and bricks.  The rest was stored...

MagneGas’ Industrial Plasma

by Debra Fiakas CFA Alternative chemicals developer MagneGas Corporation (MNGA:  Nasdaq) is posting another guard at the gate.  The company recently filed a patent application to protect new enhancements of its plasma arc technology and gasification system.  Plasma is any gas taken to a whole new phase through extremely high temperatures.  For perspective the sun is actually a very large ball of plasma.  Here on Earth MagneGas is using its proprietary system to gasify carbon-rich liquids such as municipal wastewater to produce hydrogen gas for industrial applications and vehicle fuel.  Many investors have probably heard about...

Turning Potato Peels To Power

by Debra Fiakas CFA The series on waste-to-energy continues with Blue Sphere, Inc. (BLSP:  OTC/QB), a relatively new entrant to the biogas power generation market.  Blue Sphere is focused on converting principally food waste to power using anaerobic digestion technology.  In May 2014, Blue Sphere started construction on a bio-digester and power generation facility near Charlotte, North Carolina, that will turn potato peelings and apple cores into 5.2 megawatts of power.  Duke Energy (DUK:  NYSE) has been lined up to buy the power when the plant goes operational sometime before the end of 2015. Management expects to...

Clean Energy Stocks Shopping List: Landfill Gas and Geothermal

Stocks seem expensive now, but that may not last.  Here are two Landfill Gas stocks and three Geothermal stocks I'm hoping to buy if the market falters. Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA This article continues my Clean Energy Stocks Shopping List series.  So far I've brought you: Five clean transport stocks, I looked at why it makes sense to wait for better prices, Five Energy Efficiency stocks (always my favorite sector), and Five Electric Transmission Stocks. This article takes a look at two of the most economical clean electricity generation technologies, landfill gas and geothermal. Kilowatts from...

Carbon Negative Impacts from Biomass Conversion

By Andrew Grant, Biomass Power Projects, LLC, Lee Enterprises Consulting Canada, New England, and California all have Carbon Credit programs to achieve GHG reduction goals. Several forms of biomass diversion from landfills, farms, and other biomass – dependent GHG sources are already in operation to support significant GHG reductions. Examples of GHG reductions are given, and the carbon impact of the different commercially available biomass to GHG reduction processes are described. The three groups of commercially guaranteed biomass conversion processes are: 1. Power Generation, Steam Generation, and CHP: from the combustion of biomass wastes. This industry, with about 100...

The Light On Blue Sphere’s Horizon

by Debra Fiakas CFA The stakes were high at the beginning of its fiscal year 2015, as Blue Sphere, Inc. (BLSP:  OTC/QB), a developer of waste-to-energy projects, was facing deadlines to fulfill its contractual commitments to the sellers of its two ‘front burner’ waste-to-energy projects in North Carolina and Rhode Island.  In the four intervening months it appears Blue Sphere has won all bets. Blue Sphere had purchased a biogas project from original owner Orbit Energy and had received an equipment financing commitment from Caterpillar.  Unfortunately, an equity financing source withdrew its interest as...

In the Middle(sex) of the Organics-to-Power Sector

by Debra Fiakas CFA A post in June featured Middlesex Water Company (MSEX: Nasdaq) as an unlikely player in the waste-to-energy game.  However, Middlesex has proven a capable project integrator, capitalizing on its collective knowledge of process engineering to launch a turnkey alternative energy service.  A successful waste-to-energy project in the Village of Ridgewood, New Jersey has placed Middlesex squarely in the middle of the organics-to-power sector.  Ridgewood taps its waste water for methane to power an electric generator.  The power is used at the Ridgewood Water Pollution Control Plant, making the plant self-sufficient for electricity. The...