International Sugar Journal

Brazil – Ethanol imports double in December 2018 [Registered]

Imports of ethanol to Brazil more than doubled to 172.36 million litres in December ‘18, compared with 83.57 million litres during the same month of 2017.

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Japanese consortium commences building demonstration cellulosic jet-fuel plant [Registered]

Last December, construction began on a demonstration plant producing jet fuel from wood biomass. This was supported by a Japanese consortium, led by Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, Ltd., with partners Chubu Electric Power Co (CEPCO), Toyo Engineering Corp. and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and support from the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO).

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Supercomputer use greatly advances molecular-level breakdown of lignocellulosic feedstock [Full subscriber]

Using supercomputers, a team from the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has made several fundamental discoveries related to the challenges associated with breaking down lignocellulosic feedstock prior to the production of cellulosic biofuels.

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Brazil – Technical and legal hurdles addressed by GranBio for its cellulosic ethanol plant [Full subscriber]

The first commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant built in Brazil with investment by GranBio in São Miguel dos Campos, Alagoas was briefly operational in 2014 but had to shut down a couple of months later as a result of a variety of operational problems. According to Valor Economico, process conversion technology problems were exacerbated by legal issues underpinning access to latest technology.

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USA – 2019 biofuels mandate increases quotas [Registered]

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ordered oil companies to blend more renewable fuel into gasoline and diesel next year — but it could be the last increase for years to come, as the government starts to make sweeping changes to the US biofuel mandate, reported Bloomberg and Reuters.

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Hemocyanins from gribbles effective in hydrolysing lignocellulosic feedstock [Registered]

An international team of researchers has discovered that gribbles (termites of the sea) that hemocyanin proteins, which transport oxygen through the bodies of invertebrates, play a major role in the crustacean’s ability to extract sugars from wood. This discovery is likely to support the production of cellulosic biofuels where breaking down the lignocellulosic feedstock is the key crucial step.

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Brazil – Millers bet on ethanol, investing in capacity expansion [Registered]

Brazilian sugar companies are increasing their capacity to produce ethanol in the face of depressed global sugar prices and government policies expected to boost demand for the biofuel, reported Reuters.

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Biowaste converted into biodiesel via hydrothermal liquefaction [Full subscriber]

Researchers from the universities Illinois’ (Prairie Research Institute) and Massachusetts (Lowell) report that they have succeeded in converting wet biowaste, such as swine manure and food scraps into biodiesel.

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Red-hued Yeasts hold clues to producing isobutanol [Registered]

Researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Centre (GLBRC) have identified a red pigment called pulcherrimin, naturally produced by several strains of wild yeasts, that may hold the key to engineering yeasts to produce isobutanol.

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Enerkem produces bio-DME from municipal waste [Registered]

Waste-to-biofuels and chemicals producer Enerkem has successfully produced bio-dimethyl ether (Bio-DME), a by-product of biomethanol, that could replace the use of diesel fuel in the transportation sector.

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