Tuesday, October 10, 2006

News of the morn

I was reading about Delek buying into the Dead Sea oil project that the Israelis have going on and of course did my usual search for clean energy projects.

It is nice reading some good news, especially from New Jersey. The one thing about growing up in that state is that when you travel to other states you hear nothing but other people making fun of it. In Maine people thought those from New Jersey were busy all of the time (never figured out why) while people from NYC would lament the lack of a busing system in South Jersey (um, it's mostly rural and not really that population dense but it is still growing).

The Price of Success: Inside the NJ Clean Energy Program
The rebates, which formerly covered up to 60 percent of an installed solar system, had been a great success. And as a result, there are now many applications sitting in a queue. Both the rebate levels and consumer demand have been very high. In an effort to temper the program and limit applications, rebates have been lowered 5 times in 15 months.

Also, to meet the strong solar goals of New Jersey's Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), the BPU made a large number of commitments to solar projects. However, those commitments exceeded the CEP budget through 2008, putting a 9-month halt on up to 200 projects.

And now onto what may be mankind's greatest achievement, beer power.

FuelCell Energy Helps Sierra Nevada Harness ‘Beer Power’ to Reduce its Energy Costs by 25 to 40 Percent
FuelCell Energy, Inc. (Nasdaq:FCEL), a leading manufacturer of ultra-clean electric power plants for commercial, industrial and government customers, today announced the upgrade of its 1 megawatt (MW) Direct Fuel Cell® (DFC®) power plant at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. to use fuel created from a waste by-product of the brewing process. With this enhancement, Sierra Nevada furthers its sustainability and energy efficiency goals, while realizing substantial cost savings by offsetting its purchase of natural gas.

The brewery’s fuel cell power plant, which began running last summer and was dedicated by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, initially ran on natural gas. To boost the brewery’s energy efficiency and ecologically friendly profile, Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman sought to convert the ultra-clean fuel cells from operating solely on natural gas to a gas mixture that the brewery produced as a by-product, methane.

Sierra Nevada installed a compressor and filtration system to purify methane gas that is generated during the brewery’s water treatment process, and then feed it to the power plant for fuel. As a result, two of the plant’s four fuel cell stacks can now operate in dual fuel mode -- using any combination of natural gas and anaerobic digester gas (ADG). As Sierra Nevada increases its production and the amount of methane it generates, it also can operate the other two fuel cells on ADG.

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