energi terbarukan: $an9 3+an01 … 020810 (dan ANGIN)

Europe Lagging U.S. and China in Developing Biofuels, Novozymes CEO Says
By Alex Morales – Jul 29, 2010
Europe is lagging the U.S., China and Brazil in developing biofuels for transportation because of a lack of political direction, Novozymes A/S Chief Executive Officer Steen Riisgaard said.

Brazil aims to displace 10 percent of global gasoline use with ethanol by 2020; China is testing corn-based ethanol in nine provinces; and the U.S. has set fuel standards requiring ethanol use, said Riisgaard, whose companies is the world’s biggest maker of enzymes used to refine biofuels.

“Brazil knows what it wants to do,” Riisgaard said in an interview at Bloomberg’s office in London. “In the United States, similarly, they have a renewable fuels standard — they know what they want to do. You go to China: the government knows what it wants to do. They have a plan. You come to Europe and there’s not this kind of political direction. We don’t know what we want to do.”

Novozymes estimates ethanol from crops, agricultural waste and grasses can cut greenhouse gas emissions by 90 percent relative to gasoline. The Bagsvaerd, Denmark-based company draws 17 percent of its revenue from selling enzymes used to speed up the reactions in producing biofuels.

Novozymes is working with more than 30 companies around the world including Poet LLC, the largest U.S. ethanol producer, Dedini S/A Indústrias de Base, a Brazilian maker of biofuels equipment, Cofco Ltd., China’s largest grain trader and China Petrochemical Corp., known as Sinopec, which is the nation’s second-largest oil producer.

Debate in Europe

The 27-nation European Union has set itself a target of deriving 10 percent of its transportation fuel from biofuels by 2020. The push for the fuels is clouded by a debate over whether biofuel production is competing with farmland used for food crops, “which is not relevant when you talk about residues from agriculture” that will be used to make the next generation of biofuels, Riisgaard said.

So-called second-generation biofuels, which come from grasses and crop waste rather than the crops themselves, can be competitive with current ethanol and gasoline within five years without government subsidy, Riisgaard said. With support, the new fuels will be competitive next year, he said.

Poet, based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, plans to open a new plant next year using enzymes developed by Novozymes to make biofuels, he said.

“They say that in that facility they will be able to produce at less than $2 per gallon,” Riisgaard said. “The corn-based fuel ethanol today is roughly $1.80, so it’s not quite there, but under the U.S. subsidy regime, which is more favourable for cellulosic, it is certainly a competitive price.”

Pickens, Home Depot Beat Wind-Turbine Makers in Energy Measure
By Jim Efstathiou Jr. – Jul 28, 2010
T. Boone Pickens, the billionaire energy hedge-fund manager, and Home Depot Inc., the largest U.S. home-improvement retailer, are winners in energy legislation that fails to help solar-panel and wind-turbine makers.

The measure proposed yesterday by Senate Democrats would give Pickens victory in his lobbying campaign for more use of natural gas, providing $3.8 billion in rebates for cars and trucks powered by the fuel. Home Depot would benefit from provisions to channel $5 billion in rebates to homeowners who upgrade to more efficient appliances or add insulation that reduces energy use.

The provisions were the main survivors among proposals to reshape U.S. energy use under the measure that would also set tougher rules for offshore drilling after BP Plc’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the worst in U.S. history. Absent from the measure were limits on carbon dioxide or requirements that utilities add solar and wind power to their portfolios.

“Boone’s been in the natural-gas business all his life,” Monty Humble, former senior vice president for Mesa Power LLP, a company founded by Pickens in 2007 to build wind farms, said in an interview. “As early as 1988, he advocated the use of natural gas in vehicles. This is consistent with what he was advocating.”

Pickens couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. In April, Humble joined Alston & Bird LLP’s legislative and public policy group in Washington.

Awash in Gas

The U.S. is “awash” in natural gas, thanks to new drilling techniques that make gas locked in shale formations cheaper to recover, Pickens told the House Ways and Means Committee on April 14.

“We are going to look like fools if we don’t use natural gas for transportation,” Pickens told the panel. “The only way we can solve the OPEC oil threat is by replacing their expensive, dirty fuel with cleaner, cheaper American natural gas.”

In October 2009, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat who drafted the Senate oil-spill response bill, called Pickens “a good friend and a real visionary.”

The Senate bill would offer rebates to people who buy gas- powered cars or trucks or convert conventional vehicles to gas. It also would give grants of as much as $50,000 to companies that put natural gas refueling stations into service between 2011 and 2015.

A House version of the bill doesn’t include the natural gas or energy efficiency provisions. Both measures could be brought to the floor as soon as this week.

Rebates for Insulation

The Senate bill would offer rebates of as much as $8,000 to homeowners who retrofit with energy-efficient insulation, windows and heating and cooling equipment. The Home Star program to cut energy use from appliances and air conditioners would create as many as 168,000 jobs over the next two years, according to the Alliance to Save Energy, a Washington-based group the promotes energy efficiency.

“While we are disappointed at the limited scope of the overall bill introduced today, Home Star is a creative solution to the energy and economic problems facing our country,” alliance president Kateri Callahan said in a statement.

The Home Star program would extend federal tax credits from last year’s stimulus bill that expire at the end of 2010, according to Stephen Holmes, a spokesman for Atlanta-based Home Depot.

Popular at Home Depot

“The previous incentive programs have been extremely popular with our customers,” Holmes said in an interview. “Homeowners get cost savings on energy bills, tax rebates and environmental benefits, and it would create more jobs for contractors.”

Pleas from environmental groups and renewable energy manufacturers that the Senate bill include limits on emissions that contribute to global warming or a renewable energy requirement for utilities were rejected after Reid said there weren’t enough votes for the climate provisions.

“The U.S. wind industry is in distress,” Denise Bode, chief executive officer of the Washington-based American Wind Energy Association, said in a statement. A renewable standard “is a critical component to ensure the U.S. wind industry thrives.”

U.S. wind-power additions in the first six months of 2010 fell 70 percent from a year earlier, according to Bode. Developers added 1,239 megawatts in the first half, down from 4,000 megawatts in the same period of 2009.


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