Monday, July 14, 2008

Paper and Pulp Mills Poised to Produce Biofuels

No other industry is so well suited to produce fuels from waste wood cellulose than the paper/pulp industry. By converting pulp by-products from waste to precious fuel, pulp mills can do a big favour to themselves, the environment, and the energy consuming public.
The pulp and paper industry has the scale to produce more than 9 billion gallons per year of biofuels, or as much as 20,000 MW of biomass power - as much as 16 Quads of cumulative fossil energy savings – realize net CO2 emissions reductions of more than 100 million tons annually, in the process generating financial returns, relative to continued investment in existing technology, with internal rates of return between 15-40% depending of fuel prices and incentives, according to a presentation given by Navigant Consulting’s Ryan Katofsky at the “Florida Farm to Fuel Summit,” which took place in St. Petersburg July last year.

...Gasifying rather than incinerating black liquor in soda furnaces – as is common practice - results in the production of a number of by-products, including synthesis gas. The bio-syngas can then be turned into a range of liquid fuels, such as methanol, dimethyl ester (DME), Fischer-Tropsch synthetic diesel and hydrogen gas. _Source
Pulp mills could easily become energy self-sufficient by using the waste process heat of paper manufacture, and eventually supply energy to the outside in the form of electricity or fuels.

The more productive uses that can be found for solid waste, waste sludge, waste exhaust gases, waste heat, and waste water, the cleaner the environment will become--land, air, and water.

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