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Issue 101 – May 2018

Welcome members and friends

The Productivity Commission has produced its draft report on a low emissions economy. It belives that that we can achieve zero net GHG emissions by 2050 which is the target we want to see. The Commission report focuses on high level policies and institutional structures which will be necessary  if we are to achieve the goal. However the report only touches very lightly on the actual emission reduction opportunities that we have available so we now need to move discussion to focus on these. We don't need a lot of research for many of the opportunities around utilisation of wood and waste. This sector has proven technologies and opportunities which could be achieved immediately.  We now need a focus on the mechanisms and assistance needed to address market barriers and thus speed up the natural investment in these opportunities.

The Commission report has also got a number of things wrong and we need to give them evidence of what actually is the case. The Commission needs to hear from practitioners. Those who made submissions previously are often quoted in the draft report.

Utilising residual waste rather than landfilling or allowing liquid waste to produce methane - a GHG gas,  is a "no brainer" as shown in our suite of webinars and reports currently being offered. Utilising wood residues to offset coal use is economic for many applications. In both areas however there are feedstock supply perception barriers which need to be addressed. We need a collective response as we cant address these alone.

So that we don't miss the 2050 target we need to encourage greater attention of what can be achieved now. The invitation to provide a submission to the Productivity Commission report is one that I would encourage each of you to do. If you are not engaged then you cant complain.

Brian Cox
Executive Officer

Bioenergy NZ, Australia & the Pacific

Productivity Commission - Low emissions economy
The Productivity Commission has released its draft report - Low emissions economy
Submissions on the draft report are due 8 June with the final report due out in August.

The report is summarised in this document

The report says that zero net emissions by 2050 is achievable but focuses on high level policies and doesn't put  much emphasis on what "low hanging fruit"can be achieved in the short term.

The report outlines the GHG emission reduction opportunities from using waste to produce energy instead of disposing of it to landfill, but fails to understand the opportunities for replacing coal with wood fuel in process energy. The Bioenergy Association will address this in its submission.

All members of the Association are encouraged to make individual submissions so that biomass energy gets recognised in the final report as an opportunity worth Government putting effort into. Those members who submitted on the initial issues pages were listened to and are often quoted in the draft. If you are serious about the bioenergy sector you should be making a submission.

New Zealand's first report on climate finance
The Minister of climate Change Issues, James Shaw has launched New Zealand's first report on climate finance, which aims to shift investment away from the traditional carbon economy and into green alternatives, and would represent a turning point in the way business assesses climate change risk.

New Zealand had typically looked at climate change spending as a sunk cost, he said. "If you stop thinking of it as a cost and start thinking of it as an investment, then inherent in that is a notion of a return." While the ban on offshore exploration was about the end of an era, Shaw said the report was about what came next.

The report outlines the state of climate finance in New Zealand and makes 10 key recommendations. These include tougher disclosure and reporting rules for climate-related financial liabilities. It would effectively embed the disclosure of climate risk into directors' responsibilities.

The recommendation for a green investment fund had already been adopted, with $100 million having been set aside as part of the coalition agreement. Treasury was currently working on a framework for the fund, which it was hoped would incentivise co-investment with the private sector in green initiatives.

Read more here

Ministers welcome another climate change breakthrough at International Maritime Organisation

Climate Change Minister James Shaw and Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter have welcomed the adoption of a maritime greenhouse gas emissions reduction strategy at the United Nations International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

At its recent meeting the IMO agreed a strategy to reduce international shipping emissions by 50 per cent by 2050, compared to 2008 levels, and urgently phase out emissions from shipping this century.

“This is another important breakthrough in the global effort to preserve a safe and stable climate for future generations,” said Mr Shaw.

“There is now clear agreement that international shipping must urgently act to reduce emissions.

NZ Zero Carbon Act
The NZ Government will start public consultation next month to lay the groundwork for a Zero Carbon Act and establish an independent climate change commission. The aim is for a Zero Carbon Bill to be introduced by October, with a target for net zero emissions for the economy by 2050.

Climate Change Position Statement and 2020 Action Plan
Westpac last month published a Climate Change Impact Report which modelled two scenarios for moving to a lower carbon economy.

 Azwood celebrates 40 years of supplying fuel to industry
This year also marks 10 years of wood pellet production for Azwood Energy.

Coverage of the webinar on using food processing to reduce GHG and operating costs
There was a large attendance at the webinar on the 18 April by Alzbeta Bouskova where she outlined the opportunities for utilising food processing and other industrial organic waste to produce biogas and fertiliser instead of disposal. It was covered in media stories.
Read the report
Media coverage

Biogas production potential from municipal wastewater treatment facilities
Report of an investigation for Bioenergy Association of the waste-to-energy opportunities within New Zealand by Calibre, April 2018.
This report describes in detail an innovative solution to successfully:

  1. Apply sustainable organic waste management practices and derive wastewater treatment cost savings in the process,
  2. Produce renewable (non-fossil) fuel (biogas) for heat and power generation,
  3. Attract new "zero carbon" manufacturing business activity and new jobs into NZ regions,
  4. Assist local businesses to meet their environmental compliance at lowest possible costs,
  5. Create new "zero carbon" business (employment) opportunities for new regional economic growth
  6. Produce in the process tradeable carbon certificates (greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction),
  7. Collect new revenue streams for local authorities which partially offset current asset operating costs,
  8. Increase waste water treatment plant energy efficiencies (energy cost are a major operating costs)
  9. Reduce waste water treatment plant biosolids (sludge) dewatering costs (another major operating cost)
  10. Reduce wastewater biosolids (sludge) disposal costs (another major operating cost)
  11. Improve the stabilisation grade and value of treatment plant sludge to allow unrestricted beneficial re-use.

Using existing urban and regional wastewater treatment assets for the solution at four fold improved efficiency and without additional major capital spend is a main advantage over more conventional approaches for organic waste treatment by anaerobic digestion.

Read the report 
Note that this report will be discussed at the webinar on 2 May - see events below for details.

BANZ media statements

Ministers have gone deaf

The Productivity Commission might be talking about big things from the energy sector, but the Government doesn't seem to want to know... 

More here

Liz Yeaman departing EECA after 20 years
After more than 20 years at EECA, Liz Yeaman has decided to make a change and is moving on to her next career challenge. Liz has made a significant contribution to transport and biofuels over the years. We wish her well in her next endeavours.

Australia pushes for 10% biofuel increase that could earn it billions of dollars.
"It is clear that biofuels industries can grow economies, particularly in regional and rural areas where there is an abundance of agriculture residue that can be transformed into high-value bio-products.”

Australia has joined the US in its recognition of the economic benefits of bio-based industry, after the Antipodean country claimed that increasing biofuel use there by 10% could create a spike in employment of more than 8,600 and bring billions of dollars of revenue and investment.

NZ ETS reviews.
The Ministry for the Environment (MfE) has released two reports on the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS) market, as well as some new information on the scheme and on NZ’s emissions.

- Provision of information to the NZ ETSanalyses the current information provision in the NZ ETS and offers recommendations on what, how and when information needs to be provided to the market to improve its efficiency.
- Market Governance of the Emissions Trading Scheme: Options and Analysis – explores options for market oversight of the NZ ETS. It addresses whether there is a need for regulation of the market in a similar way to regulation of financial markets, to address potential or actual problems.

The reports provide recommendations on the improvement of information to the market so that it is easier for participants to be involved. The reports will be considered by MfE was it reviews the operation of the ETS.

Forthcoming Events

WEBINAR: Opportunities for utilising municipal organic waste to reduce energy costs
2pm (NZ time), 12noon (AEST) - Wednesday 2 May 2018 - Jurgen Thiele, Calibre

Please note that this webinar date has changed from 4 April to 2 May
With minor modification municipal waste water treatment facilities can reduce waste to landfill and greenhouse gas emissions.

WEBINAR:  Opportunities for replacing coal with wood fuel for process heating
Processing heating in New Zealand could be 100% from renewable energy instead of coal.  A large part of that substitution could be from use of wood fuel.

2pm (NZ time), 12noon (AEST) - Thursday 24 May 2018 - John Gifford, Gifford Consulting

WEBINAR:  Availability of fuel to meet the demand for the growing wood energy market
1pm (NZ time), Tuesday 9 June 2018 - four BANZ Accredited Wood Fuel Suppliers

Why future wood fuel supply can meet demand.  As the demand for wood fuel grows the supply market is also growing.  The suppliers of wood fuel are increasing their capability to meet customer's demand for wood fuel by sourcing biomass from a number of woodlots, forest harvest operations and end-of-life shelter belts.

CONFERENCE: Transitioning from coal to wood fuel in Otago.. the opportunities and challenges
Wednesday 30 May 2018 - Dunedin

If you are interested in how growth of the use of wood fuel can assist your business this event is for you.  Come and hear about the supply of wood fuel from Accredited Suppliers and talk to leading wood energy experts 'face to face'.  Share the knowledge and experience of successful heat plant owners who have already made the transition.  Get an update on the plant now available and showcase its applications.

Biofuels Strong - Sydney event
6pm to 8pm (AEST), Wednesday 2 May 2018, Australia

Bioenergy Australia is delighted to invite you to 'Biofuels Strong' at the Parliament House of NSW on 2 May for martinis and canapés to promote the recently produced QUT report "Biofuels to bioproducts - a growth industry for Australia".

WEBINAR: Decision Support system for biorefinery transformation strategies
Thursday 10 May 2018

On 10 May Bioenergy Australia will host a webinar on "Decision Support System for Biorefinery Transformation Strategies: I-BIOREF Software Platform".
Read more and register here

WEBINAR: Greening the gas grid: An international perspective and opportunities for Australia
Tuesday 22 May 2018

On 22 May Bioenergy Australia will host a webinar lead by Bernadette McCabe on "Greening the gas grid: An international perspective and opportunities for Australia".
CONFERENCE: Bioenergy Australia 2018 Conference
17 & 18 October, Australia

Bioenergy Australia are excited to reveal details of the Bioenergy Australia 2018 Conference.  "Bioenergy Strong 2018 - Driving Commercial Outcomes"  to be held on 17 & 18 October at the State Library of Brisbane.  A welcome reception on the evening of 16 October has been organised at the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art.

WEBINAR: Biofuels for the marine sector - new opportunities and challenges
8 May 2018,  4pm (Central European Summer Time)

IEA Bioenergy invites you to participate in an international webinar entitled "Biofuels for the marine sector: New opportunities and new challenges" presented by Claus Felby.
The webinar will be held on Tuesday 8 May 2018 at 4pm Central European Summer Time, 10am Eastern Daylight Time, 2pm Greenwich Mean Time.

6 - 9 May 2018, Tahuna Conference Centre, Nelson, New Zealand

The 2018 NZFFA Conference "Nelson - Autumn Splendour" will be based at the Tahuna Function Centre in Nelson, from Sunday 6 May to Wednesday 9 May.  

Putzmeister exhibits at the IFAT Trade Fair
14-18 May 2018, Munich,  Germany

Beasley's are proud to represent Putzmeister Solids Pumps in the Australasian region and will have a representative on the stand for the first three days.
IFAT is a Trade Fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management, and is a place where visitors can find strategies and solutions for using resources in intelligent cycles in a manner than ensures their long-term preservation.

Australia - New Zealand Biochar Conference 2018
14-16 August 2018, Queensland, Australia

The aims and objectives of ANZBC18 are to focus on "investable deals" in biochar and "building viable biochar industries" by bringing together stakeholders to achieve real outcomes.

More here


International Bioenergy News

Biofuels and bio-based products becoming very important to the US economy
A report from the US Department of Agriculture shows how the biobased economy is playing an increasingly important role in the American economy. Through innovations in renewable energies and the emergence of a new generation of biobased products, the sectors that drive the biobased economy are providing job creation and economic growth.

There is a wealth of information on the US market in this report. 

Read full report here

Production or renewable toluene from sewage sludge
Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) in California have discovered a new enzyme that will enable microbial production of a renewable alternative to petroleum-based toluene, a widely used octane booster in gasoline that has a global market of 29 million tons per year.

The opportunities for use of biogas in Europe are very attractive
A study into the production and use of biogas in Europe indicates under some scenarios the most cost-effective route to reduce GHG emissions is upgrading of the biogas to biomethane and then using it as bio-CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) or bio-LNG (Liquified Natural Gas), in both cases replacing diesel.

More here


Maritime shipping could be completely decarbonised by 2035
Deployment of all currently known technologies could make it possible to almost completely decarbonise maritime shipping by 2035, according to a new report published by the International Transport Forum (ITF) at the OECD.
More here

International Maritime Organisation adopts climate change strategy and a historic GHG reduction target
Nations meeting at the United Nations International Maritime Organization (IMO) in London, UK have adopted an initial strategy on the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from ships, setting out a vision to reduce GHG emissions from international shipping and phase them out, as soon as possible in this century. The vision confirms IMO’s commitment to reducing GHG emissions from international shipping and, as a matter of urgency, to phasing them out as soon as possible.

Under the identified “levels of ambition”, the initial strategy envisages a reduction in total GHG emissions from international shipping which, it says, should peak as soon as possible and reduce the total annual GHG emissions by at least 50 percent by 2050 compared to 2008, while, at the same time, pursuing efforts towards phasing them out entirely.

Air Canada to introduce biofuel at Toronto-Pearson Airport
Air Canada says it will save 160 tonnes of carbon on 22 domestic flights this Earth Day through an innovative biofuel demonstration project at Toronto-Pearson Airport.

Under the project, co-ordinated by Canada’s Biojet Supply Chain Initiative (CBSCI), Air Canada is a leading partner, introducing 230,000 litres of sustainable biofuel blended into the airport’s multi-user fuel supply system to show the feasibility of biofuel use in shared fueling systems Canadian airports.This project at Toronto Pearson is the first to blend biojet into the existing multi-user, co-mingled airport fuel supply system, thereby highlighting its feasibility and improving process efficiency.

Boeing 777 ecoDemonstrator arrives at FedEx hub flying on 100% biofuel
In Tennessee, the Boeing 777 ecoDemonstrator flying for the first time on 100% animal fat and beef tallow waste aviation biofuel touched down at FedEx’s Memphis hub on Sunday to commemorate Earth Day where it was open for tours on Monday. Typically aviation biofuels only go up to 50% blends with fossil-based A1 jet fuel but the 100% biofuel flight was meant to demonstrate FedEx’s commitment not only to innovation but also to its goal of using 30% aviation biofuel by 2030.

Bioenergy Knowledge Centre

Resources in the Bioenergy Knowledge Centre can be accessed free by members at (not a member - talk to us).  View the latest resources added to the BKC below

Assessment of potential for energy generation from expanding industrial wastewater treatment facilities

Prepared by Dr Alzbeta Bouskova (BPO Ltd)

A review of the current greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from food processing and other industrial wastewater treatment has assessed the potential for emissions reduction  achieveable by processing residual food processing waste in anaerobic digestion plants to produce energy and fertiliser.
Read the report

Job Opportunity
Research Leader - Bioenergy - Scion
  • Deliver innovative and ground breaking research and lead Scion's Bioenergy team to drive NZ's renewable energy future
  • Excellent science growth and leadership opportunity in a growing area
  • Unique opportunity in a full-time permanent position, to apply science expertise to industrially relevant technology.
Scion are looking for a passionate and innovative Bioenergy Scientist to lead their multi-disciplinary Bioenergy team.  The person they appoint will be a practicing laboratory researcher who enjoys digging deeper into the science to produce and publish high quality research.  As the Research Leader you will spend 0.1FTE of your time involved in leadership activities for your group of 5 to 10 scientists and technicians.  It is expected that the rest of your time would be spent on science projects.  This is a permanent full-time position.

More details in the job spec here,27551.html  

Improved promotion opportunities for Members
Reminder - work with us to promote your business
Contribute to growing the sector and setting best practice standards
The Association is a collective of people who believe that by working as a group we can make more progress than by acting individually. A quarter of membership fees is a contribution to a pool of money to fund activities to grow the sector and develop best practice standards.  If you want to work with others to ensure that bioenergy solutions contribute to a sustainable future you should join the Association. 

Support to grow your business
The Association provides individual and confidential support to its members to assist them grow their business. If you have a bioenergy related matter where you would like assistance contact the Executive Officer.  This could be related to the market, support for individual proposals or discussion with an independent person the business case for a proposal.
Extend your profile through workshops and webinars
Participate in Association hosted webinars and workshops to extend your profile and your network of others in the sector.  As a webinar speaker you can extend your network of contacts.  If you have a topic which you would like to lead a discussion on contact the Executive Officer who will assist you prepare the idea for a webinar.  As a member this is free exposure to hundreds of potential attendees you wouldn't otherwise reach.

News and advertising of products and services
Members are welcome to provide news for the Bioflash.  The Bioflash is sent to around 900 recipients across the sector each month.  If you have a product or service or have participated in a project you would like to shout about then find the news angle and we will share it with hundreds of readers of the Bioflash.

Contact an Expert
Members are listed in a Contact an Expert directory. Each member has an associated profile page where NZ and Australian specific information, case studies, contact details etc are set out. The size of the profile depends on membership levels - Silver and Gold Members get a larger profile.  See examples here

Members should:
  • check their online company profile - are your profiles upto date and nd relevant to the Australasian markets?
  • check your online project case studies - do we have them?
  • are the projects you have been involved with listed in the Bioenergy Facilities Directory?
  • is your expertise appropriately described?
Members may now also advertise brands and products through advertising on the website.
  • advertising - the new sites have dedicated advertising space - contact us  for more.

Promotion of products and services
The suite of Association websites provides opportunities to improve promotion of members' products and services.

Members are able to promote products in the equipment catalogues on the relevant website. A number of products listings are free to members according to the level of membership.

Contact to have your profiles updated or replaced.   Also ask us about advertising packages and rates.

The association has set up discussion groups on LinkedIn. These are for members to communicate more widely with the public.  Join the discussion group  

Bioenergy Association welcomes news, advertising and articles from members.
Contact the
 Executive Officer.

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