Dynamotive to invest $105 million to develop second-generation biofuel and electricity complexes for rural Argentina
Each complex will be comprised of a 15.7 megawatt electricity generating station powered by the majority of the fuel output of two 200-ton-per-day modular plants producing bio-oil from wood waste and residues from nearby forests and other biomass residue. Excess bio-oil produced at these facilities will be sold into commercial and industrial fuel markets.
Dynamotive is one of the companies to have made most progress in the development of second-generation biofuels. Its production process is based on fast-pyrolysis of biomass. Fast-pyrolysis is a process that heats biomass to 450-600 degrees centigrade in the absence of air, which results in a heavy oil (pyrolysis oil, bio-oil, 'biocrude') that can be used as such instead of heating oil, or further refined into a range of fuels and green chemicals (schematic, click to enlarge). Unique to Dynamotive is its modular concept, which allows for flexible, decentralised biofuel production close to the source of the biomass (earlier post). Recently, the company demonstrated its commercial-scale plant in Guelph, Ontario - the first to do so (here).
Dynamotive’s proprietary fast-pyrolysis technology is a proven and cost-effective method of turning agricultural and forest residues into renewable fuel and electric power. Furthermore, we have pioneered our technology as a readily-transportable series of modules that can create such biofuel-to-electricity complexes virtually anywhere in the world. - Andrew Kingston, chief executive officer of DynamotiveDynamotive's activities in Argentina focus on two sites to be located approximately 500 miles from Buenos Aires, in Virasoro and Santa Rosa (map, click to enlarge). They are being secured by the Province of Corrientes. The company said the projects will proceed promptly once existing 10-year agreements-in-principle are finalized for the needed supply and cost of the biomass raw materials, and for the pricing structure of the electricity to be produced and transmitted to nearby industry and communities from the complexes. Other similar projects are being planned for additional locations in Corrientes, in Argentina and elsewhere in Latin America:
sustainability :: biomass :: bioenergy :: biofuels :: fast-pyrolysis :: bio-oil :: decentralisation :: electricity :: Argentina ::
Development and construction of the complexes will be implemented by Dynamotive, jointly with TECNA, a major Argentine engineering firm, and financing will be provided by a group of banks and other private sources. When fully operational late next year, the complexes will have available approximately 340,000 dry tons of biomass annually, providing opportunity for further expansion.
Dynamotive said a joint focus of the development of the complexes is to tackle environmental issues arising from vast stockpiles of decomposing wood waste and substantially increase electricity generating capacity in this forested region of Argentina.
The announcement was made in the city of Gobernador Virasoro by Vice President Raúl Parisi of Dynamotive Latinoamericana and Governor Arturo Colombi of Corrientes Province, at a gathering that included city and provincial officials, including Mayor Rodolfo Fernández and members of the provincial and local cabinets.
Dynamotive’s proposed investment reflects strong support for the progress we are making in Corrientes toward economic growth and environmental protection, two goals to which we are all committed. - Arturo Colombi, Governor of Corrientes ProvinceThe biomass-to-energy facilities are expected to foster progress in the region with widespread positive impact on the provincial economies, the local job market and the environment.
In a development not related to the plans in Argentina, but of interest to the bioenergy community, Dynamotive is also experimenting with biochar ('agrichar', 'terra preta') which could lead to the production of carbon-negative fuels (more here and here). By storing a carbon-rich fraction of the pyrolysed biomass in agricultural soils, a low-tech carbon sequestration technique can be developed. The process has shown to result in increased yields for the (energy) crops that are planted on such improved soils.
Biopact: Dynamotive demonstrates fast-pyrolysis plant in the presence of biofuel experts - September 18, 2007
Biopact: Carbon negative biofuels: Dynamotive to test biochar to boost crop yields, water quality, and sequester carbon - May 30, 2007
Biopact: Dynamotive plans to build 6 bio-oil plants in Argentina - April 30, 2007
Biopact: Dynamotive begins construction of modular fast-pyrolysis plant in Ontario - December 19, 2006