Weekly News Roundup

I received a suggestion to break out the Weekly News Roundup and make it as an individual post. That can be done but let me know what you think about it. For now, here’s this week’s news bites from ExxonMobil’s CO2 remover to Solvay’s garbage-powered plant in Germany.

A cool way to remove CO2
ExxonMobil is building a commercial demonstration plant in Wyoming to showcase its Controlled Freeze Zone (CFZ) technology, which can reduce the cost of carbon dioxide removal and storage from produced natural gas. The $100m plant will process 14m cu.ft. of gas per day.

Portugal heats up
German companies Qimonda and Centrosolar will jointly build and operate a silicon-based solar cell plant in Portugal. The EUR70m ($108m) plant will have initial capacity of 30m/year solar cells and will start producing in the second half of next year.

…and China not far behind
DuPont is building a solar research center in Hong Kong and a manufacturing facility for crystalline silicone and amorphous silicon thin film in Shenzhen. DuPont expects growth in the photovoltaic market to exceed 30 percent in the next several years.

Steeling air quality standards
The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing stronger air quality standards for lead for the first time in 30 years. The proposal will revise the existing standard of 1.5 micrograms per cubic meter of air to a level within the range of 0.10 to 0.30 micrograms per cubic meter.

Garbage powers chemicals
Belgian chemical group Solvay is constructing a refuse-derived power plant in Bernburg, Germany, to supply energy to the company’s sodium carbonate and hydrogen peroxide plant, which will start in the second quarter of 2010. The power plant will use mixture of used plastics and wood from furniture and buildings, textiles, paper and cardboard and will have Solvay’s sodium bicarbonate technology to freshen its gaseous smell.

And in ICIS News (which requires subscription):

Two US congressmen have asked infant formula manufacturers to stop using bisphenol-A in their food packaging. Several Chinese villagers have been hospitalized after a poisonous gas leak at a phosphorous trichloride plant in Handan City. And California’s academia blame the current lax federal policy in inhibiting development of green chemistry innovation.

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