Weekly News Roundup

The G8 Summit last week seem to have brought little resolutions to any climate actions and some expect the same to happen in the incoming climate talks in Copenhagen later this year. I hope that’s not the case.

Anyway, last week also brought forth major press conferences from the American Chemistry Council (ACC) and the International Council of Chemical Associations (ICCA) about a recent study involving the current and potential benefits of chemicals in reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. The organizations’ goal for the study is for lawmakers to recommend global (and local) policy actions (and inactions) that will not, as much as possible, hinder these benefits.

Let’s see what’s going to happen this week but I’m hoping it’ll be more quiet so I can enjoy more time under the beautiful (about darn time!) New York sun. Here are this week’s news roundup!

Rhodia enters biogas

Rhodia made its first investment in biogas technology, by acquiring Econcern Group’s participation in six pilot biogas production projects located in China and Vietnam. Biogas is a mix of methane and CO2 obtained from fermentation of biowastes.

Biopolymers collaboration

NatureWorks and Avantium formed a development partnership to fully understand the properties and commercial potential of a new generation of bioplastics. Avantium is working to develop monomers and polymers from non food biomass.

ReVolt on zinc-air battery

ReVolt Technology formed a joint-development agreement with BASF to speed the development and commercialization of ReVolt’s rechargeable zinc-air battery system. ReVolt says its battery offers up to 3x the energy density of lithium-ion in an inherently safe and cost-effective package.

Volvo invests in fuel cell

The Volvo Group, in partnership with corporations Midroc and OCAS, andthe Swedish Energy Agency are investing SEK 200m in the development ofits fuel cells by subsidiary Powercell Sweden AB.Its fuel cell is based on two patented components: a fuel converter(reformer) and a PEM fuel cell – the type of fuel cell most often usedin transport applications.

Bioplastic in Brazil

Cargill is introducing to Brazil its Ingeo™ bioplastics from NatureWorks. The product line will be sold in Brazil through Cargill’s Starches and Sweeteners business unit.

Clean energy for US and Turkey

Turkey’s Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (MENR) and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) formed a Clean Energy development partnership.The project includes training for Turkish officials in Argonne NationalLaboratory’s energy planning and modeling tools to support long-rangeenergy supply and demand projections while improving and diversifyingenergy use, developing renewable energy and reducing carbon emissions.

And in ICIS news (requires subscription):

Plans by US president Barack Obama to cut greenhouse gas emissions are helping to boost biopolymers demand, according to NatureWorks CEO in an exclusive ICIS interview.

Dow Chemicaljoined the Obama administration and environmentalists in calling forimmediate action by Congress to impose a cap-and-trade emissionsmandate.

US chemical manufacturers would be among those hardest hit by the trade impact of climate change legislation under consideration in Congress, government and private sector experts said.

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