Fuel Crops for Energy

Fuel crops are broadly defined as those grown to be converted into energy of various kinds.

Corn has been used for years to create ethanol which is added to gasoline in various percentages to reduce the amount of fossil fuel being burned and thereby reducing net greenhouse gas emissions.

Fuel crops, as they grow, capture the energy from the sun and convert CO2 from the air and water from the ground into carbon-rich materials that can then be converted back into useable energy. As such, they trap absorb carbon dioxide which is good to reduce greenhouse gas concentrations.

We are vertically integrated to create our own feedstock supplies for our energy processes.

In this endeavor, we manage some of our own production but rely on creating jobs with supplier-partners (growers and farmers) to produce the fuel crops and to convert them to a useable form that we can collect and use. 

Examples of fuel crops include timber grown in sustainable forestry operations, various field crops, different kinds of grasses, and bamboo.

Fuel crops can be converted into energy via a number of means with varying degrees of carbon emitted back into the air depending on the process.

Incineration/burning: Releases energy by converting carbon-based materials with oxygen into carbon dioxide. Residual by-products, the parts that do not burn are ash.

Gasification/pyrolysis: Releases energy by converting the materials in the absence of oxygen to a volatile mixture of gases, which in turn can be burned or converted to an alternate fuel (diesel, jet fuel, etc) . A significant portion of the starting amount of carbon in the feedstock is left behind as biochar. The leftover carbon can be sequestered into the ground (or other products) so that the overall carbon footprint is actually negative.

Anaerobic Digestion: Methanogenic bacteria "eat" organic matter and "exhale" methane (Natural Gas) plus CO2. This usually occurs in large tanks that are heated to optimal temperatures to maintain an active bacteria culture. The biogas is collected and can be refined to pipeline quality NG or fed into generators or sent to boilers to be burned to make electricity. The biogas can also be converted into liquid fuels (diesel, jet fuel, etc).The leftover "digestate" contains a high proportion of the original volume of carbon, making the whole process carbon negative. The digestate can be used as a soil additive, thereby sequestering it forever in the ground.

We use fuel pellets ourselves and also market them to others.