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EERE Network News -- 02/23/05

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  • EERE Network News by way of Tom Gray
    [] [] A weekly newsletter from the U.S. Department of Energy s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). The
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 23, 2005


      A weekly newsletter from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE)
      <http://www.eere.energy.gov/>Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable
      Energy (EERE). The EERE Network News is also available on the Web at:

      February 23, 2005

      News and Events

      * DOE Project Leads to New Hydrogen Fueling Station in California
      * DOE Awards $87.5 Million to 12 Vehicle Efficiency Projects
      * EPA Launches Clean Energy Partnerships with 12 States and D.C.
      * Massachusetts Offers $25 Million for Renewable Energy Credits
      * First Hybrid SUV Makes List of Top Twelve Green Vehicles
      * DOE Offers $1 Million to Help Industries Save Energy

      Energy Connections

      * LNG Terminals Move Ahead in the Gulf of Mexico

      News and Events

      DOE Project Leads to New Hydrogen Fueling Station in California


      Photo of an SUV at a hydrogen fuel pump.

      A fuel-cell-powered Hyundai Tuscon pulls up to the new hydrogen fueling
      Credit: ChevronTexaco

      ChevronTexaco opened its first hydrogen fueling station in Chino,
      California, last week, joined by Assistant Secretary of Energy David Garman
      and representatives of Hyundai-Kia and UTC Fuel Cells. The station is a
      major part of the DOE's Hydrogen "Learning Demonstration," which brings
      together automobile makers and energy companies to test fuel cell vehicles
      and hydrogen fueling systems in real-world conditions. Hyundai Tucson and
      Kia Sportage SUVs, powered by fuel cells manufactured by UTC Fuel Cells,
      will operate throughout Southern California and refuel at the ChevronTexaco
      hydrogen station. The hydrogen is produced on-site from natural gas, but
      the station will also have the future capability to convert other renewable
      fuel sources, such as ethanol, into hydrogen for refueling fuel cell vehicles.

      "On a day-to-day basis, [these projects] will give our researchers and
      scientists on-the-road experience with hydrogen fuel vehicles and
      demonstrate what we need to do to make these technologies even better,"
      said Assistant Secretary Garman. "By doing so, it is our hope that these
      clean, zero-emission vehicles will become as common as the cars we know
      today." See the press releases from
      and <http://www.hyundainews.com/hyundainews/corporate60.htm>Hyundai.

      While the Chino project is part of President Bush's Hydrogen Fuel
      Initiative, his brother—Florida Governor Jeb Bush—has his own hydrogen
      energy initiative, called "H2 Florida." Last week, Governor Bush attended
      the groundbreaking in Orlando for another ChevronTexaco hydrogen fueling
      station, which will be Florida's first, and announced plans for new
      legislation to move the H2 Florida initiative forward. Under the proposed
      Hydrogen Energy Technologies Act, Florida will set aside $12.9 million to
      test and demonstrate the cutting-edge hydrogen technology and provide $2.1
      million in new tax incentives for businesses that invest in hydrogen
      technologies. Participants in the groundbreaking included Ford Motor
      Company and Progress Energy. See the press releases from the
      Energy Office and

      DOE Awards $87.5 Million to 12 Vehicle Efficiency Projects

      DOE announced last week that it will award $87.5 million to 12 projects
      that will develop more fuel-efficient passenger and commercial vehicles.
      Seven of the 12 projects will involve research in advanced combustion
      technologies, and three of those seven relate to homogeneous charge
      compression ignition (HCCI). In HCCI engines, fuel is pre-mixed with air,
      as in spark-ignition engines, but the engine combusts the mixture using
      compression, like a diesel engine. HCCI engines burn with high efficiency
      and low emissions, but the combustion process is difficult to control. The
      seven advanced-combustion projects will also explore such technologies as
      premixed charge compression ignition (like HCCI, but with a non-homogeneous
      mixture of fuel and air), variable valve timing, variable compression
      ratios, variable nozzle turbocharging, and low-pressure loop-cooled exhaust
      gas recirculation (EGR). In addition, Mack Trucks, Inc will develop and
      demonstrate an air-power-assist system that works with a commercial diesel

      The remaining five projects relate to technologies that convert waste heat
      from engines into useful electrical or mechanical energy. One promising
      technology­under examination by three of the five projects­is
      "turbocompounding," in which exhaust gas from a conventional turbocharger
      is passed through a second turbocharger to provide more torque and energy
      to the engine's crankshaft.

      DOE's <http://www.eere.energy.gov/vehiclesandfuels/>FreedomCAR and Vehicle
      Technologies Program is providing funding for the 12 projects. See the
      press release, and for more information about HCCI engines, see
      National Laboratories' Combustion Research Facility Web site. A
      diagram of a turbocompound system is also available on the Web site from
      Scania, a Swedish manufacturer of heavy vehicles and engines.

      EPA Launches Clean Energy Partnerships with 12 States and D.C.

      The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched two new clean
      energy partnerships with states last week. EPA and the National Association
      of Regulatory Utility Commissioners announced their formation of the
      EPA-State Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Projects on February 16th.
      Utility commissioners from five states—Arkansas, Connecticut, Hawaii,
      Minnesota and New Mexico—plus the District of Columbia are participating
      in the projects, which will explore cost-effective energy efficiency,
      renewable energy, and clean distributed generation. See the
      press release and fact sheet
      (<http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/pdf/eere_factsheet.pdf>PDF 42 KB).
      <http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/alternate.html>Download Acrobat Reader.

      On Friday, EPA launched the new Clean Energy-Environment State Partnership
      Program with 10 states: California, Connecticut, Georgia, Minnesota, New
      Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas (three
      states—Connecticut, Minnesota, and New Mexico—are participating in both
      partnerships). Under the voluntary program, the EPA will assist states as
      they develop and implement action plans to improve air quality, decrease
      energy use, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and enhance economic
      development. See the
      press release and
      Energy-Environment State Partnership Program Web site.

      Massachusetts Offers $25 Million for Renewable Energy Credits

      The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC) announced in late January
      that its Renewable Energy Trust is offering $25 million to support
      renewable energy projects that will generate up to 50 megawatts of clean
      power for the New England electric grid. The trust's Massachusetts Green
      Power Partnership provides long-term funding commitments to purchase
      renewable energy certificates (RECs) and other price supports for clean
      energy projects. The new request for proposals (RFP) starts the second
      round of awards; the first round led to $32 million in funding commitments
      for six projects that will generate close to 100 megawatts of clean energy,
      including two large wind power plants (covered in last week's newsletter),
      a 50-megawatt biomass power plant, and small installations of landfill gas,
      hydropower, and solar energy systems. Proposals for the new RFP are due on
      March 18th. See the
      release and
      <http://www.masstech.org/Grants_and_Awards/CE/mgpp_round2_rfp.htm>RFP from
      the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.

      Although most of MTC's commitments to purchase RECs are for future
      projects, the agency is already buying RECs from a landfill gas project.
      MTC buys the RECs and then auctions them off to electricity providers,
      which can either use them to meet the requirements of the Massachusetts
      Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) or to meet the needs of any voluntary
      green power program. In early February, MTC had Evolution Markets LLC
      auction off 5,011 RECs, which sold to two successful bidders at an average
      price of $51.12. Some companies are also bypassing the MTC, selling RECs
      directly into the Massachusetts power market, as Conservation Resources
      Group did for a New York landfill project in 2004. See the press releases
      from <http://www.evomarkets.com/scripts/pr_full.php?pr=38>Evolution Markets
      and the Conservation Resources Group
      (<http://www.csgrp.com/images/pdf_press_releases/NYEnergy.pdf>PDF 53 KB).
      <http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/alternate.html>Download Acrobat Reader.

      RECs represent the attributes of electricity generated from renewable
      energy sources, and are usually sold separately from the actual
      electricity. According to a new DOE report, an estimated 3 million
      megawatt-hours (MWh) of RECs were sold in 2003. Fourteen of the 18 states
      with RPS policies use RECs, creating an annual potential market of about 13
      million MWh. According to the report, the REC market could reach 65 million
      MWh by 2010. See the report, "Emerging Markets for Renewable Energy
      Certificates: Opportunities and Challenges"
      (<http://www.eere.energy.gov/greenpower/resources/pdfs/37388.pdf>PDF 2.0 MB).

      First Hybrid SUV Makes List of Top Twelve Green Vehicles

      The world's first hybrid-electric sport utility vehicle (SUV), the Ford
      Escape Hybrid, is also the first gasoline-powered SUV to make the list of
      12 "greenest" vehicles. The American Council for an Energy Efficient
      Economy (ACEEE) issued its eighth annual environmental guide to cars and
      trucks, "ACEEE's Green Book Online," last week, including its list of the
      greenest vehicles of 2005. The Honda Insight, Toyota Prius, and Honda Civic
      Hybrid again hold top spots on the list, although the number one green
      vehicle is still the natural-gas-powered Honda Civic GX. But your car
      doesn't have to be a hybrid or alternative-fuel model to make the list:
      other top green cars include the Toyota Corolla and Echo; the Toyota Matrix
      and its twin, the Pontiac Vibe; the Nissan Sentra; the Mazda 3; and the
      Ford Focus and Ford Focus Wagon. ACEEE ranks vehicles based on their levels
      of noxious emissions, fuel economy, and greenhouse gas emissions. See the
      <http://www.greenercars.com/pr11.html>ACEEE press release and
      <http://www.greenercars.com/12green.html>list of the top twelve greenest

      Photo of the Hyundai Portico.

      Hyundai's Portico concept vehicle is designed to accept a hybrid drive.
      Credit: Hyundai

      Hyundai may be the next car company to join the ranks of hybrid vehicle
      producers: at the Chicago Car Show in early February, the company unveiled
      its "Portico" concept vehicle, a six-seat vehicle that it bills as
      "designed to accept Hyundai's hybrid drive system." The hybrid Portico
      would feature two electric motors: a 100-kilowatt motor driving the front
      wheels and a 60-kilowatt motor driving the rear wheels, providing efficient
      all-wheel-drive capability. According to Hyundai, a lithium-ion battery
      would power the motors. See the
      <http://www.hyundainews.com/hyundainews/newmodel13.htm>Hyundai press release.

      DOE Offers $1 Million to Help Industries Save Energy

      DOE announced last week that $1 million in new funds are available to help
      industrial plants find ways to save energy. The new solicitation offers up
      to $100,000 per facility to carry out a "Plant-Wide Assessment" to examine
      energy-intensive processes, determine which plant systems offer the
      greatest energy savings potential, and identify specific actions to achieve
      those savings. Proposals are due by May 3rd. See the
      and the
      Assessment Web page on DOE's Industrial Technologies Program Web site.

      One company that may be interested in carrying out some plant-wide
      assessments is Modine Manufacturing Company, a Wisconsin-based manufacturer
      of heating and cooling equipment. In late January, the company launched an
      initiative to cut energy use at its 35 worldwide manufacturing facilities
      by 12 percent. See the
      release from Modine.

      Energy Connections

      LNG Terminals Move Ahead in the Gulf of Mexico

      Companies continue to make progress developing new terminals for importing
      liquefied natural gas (LNG) into the United States. Shell announced last
      week that it has received regulatory approval to build an offshore LNG
      terminal in the Gulf of Mexico, 38 miles from Cameron, Louisiana. The Shell
      terminal will have the ability to gasify one billion cubic feet per day of
      natural gas for use in the United States. ConocoPhilips has also proposed
      building an LNG terminal in the Gulf, about 56 miles south of Louisiana,
      with a capacity of 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. Another
      project in the Gulf, under design by Tidelands Oil and Gas Corporation,
      will be located off the coast of Mexico to supply natural gas to Mexico.
      See the press releases from
      and <http://www.tidelandsoilandgas.com/flash_newstide_021005.htm>Tidelands.

      In terms of on-shore LNG terminals in the Gulf area, Cheniere Energy, Inc.
      is now spearheading four LNG projects. Its proposed LNG terminal in
      Freeport, Texas, won approval in early January and is now under
      construction. In late January, the company applied to build a second LNG
      terminal in Cameron Parish, Louisiana, called "Creole Trail"; the company
      has already earned approval to build the "Sabine Pass" LNG terminal there,
      and plans to start construction in late March. The company has also applied
      to build an LNG terminal in Corpus Christi, Texas. See the Cheniere Energy
      press releases from
      11th and

      Other plans for North American LNG terminals include a ChevronTexaco
      proposal for a terminal eight miles off the coast of Baja California,
      Mexico, which earned approval in early January; a planned expansion of the
      Dominion Cove Point LNG terminal in Maryland; and a proposed LNG terminal
      off the coast of Massachusetts. Tractebel LNG North American LLC is
      proposing to build the Massachusetts LNG terminal about 10 miles south of
      Gloucester. See the
      press release, the
      Cove Point Web site, and the Tractebel press release
      (<http://www.tractebelusa.com/news/NeptuneAnnouncement20050214.pdf>PDF 33
      KB). <http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/alternate.html>Download Acrobat

      This newsletter is funded by DOE's <http://www.eere.energy.gov/>Office of
      Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) and is also available on the
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