BOTHAVILLE, South Africa, March 10 (Reuters) – A big maize crop following recent rains has pulled South African maize prices to two-year lows, eroding farmers’
When USDA released the first-ever Economic Impact Analysis of the U.S. Biobased Products Industry last year, we were thrilled to see what a positive impact this sector was having on our economy, and this updated analysis shows that the sector is not just holding strong, but growing.
– Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said at reports release this week in Washington, D.C.
A new report released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has revealed the precise amount that the bio-based products industry contributed to the US economy and how many jobs it sustains.
Just how much are biobased products worth (to the US economy)?
A new project that aims to provide farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa with stress-tolerant maize varieties has been launched to help the region boost food security. The Stress Tolerant Maize for Africa (STMA) project will apply conventional breeding techniques to develop maize varieties and hybrids capable of resisting environmental shocks, including drought, low soil fertility, heat, pests and diseases.
- The project aims to increase maize productivity by 30-50 per cent
- It will benefit 5.5 million smallholders in 12 African nations
- An expert calls for more improved maize varieties to help more nations
Editor’s Note: Although the maize plants always makes a cob, even during drought, the good news is that STMA will create stable biomass supply chains (see Cob.Trade or Biomass.Market), as “Collecting Cobs Makes Good Business Sense.”
In Africa we recommend to use the cobs, only or indigenous energy crops. We also have smaller biorefinery solutions, like the µ-Biorefinery or the GreenEnergyPark, which have the same economic outcome as in the USA: Additional income for the farmers.
The article below appeared on Energy.gov (US Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy):
GreenEnergyPark™: Empowering Africa’s New Agricultural Economy
Originally Published in the ECOreport.
The biofuel industry has been enjoying a 19.6% annual growth since 2005. That is about to change. The World’s 53.2 billion gallon biofuel industry could grow to over 60 billion gallons during the next few years. Much of this will come from riskier next generation technologies.
Approximately 65.9% of global biofuel capacity
Biofuels mainly use the C6-fraction of the biomass (sugars, starches and celluloses). This leaves the lignins and the C5-fraction (hemicelluloses), from which furfural is made. Furfural is a platform chemical for large variety of bio-renewable chemicals and bioplastics (http://j.mp/GQHGob).
Furfural has been industrially made since 1922. No risky technologies are need. It’s not rocket science: dalinyebo.com/it-s-not-rocket-science.
See on cleantechnica.com
The furfural industry makes natural fibre reinforced bioplastics (example: dalinyebo.com/item/456-new-green-materials) for the automotive industry. New developments of lightweight structural panels from natural fibres and furfural-derivatives are aimed at products for car and aircraft interiors.
Industry trend: high end compounds and fiber reinforced compounds gradually replace metal in automotive parts
Engineering plastics and thermoset materials have already succeeded in replacing metal in multiple markets. The key driver for this substitution is weight reduction and, consequently, lower fuel consumption for vehicles of all types.
View original post 1,480 more words
We suggest that some of the furfural by-products should be considered. There are a variety of avenues that lead to e.g. thermoset-resin-biofibre composites or high-temperature polymers.
Next breakthrough: carbon fiber from Biomass. En route to a totally sustainable airplane!
The Energy Department of the U.S.(DOE) recently announced up to $12 million in funding to advance the production of cost-competitive, high-performance carbon fiber material from renewable non-food-based feedstocks such as agricultural and forestry residues.
View original post 285 more words
The impact of these trends could see the furfural market grow to twice its current size. For Africa, biomass valorisation means food security and jobs (e.g. greenenergypark.co.za/bio-refining)!
The global bio-plastics industry is expected to witness significant growth and reach an estimated $7.02 billion by 2018
Lucintel, one of the leading global management consulting and market research firms, has just released a detailed analysis on the bio-plastics industry entitles “Global Bio-plastics Industry 2013-2018: Trend, Forecast, and Opportunity Analysis”.
View original post 352 more words