Forty years ago I met Leo for the first time, and our paths kept crossing agreeably often. In the early seventies, Leo soon joined the Reflection Group on Energy Policy, founded by others and myself, as an MP for the PPR (a party which later merged into the Green Left). Until yesterday he remained involved.
German Nova-institute released an interesting press release, August 15: ‘The next revolution: CO2 plus renewable energy can serve as a feedstock for fuels, chemicals and plastics’. According to Nova’s CO2 expert Dr. Fabrizio Sibilla, CO2 will produce many environmental gains, when used in chemical industry. Countries like Australia, China and the US have embarked upon
In Europe we witness intensive social participation, coupled to increased self-confidence. People often decide to leave government and political parties aside. They seek and find each other in loose alliances, not heavily structured, in order to vent one’s indignation of the dictate of financial markets, or for a good cause like nature conservation or better
Just for a second, one forgets Europe and feels a one hundred percent Dutchman on a hot Sunday afternoon. Where? In ‘Futureland’. Again please? Right, nowadays that is the name of the second Maasvlakte, the artificial harbour area in the North Sea near Rotterdam. And I must admit: one feels proud to be a Dutchman,
Mark Bünger, author of the recent Lux Research report on biochemicals and biomaterials (see the article on this site), holds the opinion that the viability of a green chemical industry is dependent upon many factors, which renders general judgements rather precarious. Local factors often prove to be decisive. ‘Everyone, from government ministers to protesters in
There still are many obstacles on the road to a fully commercial green chemicals industry. That is the upshot of a study by Boston based Lux Research, ‘Pruning the Cost of Bio-Based Materials and Chemicals’ (also see the interview with the report’s author Mark Bünger on this site). Even where conventional feedstock like maize and
On August 17, 2012, BASF, Cargill and Novozymes signed an agreement to develop technologies to produce acrylic acid from renewable raw materials. Presently, acrylic acid is produced by the oxidation of propylene derived from the refining of crude oil. Novozymes and Cargill have collaborated on renewable acrylic acid technology since 2008. Both companies have worked
A recent report by the German Academy of Sciences Leopoldina (discussed here on the 10th of august by Diederik van der Hoeven) argues in favour of selective energetic usage of biomass. That is good advice. Photosynthesis is beautiful but its energetic efficiency is modest. Corrected for inputs of fossil fuels, the conversion efficiency of solar