Paper Maker Turns Waste Wood to Biofuel, Jobs
by Tony Dobrowolski (Berkshire Eagle) Crane & Co. is planning to employ a rarely used, clean-energy technology to reduce the paper maker’s energy costs and possibly bring 100 new jobs to the region.
The technology, known as Rapid Thermal Processing, or RTP, converts local waste or scrap wood into a clean-burning, nearly carbon-neutral biofuel, which would replace fuel oil in burners and generators. The biofuel — called pyrolysis oil — can also be used as a replacement for electricity and natural gas. The conversion occurs when the waste wood is vaporized at high heat in the absence of oxygen.
…Crane is expected to use only half of the biofuel that the RTP plant generates. It would sell the rest.
“We believe that approximately 50 percent of the output of the plant would be available locally,” Sears said. “We’d like to get some local customers. It’s not ready for homes. But it’s ready for industrial use.”
…”This particular application of this fuel as we’re doing here, I believe, is the first demonstration of this kind of fuel in the United States,” he said. “There are applications being looked at in Southeast Asia, Italy and Canada.” READ MORE