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Posts tagged “Tyson Foods”

By Robert Rapier on Oct 23, 2011 with 74 responses

Visit and Conversation With Executives at Solazyme

On October 13, 2011 I paid a visit to Solazyme’s headquarters in San Francisco. For those who are unfamiliar with Solazyme, they produce oil from genetically modified algae. The company was founded in 2003 by two college friends, Jonathan Wolfson and Harrison Dillon. I had previously visited with Dr. Dillon at the 2009 Pacific Rim Summit on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy in Honolulu. Harrison is Solazyme’s Chief Technology Officer, and he filled me in on some of what the company was doing at that time. This time I was going to have a chance to interview Solazyme CEO Jonathan Wolfson. A lot has happened since that meeting with Harrison in 2009. Solazyme has delivered hundreds of thousands of gallons of… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on May 14, 2009 with no responses

Congress Kills a Biofuel Project

If we are to seriously encourage a move to biofuels, incentives are going to be required because the economics of biofuels just can’t compete with petroleum (regardless of what Vinod Khosla thinks). Eventually depletion will cause petroleum to become very expensive, and then the economics of certain biofuels (especially those with the best energy returns) are going to start looking a lot better. But if depletion occurs quickly, we are going to wish that we had provided encouragement for all sorts of alternatives. Of course not all alternatives are created equally, and there are often unintended consequences to deal with. But overall, Congress and now two administrations in a row have shown overwhelming support for incentivizing biofuel production. There is,… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Sep 23, 2008 with no responses

Games Politicians Play

In a bid to keep 1st generation biodiesel technology competitive with the more desirable 2nd generation variety, politicians have voted to keep a $1/gal tax credit for biodiesel made from food, but deny the credit for green diesel made from waste fats: US Senate Bill Kills Tax Credit For Clean-Diesel Project WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- A U.S. Senate vote Tuesday on tax legislation could be the death knell for a partnership between ConocoPhillips (COP) and Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) that promised to generate as much as $175 million in tax credits annually through the production of cleaner-burning diesel fuel. Soap makers and producers of biodiesel, a diesel additive made from vegetable oil, joined lobbying forces to help kill the $1 per… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Dec 22, 2007 with no responses

My Top 10 Energy Stories of 2007

First, thanks to all who contributed ideas. You may have an entirely different opinion on the most important energy stories. Feel free to share it. Many of these stories were contributed by various readers. Comments by readers are italicized. If you want to know who wrote what, you can see the entire comment thread here. Here are my Top 10 Energy Stories of 2007 1. Oil price soars as media becomes Peak Oil aware One reason I felt pretty safe in making the $1,000 bet on oil prices is that a move from $60 – the price in January – to $100 – the price at which I would lose the bet – would be unprecedented. Of course a worldwide… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Dec 15, 2007 with no responses

Help Brainstorm the Top Energy Stories of 2007

While Platts has done a great job listing all of the major oil company stories of 2007, I am working on a Top 10 list for energy in general. I am about to be offline for a few days, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to gather input on the top energy stories of the year. My short (non-oil company) list of potential candidates would be Nanosolar, the Chevy Volt announcement, the LS9 start-up, the Range Fuels groundbreaking, the BP/D1 jatropha announcement, and the COP/Tyson green diesel announcement. Those are some that spring to my mind. What else? I am struggling to remember any major developments in wind, tidal, or geothermal power. What about coal? Nuclear? Feel… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Aug 13, 2007 with no responses

Biodiesel’s Green Diesel Nightmare

I have been saying this for months, and others are starting to realize the same thing: Renewable Diesel: Biodiesel’ s Nightmare I first heard of this process last October at an NREL presentation (they called it “Green diesel” and could not identify COP as the oil company they were dealing with,) but details remain sketchy. The fact that it refers to the process as a “proprietary thermal depolymerization production technology” and the fact that it is using existing refinery infrastructure should cause alarm to biodiesel firms, and investors. Why should this cause alarm? Because COP claims its “renewable diesel” is chemically equivalent to conventional diesel. If this is true, it’s quite possible that it has a lower cloud point than… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Apr 23, 2007 with no responses

Are Subsidies to Oil Companies Ever Justified?

Should We Ever Subsidize an Oil Company? “Of course not!” might be the immediate reaction of most people. But doesn’t it depend on the objectives you are trying to achieve or the behaviors you wish to influence? Are there no cases in which it would be warranted? What if the end result was a reduction in our fossil fuel consumption? I think most people would like to see us move away from fossil fuels. But fossil fuels are money-makers for the oil companies, and the cheapest option (strictly in terms of dollars at the pump) for consumers. So how do we wean off of fossil fuels? Reducing Fossil Fuel Usage There are really two options. By far the most efficient… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Apr 20, 2007 with no responses

Democrats Plan to Reverse Tax Break

As someone said to me just now by e-mail, “It ain’t about the fuel… it’s about a piece of the pie.” Democrats Plan to Reverse Tax Break for ConocoPhillips, Tyson April 20 (Bloomberg) — Democrats in Congress plan to reverse an Internal Revenue Service ruling that allowed ConocoPhillips and Tyson Foods Inc. to benefit from a tax break for producing alternative energy. If adopted, the legislation would threaten a joint venture announced this week by ConocoPhillips and Tyson to produce diesel fuel from animal fat. ConocoPhillips Chief Executive Jim Mulva said the companies wouldn’t proceed if they didn’t qualify for the tax credit, worth $1 per gallon of renewable diesel produced. “It’s not profitable without the $1 tax credit,” Mulva… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Apr 18, 2007 with 1 response

The Biodiesel Lobby Cries Foul

Let me be clear that I strongly support biodiesel. It has a better energy return than does corn ethanol, and diesel engines are far more efficient than gasoline engines. Each gallon of biodiesel displaces far more fossil fuel than a gallon of ethanol. Therefore, I am much more in favor of biodiesel production than I am of corn ethanol production. I am also not opposed to subsidies directed at giving alternative fuels a boost. (However, in order to avoid picking technology winners, I think a better system would be to boost carbon taxes on fossil fuels. That would mean all alternatives competed on equal footing). So, I was quite pleased to read the announcement yesterday of the collaboration between Tyson… Continue»