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This page lists key past developments and future goals and anticipated events related to bioenergy.

Bioenergy timeline edit
Future goals: 2030 - 2025 - 2022 - 2020 - 2018 - 2017 - 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010

Past developments: 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 1996 - 1992 - 1981 - 1973 - 1947 - 1942 - 1940 - 1937 - 1935 - 1932 - 1921 - 1918 - 1906 - 1861 - 1860 - 1834 - 1826

Future goals and anticipated events

2050

  • Year by which a suite of fossil fuel alternatives (including electric batteries, biofuels and natural gas) could meet demand for transportation fuel in Europe, according to a European Commission expert group report released in 2011.[1]

2040

  • Year by which investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency will begin to pay off, according to a World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) report released in 2011.[2]

2030

2025

  • Target year set by the "25x'25 coalition" [5] for renewable energy to reach 25% of total energy use in the United States.
  • Target year set by the government of the US state of Iowa to achieve "energy independence"[6]
  • By 2025, meeting demand for wood-fueled power plants in the United States was estimated (in 2010) to require clearing "46,000 square miles of forests -- an area the size of Pennsylvania."[7]

2022

2020

  • United Kingdom targets call "for one-fifth of total energy supply to come from renewable sources" [10] and for 30% of electricity to be generated from renewable sources.[11]
  • Target year announced by the aviation industry for annual consumption of 3 billion gallons of biofuels.[12]
  • Target year for China to have 13 million hectares devoted to biofuel plantations.[13]
  • Target year for the U.S. "Navy to use alternative energy sources to provide 50 percent of the energy for all its war-fighting ships, planes, vehicles and shore installations." [17]

2018

  • Year by which "cellulosic biofuels" potentially may become commercially viable, according to a 2008 UN FAO/OECD study.[18]

2017

  • Target year set in September 2008 for petrol and diesel in India to be blended with 20% biofuel.[20]
  • Target year under proposal by U.S. President Bush (in his 2007 State of the Union Address) for achieving utilization of 35 billion gallons of alternative fuels within the United States.

2016

2015

  • An estimated 32 million acres to be devoted globally to production of jatropha, according to a 2008 study by the Global Exchange for Social Investment.[21]
  • 30 million acres of U.S. farmland projected to be needed for corn production to meet legislated ethanol production target.[22]
  • Target year for France to achieve 10 percent blending of biofuels into motor fuels.[23]
  • Target year set by the environmental organization WWF for palm oil to be derived from entirely sustainable sources.[24]

2014

2013

  • Year by which "cellulosic biofuels" potentially may become commercially viable, according to a 2008 statement by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Schafer.[27]

2012

  • Target year for making cellulosic ethanol cost competitive as an energy source under U.S. Advanced Energy Initiative.
  • Target year for France to remove tax breaks for biofuels, according to a 2008 proposal.[29]

2011 (Events/News)

  • 2011: Year in which all vehicles in Malaysia are mandated to utilize a B5 biodiesel diesel fuel blend containing five percent processed palm oil (based on a decision made in 2010). [30]
  • "One-year extension of a [ US ] tax credit giving refiners nearly 12 cents of federal cash for every litre of corn ethanol they blend into gasoline. A tariff of more than 14 cents per litre on imported ethanol was also extended through 2011." [35]

Past developments

2010

  • Target year for France to achieve 7 percent blending of biofuels into motor fuels.[38]
  • Year of expiration of U.S. Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit (VEETC), which provides a 51-cent-per-gallon subsidy to U.S. ethanol producers.
  • 31 March 2010: U.S. President Obama announces new policies for use of biofuels in military vehicles.[43]
  • 20 April 2010: Major oil spill from BP's Deepwater Horizon platform in the Gulf of Mexico (U.S.); impacts ongoing debates related to energy issues, including climate change legislation.
  • September 2010: Launch of the Global Alliance for Clean Cook Stoves.[45]
  • 13 October 2010: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issues decision allowing "15% ethanol fuel (E15) to be sold for use in cars and light trucks placed on the market from 2007 onwards."[46]
  • 22 November 2010: Al Gore, former Vice President of the United States, quoted in a speech as saying that supporting corn ethanol was "not a good policy."[47]

2009

  • 14 January 2009: The Guardian (UK) reports that Britain's Advertising Standards Authority banned a print advertisement by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) due to a "misleading claim" that "biofuels offer a sustainable alternative to oil".[50]
  • March 2009: "[E]thanol lobby group Growth Energy and 54 ethanol manufacturers" request the U.S. EPA to approve sales of 15% ethanol (E15) for use in motor vehicles.[53]
  • April 2009: Council of the European Union adopted Directive 2009/28/EC which aims for 20% of the EU's final consumption of energy to come from renewable sources by 2020 and 10% of each member state's transport energy consumption to come from renewable sources.
  • 28 July 2009: Reports indicate that the there will be an extension for an additional year on the moratorium on purchases of soya grown in deforested areas of the Brazilian Amazon.[55]

2008

  • 2008: Globally, an estimated "242 jatropha biofuel projects covered 2.2 million acres."[60]
  • 7 February 2008: Two studies published in Science magazine ("Land Clearing and the Biofuel Carbon Debt" and "Use of U.S. Croplands for Biofuels Increases Greenhouse Gases through Emissions from Land Use Change"), indicate that land-use change associated with production of biofuels leads to increased net carbon emissions, thus challenging a major point advanced by biofuels proponents, that biofuels are "climate friendly".
  • 6 July 2008: World Bank President Robert Zoellick reportedly calls for reform of biofuel policies in rich countries, including a reduction in mandates, subsidies and tariffs.[63]
  • 13 August 2008: The Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB) releases "Version Zero" draft of the "Global principles and criteria for sustainable biofuels production", for use during a six-month period of stakeholder comment in preparation for release of the first official standards in early 2009.
  • 4 November 2008: Ethanol and clean energy supporter Barack Obama elected president of the United States.
  • 31 December 2008: Target date for expiration of U.S. 54-cent-per-gallon import tariff on ethanol.

2007

  • 23 January 2007: President Bush, in his State of the Union Address, calls for achieving utilization of 35 billion gallons of alternative fuels within the United States in 10 years (by 2017).

2006

2005

  • US Energy Policy Act of 2005 mandates use of 7.5 billion gallons of renewable fuels annually by 2012.

2004

2003

  • France introduces quotas and tax breaks on biofuels.[70]

2002

  • 11 percent of U.S. corn crop used for fuel production.[71]

2001

1997

1996

1992

1985

1981

1978

  • Tax incentives for ethanol proposed by US President Jimmy Carter, primarily for national security reasons.

1973

  • Nebraska Farm Crops Utilization Committee begins tests of alcohol blends. The committee later becomes the Nebraksa Gasohol Commission.

1947

  • Alcohol plants built for the war effort are sold for scrap, despite interest in ethanol production for fuel and chemicals.

1942

  • Synthetic rubber production from alcohol promoted by farm lobby. Oil industry opposes this, but is exposed by Sen. Harry Truman's war investigating committee. By 1944, 3/4 of all US rubber production is from alcohol.

1940

  • Ethyl Gasoline Corp. loses anti-trust lawsuit brought by Justice Dept. for anti-competitive behavior.

1937

  • Agrol plant opens in Atchison, KS as part of the Chemurgy experiment. About 2000 service stations across the Midwest use the 10% alcohol blend in gasoline. Plant is bankrupt by 1939.

1935

  • First Farm Chemurgy conference in Dearborn, MI, sponsored by Henry Ford. Chemurgy seeks new uses for farm products, such as ethanol as an outlet for surplus corn, through scientific research.

1932

  • Leo Christensen and others in Iowa State University's chemistry department advocate use of alcohol blends as anti-knock fuels and for Depression-era farm relief.

1921

  • General Motors researchers discover anti-knock effect of tetra-ethyl lead. Leaded gasoline, as it comes to be known, displaces most US ethanol anti-knock blends. GM and Standard Oil Co. of NJ form the Ethyl Gasoline Corp. as a 50-50 joint venture.

1918

  • Scientific American reports: "It is now definitely established that alcohol can be blended with gasoline to produce a suitable motor fuel..." Two years later, the magazine reports "a universal assumption that [ethyl] alcohol in some form will be a constituent of the motor fuel of the future."

1906

  • Civil War tax repealed; President Teddy Roosevelt signs a bill allowing tax-free use of industrial alcohol on June 8.

1861

  • Alcohol taxed; $2.08 per gallon tax imposed on beverage and industrial alcohol in stages between 1862 and 1864 as part of the Internal Revenue Act to pay for the Civil War. The tax was meant to apply to beverage alcohol, but without any specific exemption, it was also applied to fuel and industrial uses for alcohol. "The imposition of the internal-revenue tax on distilled spirits ... increased the cost of this 'burning fluid' beyond the possibility of using it in competition with kerosene..," said Rufus F. Herrick, an engineer with the Edison Electric Testing Laboratory who wrote one of the first books on the use of alcohol fuel.

1860

  • German inventor Nicholas August Otto uses ethyl alcohol as a fuel in an early engine because it was widely available for spirit lamps throughout Europe. He devised a carburetor which, like Morey's, heated the alcohol to help it vaporize as the engine was being started. A patent application was turned down because the carburetor was considered to be well established technology.

1834

  • The first U.S. patent for alcohol as a lamp fuel was awarded in 1834 to S. Casey, of Lebanon, Maine, but it is clear that alcohol was routinely used a fuel beforehand.

1826

  • Samuel Morey uses readily available alcohol in the first American prototype internal combustion engine at the surprisingly early date of 1826. Morey's work was lost in the enthusaism for the steam engine and a lack of funding. No other internal combustion engine would be developed until Nicholas Otto began his experiments 35 years later.


Bioenergy timeline edit
Future goals: 2030 - 2025 - 2022 - 2020 - 2018 - 2017 - 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010

Past developments: 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 1996 - 1992 - 1981 - 1973 - 1947 - 1942 - 1940 - 1937 - 1935 - 1932 - 1921 - 1918 - 1906 - 1861 - 1860 - 1834 - 1826


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