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Waste-to-fuel firm retains advisors, plans California plant sale out of bankruptcy

A Canadian waste-to-fuel firm has retained bankers and is planning to conduct a sale of a state-of-the-art plant near Los Angeles.

Anaergia, an Ontario, Canada-based waste-to-fuels firm, has hired an advisor for a strategic review, and is planning to run a bankruptcy sale of its plant in Rialto, California.

Rialto Bioenergy, the Anaergia subsidiary that owns the plant, filed for bankruptcy in May, and is planning to conduct a sale with a milestone to consummate a transaction by April, 2024, according to bankruptcy documents.

Rialto is owned 51% by Anaergia and 49% by Igneo Infrastructure, a stake it acquired in 2020.

Anaergia meanwhile has retained Piper Sandler to conduct a strategic review of the company, citing management’s previous statements that it will need additional liquidity to continue as a going concern.

A source familiar with the matter said Piper Sandler will also advise on the Rialto asset sale, pending approval by parties to the Chapter 11 process. Representatives of Anaergia and Piper Sandler did not respond to requests for comment.

B. Riley Securities has also been retained as financial advisor and valuation consultant to the company, filings show.

Rialto Bioenergy’s bankruptcy, filed in the Southern District of California, was precipitated by a lack of feedstock available to the facility as a result of a delay in the implementation of organic waste diversion laws in Los Angeles. The delay caused insufficient revenues to cover Rialto’s costs and debt service, according to the company.

It owns a multi-feedstock bioenergy facility that converts organic waste into carbon-negative RNG, with the capability to also generate renewable electricity and fertilizer. The facility can process up to 1,000 tons per day of waste and convert it into up to 1,000,000 MMBtu per year of RNG.

In Chapter 11, Rialto reached an agreement for a $30m debtor-in-possession loan arranged by UMB Bank, a stipulation of which was to retain an investment banker to sell the waste facility. 

A final hearing for approval of the DIP loan is scheduled for October 16, while the motion to approve sale procedures will be heard at a hearing on October 30.

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JX Nippon joins investment consortium for Louisiana SAF plant

JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration Corporation has joined Sumitomo Corporation in an investment consortium supporting a Louisiana bioenergy with CCS sustainable aviation fuel plant.

JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration Corporation and Sumitomo Corporation have executed consortium agreements to manage investment in the Louisiana Green Fuels BECCS project at Port of Columbia, Caldwell Parish, Louisiana, according to a news release.

The project is developing a SAF production plant with renewable Naphtha as a byproduct utilizing woody biomass waste, such as thinning, with the production capacity of 32 million gallons (120,000 kiloliters) per year and the scheduled commercial operation date in 2029.

It will convert woody biomass waste into synthesis gas, and then synthesize and upgrade it into SAF and renewable naphtha. The Project is powered by a biomass-fired power plant using sawmill and other woody biomass waste attached with carbon dioxide capture and storage facility addressing CO2 emitted from the project, both installed onsite and owned by the project. As a result, the SAF and RN produced from this integrated project achieves deeply negative carbon emission (equivalent to removing nearly 300,000 passenger cars from the road every year). Once complete, the project will create approximately 150 direct jobs onsite, while five to six times as many indirect job opportunities are also expected and will contribute to the improvement of the local quality of life.

This project, which contributes to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the enhancement of energy security, will accelerate the development based on the utilization of various U.S. government support measures, including the Inflation Reduction Act and the Department of Energy’s Title 17 Clean Energy Financing Program established to promote clean energy technologies.

Sumitomo, through its subsidiary Sumitomo Corporation of Americas (SCOA) entered into Joint Development Agreement with Strategic Biofuels on the Project in February 2024. JX, through its subsidiary JX Nippon Oil Exploration (U.S.A.) Limited, and SCOA will jointly establish a consortium Magnolia Sustainable Energy Partners to manage and make investment in the Project.

According to the agreement, SCOA takes an anchor position and leads the formation of a Japanese-based investment consortium aimed at funding the majority of development capital needed to carry the project to FID and commencement of construction in early 2025. As part of the agreement, SCOA will also acquire rights at FID to participate for a portion of the full project equity requirement.

SCOA intends to provide a 20-year offtake for the approximately 640 million gallons of renewable fuels produced as well as all state and federal renewable fuel credits.

Additionally, SCOA and NOEX USA will explore further business opportunities in DACCS, BECCS, and other CCS and CDR fields by leveraging the Sumitomo Corporation Group’s global initiatives in the CCUS sector and the abundant expertise and technological capabilities of the JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration Corporation Group.

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Tailwater Capital partners with renewable diesel and SAF developer

The company, Ash Creek Renewables, serves North American renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel producers through its feedstock marketing, distribution, pretreatment and logistics operations.

Tailwater Capital LLC, an energy and growth infrastructure private equity firm, has agreed to a partnership with Ash Creek Renewables, a platform dedicated to developing renewable fuel feedstock solutions to meet the demands of the growing renewable fuels market, according to a news release.

Terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

The company serves North American renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel producers through its feedstock marketing, distribution, pretreatment and logistics operations.

Dallas-based Tailwater Capital is an energy and growth infrastructure private equity firm with $4.4bn in commited capital.

Ash Creek is led by chief executive officer John Cusick, who has over 20 years of experience in the low carbon fuels sector. Previously, Cusick was an owner of The Jacobsen, the leading consultancy for the renewable fuels industry. Prior to The Jacobsen, Cusick held senior positions at Renewable Biofuels, Inc., Glencore and Morgan Stanley.

“We are thrilled to partner with Tailwater as we embark on this exciting new chapter,” Cusick said. “Pairing Ash Creek’s deep industry knowledge, capabilities and multi-decade relationships in the renewable fuels industry with Tailwater’s experience in downstream-adjacent infrastructure creates an ideal partnership to execute our strategy.”

“Ash Creek will make an incredible addition to our portfolio and aligns well with our growth infrastructure expertise that has been developed through over a decade of investing in the downstream-adjacent infrastructure, renewable fuels, and logistics sectors,” said Edward Herring, co-founder and managing partner of Tailwater. “We are excited to partner with Ash Creek as they continue to develop meaningful solutions for renewable fuel producers.”

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BayoTech hires VP of development

The new hire, Jack Hedge, will be responsible for leading the development of hydrogen projects in North America.

New Mexico-based BayoTech Hydrogen has hired Jack Hedge as its new vice president of hydrogen hub development, according to a press release.

Hedge will be responsible for leading the development of hydrogen projects in North America. He will lead a team that is developing relationships with host property managers, community stakeholders, regulators, and local government officials who are interested in decarbonization.

“BayoTech is on the verge of making hydrogen production local and hub development is how we achieve it,” said BayoTech President & CEO, Mo Vargas. “Jack has years of experience in developing and executing major projects for some of the most recognized ports in the nation. That experience paired with his dedication to clean energy projects is exactly why we thought he was the right person to lead this phase of growth. We are delighted to have Jack’s leadership, passion for making the world better and experience both as a developer and as a project host to support customers decarbonization goals and drive projects to completion.”

“I am excited to begin this next chapter and blend all my previous experience into something truly meaningful and impactful. Working with the team at BayoTech we will lead the way to truly “smart, sustainable and equitable” supply chains,” Hedge said in the release.

Prior to joining BayoTech, Jack served as president of Utah Inland Port Authority, where he was responsible for developing and building one of the nation’s leading sustainable intermodal logistics hubs. Jack has also worked as the director of cargo and industrial real estate for the Port of Los Angeles where he lead the development, leasing, and asset management functions of the largest container port complex in North America.

BayoTech last year agreed to a memorandum of understanding with Carbon Clean under which the two parties will work togeterh on a demonstration facility to evaluate, design, and operate a carbon capture plant at a BayoTech site in North America which is expected to be operational by the end of 2022.

Investors in BayoTech include Newlight Partners, Opal Fuels, Nutrien, The Yield Lab, Cottonwood Technology Fund, Sun Mountain Capital and Caterpillar Venture Capital Inc.

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Waste-to-hydrogen developer hires advisor for equity raise

A California developer of waste-to-hydrogen projects has mandated a boutique advisor to raise equity for early-stage project development and is planning a larger funding round in early 2024.

Clean Energy Enterprises, the holding company of awaste-to-hydrogen project developer based in Long beach, California, hasmandated a financial advisor to raise equity for early-stage development, CEO Jean-LouisKindler said in an interview.

Costigan Capital Partners, of Vancouver, Canada, has beenretained to raise an early round of $5m, Kindler said. That liquidity, split evenlybetween a demonstration project in California and operations, will last aboutone year.

Clean Energy is the holding company of WaysH2, which is thecompany developing the projects.

Next year Clean Energy will conduct a raise of equity anddebt between $30m and $50m, Kindler said.

Clean Energy, which is owned by five founding partners and earlyfriends-and-family backers, is also narrowing options for the first WaysH2 commercialproject in the US, Kindler said. The company has a client that will use hydrogenfor municipal transportation in the southwest.

The group has a relationship with Spanish EPC firm TechnicasReunidas and plans to pursue another demonstration project in either Spain or Portugal.

The technology play is waste-to-hydrogen at landfillprojects to serve end users in local mobility and waste processing energyrequirements.

He pointed to California’s SB 1383 regulations, which mandatesa reduction of organic waste disposal by 75% by 2025.

“It will be used locally,” Kindler said of the hydrogen. Thecompany is also in discussions with foreign ammonia producers. “We want to beclose to our clients.”

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Exclusive: Wisconsin RNG portfolio for sale with large renewables portfolio

A major Canadian utility is auctioning off four Wisconsin RNG assets as part of a larger renewables selldown. The subsidiary at auction has previously indicated that it would take part in Northeastern US hydrogen development.

Algonquin Power & Utilities is selling a package of four renewable natural gas assets, totaling 532 mmbtu, in Wisconsin as part of a larger renewables auction, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

JP Morgan is advising on the process, codenamed Project Power, the sources said.

The process comprises mostly operational onshore wind (2,325 MW) and solar (670 MW), along with an 8 GW development pipeline across 10 power markets, according to a teaser seen by ReSource. The renewable assets are collectively known as Liberty under the Algonquin banner.

The pipeline includes 1,600 mmbtu of RNG. The operational RNG assets reached COD in 2022.

Algonquin did not respond to requests for comment. JP Morgan declined comment.

The Wisconsin assets are apparently the former Sandhill Advanced Biofuels projects, which were acquired by Algonquin in 2022.

When that acquisition was made, it was announced that Liberty had signed on as a “hydrogen ecosystem partner” in the multi-state Northeast Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub. That hub ultimately was not selected by the US department of Energy for hub funding.

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Waste-to-hydrogen developer to close $100m capital raise this month

Raven SR’s C-round of financing is being run by two bulge-bracket banks, and the firm has received widespread interest from private equity and corporate strategics.

Raven SR, a US waste-to-hydrogen developer, is working on a $100m capital raise that’s expected to wrap up this month, according to four sources familiar with the matter.

Raven’s C-round of financing is being run by Barclays and Bank of America. The firm has received widespread interest from private equity and corporate strategics.

Raven CEO Matt Murdock said on the sidelines of the Hydrogen Americas event in Washington D.C. that he was hoping to have the raise done by Thanksgiving.

Headquartered in Wyoming with projects in California and Spain, the company uses a steam/CO2 reforming process that transforms municipal solid waste, organic waste and methane into clean fuels.

In August, 2021, Raven closed on a $20m strategic investment from Chevron U.S.A., ITOCHU Corporation, Hyzon Motors Inc. and Ascent Hydrogen Fund. Samsung Ventures made a strategic investment earlier this year, allowing the company to expand into the Asia-Pacific market.

The company has partnered with INNIO to use its Jenbacher engines to provide renewable power and heat to Raven SR’s first waste-to-hydrogen production facility at the Republic Services West Contra Costa Sanitary Landfill in Richmond, California.

Raven SR plans to bring the plant online in the first quarter of 2023, initially processing up to 99.9 tons of organic waste per day and producing up to 2,000 metric tons per year of hydrogen.

In Aragón, Spain, Raven SR is aiming to bring a second project online in 2023 that will produce 1,600 metric tons per year of renewable hydrogen from approximately 75 tons of organic solid waste per day.

Raven SR recently announced the election of Mark Gordon of Ascent Fund and Michael Hoban of Chevron New Energies to its Board of Directors.

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