Confluent Energies, Inc. (“CEI”) is a Massachusetts-based corporation principally focused on developing and operating Advanced Technology GreenhousesTM (“ATG”) as the centerpiece of Phase III biorefineries. The energy to power and operate biorefineries can come from a multiplicity of clean, renewable, recyclable sources (such as cellulosic biomass, wind, solar, hydro, landfill gasses), depending on the ATG location. Typically, energy sources will be blended to provide needed redundancy, lower costs, and to assure reliability for continuous 24-hr, 7-day week operations. Conventional power plants, regardless of feedstock, are no more than 40% efficient, with the bulk of energy being in the form of heat, given off as effluents. The CEI process uses the normally wasted heat to operate ATGs, for a Combined Heat and Power system (CHP), thereby significantly improving efficiency and reducing operating costs. Additionally, carbon dioxide is normally emitted when burning feedstock to generate electricity. CEI reduces the carbon footprint by capturing CO2, and using it as plant food to enhance growth. More than one energy source may be used in a given location, depending on the availability of feedstock and the local power generation options. The ability to collectively use multiple clean energy sources increases efficiency and processing technologies. Clean energy is used to operate all ATGs, and to add value along the supply chain from raw feedstock to end products.
“Phase III biorefineries
correspond to the most developed/advanced type
of biorefinery They are not only able to produce
a variety of energy and chemical products, but
can also use various types of feed stocks and
processing technologies to produce the multiplicity
of industrial products our society requires.
The diversity of the products gives a high degree
of flexibility to changing market demands…and
provides various options to achieve profitability
and maximum returns.¹ ” Horticultural plants,
including vegetables and herbs as well as plant-based
nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals can be grown
in controlled, pesticide-free environments to
result in more rapid growth, and with consistent
quality. End products may include essential
oils for the cosmetic industry, pet-food supplements,
or growing plants specifically for the production
of specified high-value materials that are otherwise
difficult to synthesize. Examples are transgenenic
plants to produce non-mammalian genetic material,
and the production of pharmaceutical proteins
that are currently being developed and used
by the extensive biotechnology/biomedical industry.
CEI operations are eco-friendly and result in conserving water, non-use of pesticides, and in sequestering carbon, unlike conventional open-field agricultural methods, which are noted for environmentally insensitive practices. The Confluent Energy generation/agro-production approach has the potential for creating new agricultural-based sectors that can provide consumers with a wider selection of locally grown, higher quality foods on a year-round basis. Confluent Energies, Inc. is the basis for establishment of a new agro-based industry for the production of many products now extensively using fossil fuels.
¹ “Introduction to Chemicals
from Biomass” Clark/Deswarte, John Wiley and Sons