Open Letter - Electric Power Co-Op
We are at the beginning stages of forming a co-op that has its shareholders the farmers and the private sector. Our co-op is designed to take advantage of specific Government programs that should help you financially. We are surveying local farmers to see if you might want to grow a specific crop we have been researching for use as a feedstock (fuel) to make electricity using a state of the art generator – a somewhat new technology. We in turn would harvest and buy this crop from you. We also make animal feed from the parts of the plant that aren’t used for fuel.
We want to see if you’d be interested in growing this crop on some of your land this season as a test so you can get familiar with it. We supply you with free consultation and sell you the seeds for what we buy them for.
We would then hope that there will be enough farmers cumulatively to commit to growing 640 acres (or more) next year and forming a co-op. This 640 acres is the minimum amount of land we need to grow to have enough bio mass feedstock to run a one mega-watt generator. (Mega means one million. Abbreviated MW = 1 million watts) I This generator would produce 1 mw of electricity per HOUR, 20 hours a day, 360 days a year. This requires 640 acres.
Just to brush up on the language used here: Your electric bill is in kilo watt hours (Kilo Watts is Abbreviated normally to kw - a kw =1000 watts. For example a kw is ten 100 watt light bulbs running for one hour) Your family might use 800 kilo watt hours in a month.
A mega-watt sized generator of electricity would roughly produce enough power to run 750 homes. We sell this electricity that we would make to the power company at 7.5 cents a kw and the power companies then sell it to you for 11 cents or so. Typically power companies buy their power at 5 cents a kw.
You may want to make your own electricity, grow your own bio mass and produce your own animal feed and not be part of the co-op. We would be glad to help you. The affiliated companies you would need to talk to are independent of the co-op and are very happy to give you the sales data you need to make an independent decision. The Co-op has a management team embracing agricultural, technical and administrative to help you if you want to start your own co-op. The co-op embraces establishing regional farms with a wide variety of products to service your local community. The co-op is the sales outlet and the middle men between the farmer and the buying public.
The power companies are desirous of having independent producers of power that is made from green technologies. Also they save money because they do not have to invest in a new power plant. To build a nuclear power plant for example costs over $1600 per Kilo watt and ours cost about $50. Most permitting applications for new coal fired power plants get denied because coal produced electricity is responsible for 95% of the world’s CO2 (carbon di oxide.)
This CO2 is the exhaust from any combustion process. Your vehicle has a combustion engine mixing air and fuel and exits as exhaust CO2 for example. As you know CO2 is plant food. During photo synthesis it breathes in CO2 and uses the carbon in the CO2 to build the cells of the plant and exhales the oxygen – the O2 means two atoms of oxygen are exhaled to the atmosphere. We suspect that the reason for excess CO2 in our atmosphere is directly related to developing countries use of wood for cooking and slash and burn of forests for farmland. This practice allows a rapid depletion in plants that grow around these trees and an increase of the world’s deserts.
By using organic materials that are grown to make power we exhaust the same amount of CO2 from the generator that the plant took in to grow. Our system then has a carbon neutral footprint.
Who we are
Agricultural researcher / environmental inventor, Bill Loftus is the founder of this co-op concept. The integrated farm is a very old idea where nothing is wasted. The new thing is that our major crop is used to make electricity. Our integrated farm has the end goal to recycle and reuse the exhaust gas from the generators to supplement rapid growth of algae and vegetables in greenhouses. We recycle the Tilapia water that is rich in nutrients and supply these nutrients to our algae and green house plants.
Coupled to the integrated farm is the farming of Tilapia fish. In addition we have expect to introduce Rabbit farming along with Tilapia farming. On the bottom of the Tilapia tanks we plan on raising fresh water lobsters. It’s a little eco system.
We have a roster of our consultants that include engineers, rabbit processing and farming, farmers, vets, agronomists. They all have contributed their piece of this puzzle that makes the integrated farm a comprehensive collection of “smart thinking” using ideas that have been proven. This smart thinking results in you the farmer being more profitable per acre.
Chris Morrison, Inventor of the generator and CEO of Planet Green Solutions developed this state of the art system. This unique power generation system will benefit you the farmer, the community and create home grown, green electricity. We believe this system will play a major role in the coming years as the preferred alternate energy technology because we are not just growing a bio mass crop on our farm lands, but we prefer to think of it as we are growing a food crop first and the left overs is what we use to make electricity from.
What is kenaf?
Bill Loftus, founder of Power co-op, is pointing to kenaf’s seed pods. The top 4 feet of a typical
12 to 16 foot tall plant contains most of the seed pods. The bottom 8 feet we use as a
feedstock for the electrical generator. We have several harvests in one growing season.
The plant we grow is called kenaf. It is a cousin to okra and cotton. Kenaf is familiar to you as the fibers are used to make burlap and carpet backing. It has been grown mostly in China and India for centuries. Most kenaf varieties have leaves that look like marijuana and the one we focus on is a variety called Whitten. Whitten kenaf was developed by Mississippi State and named after Congressman Whitten who got the funding to develop this hybrid. Loftus found that the Whitten leaves actually taste good and animals like them as well. The high protein content of the leaves (Up to 34%) has allowed Loftus to explore some uses for the plant not usually done. He has some patents on this plant for use in a proprietary concrete mix, that is fire resistant and lightweight and insulated.
He discovered by accident that chickens loved the kenaf. He has been exploring kenaf since 1996 and has been invited as guest speaker at the Kenaf association. Loftus has been introducing kenaf to developing countries as a food and home meal cooking fuel instead of using wood from trees.
Haiti - Excerpts from a report from Reverend Antoine to Bill Loftus
The seeds were distributed and planted throughout several villages in
Haiti. Please let me explain, the first planting was in Mirebalais,
where the population is 280,000 where I was born. While in
Mirebalais, I gathered 25 villagers that were relying on the
government’s unpredictable subsidized food system. Kenaf was valuable
because when there was no food available the people could eat kenaf.
This in just 3 weeks! The leaves were continuously harvested each week
thereafter. When we showed Tibe a member of our church he organized
villagers and even went on the radio station and told many people
about kenaf and trained them with your video and gave out seeds. I
know of a little village of 2000 people that kenaf fed in part and
kept many people from hunger. The local people have come up with
several recipes now and loved the taste. They use it in baking and
making a legume soup.
Bill Loftus filling the stove he invented with kenaf. After cooking the family meal the stove makes bio char and not ash. Note the bio char briquettes made from this waste.
As a result of his research to make a soil amendment by using a process of charring the kenaf to make charcoal – called bio char- he found that kenaf creates an unusually high amount of the gas that comes out of the kenaf. It is this gas that is used to run the electrical generator Chris Morrison’s system is a thermal reactor, meaning it uses heat to change the solid state of the kenaf into a gaseous state. These gasses are combustible and are ideal for supplying the fuel for the whisper quiet Ford generator that produces the electricity. The exhaust from this system is mostly CO2 and we use it for feeding the plants. In all fairness our electrical power generation system exhausts oxygen.
The plant we grow is an annual plant called kenaf. The 3 parts of the plant that have market value:
1. The leaves and the branches that support the leaves are high in protein and digestible fiber. The tops of the plant are cut with a special harvesting machine. We expect to harvest for animal feed every 4 to 6 weeks during the growing season. This could be a net income of $400 to $800 per acre.
2. When the plant matures in early November the seed pods are harvested and used as a flour. This could be a net income to you of $300 to $500 an acre.
3. The stalks are left standing in the field to dry out and harvested as needed to supply the generator during the months of December, January, February and March. This could be a net income to you of $450 to $600 an acre. (Note $225 would be in the form of a USDA incentive.)
Several harvests are done in a single growing season. The combined net income for you the farmer is estimated at $1,150 to $1,900 per acre. There are several harvests with resultant payouts between the time periods between August to April.
Why the co-op?
A. The equipment used to harvest the plant and chop it to the correct size so it can be used as a feedstock for the electrical generator is pricey- $600,000. This is a bit much for one farmer to buy by himself. By being a member and shareholder in the Co-op we would own this equipment and we would harvest the crop for you.
B. We need a continuous supply of bio mass for 15 years because we have a contract to deliver the power for that long. By being in the co-op you will not only make money on your farming but will also own a piece of the power plant where you will receive your share of the profits.
C. We research the USDA and Farm Services Administration for financial incentives that will benefit you. We even propose changes to existing legislation so the wording of these bills can include our joint efforts. It’s not an overnight process. What we do here is make the complex bureaucratic paperwork and language into focused information. We wade through a general bill for example and then explain what’s in it for you in every-day language. We help you get all the information needed to fill out the forms so you just have to sign it. Of course we make all the information that is available to you to read. For example you will qualify for a $45 a ton bonus from the USDA to grow this crop and make green electricity. There are 135 pages of documents relating to this. But what this means is there is an extra $200 to $300 per acre in your pocket. We try and make it simple.
D. Our co-op also plans on using the kenaf for animal feed. Depending on your farm and what you want to raise – animals or if no animals – we would predict we would buy your animal feed to sell to farmers who have a need for it. The co-op charges $.10 (ten cents) a pound for harvesting and processing the leaves and branches into pellets for animal feed. We sell it to other farmers in our co-op for $.20 (twenty Cents) a pound. You make then $10 cents a pound. (please use these figures as estimates) This could work out to be an income for you of $400 to $800 per acre. Additionally we harvest the seeds separately and we predict an income for you of $300.
E. The Co-op intends on being a market outlet for the farmers in the co-op. For example we recommend farmers who want our integrated farm to grow Tilapia, and Rabbits. These animals consume a diet mostly of the pellets made from kenaf. We focus on these two animals because we plan on processing them in house or have an outlet to process them for us. You are not obligated to sell to us or to even raise any animals. You can use the animal feed to raise whatever you want and sell your farm products to any outlet you so desire. The United States imports about 750 million dollars a year in Tilapia. We think our integrated farmers would enjoy a market share and believe we have solved the reasons why Tilapia is not farmed in Florida.
F. The Co-op may buy or act as middle-men if you want to sell or lease your land. We are interesting in training beginning farmers on our integrated farm. There are guaranteed loans by the USDA to get families into a beginning farm and the newbies would use our program as the blueprint for how they will make an income. We hope to help qualify individuals who would not have this opportunity otherwise. We have an interest in cleared and un-cleared land.
An affiliated company makes bio char from some of the trees and stumps and another makes lumber from the good trees when the land is cleared. We predict bio char will prove to increase your yields dramatically. This is something we would like you to try.
About the generator
The electrical power plant we use is something new yet the technology is old. How it works. The power plant is a Ford Motor Company Generator that is designed to work on gas like propane. The fact that gas is a cleaner burning fuel makes the generator last. We expect to get a good ten years of service from these generators.
This is the smaller 20KW Ford Motor company Generator. This unit is mobile for doing demonstrations.
Inventor Chris Morrison starting the Thermal Reactor (oven) to make the gas that runs the generator.
How it works.
When you watch a fire burning you are witnessing a change of state of the wood from a solid to a gas. It is actually the gas coming out of the wood that is burning. This gas is called synthetic gas, or syn-gas for short. When this heat is applied to the wood or kenaf it releases these gasses. The gasses are hydrogen, carbon mon oxide and methane – all flammable.
In Chris’s thermal reactor, there is a controlled environment that minimizes oxygen in order to maximize the syngas. If a lot of outside air went into the thermal reactor the gas would mostly be carbon di-oxide which is not a flammable gas.
The heat created in the thermal reactor is extremely hot because it is mostly the hydrogen, Hydrogen is mostly why the heat reaches such high temperatures. Our sun is burning hydrogen too. Then just as soon as there is syngas coming from the kenaf it is exited from the reactor. It is then cooled, and filtered so it can power the generator.
The beauty of what Chris and his team did is to produce a sophisticated monitoring/governing system where the syngas is analyzed by a computer control of his design and fed into the generator at the right ratios. We compare Chris’s control system to the brain that is your vehicle that controls the amount of fuel and air to be mixed so the engine runs efficiently. The end result is that his system requires no human intervention or skill to operate.
It is extremely safe because the engine is consuming the gas as its created. There is no storage of gas. The exit gasses are cleaner than any other system. The pollutants that are normally given off by combustion engines are eliminated.
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