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 Crude Oil TagsBiodiesel
Crude Oil
Energy Balance
Exhaust Emissions
Fischer Tropsch
Fuel Cell
GHGenius 2.3
GHGenius 2.5
GHGenius 3.10
GHGenius 3.11
GHGenius 3.13
GHGenius 3.16
GHGenius 3.20
GHGenius 3.3
GHGenius 3.8
GHGenius 4.03
Hydrogen Transportation
Land Use
Mixed Alcohols
Natural Gas
United States
 Crude Oil Production Update 2013
 Prepared March 2013
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A significant number of changes have been made to the crude oil production calculations in GHGenius. More individual countries have been added, additional sources of information on the energy use and GHG emissions in producing countries have been reviewed, and some enhancements in the calculation of GHG emissions from gas flaring has been made.

The emissions from the production of crude oil, particularly crude oil produced outside of Canada, remains a subject of significant interest. New information has become available from work funded by Alberta Energy that looked at crude oils that are supplied to European refineries, the California Air Resources Board have released their OPGEE model and estimated carbon intensities of crude oils refined in California, and other publications on the subject have been produced.

One of the shortcomings in the current version of GHGenius is the degree of aggregation for foreign crude oils. Ten countries supply more than 75% of the imported crude oil but only 13% of the imports are from a specific country in the model and the rest are combined into a region. Some of these regions are likely to have quite different production characteristics, Russia and Norway for example. We have added seven more countries to the model so that imports from the top ten countries can be modelled as countries rather than regions.

The structure of the model has required the same changes to be made to the US regions, India and Mexico. At the same time import data up to the calendar year 2011 has been added to the model. Crude oil quality and production emissions have been reviewed and updated for the new countries as well as the regions that are not being changed. The recent Alberta Energy work, the OPGEE results, the annual OGP data, and any new sources that can be found have been reviewed for use in the model.

All of the crude oil transportation distances have been reviewed as we added the new countries to the model. We have paid particular attention to transportation distances in the country of origin prior to reaching the shipping port. We have also reviewed and added power production for oil production to each of the new countries.

A large number of changes were made to the model but the changes with the most impact on the emissions were related to venting, flaring, and fugitive emissions. These are calculated more rigorously in the model now. For most regions of the world this has resulted in an increase in methane released for crude oil production and this increases the lifecycle GHG emissions. We have updated the emissions from flaring and venting associated with crude oil production. The World Bank flaring project has released updated data for 2010 that will be reviewed for the model. Flaring emissions will be done in a more rigorous manner so that N2O emissions are also included, not just the methane and CO2 emissions.

There were very few changes made to the oil production data for Canada. Just a reduction in energy use in the offshore region and the changes in the calculation of flaring emissions, where the volume for Canada did not change but the emission calculation did.

Tags: Crude Oil - GHGenius 4.03
 2013 US Update
 Prepared March 2013
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The update of the core US data in the model has resulted in some changes in some of the pathways. As expected, the carbon intensity of electric power has been reduced due to the competitiveness of natural gas. There was reduced coal use for electric power and increased gas consumption. Hydropower also increased in the US West region, the only region with significant hydropower, although this could be due to annual weather patterns.

Overall there is little change in the GHG emissions for petroleum products. Increased emissions for crude oil production have been offset by reductions in the refinery. CNG for light and heavy-duty vehicle use have slightly larger GHG emission reductions compared to gasoline and diesel fuel in this version of GHGenius compared to version 4.02. Natural gas production energy use is lower in the latest set of data from the US EIA.

Natural gas as a transportation fuel is gaining attention in the US and in Canada. It was shown earlier that there are some reductions in the natural gas emissions delivered to an industrial user as a result of the data update. These upstream emissions should also be apparent in the natural gas for vehicle pathways, along with any changes in the electric power carbon intensity.

The update of the energy data has a small impact on the emissions for corn ethanol and soybean biodiesel, as natural gas and electricity have lower carbon intensities as a result of this update.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - GHGenius 4.03 - Natural Gas - United States
 Oil Refining Update
 April 2011
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The GHG emissions related to the production and use of petroleum fuels are very important, as these fuels are used in most fuel production pathways and, for all alternative fuels, gasoline or diesel fuel represents the reference fuel to which the alternative fuel is compared.

This GHGenius update has involved an in depth review of the emissions associated with oil refining and oil production in Canada. This included some structural changes to the model and the inclusion of more real world data and fewer assumptions. The oil refining section of the model now has time series of data for energy consumption in Canadian oil refineries, a revised and improved method for calculating the allocation of the emissions between products, and increased flexibility for modelling a specific refinery. It also has revised factors for estimating the emissions when the crude oil properties are changed.

The model results, in most cases, are aligned with the reported GHG emissions from refineries. The CAC emission factors for CO, SOx and NOx have also been adjusted to better match the reported emissions. The previous factors were based on early sector wide emissions and, now that these emissions are reported annually, clearer trends have emerged.

This new version of GHGenius provides the capacity for refiners to model individual refineries relatively easily. The cells where users could input their own data are clearly distinguished and it is no longer necessary to override any of the data or calculations in GHGenius to model a specific refinery. Most of the other LCA models don’t have this capability.

The model also allows refiners to change the refined products slate when they change the crude oil charged. Combined with the new allocation system, this will calculate any benefits that different crude oils may provide in terms of more of the high intensity products produced at the expense of the low value, low allocation, heavy products.

Tags: Crude Oil - GHGenius 3.20 - Refining
 Oil Production Update
 April 2011
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As more focus is placed on different industrial processes, more data on those systems becomes available. The crude oil systems in GHGenius have been updated several times but the most recent update was two years ago and more data is now available. It was therefore appropriate to undertake a thorough review and update of the crude oil pathways in GHGenius. The scope of this work is discussed below.

1. International Crude Oil Supply to Canada
About 50% of the crude oil that is refined in Canada is imported. The quantity of crude oil and its destination is reported by Statistics Canada and a time series of data has been produced for each of the regions in the model from 1985 to the present time. This data has been added to the model (sheet Z) and used as the basis for future projections.

2. Energy Requirements International Crude Production
The energy required to produce international crude oils has been essentially static in GHGenius (sheet S). A time series of data is produced by the International Oil and Gas Producers Association. It covers about one third of the world’s crude oil production. Data is available from 2001 to 2009. This data has been analyzed to establish some trends for the model.

3. Canadian Crude Oil Production Trends
GHGenius does not currently have total crude oil production data for Canada. The model has focussed on the crude oils that are refined in Canada. Since there is some interest in the emissions impact of crude oils that are exported from Canada this data has been added to the model.

4. Energy Requirements for Canadian Crude Oils
The energy requirements for producing conventional Canadian crude oil have been reported by CAPP and that data has been used in GHGenius. It has been reviewed and newer sources of information have been sought.

A time series of data on mineable oil sands statistics has been found that is produced by Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB). It includes complete mass and energy balance information for all operating mineable projects. The data has been reviewed and incorporated into the model.

Data on in-situ oil production is starting to be reported by ERCB and the data for 2009 and 2010 has been used for the model.

Another stage in the lifecycle has been added to the model to differentiate the emissions from bitumen production and bitumen upgrading. This has been done on sheet I, the Energy Balance sheet, and the Upstream Emission sheets (HHV and LHV).

5. Venting and Flaring Emissions Canadian Crude Oils
The venting and flaring data for Canadian crude oil production was updated in 2004. At that time there had been a concerted effort by the industry to reduce these emissions and some success was evident from the data. A projection of future improvements was made based on the trends. More recent data provided by Alberta Energy suggests that the annual improvements ceased about 2006, so this issue has been re-evaluated in the model.

6. Carbon Capture and Storage
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is one GHG emission reduction strategy that is potentially applicable to emission sources. Bitumen upgrading and synthetic oil production are two potential applications of this technology. The carbon capture and storage technology can also be applied in the refineries and GHGenius has had the capacity to model CCS for these sectors for some time. This function in the model is reviewed, updated, and documented.

7. Co-generation of Power and Steam
Some oil sands upgraders produce their own power and export some back to the grid. This can be handled in GHGenius through the use of a negative consumption of electricity but this does not provide any flexibility in how it is modelled. In other systems that produce electricity as a co-product the model provides full flexibility, this allows the modeller to choose what power source is being displaced; this approach has been extended to upgrader operations.

8. Refinery Energy Use
The energy use data for refineries in GHGenius had been based on 2002 data and significant changes in the industry have taken place since then, such as the introduction of low sulphur gasoline and ultra low sulphur diesel fuel. This work has tried to develop consistent regional data sets, and time series of data, which can be used in the GHGenius model.

A literature review has been undertaken on changes in refining energy requirements with changes in crude density and sulphur content and changes in the way that the model deals with these issues has been made.

9. Refinery Energy Use Allocation
The other important parameter related to refineries is the allocation of emissions between products. The current allocation process has been reviewed and significant changes have been made to make the process more functional.

Tags: Crude Oil - GHGenius 3.20 - Refining
 US Update
 April 2011
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The report covers work on the regionalization of the US fuel production pathways and the updating of the basic data that covers US electric power production, US natural gas production and flows, US crude oil production and flows, and the US petroleum refining sector. The revised model resulting from this work has more functionality for modelling various scenarios in the US and more up to date data on the traditional US energy sector.

This report has been prepared to document the changes that have been made to GHGenius in terms of updating US data and the regionalization of some of that data. The version of the model that accompanies this report is GHGenius 3.20.

This work added US regional buttons to the Input sheet, these install regional values much like the Canadian regional and Provincial buttons. This makes it much easier to run US regional scenarios.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - GHGenius 3.20 - Refining
 Crude Oil Land Use Emissions
 Prepared September 2009
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The intense discussion concerning indirect land use change emissions for biofuels has highlighted the lack of analysis of indirect emissions associated with crude oil production and possible gaps in the assessment of direct land use change from crude oil production.

This work looked for Canadian data sources to determine if good original source data is available to make more accurate, current estimates of direct land use change associated with crude oil production. This report identifies the issues, discusses the available data and data gaps, and suggests a path forward.

Land use change emissions from the production of oil and gas in Canada are probably a relatively small fraction of the total lifecycle emissions of petroleum products in most cases. There has been some work done on quantifying the amount of land disturbed by the various activities that are undertaken prior to production commencing. This quantification does require some assumptions to be made but a variety of estimates found in the literature do cluster in a relatively narrow range.

The results of the estimates reveal that the land disturbed by oil sands extraction may be lower per unit of production than that for conventional oil and gas production. The oil sands operations have higher productivity than oil and gas wells in Alberta and thus while the concentration of the disturbed land is higher than conventional oil production, the intensity of land disturbed per unit of oil produced appears to be lower.

While there is still a large degree of uncertainty with respect to land use emissions from petroleum production, it is clear that there are some land use emissions from all sources of petroleum production in Canada. Land disturbances in other parts of the world are expected to be at least similar to those in Canada but the GHG emissions will vary widely with local conditions. Tropical forests may contain above ground biomass quantities that are an order of magnitude higher than that found in the boreal forests of Canada. This will have a significant impact on land use emissions. Soil carbon levels are not expected to have as wide a range as above ground biomass but wetlands and peat soils do have high carbon contents and petroleum production in these regions can be expected to have higher GHG emissions from land use than well drained soils.

More work should be undertaken to determine accurate values for the change in carbon inventory in the lands impacted by oil production. This is particularly important for oil sands mining where significant overburden is removed.

Tags: Crude Oil - Land Use
 2009 GHGenius Update
 Prepared September 2009
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This report covers an update of the following data in GHGenius. In some cases the structure of the model has been slightly changed to accommodate the time series but any difference in the results is due to the new input data and not due to any structural changes in the way that the model handles the new data.

1. International crude oil energy and emissions. Several new data sources have recently been identified. These include the International Oil and Gas Association (a time series from 2002 of the energy and GHG emissions of crude oil production for various regions of the world), data from the Alberta Energy Research Institute studies (some specific useful information for countries such as Mexico, Venezuela, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia), and the World Bank flaring study.

2. Canadian electricity. A time series of electric power production on a regional basis in Canada from 2000 has been be developed from Statistics Canada data. Regional generation efficiencies and proportions of power types have been extracted from the data.

3. Rail energy. Statistics Canada has a time series data for freight movement on Class 1 railways. This data has been compared to similar information from the United States and incorporated in the model.

4. Potash mining. Statistics Canada, CIEEDAC, and NRCan Comprehensive Energy Use Database provide a time series for energy consumption, quantity and type. This has been compared to the NRCan CIPEC report that was used as a data source in the model. The new information has been incorporated into the model.

5. Nitrogen fertilizer. Statistics Canada, CIEEDAC, and NRCan Comprehensive Energy Use Database all have a time series for information on this sector. These data sets do not include process energy consumption but that can be calculated. The data sets have been compared to the NRCan CIPEC report that was the base of data in the model.

6. Corn and Soybeans. Fertilizer and yield time series available from the USDA. Some Statistics Canada yield data on these crops and other Canadian crops is available as well. This time series data has been incorporated into the model.

7. Ethanol and Biodiesel energy requirements. New data from the United States is available for both these alternative fuels. An update and development of a time series for ethanol has been incorporated into the model.

8. Some users have identified a number of enhancements for the functioning of the EV macro in GHGenius. These modifications have been incorporated into GHGenius. They provide more functionality and having them in the public model will allow them to be continually updated as model enhancements are undertaken.

9. Natural gas update. The Canadian Gas Association has provided some recent information on distribution emissions. Unfortunately the report did not provide activity data but that that has been developed from other sources. In addition Statistics Canada has data on the natural gas sector and this will be reviewed to see if it can be worked into the model.

Tags: Biodiesel - Corn - Crude Oil - Electricity - Ethanol - Fertilizer - GHGenius 3.16 - Natural Gas - Soybeans
 2008 GHGenius Update
 Prepared August 2008
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There have been a significant number of changes made to the model. The new version is 3.13. These upgrades have included incorporating more recent forecasts of future changes in the Canadian energy infrastructure, the capability of having a choice of GWPs to make comparisons with other studies and models easier, the ability to report emissions per unit of energy on either a higher or lower heating value basis, much expanded capacity to model oil sands operations, many changes to the land use calculations to make the results more regional specific, and a number of smaller changes. The changes have impacted all of the pathways in the model.

The two largest pieces of work included:
1. GHGenius has had default values for the production of synthetic crude oil by an integrated mining process. More and more synthetic crude oil is being produced by in situ mining (Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage or Cyclic Steam Stimulation), so pathways and default values for these alternate production systems have been added. There is now full flexibility in the model for combining bitumen extraction methods and integrated or stand alone upgraders.
2. A major upgrade of the methodology for calculating land use emissions (direct and indirect).
a. The IPCC 2006 guidance document has some small changes in the sources of N2O that are to be calculated as part of a national inventory. This includes N2O emissions resulting from a loss of soil carbon. This source has been added to the model along with an update of the IPCC default values.
b. An update on the issue of N2O emissions from crops that fix their own nitrogen has been included. There has been an update of the approach included in the model.
c. Environment Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada have made considerable progress in defining the appropriate regional emission factors for agricultural activities such as fertilizer application, cultivation practices and other land use activities rather than relying on the IPCC Tier 1 values. These emission factors, which are found mostly on sheet W, have now been regionalized.
d. The soil carbon changes calculations in the model have been changed to a more straightforward approach.
e. Within the model we have an above ground carbon offset due to nitrogen fertilization of biomass from fertilizer that is lost offsite. This is not included in the IPCC guidelines. We have modified the model so that this source can be included or excluded from the calculations by the user.
f. A discussion of above and below ground carbon changes has been included. The model has been modified so that the land use assumption for ethanol co-product credits are consistent with the energy and GHG emission credit calculations. A discussion of how to model both the direct and indirect land use changes for the biomass feedstocks in included.

Tags: Biodiesel - Canola - Corn - Crude Oil - Electricity - Ethanol - GHGenius 3.13 - Land Use - Soybeans - Wheat
 Energy Balance
 Prepared November 2007
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This work entailed the addition of a new Energy Balance sheet to the model. This sheet has tables of the secondary energy by fuel type for each stage of all of the pathways. There are tables for electricity, coal, natural gas, diesel fuel, biomass, crude oil, gasoline and another table to account for minor fuels such as LPG, coke, still gas, etc. From these tables the primary energy inputs into each pathway can be calculated from existing data in the model.
This approach of producing separate tables for each type of energy and then rolling all of the data into the primary energy table will not only add some structure to the primary energy calculations but it will also yield information on the types of fuel consumed in the pathways that will have value by themselves.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - Energy Balance - GHGenius 3.11 - Gasoline - Natural Gas
 US Data Update
 Prepared October 2007
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The report covers work on the regionalization of the US fuel production pathways, and the updating of the basic data that covers US electric power production, US natural gas production and flows, US crude oil production and flows, and the US petroleum refining sector. The revised model resulting from this work has more functionality for modelling various scenarios in the US and more up to date data on the traditional US energy sector.

This report has been prepared to document the changes that have been made to GHGenius in terms of updating US data and the regionalization of some of the data. The version of the model that accompanies this report is GHGenius 3.10.
There are some small changes in the average results for the United States for the fossil energy pathways as a result of this update. The results for Canada also show some very small changes as a result of updating some of the foreign oil production data and as a result of a few small structural improvements in the way that the US natural gas values are calculated.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - GHGenius 3.10 - Natural Gas
 2007 Crude Oil GHGenius Update Report
 Prepared April 2007
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The energy requirements for the production of Canadian crude oil have been updated. The energy data for the various classes of crude oil has been extracted from the NRCan report, “Canada’s Energy Outlook: The Reference Case 2006”. and incorporated into the data on sheet S in the model.

Other sources of information were sought to validate the Outlook data. In some cases these other sources were used where the data appeared to be more complete or could be corroborated. This has provided a better profile of the energy requirements for oil production in Canada.

The type of information included for all of the different types of crude oil has been expanded to include the density and the sulphur content. This way it is now possible to determine the actual oil density and sulphur content of the oil that is going into the refinery rather than using the essentially static values that were previously in the model.

Tags: Crude Oil - GHGenius 3.8 - Natural Gas - Refining
 GHGenius Sequestration Report
 Prepared April 2006
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The report covers work on the expansion of pathways and expanding the results from existing pathways. This work involved the following tasks and deliverables.

1. The potential to include carbon dioxide sequestration to a number of feedstock and fuel production pathways has been added to the model. There was previously a switch in GHGenius to account for carbon sequestration in thermal power generation but this was a very simply approach to the issue and it underestimated the emissions in the upstream portion of power generation. There are a number of other places where sequestration might be employed. These include gasification plants, oil sands upgraders, oil refineries, methanol, and ethanol plants. The capability of adding a sequestration step to all of these facilities has been added to GHGenius and the current switch for electric power plants has been removed to calculate the impact of carbon storage more robustly for power plants.

2. The capability of using biodiesel in the light duty diesel and light duty hybrid diesel vehicles has been added to the model. These pathways have also been added to the LDV Summary sheet and the Light Duty Cost effectiveness output sheets. This involved only the combination of existing fuel and vehicle pathways in the model.

3. The tables 51c and 51e on sheet I have been expanded to include all of the pathways in the model. This included the pathways that are primarily electric in nature. It should be noted that in GHGenius, electric power is treated as a primary energy source where a kWh of power is converted to 3,600 kJ of energy. Some other models consider electric power a secondary source of energy and account for the energy of one kWh based on the energy that went in to the power plant so there may be some differences in the results shown in GHGenius compared to some other models. We may want to consider changing this in the future.

4. For some types of oil production there are surface disturbances that will result in a loss of biomass and soil carbon. The emissions from these disturbances are included in the coal mining pathway but not in the oil sands pathways. The emissions from this source for oil production pathways have been added to the model where appropriate.

GHGenius has been modified to allow the incorporation of carbon capture and storage (CCS) into many of the fuel and energy pathways in the model. This has been accomplished in a manner that provides a significant amount of flexibility for the user. There is still a considerable amount of uncertainty with respect to the actual performance of CCS systems in real world applications. With some large projects now being proposed some real data may become available in a few years that can be used to further refine the values used in GHGenius.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - Ethanol - Fischer Tropsch - GHGenius 3.3 - Hydrogen - Methanol - Mixed Alcohols - Refining - Sequestration
 Hydrogen Pathways, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and En
 Prepared for Fuel Cells Canada and Natural Resources Canada in December 2003
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Fifty pathways for transportation fuels are evaluated for their lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions. Forty-five of those involve hydrogen. Thirty-six pathways have been investigated for their energy use and thirty-one of those involve hydrogen. The hydrogen pathways that are studied include the following components:
  • Feedstocks. The following feedstocks can be converted to hydrogen: coal, crude oil, natural gas, biomass, nuclear energy, and hydropower (can also be used as a proxy for wind and solar).
  • Intermediate Products. In addition to the direct production of hydrogen, some of the feedstocks mentioned above can produce various intermediate energy carriers that can be used for the eventual production of hydrogen; these include methanol, electricity, ethanol, LPG, FT Distillate, and gasoline.
  • Distribution. Hydrogen can be produced on site or it can be produced at a central facility. The distribution from a central facility can be as a liquid or a compressed gas. The compressed gas can be distributed by pipeline or by truck. Liquid hydrogen can be distributed by truck or rail. Some of the pathways will only be feasible with large central facilities that require hydrogen distribution while others could be small decentralized systems or large central systems. The impacts of the distribution system on the results are discussed and the most likely option for each pathway can be modeled.
  • Utilization. The hydrogen could be used in an internal combustion engine or in a fuel cell. The data in GHGenius for the hydrogen ICE has been reviewed with a literature search to ensure that it is consistent with the latest developments in this area.

Tags: Coal - Crude Oil - Fuel Cell - GHGenius 2.3 - Hydrogen - Hydrogen Transportation - Natural Gas
 Update of GHGenius
 Prepared for Natural Resources Canada in March 2004
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As part of this work, there have been several changes to the model. The version of the model that accompanies this report is GHGenius 2.5. A number of revisions and updates to the model were undertaken. The revisions generally have either improved the quality of Canadian data in the model or added functionality that makes the model more powerful for the user. In addition, two new cycles, based on processes developed by NRCan have been added to the model. These new cycles are the subject of a separate report. The objectives of the model updates were to:
  • Allow selection of ethanol cellulosic feedstock from the input sheet. Ethanol from lignocellulosic feedstocks could be produced from a variety of feedstocks including wheat straw, corn stover, switchgrass, and hay.
  • Improve the quality and functionality of the emissions from crude oil production and refining in Canada. The model has been modified to use four different crude oil types, conventional, heavy, bitumen and synthetic.
  • Harmonize the methodology for the production of hydrogen from electrolysis with other methods.
  • Review and update the Canadian electricity mix.
  • Update the emissions of criteria air contaminants from heavy-duty diesel engines on Sheet H in light of the new emission standards being phased in this decade.
  • The latest LEM model by Dr. Mark Delucchi made many changes to sheet L that calculates emissions associated with materials. The documentation that describes the changes to determine the best data to use for GHGenius with particular attention to the data for Canada has been reviewed and the appropriate changes have been made to GHGenius.

Tags: Crude Oil - Electricity - Ethanol - Exhaust Emissions - GHGenius 2.5 - Lignocellulosic - Refining
(S&T)2 Consultants Inc. 2004 Important Notices