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2014 Conference Presentations

Video PDF


What A Long Strange Trip It's Been
- Bob Armantrout, Central Carolina Community College & Altadore Investments
Bob Armantrout, Formerly of Pacific Biodiesel, Rocky Mountain Biodiesel, and currently with Central Carolina Community College and Altadore Investments. Bob has run biodiesel plants, closed biodiesel plants, and taught sustainability, farm management, and biodiesel to many students. He's also tried his had at turning human fecal sludge into fuel in Ghana. He burst onto the B100 scene at the Collective Biodiesel Conference in 2006 as the guy in the Hawaiian shirt who could make a GC spin like a top. He's served on the Board of Directors of Piedmont Biofuels, drives around on B100 and will offer some observations on the community as a whole.

Kelley Green Biofuel
- Kristopher Kelley, Kelley Green Biofuel
- Link Shumaker, Biofuels and Renewable Energy Industries
Link Shumaker and Kristopher Kelley will discuss their innovations and improvements at Kelley Green, a 100K gpy wvo based biodiesel plant in Kentucky. Link is a chemical engineer and former Piedmonter who has become a consultant to the community scale biodiesel industry. He has worked on a wide range of plants throughout the southeast and beyond.

Kristopher Kelley has been collecting grease for a long time. He's also been producing fuel. He and Link have developed a small scale methanol recovery system that could be an important innovation for community scale producers.

Life Cycle Analysis
- Lyle Estill, Piedmont Biofuels
Lyle presents a seminar on creating a life cycle analysis and will walk the group through what it takes to create one, how it works, and why it's important.

Lyle Estill is a founder of Piedmont Biofuels, and goes by the V.P. of Stuff, which is the title on his business card. He is the publisher of Energy Blog and has long been the “voice” of Piedmont Biofuels. He is the author of Biodiesel Power; the passion, people, and politics of the next renewable fuel. And he has written a bunch of columns and essays and such that you can check out here. He is the author of Small is Possible; Life in a Local Economy, and Industrial Evolution; local solutions for a low carbon future. His fourth book, about activism, is a collection of fourteen different authors: Small Stories, Big Changes; Agents of Change on the Frontlines of Sustainability.

Round Trip Education
- Andy McMahan, Central Carolina Community College
Andy McMahan, Central Carolina Community College. Andy is a former Board Member of Piedmont Biofuels, runs on B100, and has established the premiere biodiesel educational program on the Eastern Seaboard. At CCCC they can grow oilseed crops, crush them into oil, use the oil for cooking in their unique Natural Chef Program, spin the oil into fuel, and use the fuel to power the College's fleet--including the tractors that grew the oilseed crops in the first place. Andy will lead a tour of CCCC's remarkable campus/project.
Carolina Common Enterprise
- Becky Bowen & Thomas Beckett, Promethean Biofuels
Becky Bowen and Thomas Beckett help new and growing cooperatives in all sectors with planning, organizational support, and other technical assistance. They are helping to build the co-operative economy that is emerging throughout the south. Becky and Tom are business and legal professionals with plenty of cooperative development experience.
End To End Sustainable Production
- Jeremy Ferrell, Eco Complex Catawba Complex
Jeremy Ferrell, Appalachian State University. Jeremy did his PhD on sustainable biodiesel production. He is one of the brains behind the Eco-Complex in Catawba County, which captures methane from a landfill, incinerates it for electricity, sends the waste heat to the biodiesel plant which is fed by waste cooking oil from the community, along with virgin canola oil grown on the landfill, and crushed onsite. For those who skipped the field trip on Thursday, this is the session for you.
Ghent University Bio Based European Plant
- Roland Verhe
Biodiesel gets blamed for everything from flat tires, flatulence and emissions failures to complete engine failure. So it is very important to do our job perfectly and educate our users on how to use biodiesel successfully and sustainably. Best practices for B-99 retailing customer training, storage and fleet implementation.
Small Scale Biodiesel Production Using Enzyme Catalysts
- Rachel Burton, MARK-IV
In additional to being one of the co-founders of Piedmont Biofuels, Rachel led Piedmont's Research and Analytics department before spinning off her own Enzymatic catalysis endeavor. Rachel will be providing an overview of the method she and her team developed to pretreat high FFA feedstocks and produce a much cleaner glycerin by-product.
GOAL Model for Urban Redevelopment
- Marc Dreyfors
Marc Dreyfors is a serial social entrepreneur who is fixated on market externalities and human behavior associated with our Planet's Sixth Great Extinction. He has been active in the Fair Trade movement, biodiversity conservation and sustainable development. As an activist he has transitioned a brownfield site into a home for biodiesel distribution and a biodiesel bus company. He is currently working on training a community of color on concepts of sustainability.


Farm to Fuel
- Glenn Rodes, Oilseed Farmer from Virginia
Glen and his family have been farming land in Virginia's Shenandoah family for more than five generations. He has been making his own fuel, meal, and soap from oilseed he's grown for the past six years or so. Glen will share his common-sense, hands-on approach to farm scale fuel production.
Cotton of the Carolinas
- Eric Henry, T.S. Designs
Eric Henry is not just the founder of Burlington Biodiesel. He doesn't just run his family's fleet on B100. He is also the founder of T.S. Designs, a textile company that made its stand in the face of a vanishing industry. By converting to sustainable practices, creating a transparent supply chain, and fostering the first organic cotton crop in North Carolina since reconstruction, he has figured out how to survive in a very tough business environment.
Omaha Biodiesel Coop & Algae As A Feedstock For Biofuels
- Scott Williams, Omaha Biofuels Coop
Scott Williams, Ph.D is a founding member of Omaha Biofuels Cooperative and works professionally as a scientific researcher. Originally from Omaha, he attended Iowa State University, and has held appointments in Las Alamos, NM, and Berlin, Germany. His research has focused on advanced biofuels, including algae. He is passionate about science education, open access, and sharing information to appeal to the scientist in all of us.
Financing Ourselves
- Carol Peppe Hewitt, Author
Carol Peppe Hewitt was inspired by Slow Money to instigate peer to peer loans in our foodshed. She then branched out into non-food related businesses, and has placed over two million dollars worth of "self financed enterprises" in the Piedmont of North Carolina. Carol is a long standing member of Piedmont's Board of Directors, runs her family fleet on B100, and travels widely spreading her message of how to improve resilience in communities.
Holding The Contract
- Brian Potter, Potter Oil
Brian Potter is a third generation oilman who has long held the State Contract for petroleum fuel distribution in North Carolina. He's imported biodiesel from virtually everyone in the business, large and small, and has been North Carolina's premiere biodiesel distributor for many years. He will discuss the attributes he needs in a supplier, what he looks for in a C of A, and what a successful biodiesel business looks like.
Sustainable Oil Crops for the Southeast
- David Thornton, Clemson University
David is the founder of Piedmont's founded Design Build group in 2006 that designed and built 26 facilities worldwide. David now serves as Clemson University's Coordinator of Sustainable Biofuels program while completing his masters degree in bio engineering. David will cover black soldier fly oil oil, algae from glycerol, sunflower, canola, and oilseed radish.
Biodiesel Production - A Meat and Potatoes View
- Rudy Pruszko, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Rudy Pruszko will cover technologies, feedstocks, markets and the production process. Rudy will provide the “Meat and Potatoes” view (in words you can relate to) about making biodiesel and answering your questions. He will help to put in context what you learn at this conference and how to apply it. Rudy is an Iowa based biodiesel consultant who teaches at Iowa State. He has a manufacturing background with vast experience with plant design, engineering and troubleshooting. He's worked with most technologies, and feedstocks with all sizes of plants. He is co-author of Building a Successful Biodiesel Business.
High Tech, Low Cost Point of Sale and Pump Solutions
- Brian Roberts, Cowichan Biodiesel & Cowichan Energy
Brian Roberts, Cowichan Bio-Diesel Co-op will discuss the development of a more cost effective, standardised, open-source biofuel distribution model that can interface cheap surplus fuel pumps to inexpensive, cloud-based Point of Sale (PoS) systems is what’s needed to blow the lid off the growth potential for sustainable biofuels! Come to learn and to contribute to the collective development.

Watch all of the available conference videos at once!

2014 Press Coverage

Announcement of 2014 CBC Conference Location from Biodiesel Magazine
- Editorial Report on the conference from Ron Kotrba
- Report on Kelley Green Biofuels presentation from Biodiesel Magazine
- Report on Brian Potter's presentation from Biodiesel Magazine
- Report on Rudy Pruszko's presentation from Biodiesel Magazine
- Report on Jeremy Ferrell's Eco-Complex Tour from Biodiesel Magazine

- Blog Post on the 2014 Collective Biodiesel Conference

2014 Conference Sponsors

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