May 17, 2020

Pennsylvanians' 100 Days of Climate Reform Action

Citizens for Pennsylvania
3 min
State sets the precedence for climate action
By Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture) When President Obama stated at his second inauguration that we have a moral obligation to fight...


By Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture)

When President Obama stated at his second inauguration that we have a moral obligation to fight climate change, Pennsylvanians saw it as a call to action. Over the past 100 days, a coalition of environmental groups including PennFuture, National Wildlife Federation, Clean Air Council, PennEnvironment, and Sierra Club have joined with Pennsylvania citizens to help fulfill that obligation by holding events across the state and generating more than 6,200 grassroots activities directed toward policymakers. These actions highlighted the need for the President and his administration to follow through on his promises to limit industrial carbon pollution that causes climate change and endangers the health of our communities.

"President Obama called climate action an 'obligation' and we spent the last 100 days showing the President we support his fulfillment of that obligation and look forward to his prioritizing American leadership on climate and clean energy during his second term," said Joy Bergey, federal policy director for PennFuture. "Right now, after the Obama Administration missed a recent court-ordered deadline, the EPA can finalize a Carbon Pollution Standard for power plants and then immediately turn its attention to curbing carbon pollution from existing power plants. These are the largest producer of dangerous carbon pollution, and a strong carbon pollution standard would be a major step forward in protecting public health, especially of our children and seniors."

In addition to the efforts in Pennsylvania, groups across the nation participated in many local actions over the last 100 days to highlight our climate action obligation that included:

1. 13,899 participants in climate change activities nationwide; and

  1. 17,226 grassroots activities nationwide, such as climate change awareness events, letter writing, and phone calls to policy makers.

Those who participated say we've waited long enough for our leaders to act to protect our health and build our economy using cleaner, safer energy technology.

"People of faith recognize that we have a moral calling to care for each other and for Creation. Every year, power plants dump more than two billion tons of dangerous industrial carbon pollution into our shared air, impairing our children's health and their futures. We can work to make our lives as energy-efficient as we can, but neither individuals nor congregations can change the way power is generated," said Cricket Eccleston Hunter, executive director of PA Interfaith Power & Light. "The EPA should complete the final version of the proposed and reviewed new source standards without further delay."

There are also benefits to the economy of moving forward. "Just as the Obama administration's clean car standards are helping rebuild the American auto industry, these power plant standards to protect human health will promote the innovation and investment needed to create jobs," said Christina Simeone, director of the PennFuture Energy Center.

PennFuture is a statewide public interest membership organization, founded in 1998, with staff in Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Wilkes-Barre. PennFuture's activities include litigating cases before regulatory bodies and in local, state, and federal courts; advocating and advancing legislative action on a state and federal level; public education; and assisting citizens in public advocacy.

The Philadelphia Inquirer called PennFuture the "state's leading environmental advocacy organization;" the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette named the organization "one of the 10 most influential groups on the issue of natural gas drilling;" and StateImpact Pennsylvania, an online collaboration of NPR stations across the state, called PennFuture "the commonwealth's main environmental advocate."

SOURCE Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture)


Read More in Energy Digital's April Issue



Share article

Oct 19, 2020

Itronics successfully tests manganese recovery process

Scott Birch
3 min
Nevada firm aims to become the primary manganese producer in the United States
Nevada firm aims to become the primary manganese producer in the United States...

Itronics - a Nevada-based emerging cleantech materials growth company that manufacturers fertilisers and produces silver - has successfully tested two proprietary processes that recover manganese, with one process recovering manganese, potassium and zinc from paste produced by processing non-rechargeable alkaline batteries. The second recovers manganese via the company’s Rock Kleen Technology.

Manganese, one of the four most important industrial metals and widely used by the steel industry, has been designated by the US Federal Government as a "critical mineral." It is a major component of non-rechargeable alkaline batteries, one of the largest battery categories sold globally.

The use of manganese in EV batteries is increasing as EV battery technology is shifting to use of more nickel and manganese in battery formulations. But according to the US Department of Interior, there is no mine production of manganese in the United States. As such, Itronics is using its Rock Kleen Technology to test metal recoverability from mine tailings obtained from a former silver mine in western Nevada that has a high manganese content. 

In a statement, Itronics says that its Rock Kleen process recovers silver, manganese, zinc, copper, lead and nickel. The company says that it has calculated – based on laboratory test results – that if a Rock Kleen tailings process is put into commercial production, the former mine site would become the only primary manganese producer in the United States.

Itronics adds that it has also tested non-rechargeable alkaline battery paste recovered by a large domestic battery recycling company to determine if it could use one of its hydrometallurgical processes to solubilize the manganese, potassium, and zinc contained in the paste. This testing was successful, and Itronics was able to produce material useable in two of its fertilisers, it says.

"We believe that the chemistry of the two recovery processes would lend itself to electrochemical recovery of the manganese, zinc, and other metals. At this time electrochemical recovery has been tested for zinc and copper,” says Dr John Whitney, Itronics president. 

“Itronics has been reviewing procedures for electrochemical recovery of manganese and plans to move this technology forward when it is appropriate to do so and has acquired electro-winning equipment needed to do that.

"Because of the two described proprietary technologies, Itronics is positioned to become a domestic manganese producer on a large scale to satisfy domestic demand. The actual manganese products have not yet been defined, except for use in the Company's GOLD'n GRO Multi-Nutrient Fertilisers. However, the Company believes that it will be able to produce chemical manganese products as well as electrochemical products," he adds.

Itronics’ research and development plant is located in Reno, about 40 miles west of the Tesla giga-factory. Its planned cleantech materials campus, which will be located approximately 40 miles south of the Tesla factory, would be the location where the manganese products would be produced.

Panasonic is operating one of the world's largest EV battery factories at the Tesla location. However, Tesla and other companies have announced that EV battery technology is shifting to use of nickel-manganese batteries. Itronics is positioned and located to become a Nevada-0based supplier of manganese products for battery manufacturing as its manganese recovery technologies are advanced, the company states.

A long-term objective for Itronics is to become a leading producer of high purity metals, including the U.S. critical metals manganese and tin, using the Company's breakthrough hydrometallurgy, pyrometallurgy, and electrochemical technologies. ‘Additionally, Itronics is strategically positioned with its portfolio of "Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies" to help solve the recently declared emergency need for domestic production of Critical Minerals from materials located at mine sites,’ the statement continues.

The Company's growth forecast centers upon its 10-year business plan designed to integrate its Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies and to grow annual sales from $2 million in 2019, to $113 million in 2025.

Share article