Oberon Fuels Names Propane and Agribusiness Leader Cinch Munson as Vice President, Commercial Development
Munson’s experience will be critical in expanding commercial production of renewable Dimethyl Ether (rDME)
Oberon Fuels, the world’s only producer of ultra-low carbon, renewable dimethyl ether (rDME) transportation fuels, announces that longtime propane industry executive and advocate Cinch Munson has joined the team as Vice President of Commercial Development. The appointment comes as Oberon has begun commercial production of rDME and is expanding market development across North America and around the world.
“Oberon Fuels is expanding on multiple fronts right now – from driving sales of rDME as a blending agent for propane users to unlocking the pathway for renewable hydrogen, and Cinch will be at the center of it all,” said Rebecca Boudreaux, Ph.D., CEO of Oberon Fuels. “From securing feedstock partnerships within the ag industry, to siting our next production facility to building awareness of rDME’s benefits to the global energy industry, Cinch is the perfect fit for this role.”
Munson has more than 20 years in the propane and agribusiness sectors. Most recently, he served as Senior Vice President, Business Development, for the Propane Education and Research Council (PERC), a trade association that promotes the safe and efficient use of propane fuels.
During his tenure, he led the propane industry’s growth efforts by leading business development on behalf of the US propane industry through partnerships, market development, product development, and product commercialization.
With an estimated Carbon Intensity (CI) value of -278 according to the California Air Resources Board, and similar handling and storage properties as propane, rDME can be an ideal blending agent to reduce the carbon intensity of propane. It can be produced at or near renewable feedstock sources using Oberon’s modular production technology. Because rDME is compatible with LPG, it requires minimal modifications to the existing global LPG distribution network and workforce, which have been safely handling and transporting similar molecules for more than a century.
“The synergies between rDME and the propane industry are unique, and rDME provides a remarkable pathway to not only further reduce the carbon footprint of today’s propane, but also unlock the future of hydrogen,” said Munson. “rDME is uniquely positioned to decarbonize the transportation sector and beyond.”
In June, Oberon and the Los Alamos National Laboratory were awarded grant funding from the U.S. Department of Energy for a project to scale-up steam reforming technology that would produce renewable hydrogen (rH2) from rDME at the point of use (i.e. a fueling station). This novel approach overcomes the two largest barriers to widespread hydrogen adoption: the lack of cost-competitive, sustainable production and lack of energy-dense storage and transport.
Renewable DME can be made from a variety of waste resources, but the most promising and the most scalable sources come from large agricultural resources, specifically around dairy and other livestock operations. Prior to joining PERC, Munson spent more than a decade in the agribusiness industry including Director of Market Operations at Mercaris, a provider of market information and trading platforms for certified and identity preserved crops; Manager of Product Quality and Innovation at Oxbow Animal Health; Associate Vice President at Mid-Plains Center for Enterprise; Verified Services Manager at AgInfoLink; and Market Analyst at Cattle-Fax.
Munson earned a Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Cum Laude in Animal Science with an emphasis in Life Sciences from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Master of Science (M.S.) in Animal Science with an emphasis in Systems Management and Nutrition from Colorado State University.
“Cinch has been instrumental in the growth of the propane industry through his leadership at PERC and his efforts will continue to benefit our industry,” said Tucker Perkins, President and CEO of the Propane Education and Research Council. “We look forward to finding new opportunities for the propane industry through collaboration with Cinch and Oberon.”
About Oberon Fuels
California-based Oberon Fuels is on a global mission to decarbonize transportation by producing a powerful, enabling molecule, dimethyl ether (DME). DME, which can range from being ultra-low carbon to carbon-negative, can significantly reduce the carbon footprint of the transportation sector and beyond 1) as an energy-dense, cost-effective means to move renewable hydrogen, 2) as a blending agent for LPG, and 3) as a diesel replacement. Oberon has challenged the status quo by introducing innovative solutions to the transportation sector to reduce its carbon footprint, vehicle emissions and improve local air quality while creating economic opportunity for the communities where they operate. In 2013, Oberon Fuels’ refinery in Brawley, Calif., produced the first fuel-grade DME in North America, and in 2021 produced the first-ever renewable DME in the US. Oberon’s DME has powered vehicle demonstrations around the world with Volvo Trucks, Mack Trucks, Ford, among others. Founded in 2010, Oberon Fuels is privately held with both private and strategic investors, including Suburban Propane Partners, L.P. (NYSE: SPH).
More information about Oberon Fuels is available at www.oberonfuels.com.
John Williams, Scoville PR for Oberon Fuels