In May 2011, the Bioenergy Technologies Office began sending out a monthly "News Blast," highlighting Office events, solicitations, publications, related blogs, and other relevant information. This page recaps the most recent news blast and archives the past blasts by month.
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July 2015 Blast Recap
Below are some highlights from the July 2015 News Blast.
“Sustainability in Bioenergy: A Nation Connected” Now Online!
From its big screen premier at Bioenergy 2015: Opportunities in a Changing Energy Landscape, “Sustainability in Bioenergy: A Nation Connected” is now available for viewing on your computer or electronic device! This short documentary highlights efforts by people and communities across America to develop, produce, and provide bioenergy, while ensuring it is environmentally, economically, and socially sustainable. The bioenergy supply chain connects people of many different regions, industries, and demographics—from farmers and families in the Midwest, to researchers and business owners on the East and West Coasts. Developed by the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) to expand the public’s understanding of the bioenergy industry and sustainable transportation, this documentary is a prelude to future film segments on sustainability in bioenergy practices.
Energy Department Selects Six Projects to Receive up to $18 Million to Develop Biofuels and Bioproducts from Algae
Algae offers a promising alternative to petroleum-based diesel and jet fuels and can also be used to make many valuable bioproducts, such as industrial chemicals, bio-based polymers, and proteins. To further the Energy Department’s goal of reducing the cost of advanced algal biofuels to $3 per gasoline gallon equivalent by 2030, DOE announced six projects that would receive up to $18 million in funding to develop technologies to produce valuable bioproducts and achieve higher biomass yields.
Study Finds Increased Carbon Intensity from Canadian Oil Sands
A recent study from Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) shows that gasoline and diesel refined from Canadian oil sands have a higher carbon impact than fuels derived from conventional domestic crude sources. BETO funded the study and conducted it in collaboration with Stanford University and the University of California, Davis. ANL is working to help characterize the environmental impacts of all types of transportation fuels, in addition to biofuels.
BETO Partners Win 20th Annual Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards
Congratulations to LanzaTech and Algenol for their 20th Annual Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards. The awards—sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the American Chemical Society—recognize outstanding chemical technologies that promote environmental and economic benefits using green chemistry. Both organizations have received funding from BETO and have demonstrated excellence in chemical technologies that incorporate green chemistry principals into chemical design, manufacturing, and use.
BETO Releases 2014 Annual Report
BETO made great strides in fiscal year 2014 toward developing sustainable bioenergy and bioproducts, which include supporting the opening of a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol biorefinery, reducing feedstock logistics costs, increasing algal feedstock yields, and establishing interagency partnerships designed to secure the future of bioenergy research and development. Read more in the Office’s Fiscal Year 2014 Annual Report.
Summary of Waste-to-Energy Workshop Released
Significant amounts of energy and biogenic carbon can be recovered from U.S. wet waste streams, like the one pictured here from DC Water’s Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant. BETO recently published a report summarizing the proceedings of the Waste-to-Energy Workshop held in November 2014. Experts from industry, academia, and government explored activities and technologies to facilitate the commercial conversion of wet waste feedstocks into drop-in hydrocarbon fuels and products. Collectively, the workshop participants identified 17 high-priority advancement activities that fall within four main categories: pre-processing, process research, process engineering, and analysis.
BETO Deputy Director Accepts Temporary Assignment with USDA
Valerie Sarisky-Reed, Deputy Director for BETO, recently took on a new strategic role as the Senior Advisor of Bioenergy within the Chief Scientist Office at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). She explained that this change “enables [her] to have an impact with all the USDA agencies involved in bioenergy activities, [such as] the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, the Agricultural Research Service, the Economic Research Service, etc.” Harry Baumes, Director of the Office of Energy Policy and New Uses at USDA, has also taken a temporary assignment in DOE in order to better integrate the goals of the two leading agencies involved in developing the bioeconomy. Valerie will continue to focus 20% of her time supporting BETO. She explained that this is a way for the agencies’ efforts to grow, and it will serve as a catalyst for smoother sailing as the agencies taken on new challenges in the area of bioenergy.
Get Social Media Updates of Sustainability Research
The Bioenergy Knowledge Discovery Framework (KDF) is a BETO-funded resource that supports the development of a sustainable bioenergy industry by providing access to a variety of data sets, publications, and collaboration and mapping tools that support research, analysis, and decision making. These resources include a plethora of information related to bioenergy sustainability, from environmental indicators to scientific communication, and much more. Over the next few months, we will be featuring a series of posts showcasing our sustainability resources. Check out the Bioenergy KDF Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages to follow along!
Click on a link below to view a PDF version of the blast from the corresponding month: