BLOG: BioLogue


Two Wild Weeks
Posted May 7, 2009



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Center to investigate plant cells

The newly funded Center for Lignocellulose Structure and Formation at Pennsylvania State University will be home to investigations into plant cells to produce better biomass fuels. The U.S. DOE will fund the center with $21 million for over five years as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, according to the university.READ MORE

Senators propose solution to DOE loan program

New legislation introduced April 30 by Senators Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., and Lisa Murkowski, R.-Alaska, would streamline the current U.S. DOE loan guarantee program and provide additional options for the commercial deployment of renewable energy technologies.READ MORE

U.S-Brazil develop biofuels network

A network in development between scientists and universities in the U.S. and Brazil should help forge partnerships and collaboration in biofuels-related research. Funded by the U.S. Department of State and coordinated by the Fulbright Commission, Brazil, the Brazil´┐ŻU.S. Higher Education Network's Biofuel Network aims to promote awareness of research activities, improve communication, and develop and enhance scientific exchange between the two countries in the biofuels field, according to Fulbright Brazil.READ MORE

Biofuels Wiki makes information gathering easier

Disconnected information on biofuels scattered across numerous Web sites and geographical areas can make it difficult to find the right source. The Biofuels Center of North Carolina launched a global wiki in April to address the problem. The wiki makes it possible to educate members and the public about issues related to large-quantity sustainable production of biofuels all in one place, including feedstock, research, training, logistical solutions, policy, commerce and distribution, among others.READ MORE

Agrosil Energy to grow commercial-scale miscanthus

Colorado-based Agrosil Energy LLC has begun large-scale growing operations of Miscanthus x giganteus for use in producing heat and power or liquid biofuels. The energy crop has been used for years in the U.K. and Europe, and Agrosil is in the lead position for commercial production in the U.S., according to Agrosil Vice President of Energy Crops Tom Harrington.READ MORE

Fibrowatt fields emissions questions

Fibrowatt LLC's plans for three poultry-litter fueled power plants in North Carolina are raising questions about the environmental impact. The three plants include a 40 megawatt (MW) facility near Elkin in Surry County, a 55 MW plant near Biscoe in Montgomery County and a 55 MW plant near Faison in Sampson County.READ MORE

OriginOil partners with Desmet Ballestra

Algal oil extraction company OriginOil Inc. reported it has partnered with Beligum-based oil and fats technology developer Desmet Ballestra to create a more cost-efficient algae oil extraction system. OriginOil CEO and President Riggs Eckelberry announced the partnership during a speaking engagement at the National Algae Association's fifth quarterly meeting, where he discussed potential gains from OriginOil's technology breakthrough.READ MORE

EPA releases proposed rulemaking for RFS2

The U.S. EPA released its proposed rulemaking for the second stage of the renewable fuels standard (RFS2) on May 5. The proposed rulemaking lays out the agency's strategy for increasing the supply of renewable fuels as mandated by the Energy Independence & Security act of 2007, which requires the production of 36 gallons of renewable fuels by 2022.READ MORE

Obama administration outlines biofuels agenda

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson held a joint press conference May 5 to announce the development of an interagency working group that has been formed at the request of President Barack Obama to expedite advanced biofuels research and commercialization.READ MORE

Obama gives biomass/biofuels a boost

President Barack Obama has proven his support for the biomass and biofuel industries by providing nearly $800 million in funding and forming a market development program. The new funds will be allocated under the directive of the U.S. DOE biomass program across four main areas which include $480 million to the solicitation for integrated pilot-and demonstration-scale biorefineries, $176.5 million for commercial-scale biorefinery projects, $110 million for fundamental research in key program areas, and $20 million for ethanol research.READ MORE