Biobased and Renewable Products News: Research

January 24, 2020
Penn State Offering IMPACT Seed Grants To Support Biotechnology R&D
Pennsylvania State University’s (Penn State) Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences’ Center of Excellence in Industrial Biotechnology (CoEIB) is now offering a new round of IMPACT Seed Grants to support interdisciplinary research, curricular development, or educational activities in the broad area of industrial biotechnology. These areas include but are not limited to: biopharmaceutical manufacturing, food biotechnology, and production of biobased chemicals. According to Penn State’s announcement, project proposals of up to $25,000 per project will be available. Favorable ... read more >
December 6, 2019
Scientists Uncover Production Of Aromatic Alcohols From Lignocellulosic Biomass
First published last week, on November 25, 2019, the article titled “Consolidated Production of Coniferol and Other High-Value Aromatic Alcohols Directly from Lignocellulosic Biomass” has gained media attention across the globe. Given the finite geological oil reserves, the competition to identify alternative biobased and biorefinery processes continues to grow. According to the article, the aim in identifying such products is not only to find alternatives, but most importantly to “overcome significant costs and productivity barriers.” In the aforementioned article, ... read more >
November 22, 2019
FDA Acting Director Of Therapeutic Biologics And Biosimilars Provides Statement On Continued Efforts To Facilitate Competition In The Biologic Marketplace
On November 15, 2019, Sarah Yim, M.D., acting director of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Office of Therapeutic Biologics and Biosimilars in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, released a statement on FDA’s continued progress facilitating competition in the biologic marketplace with approval of its 25th biosimilar project. In her statement, Dr. Yim highlights FDA’s approval of one of nine new biosimilar products approved in 2019. Bringing the overall total of biosimilar approvals to 25, Dr. Yim states: “I’m pleased to see this progress and am ... read more >
November 1, 2019
DOE Announces Open Meeting Of The Biomass R&D Technical Advisory Committee
On October 30, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced open meetings of the Biomass Research and Development (R&D) Technical Advisory Committee. The first meeting is scheduled for November 19, 2019, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (EST), and the second meeting will take place on November 20, 2019, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (EST) in Washington, D.C. The purpose of the committee is to advise the Secretaries of Energy and Agriculture with respect to the Biomass Initiative. The committee also evaluates and makes recommendations ... read more >
November 1, 2019
ISU Hires CTO To Serve As A Bridge Between Research And Industry
On October 25, 2019, Iowa State University’s (ISU) Vice President for Research, Dan Kirkpatrick, announced that Sundeep Vani, Ph.D., has joined the team as the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Biobased Products, a newly created role. Announced in an ISU press release, Dr. Vani’s role will be to serve as a conduit between research and industry. Dr. Vani will work closely with the Biobased Product platform leader, Brent Shanks, his team, and the Iowa Innovation Corporation (IIC) CEO. Identifying promising emerging technologies and facilitating their development into market scale ... read more >
November 1, 2019
Non-Profit Announces Opportunity For Start-Ups With Innovations To Address Plastic Waste In The Environment
On October 23, 2019, the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW) announced a partnership with innovation platform Plug and Play to develop an accelerator program focused on the plastics value chain to identify start-ups with innovative ideas addressing plastic waste. Named the End Plastic Waste Innovation Platform (EPWIP), this initiative will focus on solutions to lower the impact of plastic waste in the environment. Focus areas include but are not limited to collecting, managing, and sorting plastic waste; recycling and processing technologies; and creating value from post-recycled plastics. ... read more >
October 25, 2019
University Of Surrey Announces New Study On Microbial Organisms To Digest Plastic Waste
On October 16, 2019, the University of Surrey, United Kingdom, announced that its researchers have partnered with colleagues from France, Germany, and Spain to start working on a new technique to tackle plastic waste. According to the university’s article, this novel technique may revolutionize the recycling industry. The plan is to create engineered microbial communities that will digest two types of plastic polymers -- polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polyurethane (PU) -- and transform them into molecules that can be used to develop a more environmentally friendly material called ... read more >
October 11, 2019
FDA Publishes Technical Specifications Guidance For Bioanalytical Methods Templates
On October 3, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that a technical guidance for industry titled “Bioanalytical Methods Templates” is now available.  The technical specifications guidance provides ready-to-use templates for sponsors to submit summaries of bioanalytical methods used in clinical pharmacology studies that require pharmacokinetic concentration evaluation.  The templates provided are applicable to bioanalytical procedures such as chromatographic assays (CC) and ligand-binding assays (LBA) that quantitatively determine the levels of ... read more >
October 4, 2019
FDA Announces Availability Of Draft Guidance On Bioequivalency For Soluble Powder Oral Dosage Form Products And Type A Medicated Articles
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), on September 30, 2019, announced the availability of a draft guidance for industry (GFI) #171 titled “Demonstrating Bioequivalence for Soluble Powder Oral Dosage Form Products and Type A Medicated Articles Manufactured from Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients Considered to be Soluble in Aqueous Media.” The draft GFI describes how EPA intends to evaluate requests for waiving the requirement for performing in vivo bioequivalence studies for animal drugs administered orally as soluble powders or as Type A medicated articles manufactured from ... read more >
September 20, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
WTVB News, “Trump Meets with Senators from Key Farm States, Touts Biofuel Deal Progress” Market Realist, “Big Biofuels Issue: Trump Meets with Refiners, Senators” Cornell Alliance for Science, “Plant Breeding Innovations Required to Weather Climate Change, Report Says”  Global News Canada, “Burnaby Becomes Latest B.C. City to Declare a Climate Emergency” just-food, “Danone-Backed Meat-Analogue Business Sustainable Bioproducts Eyes Launch” CBS Minnesota, “Governor Walz Establishes Biofuels Council” Los Angeles ... read more >
September 6, 2019
ELI To Host Webinar On Genetic Engineering
By Lynn L. Bergeson On September 11, 2019, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. (EDT), the Environmental Law Institute (ELI) will host a webinar titled “Genetic Engineering: The Good, The Bad, and The Necessary.” The webinar is designed to cover the vast possibilities offered by genetic engineering in a world where regulatory officials face increasing pressure to guarantee global food security. Along with the many possibilities associated with genetic engineering, however, there are great concerns about the environmental, health, and ethical implications of it. Webinar panelists will ... read more >
August 30, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Reuters, “Facing Farmer Anger, Trump Scrambles Cabinet to Brainstorm on Biofuel Policy: Sources” Cosmeticsdesign.com, “Sulapac: The Startup Making Biodegradable, Plastic-Free Beauty Packaging a Reality” The Times, “EU Curbs Used Cooking Oil in Biodiesel Due to Fears of Fraud” Plastics News, “Resin Distributors Taking Different Paths to Sustainability” Engineering.com, “Algae Filter Paper Offers New Hope for Stopping Waterborne Illness” The Gazette, “Amy Klobuchar: Trump Treating Farmers Like ‘Bargaining ... read more >
August 9, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
PlasticsToday, “A Visual Tour of Packaging and Products from Ocean Plastics” geek.com, “Scientist Creates Bioplastic from Mango Peels and Seaweed” foodingredientsfirst.com, “European Scientists Call for EU Rethink of ‘Retrograde’ Gene-Editing Legislation” New Atlas, “Wormy Chemicals Used to Trick Crops into Protecting Themselves” Regulatory Focus, “Industry Groups Support FDA’s Latest Biosimilar Analytic Assessment Guidance” Financial Post, “EPA Chief Defends Biofuel Waivers in Meeting with Farm ... read more >
August 2, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
The Intelligencer, “Buckingham Center Offers Biotech Startups $50 Million” Science Codex, “Solar Energy Becomes Biofuel without Solar Cells” ScienceDirect, “Development of a Biorefinery Scheme to Produce Biofuels from Waste Cooking Oil” Sierra Sun Times, “U.S. Senators Renew Bipartisan Effort to Repeal Ethanol Mandate” Feedstuffs, “EPA Issued RFS Exemptions against DOE Advice” The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Trump Administration Official Visits Delaware County Refinery to Hear Gripes about Ethanol” Forbes, ... read more >
July 26, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
World Economic Forum, “Cheese Energy Could Power Hundreds of UK Homes” Iran Front Page, “Iran Ready to Tackle Biotechnology Sanctions: VP” Digital Journal, “Switching to Biobased Plastics: IDTechEx Research Asks Why So Slow?” The Yucatan Times, “Yucatan Cenotes to Be Sanitized with Biotechnology” World Economic Forum, “Your Next Pair of Sneakers Could Be Made from Coffee” CleanTechnica, “NextEra Energy Predicts 50% Renewable Energy in US by 2030” inhabitat, “Sustainable Toiletries Packaged in Soap Aim to ... read more >
July 19, 2019
DOE Funded Study Gets Closer To Accurate Algae HTL Economic Model
On July 10, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced that researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) have developed a model that predicts commercial biocrude outcomes from algae hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) significantly more accurately than previous analyses. “Techno-economic uncertainty quantification of algal-derived biocrude via hydrothermal liquefaction,” funded by DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), focused on  quantifying economic uncertainties, including algae ... read more >
July 19, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
U.S. Department of Energy, “Algae Technology Educational Consortium Prepares Students for Careers in Algae Cultivation and Technologies” World Economic Forum, “These Are the Top 10 Emerging Technologies of 2019” Somaiya, “Godavari Biorefineries Ltd. Earns USDA Certified Biobased Product Label for Acetic Acid.” Plastics Today, “Sustainable Plastics: How Far and How Fast Can We Go?” Science Daily, “Left out to Dry: A More Efficient Way to Harvest Algae ... read more >
July 12, 2019
Canadian Government Launches Plastics Challenge For The Development Of Biobased Foam Insulation
On June 27, 2019, the Government of Canada’s Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) opened the application process for a grant to develop next generation biobased foam insulation products. Called the Plastics Challenge, this funding opportunity seeks solutions that result in foam insulation products (either spray foam or rigid foam board) that: Are predominantly derived from Canadian forest residue;   Have similar insulation values (within 20 percent) as currently available petroleum-based versions;   Would have similar cost (within 20 percent) as currently available ... read more >
July 12, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Youris.com, “Surfing on Bio-based Boards” Kemira, “Kemira to Participate in the Development of 100% Bio-based Chemicals for Paper and Cardboard Production as Part of an EU Funded Project” Green Car Congress, “Researchers in Netherlands Exploring Use of Lignin as Alternative Asphalt Binder” Asian Scientist, “Supercharging Bacterial Biofuel Production” The Express Tribune, “Biofuels Can Help Reduce Current Account Deficit” MediaPost, “Huggies Launches Partially Plant-Based Diaper with Black Packaging” The ... read more >
June 28, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
NREL, “ExxonMobil Partnership Will Support National Lab Research for Future Energy Solutions at Scale” Energy.gov, “Co-Optima Identifies Innovation Needed to Continue Momentum in Fuel Economy Gains” Kemira, “Kemira to Participate in the Development of 100% Bio-Based Chemicals for Paper and Cardboard Production as Part of an EU Funded Project” NYNAS, “Nynas’ First Bio-Based Tyre Oil Supports Tyre Producer’s Sustainability Goals” Attis, “Attis Industries’ Acquired Corn Ethanol Plant Expected to Generate Approximately ... read more >
June 14, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Endpoints News, “Luck and Unicorns? Who Needs That? Sante Ventures’ New $250M Fund is Looking for Biotech Upstarts” Renewable Energy Magazine, “Neste and Air BP Deliver Sustainable Aviation Fuel to Swedavia Operated Airports” SportsMole, “F1 Eyes Carbon-Neutral Fuel for 2021” XinhuaNet, “Hong Kong Researchers Discover New Stem Cells Offering New Avenue for Biotechnology Study” Phys.org, “Study Identifies Most Promising Feedstocks for Pyrolysis-based Biorefinery” Des Moines Register, “Presidential Candidates Need a ... read more >
June 7, 2019
Companies Collaborate To Launch Sustainability Funding Opportunity
Two food-producing companies have jointly launched an initiative to drive the adoption of products and services on-farm at scale to increase sustainability on Earth. The initiative invites companies and entrepreneurs with new and emerging on-farm sustainability products and services, focused on greenhouse gases (GHG) reduction, to submit solutions to the leading companies’ experts. In August 2019, participants will be selected to present their solutions to an audience and panel of industry experts for consideration. The most promising opportunities presented will be given a special ... read more >
May 17, 2019
FDA Issues In Final Guidance On Interchangeable Biosimilars
On May 13, 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued in final guidance designed to assist sponsors in demonstrating that a proposed biological product is interchangeable with a reference product for the purposes of submitting a marketing application or supplement. This would mean that an abbreviated licensure pathway would be created, where biological products shown to be biosimilar to or interchangeable with an FDA-licensed biological reference product may be submitted without intervention. The guidance focuses on therapeutic protein products, providing an overview of ... read more >
May 17, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
The Science Times, “Plant Sugars Used as Raw Material for Plastics Chemical” The Epoch Times, “Chile-based Designer Creates Alternative to Single-use Plastic – It’s from the Sea” WNAX, “Minnesota Biofuels Executive Pleased Congress Holding EPA Accountable on RFS Waivers” Business World, “US EPA Proposes Hike in Biofuel Mandate to 20.04 B Gallons in 2020” VN Express International, “Biofuel Fails to Make a Difference in Vietnam, Consumption Drops” American Greatness, “Deregulation Will Keep U.S. Biotech Out of ... read more >
May 10, 2019
FDLI Conference On Drug, Biologics, And Biosimilars Law And Regulation
From July 23-24, 2019, the Food and Drug Law Institute (FDLI) will be hosting the Introduction to Drug, Biologics, and Biosimilars Law and Regulation conference in Boston, MA. The conference will cover an overview of administrative agencies that impact these industries and how they interact with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It will also include sessions on the development of drug and biological products, FDA’s review and approval of marketing applications, biosimilars and generic drugs, manufacturing issues, and case studies, among other ... read more >
May 10, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Chemical Engineering, “Bio-based Aromatics Plant Achieves Commercially Targeted Yields, Anellotech Says” Renewable Energy Magazine, “Neste MY Renewable Jet Fuel Wins Award for Reduction of Black Carbon Emissions” BBC News, “Coffee Waste ‘Could Replace Palm Oil” Big Ten Network, “How Michigan State Is Building Better Bioplastics: BTN LiveBIG” Pune Mirror, “Bacteria Turn Agri Waste to Biofuelm First-of-its-kind Research Conducted by SPPU and Shivaji University” BBC News, “Scientists Making ‘Aviation Fuel of the ... read more >
May 3, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
nature, “Australian Gene-editing Rules Adopt ‘Middle Ground’” Reuters, “U.S. EPA Stalls Biofuel Waiver Transparency Plan after White House Blowback –Sources” Inhabitat, “Fueled by Chocolate: Ghana’s Newest Biofuel” ScienceDaily, “Sustainable Way to Increase Seed Oil Yield in Crops” The Pantagraph, “‘Better and Greener:’ ISU Project Focuses on Recycling, Sustainability” Forbes, “This Line of Bags Is Manufactured with Algae – and the First Run Is Almost Sold Out” Canadian ... read more >
April 26, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Boston Herald, “Massachusetts Researchers Find Way to Produce Biofuels ‘Greener’” Treehugger, “From Old Duvets to Corn Stalks, a Look at Bio-based Insulations” Virtual Strategy Magazine, “DuPont Nutrition & Biosciences Launches Biobased Enzymes for…” ScienceDaily, “Green Plastic Production Made Easy” Purdue University, “Free Networking Conference for Biotechnology, Pharmaceutical, Medical Research Fields Planned at Purdue Research Park” Gizmodo, “Adidas’ FutureCraft Loop Sneaker Talks a Big ... read more >
April 19, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Reuters, “U.S. EPA Revives Provision That May Name Refiners Applying for Biofuel Waivers” Washington Examiner, “2020 Democrats Embrace Green New Deal at Their Peril in Iowa, Land of Ethanol” Reuters, “U.S. EPA May Grant Fewer Biofuel Waivers Due to Low Credit Prices: Wheeler” The Chemical Engineer, “BP Joins Effort to Make Paraxylene from Biological Sources” The Western Producer, “Canola-based Plastic May Hit Market Soon” The Hindu, “ICGEB’s Novel Yeast Strain Increases Ethanol Production” Forbes, ... read more >
April 12, 2019
DOE EERE Announces Prize Competition On FAST PSH
On April 8, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE) announced a new prize competition to support and accelerate the development of pumped storage hydropower (PSH). The prize, titled Furthering Advancements to Shorten Time (FAST) Commissioning for Pumped Storage Hydropower (PSH), seeks innovative solutions and technologies that can assist PSH developers facing non-regulatory challenges. It would also support DOE’s goal to reduce PSH time commission from ten years to five. FAST PSH will provide winners with cash and in-kind ... read more >
April 12, 2019
DOE EERE BETO Announces Special Issue Of Frontiers In Energy Research
On April 4, 2019, DOE EERE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced the appearance of 23 journal articles from some of the nation’s leading biomass experts in the journal Frontiers in Energy Research. The collection of articles, titled Advancements in Biomass Feedstock Preprocessing: Conversion Ready Feedstocks, focuses on the many years of research and development into biomass preprocessing that has been largely supported by DOE EERE’s BETO. According to the announcement, researchers from Idaho National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge ... read more >
April 12, 2019
Takeaways From ABLC 2019
Last week, from April 3-5, 2019, Biofuels Digest hosted its annual Advanced Bioeconomy Leadership Conference (ABLC) in Washington, D.C.  Among those present were various industry stakeholders, government representatives, and federal agency staffers. Innovative technologies were presented and much networking was done. The Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group’s (BRAG®) presence was welcomed and provided an opportunity for industry stakeholders to gain insight into regulatory developments in the biobased sector, particularly during the Regulatory Workshop that took place ... read more >
April 12, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. TSCAblog™, “EPA Releases Budget Justification that Increases Budget for Chemical Risk, Review, and Reduction Program”              Phys.org, “Technology Turns Municipal Wastewater Algae into Specialty Chemicals for Biofuels, Bioplastics” RealClear Energy, “The Unintended Consequences of the Renewable Fuel Standard” Quad-City Times, “Biofuels Are Not the Answer on Climate Change” Bloomberg, “These Companies Are Trying to Reinvent Recycling” Food Navigator, ... read more >
April 5, 2019
EPA Releases Draft Guidance For Pesticide Registrants On Plant Regulator Label Claims, Including Plant Biostimulants
On March 25, 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finally weighed-in on the murky and often misunderstood topic of label claims for plant regulators and plant biostimulants in posting its Draft Guidance for Plant Regulator Label Claims, Including Plant Biostimulants in Docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2018-0258.  EPA issued the notice of availability in the Federal Register on March 27, 2019.  84 Fed. Reg. 11538.  EPA states that the draft guidance, issued under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), is intended to “provide guidance on ... read more >
April 5, 2019
FDA Highlights Advances In Animal Biotechnology Product Development
On April 2, 2019, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner, Scott Gottlieb, M.D., and Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Legislation and International Affairs, Anna Abram, released a statement on the status of FDA’s Plant and Animal Biotechnology Innovation Action Plan (Action Plan). Focused on FDA’s risk-based regulatory framework, the Action Plan aims at securing confidence in the safety and performance of plant and animal-based products for consumers, patients, and U.S. trading partners. In his published statement, Dr. Gottlieb emphasizes FDA’s ongoing ... read more >
April 5, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Science Daily, “Novel Role of Water in Production of Renewable Fuels” AgWeb, “Gene Editing Promise Stalled at FDA” World Economic Forum, “This Mexican Company is Making Biofuel from Cactus Plants” Feedstuffs, “Biofuel Groups Testify at EPA Hearing on Year-round E15” KFGO, “Aerion Designing Supersonic Jet to Run Completely on Biofuels: CEO” The Hill, “Ocasio-Cortez Says She Encouraged Senate Dems to Vote ‘Present’ on Green New Deal” Chain Store Age, “Target Puts Greenhouse Gases in ... read more >
March 29, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Plastics News, “Sealed Air, Kuraray Join Forces for Plant-based Packaging” CNBC, “Starbucks Announces Trials for Recyclable and Compostable Cups” Baltimore Sun, “Maryland Senate Passes Renewable Energy Bill; House Outcome Uncertain” ScienceDaily, “First Evidence Bacterial-induced Apoptosis in Algae” Coatings World, “Clariant Launches First Bio-based Pigment Red 254” North Carolina Biotechnology Center, “bluebird bio Dedicates New Biomanufacturing Plant in Durham” Premiumbeautynews.com, “Alkos Launches ... read more >
March 22, 2019
EPA Releases List Of High-Priority And Low-Priority Chemicals
On March 21, 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it was releasing a list of 40 chemicals to begin the prioritization process required by the amended Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  84 Fed. Reg. 10491.  New TSCA requires EPA to designate 20 chemicals as “high-priority” for subsequent risk evaluation and 20 chemicals as “low-priority,” meaning that risk evaluation is not warranted at this time.  The 20 high priority candidate chemicals include: Seven chlorinated solvents; Six phthalates; Four flame ... read more >
March 22, 2019
University Of Utah Researchers Uncover New Technique For Algal Lipid Extraction
In February 2019, the University of Utah published the article Algal lipid extraction using confined impinging jet mixers.  The article outlines the University of Utah engineers’ latest discovery of a new method for rapid lipid harvesting which is essential to energy parity for microbial derived biofuels.  This newly developed technique is not only faster but also more efficient, and uses confined impinging jet mixers (CIJM) to improve lipid extraction from microalgae.  CIJMs extract lipids rapidly and continuously creating a multistage unit operation of mixers that ... read more >
March 22, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
CNBC, “Trump Energy Secretary Rick Perry ‘Absolutely’ Would Talk with Ocasio-Cortez About Green New Deal” Reuters, “Malaysia Threatens WTO Challenge to EU’s Move to Drop Palm Biofuel” CompositesWorld, “Bio4self Bio-based Autocomposite Wins JEC Innovation Award” Feedstuffs, “EPA’s RFS Waivers Cut Corn Demand by 900m bu.” NCSU News, “Transcription Factor Network Gets to Heart of Wood Formation” NHK World-Japan, “Panel May Propose Rules on Genome-Edited Food” Plastics Technology, ... read more >
March 15, 2019
USDA Comment Request:  Draft Documents Related To GE Soybean Deregulation
On, March 12, 2019, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced the publication of two draft documents related to the potential deregulation of a soybean variety GE for increased yield and resistance to the herbicide glufosinate.  The draft documents are Draft Plant Pest Risk Assessment (PPRA) and Draft Environmental Assessment (dEA) for Petition to Deregulate GE Soybean for Increased Yield and Herbicide Resistance. The PPRA will examine any plant pest risks and the dEA will analyze the potential issues and environmental impacts.  The draft documents ... read more >
March 15, 2019
Scientists At UC Berkeley Discover Hidden Clues That Present Key Developments For Bioproducts
On March 11, 2019, scientists at the University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley) published a study on nature microbiology on the gut anatomical properties of the passalid beetle that helps it transform decaying wood into energy-rich materials.  Passalid beetles’ digestive tracts contain microbes that provide a roadmap for the production of affordable, nature-derived bioproducts and biofuels.  The structure of these beetles’ guts allows for different microbial communities to coexist and perform unique biochemical metabolic processes in energy extraction.  The ... read more >
March 15, 2019
LLNL Uses 3D Bioprinting To Produce Live Cells
On March 5, 2019, the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) announced that their researchers have 3D printed live cells that are able to convert glucose to ethanol and carbon dioxide gas.  The substance produced from this conversion resembles beer.  This means that this newly developed technology can lead to highly efficient biocatalysis.  According to LLNL’s announcement, the use of live microbes rather than inorganic catalysts is advantageous because of mild reaction conditions, low cost, self-regeneration, and catalytic specificity.  The particular case ... read more >
March 15, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
K5News, “Port of Seattle Pushing to Use More Biofuels on Flights” Sioux City Journal, “Letter: Biofuels Industry Needs Support from Leaders in Washington” Trade Arabia, “Boeing to Offer Biofuel to Fly New Airplanes Home” Green Tech Media, “US Energy Storage Broke Records in 2018, but the Best Is Yet to Come” Reuters, “Senators Propose Bill to Extend Biodiesel, other Expired Tax Provisions” Olive Oil Times, “Environmentally Friendly Bioplastics Created from Olive Seeds” Smithsonian Magazine, “Made from ... read more >
March 8, 2019
DOE Announces LANL Use Of Microbial Biosensors For Conversion Pathway Design
On February 28, 2019, DOE announced that scientists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) have been working on molecular tools that reside naturally within microbial cells.  Microbes typically use these tools to carry out their metabolism and other life-sustaining processes; LANL researchers, however, have been using the tools to produce fuel precursors and bioproduct building blocks.  With the addition of a biosensor in the microbes, light allows the scientists to learn how efficiently the product is being made and thus enabling more efficient quality control to increase ... read more >
March 8, 2019
New Scientific Discovery:  Squid Teeth For The Production Of Textiles
On February 21, 2019, scientists Abdon Pena-Francesh and Melik C. Demirel, at Pennsylvania State University, published an article on the use of squid teeth tandem repeat proteins that can be functionally used for biodegradable fibers and films.  The flexible and tough material results from a protein present in the squid teeth, which can be grown biosynthetically by E. coli bacteria.  This biosynthetic expression of squid teeth proteins presents a number of advantages over direct extraction from the natural source.  It is a sustainable, controllable, and industrially scalable ... read more >
March 8, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Biofuels International, “Coconut Biodiesel Increase Suggested by Lawmaker in Philippines” Chemical Engineering, “BP, Virent and Johnson Matthey Partner on Production of Bio-based Paraxylene” The Express Tribune, “Biotechnology Can Transform Pakistan’s Economy” Energy AgWired, “GROWMARK Offers Pre-blended E15 at More Terminals” Reuters, “U.S. EPA Gets 37 Bids for Small Refinery Waivers through Mid-February” PhysicsWorld, “Bio-based Monomers Help Upcycle Plastic Bottles” Cosmetics Business, “INOLEX ... read more >
March 1, 2019
DOE BETO Announces Collaboration Opportunity
On February 26, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced the sponsorship of a new project to harness algae strains for bioenergy.  Called Development of Integrated Screening, Cultivar Optimization and Verification Research (DISCOVR), the project is a multi-laboratory consortium including the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and the Sandia National Laboratories.  DISCOVR aims to identify ... read more >
March 1, 2019
Scientists Discover Method For Transforming Methanol To Ethanol
On February 14, 2019, scientists in China published an article revealing a new methodology developed to safely transform methanol into ethanol.  Given methanol’s toxicity, this recently uncovered method allows for a more secure, user-friendly, sustainable technology that can be more broadly applied.  The scientific article reports a photo-driven one-step conversion of methanol to ethanol at ambient temperature.  A relatively simple process, the methodology used can be broadly applied and enables a green and novel method for generating building blocks in synthetic ... read more >
March 1, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Green Car Congress, “DSM and Roquette Change Their Relationship for Bio-based Succinic Acid Production” Bio-based World News, “French Tech Firm Afyren Secures €60m to Develop Bio-based Acids” Bio-based World News, “New Dutch Programme Launched to Help European Biotech Start-ups” Phys.org, “AllThings.Bio Presents its Second Series of Videos Clips About Bio-based Products” Packaging Europe, “Biome Bioplastics and Futamura Present Biobased Multilayer Films” Packaging Europe, “ 100% Renewable Plastic Bottle ... read more >
February 22, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Biofuels Digest, “Pilot Plant Pushes Forward Economic Research on Sugarcane Waste to Biofuels” Chemical Engineering Online, “Circa Group’s Commercial Demonstration Plant for ‘Green’ Solvent Comes Online” Biobased World News, “‘One-of-a-kind Peacock-inspired’ Bio-based Dress to Be Showcased at International Clothing Exhibition” Forbes, “Midwest Corn Farmers Put New Fertilizer Alternative to the Test” Labiotech.eu, “First Plant in the Works to Turn Dairy Byproducts into Plastics” Reuters, ... read more >
February 15, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
POET, “POET’s Jive Improves, Rejuvenates Asphalt in Roads Across the US” Project Cargo Global, “Coalition Provides Sustainable Marine Biofuels Verification” Firstpost., “Govt Allows Export of Biofuels from Special Economic Zones and Export-oriented Units” Arab News, “Indonesia to Challenge ‘Discriminative’ EU Directive on Palm Oil” Biofuels Digest, “Biobased Smart Bombs for Pests: Two New Strategic Investments in Biopesticides from TechAccel” Energy Live News, “Biofuels to Power 30% of Finland’s ... read more >
February 8, 2019
EERE BETO Announces Updated 2019 Project Peer Review Agenda
On February 4, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced a revised agenda for the 2019 Project Peer Review that will take place in Denver, Colorado, on March 4-8, 2019.  An annual event hosted by BETO, this is an opportunity for BETO to present early-stage development projects across its technology areas and have the projects reviewed by experts from industry, academia, and other federal agencies.  The updated agenda includes sessions on Catalytic Upgrading, Performance-Advantaged Bioproducts and Separations, Advanced Algal Systems, ... read more >
February 8, 2019
Furan-Based Copolyesters May Replace PET Plastics
In January 2019, scientists at the University of Groningen, in the Netherlands, published a study on the application of enzymatic polymerization techniques in the preparation of sustainable furan-based copolyesters. With increased content of aromatic units, two different synthetic approaches are introduced in the article. Financially supported by the Indonesian Endowment Fund for Education, the study provides the necessary background to design sustainable, high-performance polymers that can provide an alternative to plastics made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET). PET, which is a ... read more >
February 8, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
SuccessfulFarming, “High-oleic Soybeans Out of the Lab, into the Field” North American Wind Power, “N.Y. Laymakers Propose Legislation in Support of Existing Renewable Energy Facilities” Biofuels Digest, “Bio-based Lingerie? Of course, in Paris!” Reuters, “EPA Says to Finish E15 Gasoline Rule before Summer, Despite U.S. Shutdown” Biofuels International, “ExxonMobil and Clariant Team Up on Cellulosic Biofuels” snews, “Picture Organic Launches New Bio-based Membrane” Global Cosmetic Industry, “Firmenich ... read more >
February 1, 2019
University Of Wisconsin-Madison Assistant Professor Reveals Biosensor For Biofuel Production
On January 18, 2019, Assistant Professor Dr. Vatsan Raman at the University of Wisconsin-Madison announced a new biosensor that is capable of reporting on a microbe’s biofuel production capacity from within the cell. An expensive process, “in search of the best biofuel-producing microbes, scientists may need to make millions of genetic variants” to find the right one. This new biosensor developed by Dr. Raman and his team, however, greatly facilitates the aforementioned process by triggering green fluorescence in cells that are ideal to make biofuel-type molecules. In ... read more >
February 1, 2019
New Study On The Importance Of Second Generation Sugar Feedstock For Biobased Chemicals Published
In January 2019, scientists at the nova-Institut GmbH, in Hurth, Germany, published a study on the sustainability of first and second generation sugars as a resource for the biobased chemical industry. The study, which includes a comprehensive sustainability assessment, “shows that first generation sugars are as advantageous as second generation sugars for a feasible and sustainable resource strategy of Europe’s bio-based chemical industry.” Despite the negative connotation of first generation feedstocks portrayed in public discussions, the study results indicate that these ... read more >
February 1, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
E&E News, “‘Science is Back’: New Governor Aims for Renewable Boom” AsianScientist, “Catalyzing a Path Towards ‘Greener’ Plastics” eureporter, “Organic and Safe Fertilizers in the EU” ASC, “From Health Food to Biofuels: Meet the First Algae Farm to Attain ASC-MSC Certification” Bio-based World News, “InSciTe Set to Open Bio-based Innovation Pilot Plant in April” Packaging Europe, “In Search of a Bio-based Barrier” Euractive, “US Soy for Producing Biofuels, an ... read more >
January 25, 2019
DOE BETO Publishes The 2019 Project Peer Review Agenda
On January 16, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) released the agenda for the 2019 Project Peer Review that will take place in Denver, Colorado, from March 4-8, 2019.  An annual event hosted by BETO, this is an opportunity for BETO to present early-stage development projects across its technology areas and have the projects reviewed by experts from industry, academia, and other federal agencies.  The technology areas include Advanced Algal Systems, Conversion Technologies, Feedstock Supply and Logistics, Advanced Development and ... read more >
January 25, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
European Biotechnology Life Science and Industry Magazine, “VTT Turn Waste into Biofuels and Chemicals” EPPM, “Lund University Develops Promising Bioplastic Derived from ‘Poo Molecule’” Biofuels Digest, “Covestro Launches Biobased Polyurethane Film Formers for Cosmetic Industry” The Progressive Farmer, “Wheeler:  E15 Rule Might Be Delayed” Euractiv, “Time is Running Out for Biofuels Sustainability Criteria” Renewable Energy Magazine, “UAE’s Etihad Airways Flies World’s First Flight Using ... read more >
January 18, 2019
IRENA Publishes Report On The Growth Of Renewable Energy
In early January 2019, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) published a report called A New World: The Geopolitics of Energy Transformation. Analyzing the geopolitical implications of the global energy sector that is being driven by renewables, the report was created by the Global Commission on the Geopolitics of Energy Transformation in early 2018. A ten-month project, the deliberations by the Commission consider the move of renewables to the center of the global energy landscape. The report claims that global energy transformation driven by renewables “will reshape ... read more >
January 18, 2019
Nouryon Launches Imagine Chemistry Collaborative Innovation Challenge
On January 8, 2019, Nouryon, a Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®) member, announced the official launching of the Imagine Chemistry challenge. A program focused on startups, scale-ups, university spin-offs, and other new comers in chemistry, the challenge aims to increase developing business’ opportunities to collaborate in the commercial adoption of green chemistry. In the 2019 edition of the challenge, Nouryon is seeking solutions to five areas: Sustainable bio-based surfactants for everyone; Label-free chemistries; Sensing in demanding chemical ... read more >
January 18, 2019
DOE BETO Researchers Awarded
On January 10, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced that 32 of the 100 research and development (R&D) awards given out by R&D Magazine have been won by DOE researchers. One of the winning R&D projects was BETO-funded and focused on a green nitration process to produce acrylonitrile. These awards are annually distributed to developers of exceptional new products/processes introduced into the marketplace. Since R&D Magazine’s first annual competition in 1962, DOE’s national laboratories have received over 800 ... read more >
January 18, 2019
DOE BETO Continues To Invest In Green Fuels Research
On January 15, 2019, DOE BETO announced that a current study being funded by DOE BETO’s Advanced Algal Systems has been published by scientists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The study researches strains found in a single culture of green algae that might be a candidate for biofuel production. Scientists are working to develop genetic engineering tools that would allow algae to grow faster, accumulating more biomass for biofuel. Further details on the research being conducted can be accesses ... read more >
January 18, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
The Fence Post, “Grassley Talks Shutdown, RFS, Trade, Trump Speech” Reuters, “Biogas Guzzlers: Karachi’s Public Buses to Run on Cow Poo” Biodiesel Magazine, “Biodiesel an Underutilized Solution as US Carbon Emissions Climb” Reuters, “EPA Says it is Committed to Rule for Higher Ethanol Blend by Summer Driving Season” Canadian Biomass Magazine, “Developing High Performance Bioplastics from Wood” Channel NewsAsia, “NYP Team Turns Coffee Waste Into Fire Retardant” Bio-Based WorldNews, “Circa Group’s ... read more >
January 11, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Chemical & Engineering News, “US Requires Labeling of GMO Foods as ‘Bioengineered’” TradeArabia, “RAK Firm to Use Fuel From Waste in Cement Production” Cision PR Newswire, “Green Catalysts with Earth-abundant Metals Accelerate Production of Bio-based Plastic” Irish Farmers Journal, “Biofuels Blended in Petrol and Diesel to Increase to 10% from 2019” The Virginian-Pilot, “Global Bioenergies Welcomes France’s Decision to Increase Biofuel Mandates” Biofuels Digest, “Japan Airlines to Use Aviation ... read more >
January 4, 2019
DOE EERE Announces Funding For SBI Research
On December 18, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced that new funding is available for Small Business Innovation (SBI) research and technology transfer. The announcement states that EERE expects to fund more than 100 new projects, which will total approximately $20 million. Nine EERE technology offices will fund the proposals submitted, including three joint office topics: Advanced Manufacturing with Fuel Cells, Advanced Manufacturing with Geothermal, and Advanced Manufacturing with Solar. There are 41 subtopics that range ... read more >
January 4, 2019
UCSD Awarded Grant For Algae-Based Renewable Polymer Research
On December 17, 2018, the University of California San Diego (UCSD) announced that a team of biologists and chemists has received $2 million in funding from DOE. These funds are to be used in the development of platforms to produce biobased monomers, which will be used in the manufacture of renewable and biodegradable plastic polymers called polyurethanes. The funded research will also involve improved tools for accelerated algal production systems. UCSD Chemistry and Biochemistry Department Professor, Michael Burkart, states: “Our strategy is to go from renewable algae feedstocks all ... read more >
January 4, 2019
MTI Releases RFP For Innovation Challenge
The Maine Technology Institute (MTI) announced on December 14, 2018, a request for proposals (RFP) for Maine’s Forest Resources. Managed by Biobased Maine on behalf of MTI, the RFP for the Emerging Technology Challenge aims to deploy a forest industry technology in Maine, where forest biomass is used in the production of a value-added product for sale. MTI is a “publicly funded, nonprofit corporation with the core mission to diversify and grow Maine’s economy by encouraging, promoting, stimulating, and supporting innovation and its transformation into new products, services ... read more >
January 4, 2019
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Renewable Energy Magazine, “$400 Billion US Farm Bill a Boon to Bioenergy Production” Phys.org, “Carbon Fuels Go Green for Renewable Energy” FoodNavigator.com, “Alkion CEO on Biostimulation to Scale Up Sweet Proteins: ‘Our Technology Massively Amplifies What Nature Can Do’” Reuters, “Exclusive: Exxon Mobil Secured U.S. Hardship Waiver from Biofuels Laws – Sources” BBC News, “Wooden Clothes on the Recycled Christmas List?” Successful Farming, “U.S. EPA Received 22 Biofuel Hardship Waiver Petitions as of ... read more >
December 21, 2018
DOE BETO Requests Information On Feedstocks
On December 14, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced a request for information (RFI) on algae, biomass, and waste feedstocks that can be used in the production of biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. DOE BETO’s request seeks information from industry, academia, national laboratories, government agencies, and other stakeholders. Specifically, information is requested on outdoor algae research, biomass characteristics and feedstock performance, and renewable energy from urban and suburban waste. Responses to this RFI should be submitted ... read more >
December 21, 2018
DOE Announces Funding Opportunities For FY 2019 Phase I Release 2
On December 17, 2018, DOE issued the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Phase I Release 2 Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs. Encouraging qualified small businesses with strong research capabilities in science or engineering, the following DOE program offices are offering funding opportunities: Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response; Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation; Office of Electricity; Office of Environmental Management; Office of Energy Efficiency and ... read more >
December 21, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Berkeley Lab, “Greener Days Ahead for Carbon Fuels” StockMarketWire, “Biome Receives Further Grant Funding to Support Project Aimed at Eliminating Plastic Waste” Biofuels International, “Gevo and Renmatrix to Evaluate Creation of Renewable Jet Fuel” Phys.org, “Researchers Advance Biomass Transformation Process” University of Arkansas News, “Grants Fund Research on Biofuel Production, Reduced Fertilizer Use” Ireland AgriLand, “Road Fuel Mix to Increase Biofuel Levels from January” DNA India, “Maharashtra ... read more >
December 14, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Energy Reporters, “Norway to Ban Palm Oil from Biofuels” Euractiv, “Biofuels and Electromobility Are Key in Portugal’s Transport Decarbonisation” BiofuelsDigest, “Biofuel Opportunities Could Abound with Maersk’s Net Zero CO2 Target” GovDelivery.com, “Winners of the Fourth Wood Stove Design Challenge Announced” Biofuels International, “Finnair to Launch Biofuel Offsetting Service in 2019” Des Moines Register, “Tax Credits for Electric Vehicles Are a Threat to Iowa Farmers” Laboratory Equipment, ... read more >
December 7, 2018
DOE Announces Novel Process For The Conversion Of Biomass Into Gas
On November 27, 2018, DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE) announced the discovery of a new process that uses biomass gasification.  Developed by the Bioenergy Technologies Office and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the process converts solid biomass into gas under high temperatures, creating a new blendstock that is low on aromatic compounds.  The blendstock consists of high-octane gasoline that can be produced in a few efficient and accelerated steps.  “This success provides a path for industry to scale up this novel ... read more >
December 7, 2018
DOE Announces Two New Manufacturing Innovator Challenge Prizes
On December 4, 2018, as part of its efforts to crowdsource solutions to increase energy productivity, DOE announced it will issue two new prizes as part of its Manufacturing Innovator Challenge.  The first new prize focuses on Biobased Additive Manufacturing (BAM) and will be distributed to three winners.  BAM involves the production of rapid prototyping of complex structures through biobased three-dimensional printing.  To qualify for the BAM prize, candidates are required to identify new materials that are made from at least 90 percent plant matter or algae, and that can meet ... read more >
December 7, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Chemical & Engineering News, “To Fulfill Biofuels’ Promise, Scientists Boost Plant Oils with Gene Editing” Ethanol Producer Magazine, “New Tax, Oversight Bill Aims to Extend Biofuel Tax Credits” MuscaDaily.com, “Omani Woman Scientist Wins UNESCO Fellowship for Research in Biofuels” The Times of India, “CSIR Working on Developing Biofuels on a Commercial Scale” Biofuels International, “Biodiesel By-product Has Potential as Clean Burning Fuel Additive” FDA News, “Aziyo’s Bioscaffold Cleared by FDA for ... read more >
November 30, 2018
DOE Delays SBIR/STTR Phase I Release 2 Funding Opportunity Announcement
As some may recall, on October 29, 2018, DOE announced the topic areas for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) for research and development (R&D) proposals for funding by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) in fiscal year (FY) 2019. The original timeline for the nine topics proposed by EERE intended for the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) was scheduled to be released on November 26, 2018. On the aforementioned date, however, instead of the FOA, DOE announced a delay in the original schedule pending the ... read more >
November 30, 2018
Hydrochar—From Human Waste Into Renewable Biofuel
On November 16, 2018, scientists at the Israeli Ben-Gurion University (BGU) of the Negev announced the discovery of a new technique to produce biofuel from human excrement. In an attempt to reduce carbon footprint and address poor sanitation in Global South countries, scientists at BGU developed a technique called hydrothermal carbonization. By hydrothermally carbonizing raw solid human waste biomass, hydrochar, a coal-like sterilized substance, can be produced and used for household cooking and heating. Given energy scarcity and lack of basic sanitation in parts of the world, this new ... read more >
November 30, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Biofuels International, “Biogas-to-Biofuel Technology Accepted for Testing” Biofuels International, “Prospects Raised for Large Scale Algae Biofuel Production” Reuters, “Biofuel Groups Ask Federal Judge to Freeze U.S. Refinery Waiver Program” Packaging Gateway, “Leaf Resources Extends Leafcoat License to Europe” Reuters, “Iowa Senator Says Expect Fewer Biofuel Waivers from Wheeler’s EPA” Fronteras, “Food Biotechnology Added on New Trilateral Deal” City Press, “Biofuel from Castor Oil: How Thabang ... read more >
November 16, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Phys.org, “New Method Enables Large-Scale Production of Bio-Based Plastic Bottles” Mercom India, “India Joins the Club for Collaboration on New and Alternate Fuels” Biofuels Digest, “University of Delaware Start-Up Creates Renewable Oil that Can Be Used from Cosmetics to Lubricants” Reuters, “Britain’s Renewable Electricity Capacity Overtakes Fossil Fuels -- Report” Renewable Energy Magazine, “APPA Claims Biofuel a Key Ingredient in Spain’s Energy Plan” Just-Drinks, “Jimmy’s Iced Coffee Adopts Bio-Based ... read more >
November 9, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Reuters, “Update 1 – Brazil’s Bolsonaro Backs Ethanol Industry, Pledges Partnership” Palo Alto Daily Post, “Hydrogen Fueling Station Opens” Plastic News, “Bio-on Deal Bringing Bioplastics to Russia” Bio-Based World News, “Thyssenkrupp-commissioned Bio-Plastic Plant Starts Production in China” FoodBev Media, “Plant-based Collagen Company Geltor Receives $18.2m in Funding” Bio-Based World News, “Bio-based a Possible Solution to Mastercard’s Search for More Sustainable Bank Cards” Global Cosmetics ... read more >
November 2, 2018
DOE Announces Fiscal Year 2019 Funding Opportunities
On October 30, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced the topics for 2019 funding opportunities.  Amongst the program offices that are participating in this solicitation, is the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, who will be hosting an informational webinar on November 6, 2018, at 2:00 p.m. (EST) as an opportunity to ask the DOE Program Managers any questions about DOE funding opportunities.  The 90-minute webinar requires registration and allows for the submission of questions prior to the event.  Important upcoming dates regarding the submission ... read more >
November 2, 2018
DOE Publishes Summary Report: Cell-Free Synthetic Biology and Biocatalysis
In October 2018, DOE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) published a report called “Cell-Free Synthetic Biology and Biocatalysis:  Prototyping and Conversion Platforms.”  The report consists of a summary from discussions held on a listening day by BETO in Denver, Colorado, in 2017.  The public meeting was intended to discuss research and development opportunities related to cell-free synthetic biology and biocatalysis, and how these techniques could be leveraged in the production of biofuels and bioproducts. Attendees of the meeting included representatives ... read more >
November 2, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Ames Tribune, “Dept. of Energy Grant Helps Fund Iowa State’s Biobased Chemical Study” Chemistry World, “Waste Vegetable Oil Turned into Valuable Chemicals for Drugs and Plastics” The Hill, “Oil Industry:  Voters Worried about Trump’s Ethanol Plan” The Hill, “New Technologies Can Turn Timber Abundance into Sustainable Solutions” Phys.org, “Growing Algae More Sustainably for Biofuel Production” Automotive World, “Mazda Backs Carbon-Neutral Biofuel Research” Modern Materials Handling, “Sealed ... read more >
October 26, 2018
EC Announces BioWatch
The European Commission (EC) announced on October 16, 2018, the launch of a new web-based tool called BioWatch. Developed by BIOWAYS, a project funded by the European Union (EU), this new tool expands BIOWAYS’ efforts in raising awareness of biobased products and their social, economic, and environmental benefits. BioWatch consists of “an interactive online platform that provides projects in the bioeconomy sector with a free service to position themselves alongside one another and provide direct access to industry, political stakeholders, the media, and the general public.” ... read more >
October 26, 2018
AuNCs: Gold Nanoclusters
In the beginning of October 2018, researchers from the University of California – Berkeley published a paper in Nature Nanotechnology that explains how a new bacterium can produce fuels through artificial photosynthesis upon being fed gold. The formerly undiscovered bacterium, Moorella thermoacetica, allows for the development of photosynthetic biohybrid systems (PBS), linking inorganic light with preassembled biosynthetic pathways. The addition of gold nanoclusters, AuNCs, is used to circumvent electron transfer for existing PBSs through its addition to M. thermoacetica, which is a ... read more >
October 26, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Eureactiv, “EU Bioeconomy Strategy and IPCC – Planets Apart” Dentristry.co.uk, “First Bio-based Plastic Toothbrush Launched” Automotive World, “First Biobased Coating Hardener for Lightfast Polyurethane Coatings” Chemical Engineering, “Anellotech Announces Scaleup Plans for Bio-Based BTX Production” Renewables Now, “BNDES Grants USD 13m to Brazilian Ethanol ... read more >
October 19, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
The Detroit News, “UM Researchers Get Algae Biofuel Grant” The Hill, “Oil Industry, Green Groups Join to Oppose Trump’s Ethanol Plan” AgriNews, “Investing in the Future of Agricultural Innovations” Renewable Energy Magazine, “Neste and Air BP Collaborate to Support Sustainable Aviation Fuel” The Economic Times, “Plant to Convert E-Waste into Bio Fuel to Be Made Operational Soon: Harsh ... read more >
October 12, 2018
DOE Announces Collaborative Project On Hydrogen And Fuel Cells
On October 9, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the U.S. Army on a collaborative project designed to develop hydrogen and fuel cell technologies for civilian and military use. The MOU was signed by the U.S. Department of Army’s Tank & Automotive Research Development and Engineering Command (TARDEC) and the DOE’s Fuel Cell Technologies Office (FCTO). It aims to facilitate the research and development of innovative hydrogen and fuel cell technologies portfolios. The research will include studies on hydrogen production ... read more >
October 12, 2018
What “Bio-based” Means Across The Globe
In September 2018, researchers Harmen Willemse, from The Netherlands Standardization Institute (NEN), and Dr. Maarten van der Zee, from the Wageningen Food & Biobased Research Center, published a White Paper on “Communicating the bio-based content of products in the EU and the US.” Analyzing how bio-based content information is exchanged between businesses, consumers, and government, the paper aims to address the significant challenges associated with the various methods used for the determination of bio-based carbon content in bio-based products. The paper further explores ... read more >
October 12, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Des Moines Register, “In Iowa, Trump Says He Kept His E15 Promises, Claims Democrats Would ‘End Ethanol’” Bloomberg, “Gene-Edited Foods Are Coming to Your Plate but Aren’t Being Regulated” inhabitat, “Nuatan Is the Bioplastic That Could Answer the Plastic Pollution Crisis” UPROXX, “This ‘Bio Plastic’ Is 100% Compostable and Poised to Change the World” BiofuelsDigest, “Novozymes’ Yeast Beast in New Release; Innova Lift’s Yield Revealed” Biomass Magazine, “Norway to Implement ... read more >
October 5, 2018
February Orchids And An Environmentally Friendly Lubricant
Scientists at Indiana University -- Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) partnered on the publication of a study with researchers at Huazong Agricultural University in Wuhan, China, and researchers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  The study focuses on formerly undiscovered properties of a flower known as Orychophragmus violaceus. Also known as the February orchid, O. violaceus differs from other plant seeds in that it contains unusual fatty acid compounds that had not previously been identified. Bioorganic chemist Robert Minto and researcher Alisen Teitgen, at IUPUI, discovered ... read more >
October 5, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
CompositesWorld, “Bio-based composite bridge in The Netherlands” Reuters, “South Africa Looks to Kickstart Its Biofuels Industry” Bioenergy International, “GoodFuels Marine to Supply First Offshore Wind Project with Advanced ... read more >
September 21, 2018
Converting CO2 Into Electrofuels
On September 17, 2018, scientists at Columbia University published findings of a study on carbon dioxide (CO2) electrocatalysis as the first step in converting CO2 into renewable fuels. The results of the study are key in developing conversion points for CO2 to be used as a feedstock and renewable electricity in the synthesis of different types of fuel. For further details on the groundbreaking progress discovered by Columbia University’s scientists, the published article can be found in its entirety ... read more >
September 21, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
gasworld, “Bacteria that Turn Sugar into Hydrogen Being Engineered by Researchers” The Sydney Morning Herald, “Shell-backed Startup Creates Fuel from Carbon Dioxide and Fake Sunlight” Plastics in Packaging, “Dutch Supermarket Launches Bio-based Milk Container” Biofuels Digest, “Agrisoma, United Airlines and World Energy Complete Longest Transatlantic Biojet Flight” Aalto University School of Science, “Bio-based Carbon Improve Biogas Yield” Scientific American, “The Environment’s New Clothes: Biodegradable Textiles ... read more >
September 14, 2018
Weekly Roundup of Other Biobased News
Agence de Presse Africaine (APA News), “Nigeria: Government to Support 1000 Cotton Farmers” Forbes, “Trump’s Relationship with American Farmers Is Soiled Because of Biofuels Stance and Trade War” Brisbane Times, “Biofuels Successfully Trialled in Flights from Brisbane Airport” PackagingNews, “PepsiCo Joins Danone and Nestlé Waters in Bio-based Bottles R&D ... read more >
September 7, 2018
DOE Announces Funding For Bioenergy Research And Development Projects
On September 4, 2018, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced its support for projects in Bioenergy Research and Development. The projects total about $80 million and address early-stage research and development in the hopes of achieving DOE’s goal of reducing biobased costs in fuels by 2022. Funding for these projects comes from four different programs:  BioEnergy Engineering for Products Synthesis, Efficient Carbon Utilization in Algal Systems, Process Development for Advanced Biofuels and Biopower, and Affordable and Sustainable Energy Crops. U.S. Secretary of Energy, Rick ... read more >
September 7, 2018
Repurposing Methylene Blue In Flow Batteries
Methylene blue consists of a blue dye used in the textile industry. A new study, published in mid-August 2018, reveals that the dye can be repurposed for use in redox flow batteries. After establishing that the chemical compound has electrochemical properties, chemists at the University of Buffalo divulged that, as an active ingredient, it can be used to store energy. In the textile industry, only about five percent of methylene blue is absorbed by fabrics and the rest produces large amounts of waste water that can be toxic to the environment. According to the University of Buffalo chemists ... read more >
September 7, 2018
Polyamides From Wood Creates Building Blocks For Biobased Plastics
On August 30, 2018, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology (Fraunhofer IGB) published an article announcing the latest advances in using 3-carene as a building block to produce biobased plastics. The aforementioned substance, 3-carene, “is a component of turpentine oil, a waste stream of the production of cellulose from wood.” This substance can be found in pine, larch, or spruce and is usually a byproduct that ends up being incinerated. The research project’s name -- “TerPa – Terpenes as building blocks for biobased ... read more >
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