The Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG) helps members develop and bring to market their innovative biobased and renewable chemical products through insightful policy and regulatory advocacy. BRAG is managed by B&C® Consortia Management, L.L.C., an affiliate of Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 21, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced the availability of approximately $21.3 million in funding for 106 Phase I small business innovation projects. The funds, announced by U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette, are part of DOE’s $53 million available for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) research and development projects. The selected small businesses represent 26 states. Most Phase I awards are $200,000 for a performance period of less than one year. Nine EERE technology offices will fund the awards under 12 topics.

Tags: DOE, EERE, Funding

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On April 24, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced that it intends to issue a funding opportunity to:

  • Stimulate technology innovation;
     
  • Enable manufacturing of cutting-edge products in the United States; and
     
  • Improve energy productivity of manufacturing.

On behalf of the Advance Manufacturing Office (AMO), this potential funding opportunity aims to advance the Trump Administration’s goal of enhancing manufacturing competitiveness through technological innovation. The Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), titled “FY20 Advanced Manufacturing Multi-Topic FOA,” will fund high-impact, applied research and development (R&D) projects that align with research opportunities across AMO. The FOA will focus on three areas:

  • Modular, hybrid, and/or catalytic processes to improve energy efficiency in chemical manufacturing;
     
  • Next-generation manufacturing processes that improve energy efficiency in energy-intensive and energy-dependent industries, including steel manufacturing; and
     
  • Connected, flexible, and efficient manufacturing facilities, products, and energy systems, including the integration of direct air capture at industrial facilities.

The FOA is expected to be released during this Spring.

Tags: DOE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On April 22, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Rapid Advancement in Process Intensification Deployment (RAPID) Manufacturing Institute announced the availability of $4 million for five selected projects. The projects align with RAPID’s research focus areas in chemical and commodity processing, renewable bioproducts, natural gas upgrading, modeling and simulation, module manufacturing, and intensified process fundamentals.

Tags: DOE, RAPID

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) will host a virtual meeting of the State Energy Advisory Board (STEAB). The virtual meeting will take place from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (EDT). Interested parties must contact the Board’s Designated Federal Officer, Jay Nathwani, via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or phone at 202-586-9410.

Tags: DOE, EERE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Ligia Duarte Botelho, M.A.

On March 31, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced its intention to replace eXCHANGE for a new system for funding opportunity announcements (FOA) and application submissions. Starting in Fiscal Year 2021, parties interested in responding to EERE’s opportunities will use the EERE Program Information Center (EPIC). As DOE EERE transitions into EPIC, it is currently looking for volunteers to test the new system and provide feedback. Pilot testing will be from May through June 2020.

Interested parties will have a chance to register early and experience EPIC and how the submission process is changing. According to EERE, the most prominent change to the registration process is that parties must register before their individual applicant accounts can be created. The pilot is open to any organization. Volunteers will be asked to register in EPIC and submit a test application. Training videos will be available, and volunteers will be asked to provide feedback on the new system. Two roles are needed to register for the pilot: (1) the organization’s Government Business Point of Contact (from www.sam.gov), and (2) Technical Points of Contact, such as Principle Investigators or individuals who prepare, review, or submits applications for FOAs.

Organizations interested in volunteering for the pilot test should e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) by May 1, 2020. Further details are available here. Participation is limited and volunteers will be selected on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Tags: DOE, EERE, FOA

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On March 25, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a meeting of the Biological and Environmental Research Advisory Committee (BERAC). The meeting will be held digitally via webcast on April 16, 2020, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (EDT). Information on how to access the meeting will be posted here. Tentative agenda topics include:

  • BERAC business and discussion;
  • News from the Biological Systems Science and Climate and Environmental Sciences Divisions;
  • News from the Office of Biological and Environmental Research (BER);
  • Report brief(s); and
  • Public comment.

The virtual meeting is open to the public. Both written and oral statements regarding agenda items will be accepted.

Tags: DOE, BERAC

 

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On March 16, 2020, DOE EERE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office and Bioenergy Technologies Office used a joint funding opportunity announcement (FOA) of up to $25 million for plastics recycling R&D. As part of the Department’s Plastics Innovation Challenge, this FOA has been titled “BOTTLE: Bio-Optimized Technologies to Keep Thermoplastics Out of Landfills and the Environment.” The BOTTLE FOA will support the development of new plastics capable of efficient recyclability and improvement of recycling strategies that can break existing plastics into chemical building blocks that can be used in other products.

Also as part of the Plastics Innovation Challenge, DOE has launched a new BOTTLE Consortium, which will be led by three of DOE’s national laboratories. The Consortium will work with stakeholders in industry and academia to focus on BOTTLE’s core mission. The three national laboratories in the Consortium currently are the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

This BOTTLE FOA includes three topic areas:

  • Highly recyclable or biodegradable plastics;
     
  • Novel methods for deconstructing and upcycling existing plastics; and
     
  • BOTTLE Consortium collaborations to tackle challenges in plastic waste.

Concept papers for the BOTTLE FOA are due on April 22, 2020, and full applications are due on June 18, 2020. Information on how to submit concept papers and applications can be found here.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On March 6, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced that up to $20 million in funding is available for workforce development at universities in emerging energy fields. Aiming to prepare the next generation of scientists and engineers, DOE’s investment will fund a land grant university to pursue interdisciplinary research through the support of expansions of existing joint graduate education programs with DOE National Laboratories. This effort will be led by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) as part of the implementation of the “Charting a Course for Success: American’s Strategy for STEM Education” roadmap. The selected project will:

  • Establish a five-year EERE Research, Training and Workforce Development Program that expands existing joint graduate programs, with associated investment in learning and research tools to promote research, entrepreneurship, and technology transfer;
  • Use existing National Laboratory capabilities in key EERE-related areas for training and research that support EERE-funded projects; and
  • Coordinate with other relevant programs, including regional and national fellowship and workforce development efforts, build sustainable alliances, and apply lessons learned and best practices.

Applications for this funding opportunities are due on or prior to April 13, 2020, at 5:00 p.m. (EDT).

Tags: DOE, Funding

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On March 2, 2020, 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. Occurring on March 24, 2020, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (EDT) and March 25, 2020, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (EDT), both meetings will take place in Arlington, VA. The purpose of the meetings is to develop advice and guidance that promotes R&D leading to the production of biobased fuels and biobased products. Parties interested in participating in the meeting and/or making oral statements must contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) five days prior to the meetings.

Tags: DOE, EERE, Biofuel

 
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