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 January 10, 2019, more than 600 environmental groups signed a letter submitted to U.S. Representatives urging them to consider certain principles on climate change as a Green New Deal is developed.  As the 116th Congress begins to take into account climate change legislation, environmental groups would like to see affirmative actions focused on six key areas:

  • Fossil fuel phase-out;
  • Transition into renewable energy;
  • The role of public transportation;
  • The power of the Clean Air Act (CAA);
  • Community-led transitions; and,
  • The importance of indigenous rights.

Tying together these six concepts, the environmental groups’ letter highlights the role played by legislators and day-to-day community leaders/workers in integrating a 100 percent renewable energy system in the U.S. The suggested principles call for the expansion of public transportation as a means to phase out fossil fuel vehicles, as well as the prioritization of support for communities that have been historically most harmed by the dirty energy economy. In addition, a reference to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) is made to emphasize Indigenous Peoples’ rights to receive remedies of losses or damages of their property. The signatory environmental groups also explicitly oppose rollbacks of existing environmental and human health protection policies, legislation that protects the fossil fuels industry, and policies that promote corporate profits over community burdens.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On September 7, 2018, U.S. Congressman David Young (R-IA) introduced, in a bipartisan effort with U.S. Congressman Collin Peterson (D-MN), the Restoring Our Commitment to Renewable Fuels Act. Under this bill, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would be required “[t]o provide for reallocation of the renewable fuel obligation of exempted small refineries under section 211(o) of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7545(o)) to other refineries, blenders, distributors, and importers, and for other purposes.”  As a response to EPA’s 2019 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) proposal, the bill aims to address issues related to the former EPA Administrator, Scott Pruitt, and his decision to undercut the Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS) through “hardship” waivers received by refineries. Calling for greater transparency within EPA’s decisions on issuing these waivers, this Act holds EPA accountable to meet and maintain the RVOs set annually. The bill also calls for the reallocation of each gallon of renewable fuel covered by these exemptions.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

The 5th Biotechnology World Congress has been scheduled to take place in Bangkok, Thailand, from February 13-15, 2019.  The Welcome Letter states that the conference will “feature a variety of lectures in a number of key sessions in biotechnology, including a commercial exhibition and poster sessions” and the sessions given will include “strategic alliances in biotechnology, pharmaceutical biotechnology, medical biotechnology, plant and environmental biotechnology, bioprocess engineering, and industrial biotechnology.”  A list of the speakers and presentations that have already been scheduled is posted.  The event has put out a call for speakers and posters.  The deadline of abstract submissions for lecture and poster presentation is December 31, 2018; more information on how to apply is available online.


 

By Lauren M. Graham, Ph.D.

As explained in the notice issued by Neste, a member of the Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®), with President Trump’s signing of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (H.R. 1892), the blenders tax credit was extended retroactively for 2017.  Qualified biofuel blenders are eligible for a tax credit of $1.00 per gallon of biodiesel or renewable diesel used in the blending process in 2017.  The blenders tax credit was one of several biofuel-related tax incentives that were extended retroactively.  The incentives, which also include tax credits for second-generation biofuel production and alternative fuel vehicle refueling property, and a special allowance for second generation biofuel plant property, were not extended through 2018.


 

The BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology will take place on July 23-26, 2017, at the Palais des congrès de Montréal.  Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) will co-host a Bioeconomy Leaders and Innovators Reception with Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox P.L.L.C. from 6:00-7:30 p.m. on July 25, 2017.  Enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while engaging with colleagues to exchange ideas and explore the prospect of establishing new partnerships.  Christine Lhulier, Corporate Counsel for DuPont Industrial Biosciences, will participate in a brief question and answer (Q&A) session to initiate dialog for the evening.  Register for the reception
 
Richard E. Engler, Ph.D., Senior Chemist with B&C, and Lauren M. Graham, Ph.D., Manager of the Biobased and Renewable Products Advocacy Group (BRAG®), will be attending the conference and will be pleased to discuss questions attendees may have about their own biotechnology products. 

We look forward to seeing you there! 


 

The BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology takes place July 23-26, 2017, at the Palais des congrès de Montréal.  Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) will co-host a Bioeconomy Leaders and Innovators Reception with Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox P.L.L.C. from 6:00-7:30 p.m. on July 25, 2017.  Enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while engaging with colleagues to exchange ideas and explore the prospect of establishing new partnerships.  Christine Lhulier, Corporate Counsel for DuPont Industrial Biosciences, will participate in a brief question and answer (Q&A) session to initiate dialog for the evening. Register for the reception
 
Richard E. Engler, Ph.D., Senior Chemist with B&C, and Lauren M. Graham, Ph.D., Manager of BRAG, will be attending the conference and will be pleased to discuss questions attendees may have about their own biotechnology products. 
 
We look forward to seeing you there!


 

The BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology takes place July 23-26, 2017, at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, and features two new tracks on Flavors, Fragrances and Food Ingredients, and Agricultural Crop Technologies and Biomass Supply.  Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) will co-host a Bioeconomy Leaders and Innovators Reception on July 25, 2017, with Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox P.L.L.C.  More details to come.  Richard E. Engler, Ph.D., Senior Chemist with B&C, will be attending the conference and will be pleased to discuss questions attendees may have about their own biotechnology products. 
 
There is still time to register online.  We look forward to seeing you there!


 

The BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology brings together business leaders, investors, and policy makers in biofuels, biobased products, and renewable chemicals.  The event taking place July 23-26, 2017, at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, features two new tracks on Flavors, Fragrances and Food Ingredients; and Agricultural Crop Technologies and Biomass Supply.  Registration is now open.


 

On January 31, 2017, two bills were introduced in the U.S. Congress that propose to reform the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and the national biofuels mandate.  The first bill would require the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to assess the performance, safety, and environmental impact of mid-level ethanol, and the implications of the use of mid-level ethanol blends compared to gasoline blends containing ten percent or less ethanol.  The second bill would reduce the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) cellulosic biofuel volume requirements under the RFS program to what is commercially available pending a NAS report on the environmental and economic impacts and feasibility of large scale production of cellulosic biofuel.


 

On November 1, 2016, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) issued a call for panel session proposals for the 2017 World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology.  Leaders from biotechnology, bioenergy, chemical, consumer products manufacturing, and agricultural industries as well as academia and financial sectors industries are invited to submit proposals to present on groundbreaking research and partnerships in the industrial biobased industry.  Specific program tracks for the 2017 World Congress include:  


 
Advanced Biofuels and Biorefinery Platforms; 
 

 
Renewable Chemicals and Biobased Materials;
 

 
Agriculture Crop Technologies and Biomass Supply;
 

 
Flavors, Fragrances and Food Ingredients;
 

 
Synthetic Biology and Genomics Research;
 

 
Research and Technical Presentations; and
 
Growing Global Biobased Markets.

More information on submitting a proposal is available online.  The conference will be held July 23-27, 2017 , in Montreal, Canada.


 
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