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 June 7, 2019, DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Office published in the Federal Register a notice requesting the nomination for candidates to fill vacancies on the Biomass Research and Development (R&D) Technical Advisory Committee. Nominations are being accepted until June 30, 2019, and require the nominee’s name, resume, biography, and any letters of support available. The Committee advises DOE and USDA points of contact with respect to the Biomass R&D Initiative and priority technical biomass R&D needs, and makes written recommendations to the Biomass R&D Board.

Tags: DOE, EERE, Biomass

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 30, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced that its Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) released an updated version of an online computer model meant to help bioenergy developers to preserve water. Called Water Analysis Tool for Energy Resources (WATER), this online tool provides in-depth analysis of water consumption used in the development of bioenergy. Designed for industry leaders, government, academia, and the general public, WATER provides information for users to make better-informed decisions about what types of feedstocks are most appropriate for use in water-limited areas. WATER is funded by DOE’s EERE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office and models all the water available in a region down to county levels.

Tags: DOE, EERE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 28, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) announced that, in partnership with its National Laboratories, it is dedicating the months of May and June to the public exploration of renewable biomass feedstocks used for the production of biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower in support of the U.S. bioeconomy. This means that during the months of May and June 2019, BETO will be sharing information on “Bioenergy Feedstocks Out Your Window” via social media and offering webinars on new research. The June webinars will focus on research strategies that enable supply-chain improvements in biomass quality and consistency through blending, preprocessing, diversity, and landscape design in development of conversion-ready, lignocellulosic feedstocks for production of biofuels, biopower, and bioproducts.

Tags: DOE, EERE, BETO

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 22, 2019, DOE EERE announced Ohio State University’s year one win of the EcoCAR Mobility Challenge.  The EcoCAR competition, a four-year collegiate engineering competition focused on advancing energy technologies in the transportation sector, challenges universities to apply advanced propulsion systems, electrification, and other innovative technologies to transform their vehicles from design concept into reality.  Sponsored by General Motors and MathWorks, the teams have a total of four years (2018-2022) to build an energy efficient, connected, and semi-automated vehicle for the car sharing market. The program builds on DOE’s Advanced Vehicle Technology Competitions (AVTC) by providing the student teams with competition management, team evaluation, and logistical support throughout its four years.

Tags: DOE, EERE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 16, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released the 2019 Better Buildings Report, announcing the progress made by public- and private-sector organizations that participate in DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Better Buildings Initiative. Aimed at improving U.S. energy efficiency, partners in the Better Building Initiative represent 32 of the country’s Fortune 100 companies, 12 of the top 25 U.S. employers, 12 percent of the U.S. manufacturing energy footprint, and 13 percent of total commercial building space. According to the report, together they leverage new energy-saving technologies, collaborate to overcome obstacles, invest in innovative projects, and achieve impressive energy savings. Investing in the commercial, industrial, residential, and public sectors to improve energy, these market leaders’ achievements include:

  • Savings of approximately $4 billion since the program started;
     
  • Savings of more than six billion gallons of water;
     
  • Cost savings of about $5.3 billion over the last seven years; and
     
  • An increase in the creation of new tools and strategies targeting efficiency barriers, among other achievements further outlined in the report.
In addition, 20 of the partners and allies achieved their energy, water, or financing goals this year.  Since the program began, 85 partners have now met their original goals. The full report can be accessed here.
Tags: DOE, EERE

 

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On May 15, 2019, DOE EERE’s BETO announced the deadline for concept paper submissions for a $79 million funding opportunity for bioenergy research and development (R&D): June 3, 2019. This funding opportunity includes biopower, biofuels, and bioproducts, aiming to reduce the price of drop-in biofuels, lower the cost of biopower, and enable high-value products from waste or biomass resources. The opportunity includes ten topic areas:

  • Cultivation Intensification Processes for Algae
     
  • Biomass Component Variability and Feedstock Conversion Interface
     
  • Efficient Wood Heaters
     
  • Systems Research of Hydrocarbon Biofuel Technologies
     
  • Optimization of Biomass-Derived Jet Fuel Blends
     
  • Renewable Energy from Urban and Suburban Wastes
     
  • Advanced Bioprocessing and Agile BioFoundry
     
  • Plastics in the Circular Carbon Economy
     
  • Rethinking Anaerobic Digestion
     
  • Reducing Water, Energy, and Emissions in Bioenergy

For further details, see the EERE Exchange website.

Tags: DOE, Biofuel, EERE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

On April 16, 2019, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced the winners of DOE’s Solar Decathlon® Design Challenge, which was held at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, CO, from April 12-14, 2019. The Challenge consisted of ten contests in which student teams designed highly efficient and innovative buildings powered by renewable energy.  The winners are teams that best blended architectural engineering excellence with innovation, market potential, smart energy production, and building efficiency.

Tags: DOE, EERE, Solar

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

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 laboratory support prizes. Prize competition concepts could include standardization of equipment, application of advanced manufacturing, new layouts, creative construction management, or improved construction equipment. In the first stage of the competition, ten finalists will be selected for 50 hours of support over three months from the FAST national laboratory partners. This initial stage will be in preparation for a pitch contest with up to $950,000 of combined cash prizes and vouchers support, and up to three winners. FAST PSH is part of a larger effort conducted by DOE in partnership with Argonne National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest Laboratory. Part of this effort also involves the development of a baseline framework to assist industry and understand costs, time, and risk burdens associated with PSH. The first stage of the prize competition closes on May 24, 2019.

Tags: DOE, EERE

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson

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 National Laboratory, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory were part of more than 100 authors representing more than 30 research institutions, universities, and private companies who contributed to the special issue containing these 23 articles.


 
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