Category: Columnists

Editor’s Sketchbook: DuPont cellulosic ethanol project, Nevada, IA

Editor’s Sketchbook: DuPont cellulosic ethanol project, Nevada, IA

September 11, 2014 |

It towers above the surrounding central Iowa countryside like the Launch Assembly Building lords it over Cape Canaveral — it’s the new DuPont cellulosic ethanol project, on the outskirts of the town of Nevada. Functional yet inspiring, imposing yet accessible — when it opens before year end 2014 it is sure to be a monumental addition […]

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What’s Good for Algae is Good for Renewables

What’s Good for Algae is Good for Renewables

November 12, 2013 |

By Mary Rosenthal Executive Director, Algae Biomass Organization I had the privilege of sitting in the Science, Space, & Technology Committee Room of the Rayburn House Office Building last month for the launch of the new Congressional Algae Caucus with its bi-partisan chairmen, Republican Matt Salmon of Arizona and Democrat Scott Peters of California. They, […]

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Getting by with a little help from my friends

Getting by with a little help from my friends

June 11, 2013 |

by Mary Rosenthal Executive Director, Algae Biomass Organization What’s the secret to commercializing a new technology? Recently Jonathan Silver, the former head of the Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program, discussed how that program has an approximately 97% success rate, despite a few well-known failures. As the algae industry closes in on the launch of […]

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Cleantech Conservative: 10 New Realities, Priorities for Biofuels in 2013

Cleantech Conservative: 10 New Realities, Priorities for Biofuels in 2013

December 17, 2012 |

By Douglas Faulkner, “The Cleantech Conservative” The International Energy Agency recently issued its World Energy Outlook 2012 with much press attention (and some misreporting), because of its dramatic projections about the emergence of new global energy landscape. Its main highlight: The U.S. could become, in less than a decade, the largest oil producer in the […]

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By-Products: The Key to Ethanol’s Struggles

By-Products: The Key to Ethanol’s Struggles

December 12, 2012 |

Ethanol’s Struggles Aside from the common “food vs. fuel” debate surrounding ethanol from corn, rising corn crop prices and slower rising ethanol prices has resulted in ethanol plants suffering significant net losses. Ethanol producers have to find additional revenue streams from the total product of their production process including by-products, such as CO2 which unlike […]

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Politics, Policy and Principles


Politics, Policy and Principles


April 2, 2012 |

By Mary Rosenthal, Executive Director, Algal Biomass Organization In the past few weeks we’ve seen and heard a lot of chatter about high gas prices, domestic energy and biofuels – algae biofuels in particular.  Some took the opportunity to turn President Obama’s support for algae into a liability for him, and the algae industry into […]

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Out from Solyndra’s Shadow

Out from Solyndra’s Shadow

November 17, 2011 |

Federal loan guarantees may be scuttled after the Solyndra affair – but should the baby really be thrown out with the bathwater? By Brent Erickson, Executive VP, BIO, Industrial Biotechnology & Environment Section Federal loan guarantee programs for bioenergy may be headed for demise – death by 1.2 trillion cuts. The recent Solyndra scandal is […]

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Our troops deserve the support that flows from domestic biofuels, says Gen. Clark

Our troops deserve the support that flows from domestic biofuels, says Gen. Clark

October 19, 2011 |

Consider this: Every time the price of a barrel of imported oil rises one dollar, it costs the Navy $31 million in increased fuel costs. The result is that the military must run fewer operations and complete fewer training exercises. Our nation imagines itself the most free and secure in the world, yet this statistic […]

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RFS: It’s Not Perfect, But It’s Working

RFS: It’s Not Perfect, But It’s Working

October 11, 2011 |

By Brent Erickson, Digest columnist and Executive Vice-President, BIO Industrial and Environment Section The Renewable Fuel Standard is the key foundation policy supporting the commercial development of advanced biofuels. It is not working as fast as some would like, but given the current economic situation it is indeed working. A handful of advanced biofuel companies […]

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Federal Policy for Reducing Uncertainty for Advanced Biofuels Producers

Federal Policy for Reducing Uncertainty for Advanced Biofuels Producers

September 6, 2011 |

by Brent Erickson, Executive VP, BIO As any number of economic analysts have noted, continued policy uncertainty is holding businesses back from the hiring and investment needed to get the economy moving again. The advanced biofuel industry has been trying to deploy pioneering technology in the midst of the recent economic downturn. Additional uncertainty over […]

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