Recent News

DOE Announces Funding for Three DOE MEGA-BIO Projects: Bioproducts to Enable Biofuels


5 August 2016 – The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced up to $11.3 million in funding for three projects under the MEGA-BIO funding opportunity on August 2, 2016. These three projects, which include initiatives that will be conducted by the Dow Chemical Company in Midland, Michigan; Amyris, Inc. in Emeryville, California; and Research Triangle Institute in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, will support the development of biomass-to-hydrocarbon pathways for biofuel production. Specifically, the funding will go towards developing new strategies for biorefineries, including chemicals and products manufacturing. Other entities involved in the projects include long-time CAAFI collaborators, including LanzaTech, Renmatix, Total New Energies, and others. For more information on the funded projects, refer to the DOE announcement.

U.S. Federal Government Releases Federal Alternative Jet Fuels R&D Strategy


28 July 2016 - Today, the White House released the Federal Alternative Jet Fuels Research and Development (R&D) Strategy (FAJFS), mapping out a unified federal plan to advance R&D as well as science and technology solutions to support deployment of alternative jet fuels (AJFs) in both civil and military aviation. The strategy provides a prioritized list of R&D goals and objectives addressing specific scientific, technical, analytical, and logistics challenges that hinder the development, production, and wide-scale economic deployment of AJFs. In releasing the FAJFS, the federal government hopes to accelerate the development of the AJF industry by minimizing technical uncertainty to encourage further private sector interest, facilitate the development and approval of new AJF pathways, and reduce the cost of AJF production in the United States.

View/download the CAAFI press release.

National Academies of Sciences Releases Commercial Aviation CO2 Reduction Technology Report


22 July 2016 – The National Academies of Sciences (NAS), Engineering and Medicine released a report, commissioned by NASA, entitled Commercial Aircraft Propulsion and Energy Systems Research, that focuses on propulsion and energy technology needs for reducing carbon emissions from large, commercial aircraft.

NAS organized a committee to identify innovative technology solutions that could significantly mitigate the CO2 contributions from commercial flight over the next 30 years. The committee identified a need to focus on 12 high impact solutions that fell into four general categories: 1) aircraft propulsion integration; 2) aircraft gas turbine engine improvements; 3) development of turbo-electric propulsion systems; and 4) alternative jet fuel commercialization. The report also stresses that in order to have an immediate impact on CO2 emissions reductions in aviation, drop-in alternative jet fuels must continue to be deployed in commercial flights. CAAFI Executive Director Steve Csonka was a participant in the panel of cross-industry experts who comprised the NAS team, and was a contributor to the report.

Download the full NAS report here.

Boeing’s 100th Anniversary Coincides with Africa’s First Commercial Flights Powered by Alternative Jet Fuel


15 July 2016—On Boeing’s 100th anniversary, the South African Airways and Mango flights flew Boeing’s 737-800 carrying 300 passengers from Johannesburg to Cape Town using a 30 percent blend of alternative jet fuel produced from SunChem’s nicotine-free tobacco plant Solaris, refined by AltAir Fuels and supplied by SkyNRG. The partners also launched their Southern Africa Sustainable Fuel Initiative (SASFI) sustainability plan to ensure long-term alternative jet fuel supply for South African Airways and other regional carriers. The goal is to scale production of the sustainable fuel to enable local farmers to tap into local and global demand. In 2015, farms in South Africa where the feedstock is sourced achieved certification from the Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB).

Read the SkyNRG Press Release and Boeing Press Releasefor more information.

9th Annual DOE Bioenergy 2016: Mobilizing the Bioeconomy through Innovation Conference & 2016 Billion-Ton Report Rollout


14 July 2016 – The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in partnership with the Clean Energy Research and Education Foundation, is currently hosting its 9th annual Bioenergy 2016: Mobilizing the Bioeconomy through Innovation Conference in Washington, DC, from July 12-14, 2016. The conference focuses on current and future feedstock production opportunities and breakthrough technology innovations with the potential to advance the nation’s bioeconomy, and hosts participants and attendees from Congress, national labs, academia, and the bioenergy and financial industries.

On Wednesday, July 12, DOE hosted a breakout session on “Launching Renewable Aviation Fuels” featuring CAAFI’s Executive Director, Steve Csonka, and CAAFI’s Strategy and Implementation Advisor, Nate Brown (FAA), as well as long-time CAAFI participants Chris Tindal (Navy) and Brent Sherbacow (AltAir Fuels), and moderated by DOE’s Borka Kostova.

In addition to other exciting announcements and discussions at the conference, the DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office announced the release of the 2016 Billion-Ton Report: Advancing Domestic Resources for a Thriving Bioeconomy. This is the 3rd report in a series of reports developed by DOE and Oak Ridge National Laboratory to inform the public of the current estimated biomass supply in the United States. Specifically, the report estimates that the United States has the potential to annually and sustainably produce at least 1 billion dry tons of biomass resources from non-food sources by 2040. New additions to the report include information on the potential algae, other energy crop, and municipal solid waste supplies for biomass production.

For more information on the Bioenergy 2016 conference and its sessions, see the conference website here. Find the full 2016 Billion-Ton report here.