Recent News

Food Waste Prioritized as Feedstock for Biofuel and Other Transportation Options

26 Aug 2015 – Organic waste is gaining focus as a biofuel for an additional benefit compared to other agricultural feedstocks.

As manure and food decomposes, methane is released into the atmosphere. However, if the waste is converted into biogas and power, it minimizes waste while simultaneously creating the positive product of biofuel.

In July 2015, UPS announced they will be purchasing 46 million gallons of renewable diesel from cooking oils, animal fats, and algae in the next three years for its delivery trucks. United also recently purchased 15 million gallons of renewable jet fuel from beef tallow or fat by Alt Air Fuels. Read the recent NPR story on alternative jet fuel here.

DLA Adds Co-production of Liquid Hydrocarbon Fuels to BAA

6 August 2015—The Defense Logistics Agency- Energy (DLA-Energy) has added the co-production of liquid hydrocarbon fuels as an area of interest to the Emergent II Research and Development Broad Agency Agreement (BAA). View the BAA here.

Note that the specific section is C7, and can only be viewed by clicking on the "Changed" menu selection dated May 14, 2015, 3:51PM on the right-hand side of page.

The Secretary of the Navy has set a goal that by 2020 half of all the Department of the Navy's energy will come from alternative sources. To support the Navy’s goal that half of their energy will come from alternative sources, the Department of the Navy, Department of Energy and the Department of Agriculture, signed a memorandum of understanding to "assist the development and support of a sustainable commercial biofuels industry."

FedEx Agrees to Buy 3 Million Gallons of Jet Fuel per Year Starting in 2017

30 July 2015 – FedEx, the world’s largest air cargo company, has announced their agreement to buy 3 million gallons of biofuel a year for eight years starting in 2017. FedEx plans to purchase the alternative fuels from Red Rock Biofuel based in Colorado, the same company that will start supplying Southwest Airlines in 2016.

Red Rock’s fuel will be sourced from 140,000 tons of forest waste (e.g. trees, branches, bark, and leaves), which will then be converted into 15 million gallons of renewable jet, diesel, and naphtha fuel a year. This agreement represents FedEx’s first step in reaching their goal of obtaining 30% of their jet fuel from alternative sources by 2030.

Read the full article here.

USDA Report Quantifies Benefits of Biobased Products to U.S. Economy

23 July 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a report in June 2015 highlighting the prominent impact the biobased products industry is having on the U.S. economy. In 2013 alone, the biobased products industry added $369 billion to the economy as well as four million jobs.

Seven sectors of the industry were evaluated: agriculture and forestry, biorefining, biobased chemicals, enzymes, bioplastic bottles and packaging, forest products, and textiles. According to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, this is the first research effort to quantify the effects of the biobased products industry in terms of job creation and economics.

The report is available on the USDA BioPreferred® site here.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack Announces Funding and Changes to Biorefinery and Biobased Product Program

21 July 2015 – Secretary Tom Vilsack announced in Washington that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is accepting applications for loan guarantees to support production of advanced biofuels, renewable chemicals, and biobased product manufacturing.

The funds will be available through the Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program (BAP), formerly known as the Biorefinery Assistance Program. The assistance program provides loan guarantees of up to $250 million. Additional changes to the program were discussed in a seminar hosted at USDA headquarters led by Secretary Vilsack and USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service Administrator Lillian Salerno on July 16, 2015.

For further details on the USDA program changes, see the news release here and the BAP program overview.