U.S. Senator Chris Coons of Delaware

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Cellulosic Biofuels' Economic
and Technological Challenges
Speed Bumps or Detours?

Ethanol produced from biomass (a biofuel) has been hailed as an alternative energy source to offset reliance on foreign oil. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) issued a new renewable fuel standard (RFS2) that mandated renewable fuel consumption to increase incrementally from 2010 - 2022 across feedstocks (e.g. food crops such as corn, sugarcane), cellulosics (plants' hardier non-food materials such as corn stover, starchy grasses, and forest litter including wood), and algae. While grain bioethanol is tracking to meet or exceed its quota, a lack of supply has had the 2011 and 2012 cellulosic targets reduced to less than 3% of the previous requirements. Some analysts suggest that meeting RFS2's cellulosic quotas will require either a significant increase in the price of oil and/or extensive subsidies to make such biofuel competitive with conventional gasoline. Other industry watchers argue RFS2's goals are a matter of opening more manufacturing sites and building an infrastructure and consumer base to create demand that drives production volumes. This panel will discuss the interrelated economics and technological challenges confronting biofuels to inform on moving forward with RFS2.

January 30th
at 12 noon
from the Russell Senate Office Building
in Washington, DC

Hosted by the American Chemical Society's Science and the Congress Project

Honorary Co-Hosts:
U.S. Senator Chris Coons
U.S. Senator James Inhofe

William Provine, Ph.D., Science Director, Biochemical Science & Engineering, BioFuels at DuPont Central Research & Development

Virginia Dale, Ph.D., Corporate Fellow, Oakridge National Laboratory
Douglas Karlen, Ph.D., Supervisory Soil Scientist, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Ames, Iowa
Aristides Patrinos, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Synthetic Genomics
Wallace Tyner, Ph.D., James & Lois Ackerman Professor of Agricultural Economics, Purdue University

The Science & the Congress Project was established in 1995 to provide a neutral and credible source of scientific information targeted to policymakers on Capitol Hill. Expert speakers are chosen to provide a balanced presentation about the topic under discussion, and their comments are independent of any position that may be held by the ACS, the sponsors of Science & the Congress, or its co-hosts. The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 163,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

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