“To meet our future energy needs, we will need versatile renewables like bioenergy as a low-carbon fuel for some parts of our transportation sector,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “Continuing to fund the important scientific work conducted at our Bioenergy Research Centers is critical to ensuring these sustainable resources can be an efficient and affordable part of our clean energy future.”
Each of the four centers, led by a National Laboratory or University, support the science behind a bio-based economy and aims to break down the barriers to building a strong domestic bioenergy industry.
The centers include the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, led by the University of Wisconsin-Madison in partnership with Michigan State University; the Center for Bioenergy Innovation, led by DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory; the Joint BioEnergy Institute, led by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; and the Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation, led by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Continuing to invest in these centers promises to yield a range of important new products and fuels derived directly from non-food plant biomass, such as switchgrass, poplar, energy cane, and energy sorghum.
“Wisconsin’s world-class research institutions have long supported America’s bio-based energy industry, including biofuels and biomass, that cut energy costs, create rural economic opportunity, and take on climate change,” said U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (WI).
“This investment from the Biden administration will help us continue this proud tradition. These resources will help Wisconsin’s research institutions continue to innovate, boosting farmers’ and producers’ bottom lines, developing cleaner energy, and moving our Made in Wisconsin economy forward.”
“One of the best ways for our nation to strengthen our competitiveness with the rest of the world is to enhance the brilliance that already exists right here in Illinois,” said U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (IL).
“I’m pleased that the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation will receive this federal funding to help support groundbreaking research on clean energy, create jobs, address climate change and further secure Illinois’s place as a global leader.”
The decision to renew the four BRCs followed a successful review by a panel of outside peer reviewers on each center’s past five years of performance. Initial funding for the four centers will total $110 million for Fiscal Year 2023, outyear funding will total up to $120 million per year over the following four years and is contingent on availability of funds.
(Credit: Marilyn Sargent/Berkeley Lab)