DOE BETO hosts workshop on algal biology

By U.S. Department of Energy | May 24, 2016

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office is hosting a two-day workshop gathering lead experts in the field of algal biology from May 24–25. This workshop, “Sharpening Our Tools: Algal Biology Toolbox Workshop,” held in San Diego, California, will discuss research and development (R&D) needed to achieve affordable, scalable, and sustainable algae-based biofuels. It is the first algal biofuels strategy workshop to focus specifically on improvements in algal biology—a key research focus required to advance the economic viability of algae-based biofuels. 

More than 70 stakeholders have registered to attend, representing diverse stakeholders from government, national laboratories, universities, and industry. During the workshop, attendees will review the tools and resources available to grow, monitor, valorize, and genetically enhance algae for biofuel production. Input gathered from the participants will inform a strategy for leveraging these tools to realize a future where algae-based biofuels and bioproducts contribute significantly to the U.S. bioeconomy. 

BETO’s Advanced Algal Systems Program Manager Alison Goss Eng will lead the event. On the first day of the workshop, experts in algal biology will present new developments in the field, furthering attendees’ understanding of the current state of algal science. Participants will have an opportunity to present their own project updates and develop partnerships for future collaboration to advance algal R&D. On the second day, attendees will provide input about the challenges in algal biology, the metrics of success in algae strain development, and the resources needed to overcome challenges and achieve success. The goal of these discussions is to identify research priorities for the next five years. 

Through sponsorship of this event, BETO’s Algae Program is engaging key stakeholders and carrying out a long-term applied R&D strategy to increase the yields and lower the costs of algal biofuels. BETO’s Algae Program regularly hosts algal biofuels strategy workshops to help break down critical technical barriers and promote sustainable and affordable algal biofuels

This event is sponsored by the Bioenergy Technologies Office in DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. BETO is accelerating the development of a sustainable, cost-competitive advanced biofuel industry that can strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality, through research, development, and demonstration projects in partnership with industry, academia, and national laboratory partners.