The chairman of the Renewable Fuels Association is excited about the developments in cellulose technology for the future of the ethanol industry.
“And we fully believe that many of these technologies will in fact be proven to be economically viable on a commercial scale,” said Chris Standlee, who is executive vice president of Abengoa Bioenergy in St. Louis.
He says support from the US Department of Energy through research grants is definitely helping to speed the process along. “We are fortunate enough to be the recipient of a grant to prove our cellulose technology on a commercial scale in a facility that we are building in southwestern Kansas,” one of six grant-funded plant that are scheduled to be in operation by 2010.
Standlee says the recent article in Science challenges the ethanol industry to step up its efforts to make sure the public gets the whole truth about ethanol, not just part of the story. “Even the study itself acknowledges the greenhouse gas emissions benefits of the use of ethanol,” he says. It just makes assumptions about land use for biofuels production that “just simply are not true.”
As chairman of the RFA, Standlee is looking forward to the upcoming National Ethanol Conference in Orlando February 25-27, to celebrate success and look forward to the future. “We have record attendance this year as we’ve had virtually every year since the start of the conference,” he said. “We expect somewhere in the neighborhood of 2500 people to be attending the conference. It really is an exciting opportunity.”
More information about the National Ethanol Conference can be found on the RFA website.
Listen to RFA’s “The Ethanol Report” podcast with Chris here, or subscribe to it on “The Ethanol Report” blog.