Bioeconomy Initiative Forum 


Wednesday, July 8, 2020 from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM EDT
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Yates Auditorium, US Department of the Interior 
1849 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20240

Driving Directions 


Jim Lane 
The Digest 

Bioeconomy Initiative Forum Agenda 


In honor of the 20th anniversary of the Biomass Research and Development Act, ABLC joins the Biomass Research and Development (BR&D) Board in hosting the Bioeconomy Initiative Forum. 

Established through the Biomass Research and Development Act, the BR&D Board oversees the Bioeconomy Initiative—a coordinated federal effort to harness America’s biomass potential for biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. Co-chaired by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Energy, the BR&D Board has tirelessly marched toward its vision for a vibrant U.S. bioeconomy that enhances economic growth, energy security, and environmental quality by maximizing the sustainable use of our nation’s biomass resources.

The purpose of the Bioeconomy Initiative Forum is to share the great progress to date on the Bioeconomy Initiative, including accomplishments and plans for the Board’s Interagency Working Groups (IWGs), since the release of The Bioeconomy Initiative: Implementation Framework. 

The Forum will consist of a series of 4 fireside chat-style sessions, focused on thematic key accomplishments of the Bioeconomy Initiative, with significant time for questions and input gathered from the public and industry stakeholders. This highly interactive event will provide multiple opportunities for attendees to engage with BR&D Board member agencies, build new relationships and public-private partnerships, and broaden participation in the Bioeconomy Initiative. 

The Bioeconomy Initiative Forum is free and open to the public, including all registrants of the ABLC 2020 conference. For more information on the BR&D Board, please visit 

7:30 AM
Registration and Check-in

8:00 AM
Welcome and Introductory Remarks
Session leader: Kathy Benedetto, DOI Board Member

•    Daniel Simmons, DOE Board Co-Chair
•    Scott Hutchins, USDA Board Co-Chair

8:30 AM
Overview of the Bioeconomy Initiative,  Implementation Framework, and Workshop Goals and Format
Session leader: Alison Goss Eng, DOE

9:00 AM
Mitigating Risks and Barriers
Moderator: Mark Elless, DOE

Mitigating risks, through techno-economic and risk assessments, is a key priority of the Bioeconomy Initiative. This panel will explore how understanding and quantifying technology uncertainties and financial risks is pivotal to the success of the bioeconomy.
•    Tim Cesarek, CCO, Gevo (invited)
•    Chris Clark, EPA

9:25 AM
Discussion and Questions

9:45 AM
Metrics and Indicators
Moderator: Brian Heninger, EPA

As the bioeconomy evolves, it is critical to stay at the cutting edge of understanding and assessing potential environmental, social, and economic effects of various technologies and bioeconomy scenarios. This panel will focus on developing a catalogue of key metrics and indicators, as well as methods and guidance to support their application, to help identify best practices and maximize the benefits of the bioeconomy, while mitigating impacts.
•    Rolf Hogan, Executive Director, Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (invited)
•    Jeremy Guest, University of Illinois

10:10 AM
Discussion and Questions

10:30 AM
Innovation and Technology Development
Moderator: Devinn Lambert, DOE

Performing innovative research and developing enabling platforms and applications is a critical factor to drive an innovation-based bioeconomy. This panel will the highlight new advancements in basic and applied research across the bioenergy and bioproduct supply chain.
•    Matt Crisp, CEO, Benson Hill Biosystems (invited)
•    Deepti Tanjore, Advanced Biofuels Process Demonstration Unit

10:55 AM
Discussion and Questions

11:15 AM
Stakeholder Engagement and Technology Transfer
Moderator: Bill Goldner, USDA

Strategic, sustained stakeholder engagement is essential to growing the bioeconomy to effectively reduce technology uncertainties and improve supply chain performance. Federal agencies, in collaboration with universities, industry, stakeholders, and non-governmental organizations, will need to build strong partnerships for technology transfer to the bioeconomy industry.
•    John Hannon, COO, Vertimass (invited)
•    Dan Geller, University of Georgia
•    Ira Levine, University of Southern Maine

11:40 AM
Discussion and Questions

12:00 PM
Closing Remarks
Session leaders: Alison Goss Eng, DOE