DOE Releases Plan to Advance Cellulosic Ethanol

July 7, 2006

DOE released on July 7th its new research agenda for developing cellulosic ethanol into a practical alternative to gasoline. Cellulosic ethanol is a renewable, carbon-neutral transportation fuel produced from the fibrous, inedible parts of plant matter. The roadmap identifies the research required for overcoming challenges to the large-scale production of the cellulosic ethanol, but it also details recent advances in biotechnology that have made the production of cellulosic ethanol cost effective. The goal is to use these advances to jump-start a new industry whose products can fuel many of today's vehicles and can be transported, stored, and distributed with only modest modifications to the existing infrastructure. See the research agenda on the DOE Office of Science Web site.

"Biofuels represent a tremendous opportunity to move our nation toward a reduced dependence on imported oil," said Alexander Karsner, DOE's Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. "We fully intend to use all of our resources and talent to support the President's goal of breaking our addiction to oil, while also enhancing our energy security." See the DOE press release, and for more information about biofuels, see the DOE Biomass Program Web site.