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Gran Bio received an $80 Million grant from the US Department of Energy for the Thomaston facility

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded $118 million in funding for 17 projects to accelerate the production of sustainable biofuels for America’s transportation and manufacturing needs. The selected projects, located at universities and private companies, will drive the domestic production of biofuels and bioproducts by advancing biorefinery development, from pre-pilot to demonstration, to create sustainable fuels that reduce emissions associated with fossil fuels. Funding for this opportunity supports President Biden’s goals to deliver an equitable, clean energy future, and put the United States on a path to achieve net-zero emissions, economy-wide, by no later than 2050. Projects selected as part of this funding opportunity will contribute to meeting DOE’s goal to achieve cost-competitive biofuels and at least a 70% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030.

Made from widely available domestic feedstocks and advanced refining technologies, energy-dense biofuels provide a pathway for low-carbon fuels that can lower greenhouse gas emissions throughout the transportation sector and accelerate the bioeconomy. Financing for novel biorefinery process systems can be a barrier to commercializing advanced biofuels, and this funding will reduce technological uncertainties and enable industry deployment.

The selected projects include pre-pilot, pilot, and demonstration projects that will scale-up existing biomass to fuel technologies that will eventually create millions of gallons of low-carbon fuel annually. By investing in these technologies, the projects will create good-paying jobs in rural and underserved communities in nine states. Plans submitted by the selected projects show intent to collaborate with local school districts to educate and train the bioenergy workforce of tomorrow.  Additionally, the funded projects align with renewable fuels goals in the first-ever U.S. National Blueprint for Transportation Decarbonization, a multi-agency framework for reducing emissions, creating a robust transportation workforce, and securing America’s energy independence. The projects also support the U.S. Sustainable Aviation Fuel Grand Challenge goal of enabling the production of three billion gallons of sustainable aviation fuel annually by 2030 and 35 billion gallons annually by 2050.

The 17 selected projects fall into four areas:  

  1. Pre-Pilot Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries, 
  2. Pilot Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries,  
  3. Demonstration Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries, and  
  4. Gen-1 Corn Ethanol Emission Reduction. 

The selected projects are located in nine states and Washington, DC, and focus on technologies including anaerobic digestion, conversion of cellulosic sugars to SAF, catalytic biorefining, among others.  

The following projects were selected:

SelecteeLocation (City, State)Project TitleFederal Cost Share
Topic Area 1: Pre-Pilot Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries
Algenesis CorporationCardiff, CAPre-Pilot Scale Production of Algae-based Jet Fuel and Polyurethane Monomers$4,987,974
Captis Aire LLCEast Point, GARenewable Blending Components to Enable 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)$2,000,000 
Comstock Inc.Virginia City, NVProduction of Renewable Diesel, Sustainable Aviation Fuel, Gasoline, and Marine Fuel from Lignocellulosic Biomass at Dramatically Improved Yield, Efficiency, and Cost.$2,000,000 
Global Algae InnovationsSan Diego, CAAlgae Direct Air Capture Scale-up to Multi-Acre Raceways$3,600,000
MicroBio Engineering Inc.San Luis Obispo, CAAttached Algae Flow Ways for Biofuels Production Utilizing Air-CO2$3,978,199
Research Triangle InstituteResearch Triangle Park, NCA Corn Stover Pyrolysis Pathway for Sustainable Aviation Fuel$2,000,000 
University of California: RiversideRiverside, CAScale-up Demonstration of Hybrid Catalytic Biorefining of Biomass to Sustainable Aviation and Marine Fuels$2,000,000 
University of UtahSalt Lake City, UTEntrained-Flow Biomass Gasification with Syngas Fermentation for Production of Sustainable Aviation Fuels$2,000,000 
Viridos, Inc.La Jolla, CAPre-pilot Integrated Sustainable Aviation Fuels Algae Biorefinery$2,000,000
Topic Area 2: Pilot Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries
LanzaTech, Inc.Skokie, ILRESTORE: Replenishing EcoSystems by Transforming Residues to Energy$1,640,286
MicroBio Engineering Inc.San Luis Obispo, CAScale-up of Hydrothermal Liquefaction with Supercritical Water Oxidation in an Integrated Biorefinery$579,673
Topic Area 3: Demonstration Scale-Up of Integrated Biorefineries
Alder Fuels, LLCWashington DCDecarbonizing the Skies – Sustainable Aviation Fuel from Alder Biocrude Oil$2,000,000
AVAPCO LLCThomaston, GAAVAP Biorefinery: Enabling Net Zero™$80,000,000
Topic Area 4: Gen-1 Corn Ethanol Emission Reduction
Green PlainsOmaha, NEEmissions Reduction Technologies for Green Plains Biorefineries$500,000
Lincolnway Energy LLCNevada, IAReduced Carbon Intensity Ethanol via Biogas from Stillage & Other Feedstocks$453,000
Marquis, IncHennepin, ILCarbon Refining: Corn Ethanol 2.0$8,547,047
RenewCO2 IncCranford, NJIntegrated Electrocatalytic Conversion of CO2 from Bio-Ethanol Emissions into Carbon-Negative Chemicals$499,953

These awards will be administered by DOE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), which is focused on developing technologies that convert domestic biomass and other waste resources into low-carbon biofuels and bioproducts.

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