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Bioenergy and the USDA: Policy Perspectives. Harry S. Baumes, Ph. D. Associate Director Office of Energy Policy and New Uses The Economics of Alternative Energy Sources and Globalization: The Road Ahead Embassy Suites Airport Orlando, Florida November 16, 2009. BACKGROUND.

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Bioenergy and the usda policy perspectives

Bioenergy and the USDA: Policy Perspectives

Harry S. Baumes, Ph. D.

Associate Director

Office of Energy Policy and New Uses

The Economics of Alternative Energy Sources and Globalization: The Road Ahead

Embassy Suites Airport

Orlando, Florida

November 16, 2009


  • Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007

    • RFS 2

    • GHG Reductions

  • Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008

    • Energy Title IX

  • Positions and Personalities

President Obama’s Commitment to Renewable Energy

“To put people back to work today, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil tomorrow, we will double renewable energy production.”

President Commitment to Renewable Energy

“From China to India, from Japan to Germany, nations everywhere are racing to develop new ways to produce and use energy. The nation that wins this competition is the nation that will lead the global economy. I am convinced of that. And I want America to be that nation”.

Remarks made at MIT, October 23, 2009

USDA is working to expand energy opportunities by producing alternative forms of energy and fuel, and to ensure that we are doing the research necessary to allow agriculture to transition away from its rather significant dependence on fossil fuels.”

Tom Vilsack

Agriculture Secretary

EISA – EPACT Renewable Fuels Standard

Other Biofuels

Biobased Diesel

Cellulosic Biofuels

Conventional Corn Starch



Biofuels interagency working group
Biofuels Interagency Working Group

On May 5, 2009, President Obama signed the directiveestablishing a new working group to be chaired bythe Secretaries of Energy and Agriculture and theAdministrator of the EPA.

The group will work with the National Biomass Research and Development Board on:

Creating a biofuel market development program to boostnext-generation biofuels, increase use of flex-fuel vehicles,and assist retail market development

Coordinating infrastructure policies

Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 - Title IX – Energy

  • Federal Procurement of Biobased Products (9002)

  • Biorefineries Assistance (9003)

  • Repowering Assistance (9004)

  • Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels (9005)

  • Rural Energy for America Program (9007)

  • Biomass Research and Development (9008)

  • Biomass Crop Assistance Program (9011)

  • Forest Biomass for Energy (9012)

Farm Bill Title IX Energy

Section 9006 Funding Activity FY2003 - 2008

Renewable Energy/Energy Efficiency

Loans, Grants &


TechnologyNo.Amount Leveraged

Biomass 271 $65,188,772 $321,322,470

Wind 245 48,008,511 582,427,329

Solar 108 4,683,405 11,207,057

Geothermal 52 1,969,517 4,576,639

Hybrid 18 2,620,736 85,968,197

Subtotal 694 $122,470,941 $1,005,501,692

Energy Efficiency 1,329 $34,456,722 $76,743,867

Subtotal 2,023 $156,927,663 $1,082,245,559

Guaranteed Loans 153 $91,529,855 $181,321,296

Grand Total 2,176$248,457,518$1, 263,566,855

Looking ahead
Looking Energy Ahead

  • USDA working with the EPA – final rule for implementation of the RFS2

  • EPA Ruling on Growth Energy Waiver Request – raise fuel blend to 15%

  • House and Senate Energy Bills

  • Commitment by USDA to Expand Biofuels (Biomass) Production

  • USDA Strategic Plan

  • IWG - Biofuels

Biofuels Energy

  • 1st generation, corn-ethanol, sugar-ethanol, biodiesel, used vegetable oil, animal fats

  • 2nd generation, cellulosic biofuels

  • 3rd & 4th generation, biofuel from organic wastes (solid waste, biosolids, animal wastes, green wastes, food production and pulp and paper wastes, plastics, auto shredding residues, tires) and biofuel from plants that can sequester high levels of CO2 (algae, eucalyptus)

Expanding biofuel feedstock
Expanding Biofuel Feedstock Energy

  • Increasing export demand for food and high crop returns compete for land and limit the conversion to dedicated energy crops

  • Expansion of land comes from - cropland, cropland idled by farmers and government programs, cropland pasture, and summer fallow – limited resource

  • International response to higher commodity prices can change the equation

  • Cropland expansion at the global level is possible in several countries (Angola, Rep. of Congo, Sudan, Brazil, Argentina, and others)

  • Conversion of land (rain forest, savanna and pasture) to crops in the above countries can increase GHG emissions

Environmental issues
Environmental Issues Energy

  • Land-use (direct and indirect)

  • Nutrient and other contaminant runoff

  • Water quality and availability

  • Soil loss due to water and wind erosion

  • Greenhouse gas emissions ( CO2 and non CO2)


Friday, July 4, 2008 by Energy

The Guardian / UK

Biofrenzy at usda with commitment and direction
BIOFRENZY EnergyAt USDAwith Commitment and Direction

Thank you

Contact Information: Harry S. Baumes

[email protected]