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Webinars

This page contains presentation slides and audio files from the Bioenergy Technologies Office's (BETO) webinar series that covers many of the Office's activities and features "Hot Topics" discussions relevant to the development of renewable fuels, power, and products from biomass resources.

Upcoming Webinars

July 21, 2016— A Summary of the Results of the 2016 Billion-Ton Report: Advancing Domestic Resources for a Thriving Bioeconomy, Volume 1

Join technology leads and researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office and Oak Ridge National Laboratory on Thursday, July 21, 2:30 p.m.–3:30 p.m. Eastern Time, for an interactive overview of the 2016 Billion-Ton Report, which provides detailed data about national biomass resources and new analyses that incorporate the cost of biomass delivered to biorefineries. The webinar will also showcase new visualization tools to access Billion-Ton data on the Bioenergy Knowledge Discovery Framework. Register for a Summary of the Results of the 2016 Billion-Ton Report: Advancing Domestic Resources for a Thriving Bioeconomy, Volume 1 webinar.

Check out our Events page to find out more about our upcoming webinars.

Recent Webinars

May 5, 2016—Building the Billion-Ton Bioeconomy 

Join the Biomass Research and Development (R&D) Board Operations Committee at a bioeconomy listening session on Thursday, May 5, 2 p.m.–4 p.m. Eastern Time. During the listening session, titled “Building a Billion Ton Bioeconomy in the United States,” we encourage attendees to provide their thoughts and comments and to ask questions about the potential to grow the national bioeconomy. Listening session hosts from the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Energy will solicit input from participants on opportunities that may exist and challenges that need to be confronted to achieve a focused and successful bioeconomy vision for the United States. This listening session will use ThinkTank collaborative technology to gather input from participants.

In preparation for the session, it is strongly encouraged that attendees review the recently released Federal Activities Report on the Bioeconomy. The report is a product of an interagency collaboration under the Biomass R&D Board, which includes members from federal agencies such as the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Energy, Interior, Transportation, and Defense; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; the National Science Foundation; and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. The report was prepared to emphasize the significant potential for a stronger and cleaner U.S. bioeconomy through the production and use of biofuels, renewable chemicals, biobased products, and biomass heat and power. The report also delves into the wide-ranging, federally funded activities that are currently helping to bolster the bioeconomy.

April 20, 2016—Field-to-Fleet: How Does Feedstock Type Affect Biofuels Conversion? 

In honor of Earth Week, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) presented a live webinar about BETO's Field-to-Fleet project and its outcomes to date on Wednesday, April 20, 1–2 p.m. Eastern Time. Field-to-Fleet is part of BETO’s larger Thermochemical Feedstock Interface Project and is a joint Idaho National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory project designed to determine how feedstock type affects various thermochemical biofuels conversion processes. The multi-year project has quantified the impacts that feedstock type has on hydrotreating of pyrolysis oil, and is now ready to apply the methodology to other thermochemical conversion pathways. Participants learned about Field-to-Fleet outcomes, impacts, and opportunities for partnership. Presenters included laboratory project leads and BETO's Conversion Team. 

January 21, 2016—Excellence in Bioenergy Innovation—A Presentation of 2015 R&D 100 Award Winning Projects

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) presented a live webinar titled “Excellence in Bioenergy Innovation—A Presentation of 2015 R&D 100 Award Winning Projects” on Thursday, January 21, 2016 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The webinar featured state-of-the-art research by Dr. Jianping Yu of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Douglass Elliott of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)—winners of 2015 R&D 100 Awards for breakthrough bioenergy advances. View the recorded webinar

January 21, 2016—BioenergizeME Office Hours Webinar: Must-Know Tips for the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge

Infographics are a useful visual tool for explaining complex information, numbers, or data quickly and effectively. However, you do not need to be an experienced graphic designer to make an eye-catching infographic. To assist student teams with the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge, this webinar highlights strategies for designing engaging infographics and will provide creative approaches that can bring attention to your infographic and motivate others to share it across their social media networks. The webinar also includes lessons learned from previous challenges and tips from last year’s winning team. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge engages 9th–12th-grade high school teams to research one of four cross-curricular bioenergy topics and design an infographic to share what they have learned. This webinar is part of the BioenergizeME Office Hours webinar series developed by the DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office. 

December 16, 2015—Demonstration of NREL's Bioenergy Atlas Tools

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) hosted a free webinar on December 16 demonstrating how to use the BioEnergy Atlas tools. The U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office funded the BioEnergy Atlas tools, which include the BioFuels and BioPower Atlases. These tools are designed as first-pass visualization tools that allow users to view many bioenergy and related datasets in Google Maps. Users can query and download map data and view incentives and state energy data, as well as select an area on the map for estimated biofuels or biopower production potential. View the recorded webinar.

December 10, 2015—BioenergizeME Office Hours Webinar: Integrating Bioenergy into the 9th–12th Grade Classroom

Biofuel is the only viable substitute for petroleum-based liquid transportation fuel in the near term. It is, therefore, increasingly relevant to enhance conceptual knowledge of biofuels and other types of bioenergy in today’s classroom environment. Bioenergy has applications across multiple science and engineering disciplines and also provides opportunities for real-world learning. The webinar is designed to support high school educators and administrators in planning activities for their classrooms that integrate bioenergy topics with the life sciences, physical sciences, earth and space sciences, and engineering and technology. In addition, the information will assist advisors who are interested in participating in the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge. This webinar is part of the BioenergizeME Office Hours webinar series developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office. View the recorded webinar

October 26, 2015—Bioproducts in the Federal Bioeconomy Portfolio

In order for the U.S. bioeconomy to expand, it will require increased consideration of the development of commercial bioproducts. Bioproducts can displace traditional products made from fossil fuels at competitive prices, lower greenhouse gas emissions, and enable the commercialization of biofuels. Bioproducts can also make everyday products, like plastic, that enhance our quality of life. There is currently abundant opportunity to produce renewable chemicals, while producing biofuels using sustainable biomass. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office Technology Manager Nichole Fitzgerald, U.S. Department of Agriculture BioPreferred Deputy Program Manager Kate Lewis, and the Ohio State University Bioproducts Innovation Center’s Director Dennis Hall discuss how the federal government is promoting sustainability through bioproducts research, commercialization, and market development. View the recorded webinar

October 15, 2015—BioenergizeME Office Hours Webinar: Guide to the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge is an engaging way for students to explore topics in bioenergy and share what they have learned with others across the nation. In this challenge, high school-aged teams (grades 9–12) will use technology to research, interpret, apply, and then design an infographic that responds to one of four cross-curricular bioenergy topics. To make the challenge easier and more effective, this webinar is designed to guide interested students, teachers, and other educators through the submission process and highlight the resources that are available on the BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge website. These resources will assist students with researching their selected topics, developing their infographics, and designing effective social media campaigns. This webinar is part of the BioenergizeME Office Hours webinar series developed by the DOE Bioenergy Technologies Office. View the recorded webinar.  

August 27, 2015—BioenergizeME Office Hours Webinar: Biomass Basics

Many students haven’t thought much about biomass as an option for generating electricity, transportation fuels, and other products. The Biomass Basics Webinar provides general information about bioenergy, its creation, and its potential uses, and is designed to assist teams competing in the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge. This challenge, hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), is a competition for high school students to learn about bioenergy, create infographics to present what they have learned, and share their infographics on social media. This webinar is part of the BioenergizeME Office Hours webinar series developed by BETO in conjunction with the 2016 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge. View the recorded webinar

May 27, 2015—A Changing Market for Biofuels and Bioproducts
A strong bioeconomy made up of biomass-derived fuels has an important role to play in a world of quickly changing oil prices. The U.S. Department of Energy, through the Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), is supporting research and development to ensure that these biofuels and bioproducts are both available and affordable. In this webinar, Dr. Bryce Stokes (CNJV) and Laurence Eaton (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) will discuss the results of the BETO-funded report the "U.S. Billion-Ton Update," and how this and other research efforts are helping to enhance a secure and sustainable annual supply of biomass for the U.S. bioeconomy. 

April 22, 2015—Biofuels for the Environment and Communities
Biomass-derived fuels are a promising, domestically sourced replacement for fossil-based fuels that can provide benefits to the environment, the economy, and society. The U.S. Department of Energy, through the Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO), is supporting research and development to ensure the long-term sustainability of biofuels. In this webinar, Drs. Virginia Dale (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) and Cristina Negri (Argonne National Laboratory) will discuss the results of their BETO-sponsored research on how to develop biofuels that positively impact the environmental, socioeconomic, and technoeconomic sustainability of biofuel development in the United States. View the recorded webinar

October 22, 2014—Genetically Modified Algae: A Risk-Benefit Assessment
As the algae industry continues to invest in the research and development of genetic modification (GM) to optimize biofuels production, biocontainment systems and regulatory policies will play key roles in avoiding potential impacts on the environment. Biocontainment of outdoor algae is challenging due to their small size, ability to disperse over long distances, resistance to desiccation, and the high concentration of cells in pond cultures. GM policies developed for agricultural crops provide a framework for the development of regulation for GM algae. This webinar discusses these issues, as well as examples of algal GM traits engineered by Los Alamos National Laboratory to enhance photosynthesis and biomass productivity with respect to risk analysis. View the pre-recorded webinar.

June 11, 2014 –" Algal Biofuels Consortium Releases Groundbreaking Research Results " 
Dr. Jose Olivares of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) presented the results of algal biofuels research conducted by the National Alliance for Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts (NAABB). NAABB is the largest advanced biofuels consortium ever funded, consisting of 39 institutions from national laboratories, academia, and industry.

February 6, 2014 –"The Potential for Natural Gas to Enhance Biomass Technologies" 
The Department of Energy's (DOE's) Bioenergy Technologies Office hosted a webinar in conjunction with the Office of Fossil Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory, and Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy to provide an overview of Natural Gas-Biomass to Liquids technology, advantages of using natural gas, and key themes that were established at the September Natural Gas-Biomass to Liquids Workshop.

October 24, 2013 –"Using the New Bioenergy KDF for Data, Discovery, and Research"
The Bioenergy Technologies Office launched a revamped version of the Bioenergy Knowledge Discovery Framework (KDF). The KDF provides researchers, industry, policy makers, and the public with access to a variety of datasets, publications, collaboration, and mapping tools that support bioenergy research, analysis and decision making. Users can now utilize the KDF to search for the latest bioenergy research found in the Bioenergy Library.

June 24, 2013 –"Ionic Liquid Pretreatment Technologies"
Dr. Blake Simmons of Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) presented on the discovery, design, and optimization of an ionic liquid pretreatment technology that can efficiently process hardwoods, softwoods, agricultural residues, and other energy crops. The webinar featured the latest developments in the approach of using ionic liquids to convert biomass into sugar, as well as a highlight of further research on enzymes and microbes that are compatible with ionic liquid technologies.

April 15, 2013 –"Computational Studies on Lignocellulose Deconstruction"
Dr. Gnana S. Gnanakaran from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) presented his team's molecular research on lignocellulosic biomass. Lignocellulose is a promising carbon-neutral source of energy that is sourced from non-edible feedstocks. The webinar featured LANL's novel application of mathematical modeling and computational analysis to gain a better understanding of cellular and molecular biology. This approach provides one of the most in-depth looks at how lignocellulosic biomass functions, reacts, and changes, which can advance future applied studies in conversion and processing methods.

December 12, 2012 –"Upgrading Renewable and Sustainable Carbohydrates For the Production of High Energy Density Fuels"
Presenters from Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) highlighted the development of hydrocarbon fuels as renewable alternatives to petrochemical feedstocks. With decreasing global production of crude oil, it is essential to our nation that renewable alternatives to petrochemical feedstocks for hydrocarbon fuels are developed. A constant, reliable supply of these fuels would help ensure that the nationwide transportation of food, medicine, and consumer goods remains uninterrupted, regardless of sociopolitical conflict. Lignocellulose is a promising carbon-neutral source of energy derived from wood, agricultural waste, and woody grasses. The carbohydrates D-glucose (C6), L-arabinose (C5), and D-xylose (C5) are readily obtained from the hydrolysis of lignocellulose and constitute the most abundant renewable organic carbon source on the planet. Because they are naturally produced on such a large scale, these sugars have the greatest potential to displace petrochemical-derived transportation fuel. Researchers discussed investigations into a potentially transformational strategy aimed at obtaining high energy density hydrocarbon fuels from non-food-based carbohydrate sources.

December 5, 2012 – "Global Solutions for Global Challenges: International Collaborations to Advance Bioenergy Research"
Presenters highlighted the progress of ongoing research collaborations among scientists supported by the Energy Department and researchers from China, Brazil, Canada, Finland, and other countries around the world. Scientists from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) discussed collaborations that hold the potential for innovations in feedstock logistics and biomass conversion technologies that will help accelerate the commercialization of advanced biofuels. The presenters provided the results of exchanging best practices and benchmarking current biofuels systems with metrics and trends in trade and commoditization. Finally, the webinar featured collaborative work supporting the International Organization for Standardization and other initiatives attempting to define metrics and indicators to foster robust international markets for sustainable biofuels.

August 15, 2012 – "Assessing Impacts of Bioenergy Production on Regional Water Resource Use and Availability"
This session—intended for local, county, and state water managers; working farmers and biofuel leaders; students and professionals in the fuel and energy sectors; and policymakers—provided an overview of requirements for water resources, as well as a discussion of the environmental impacts attributable to wastewater from biofuels production. Dr. May Wu from Argonne National Laboratory presented case studies to highlight the unique aspects of the water footprint of biofuels, thereby demonstrating the complex nature of the energy-water relationship.

April 23, 2012 – "Educational Opportunities in Bioenergy"
This focused on educational opportunities at two Department of Energy (DOE) national labs: National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). During the webinar, experts from NREL and ORNL showcased specific bioenergy research programs and exciting educational opportunities available for undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral students at the labs. The webinar topics featured synopses of these bioenergy research programs, highlights of the benefits to students participating in them, and a list of important contacts to help students get involved. Webcast presenters included current and former student participants and leaders of the bioenergy research programs from both national labs, who provided information on the programs and their experiences.

February 9, 2012 – "Conversion Technologies for Advanced Biofuels Roadmapping Workshop Webinar"
This focused on the results from the Conversion Technologies for Advanced Biofuels (CTAB) Roadmapping Workshop, hosted by the Bioenergy Technologies Office in Arlington, Virginia, in December 2011. Critical technical barrier areas and research activities indentified during the workshop were a central theme of the webinar and were presented by the subject matter experts who led the breakout sessions. The webinar also highlighted talks on broad technical issues (such as separation and catalysis) and innovative methods of biomass processing (such as hybrid conversion systems and lignin utilization). The information collected at the CTAB Workshop will form the basis of an upcoming roadmap document on research challenges and research and development activities for the commercial development of advanced biofuel technologies, slated for publication in late 2012.

September 22, 2011 – "The U.S. Billion-Ton Update: Biomass Supply for a Bioenergy and Bioproducts Industry"

This featured the 2011 U.S. Billion-Ton Update: Biomass Supply for a Bioenergy and Bioproducts Industry, a report detailing biomass feedstock potential nationwide. Authors of the report presented the purpose, approach, and major assumptions of the 2011 Billion-Ton Update, including how it differs from the 2005 Billion-Ton Study. They discussed the report's findings, as well as how its data might be used by both the public and private sector to grow the bioenergy industry and help achieve President Obama's goals of expanding renewable energy resources and developing alternative fuels for America's transportation sector.

August 30, 2011 "Transforming Biomass into Feedstock"

This focused on how raw biomass can be processed into consistent and reliable feedstock material. Speakers from the Bioenergy Technologies Office, Office of Science, Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), Idaho National Laboratory, and other institutions discussed technologies that produce and transform biomass into high-quality, on-spec, densified feedstocks. Speakers addressed the impacts these technologies have on supply chain logistics and feedstock performance for biofuels and biopower applications. Presentations covered both fundamental science related to cell wall formation and function, as well as applied research and development areas, such as engineering plants to produce enzymes that degrade cell walls when activated and increasing field density and productivity, while reducing fertilizer inputs.

View presentation materials and recordings on Idaho National Laboratory's website.

May 17, 2011 – "Sustainability for the Global Biofuels Industry - Minimizing Risks and Maximizing Opportunities"

This featured an overview of sustainability issues related to the development of a global biofuels market. A panel of speakers from Conservation International discussed the results of the Department of Energy (DOE)-supported Sustainable Biofuel Crops Project, including identified risks and opportunities for global biofuels production, results of field studies to develop responsible biofuel crop management strategies, and implications for land-use planning, policy, and developing markets.

February 8, 2011 – "Bioenergy Knowledge Discovery Framework"

This demonstrated the Bioenergy Knowledge Discovery Framework (KDF). The session included an overview of the system, case studies of how it may be used, and a demonstration of its user interface. View webinar recordings on the KDF website.

November 18, 2010 – "Advanced Biofuels Research Pathways"

This featured an overview of the Office's ongoing advanced biofuels research, including research on biochemical and thermochemical conversion processes. This session also discussed the progress the National Advanced Biofuels Consortium is making in research, development, and demonstration of process technology strategies to convert biomass feedstock into a form that can be used in a petroleum refinery. These new and innovative approaches can advance the commercialization and adoption of advanced biofuels.

September 8, 2010 – "The Promise and Challenges of Algae as Renewable Sources of Biofuels"

This focused on the Office's approach to algal biofuels research and development and included presentations from four representatives of its recently funded consortia. This session also discussed highlights from the National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap, which was released by DOE in June 2010.