USDA Global Conference on Agricultural Biofuels: Research and Ecomonics (Minneapolis, Minnesota - August 20-22, 2007)

Conference Presentations

Science and Technology Presentations

Biofuels: Challenges and Opportunities Ahead
The natural resource and technical challenges and opportunities associated with the burgeoning bioeconomy
Moderator:  Dr. Pai-Yei Whung, Director, Office of International Research Programs, Agricultural Research Service (ARS), USDA

Role of USDA Research and Development in the Emerging Bioeconomy     
Dr. Ghassem Asrar,   Deputy Administrator, Natural Resources and Sustainable Agricultural Systems, Agricultural Research Service, USDA

EC Research Priorities in the Area of Bio-Based Products                           
Dr. Laurent Bochereau, Head of Science, Technology and Education Section Delegation of the European Commission to the US

Challenges and Perspectives for RD&I for Brazilian Agroenergy,            
Dr. Kepler Euclides Filho, Executive Director, Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária, Embrapa – Brazil

Second Generation Feedstocks  
Prospects for “second generation” feedstock technologies 
Moderator:  Dr. Steven Shafer, Area Director, Agricultural Research Service, USDA

Switchgrass:  Production, Economics, and Net Energy, Dr. Ken Vogel, Research Leader, USDA-ARS, Lincoln, Nebraska

Biotechnology Options for Bioenergy Crops, Dr. Richard Flavell, Chief Scientific Officer, Ceres, Inc., USA

United Kingdom Biofuel Activities, Initiatives and Successes:  Scientific and technological development of agricultural production and conversion for biofuels, Dr. Melvyn F. Askew, CSL Fellow, Central Science Laboratory (CSL), York, United Kingdom

Agricultural Production and  Biomass Conversion       
Biomass Production and Feedstock Options, Conversion challenges, decision making tools and impacts on the development of feedstocks
Moderator:  Dr. Allen S. Levine, Dean, College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences, University of Minnesota

Biofuel Feedstock Options and Conversion Platforms for Today and Tomorrow,
Dr. Kevin Hicks, Research Leader, USDA-ARS, Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania

Sweet Sorghum: A dryland-adapted, pro-poor bioethanol feedstock yielding both grain and fuel,
Dr. Belum V.S. Reddy, International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), India

Biodiesel: Brazilian Perspective. New and Future Feedstocks for its Production. The Official Brazilian Biodiesel Test Program, Dr. Miguel Dabdoub, Sao Paulo Biofuels Association, Brazil

Biomass Production Decision Making Tools and Planning, Dr. Robert Anex, Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, Iowa State University

Sustainable Production & Environmental Considerations
Technical challenges of biofuel crops to enhance their sustainability
Moderator:  Dr. Robert P. Elde, Dean, College of Biological Sciences, University of Minnesota

 Making Crop Residues a Sustainable Feedstock for Biofuel Production, Dr. Wallace Wilhelm, Plant Physiologist, USDA-ARS and Director of the Renewable Energy Assessment Project

Sustainability of Biomass Production in Context, Dr. David I. Bransby, Professor, Energy Crops and Bioenergy, Auburn University, Alabama

Ethanol Production and Water Quality, Dr. Thomas W. Simpson, Professor, University of Maryland

Biofuels from Perennial Prairie Plant Polycultures and the Ecosystem Services they Provide, Dr. Jason Hill, Research Associate, University of Minnesota

Biofuel Climatic Risks Zoning in Brazil, Dr. Eduardo Assad, Agroclimatologist, Embrapa, Brazil

Economic Impacts and Outlook Panels

Commercialization and Economic Impacts Considerations
Economic impacts of biofuels on farmers, processors, fuel end users, and producers of other agricultural commodities and on commercialization of biofuels 
Moderator:  Mr. William (Bill) Lee, Former Chairman, Renewable Fuels Association

The Future for Bioproducts:  Everything old is new again, Dr. Roger Conway, Director, Office of Energy Policy and New Uses, USDA

Outlook of COFCO & China Non-grain Fuel Ethanol, Mr. Bei Li, Deputy General Manager, Cofco Ltd.

Biofuels, Energy Security, and Future Policy Alternatives, Dr. Wallace E. Tyner, Professor Agricultural Economics, Purdue University

Commercialization of First Generation Biofuels, Dr. Vernon Eidman, Professor Emeritus and former Head, Department of Applied Economics, University of Minnesota

International Biofuels Economic Outlook Panel                       
Current international economic outlook for biofuels production
Moderator: Dr. Melvyn F. Askew, Central Science Laboratory (CSL), York, United Kingdom

Support for Biofuels — Considerations for Policymakers, Dr. Masami Kojima, Lead Energy Specialist, World Bank

The World Energy Outlook 2006 – Outlook for Biofuels, Dr. Teresa Malyshev, Senior Energy Analyst, International Energy Agency

Global Biofuels Trends and Economic Forces Determining the Future Size of the Maize-based Ethanol Industry, Dr. Robert N. Wisner, Agricultural Economist & University Professor, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa

Rising Biofuels Prices – Blessing or Curse for Food Security, Dr. A. Arslan Gürkan, Commodity Markets, Projections and Policy Analysis Service, Trade and Markets Division, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

International Perspectives Sessions

International Perspectives Session A  
Moderator:  Mr. Michael Yost, Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, USDA
International Country Representatives:


Bio-diesel research and production in Kenya, Dr. Joseph Keriko, Institute of Energy and Environmental Technology (IEET), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Nairobi, Kenya


Agricultural biofuels – Bulgarian Perspectives, Prof. Atanas Atanassov, AgroBioInstitute, Director, Bulgaria

Scientific and technological development of agricultural production and conversion of biofuels in Germany, Mr. Ronny Winkelmann, Project Manager, Agency of Renewable Resources, Germany

Commercialisation of biofuels in Poland, Dr. Podlaski Sławomir, Warsaw Agricultural University Warsaw, Poland

Biofuels – activities in Sweden, Mr. Fredrik Odelram, Senior Administrative Officer, Agriculture and Forestry Division, Sweden

International Perspectives Session B       
Moderator:  Dr. Asif Chaudhry, Deputy Administrator, Office of Global Analysis, Foreign Agricultural Service, USDA


Current Status of China's Bio-Ethanol Industry and Policy Development, Mr. Bilin Xiong, Deputy Director General, Industry Department, National Development & Reform Commission, PR China

Non-food feedstock and the road map of China’s bioethanol industry, Dr. Shi-Zhong Li, Institute of New Energy, Tsinghua University, Beijing - PRC

Current status of research and development on Jatropha (Jatropha curcus) for sustainable biofuel production in India, Dr. M.S. Punia,  Executive Director, National Oilseeds and Vegetable Oils Development Board, Ministry of Agriculture, Haryana, India

Biofuel development in Indonesia, Ms. Yanni Kussuryani, Coordinator of Process Technology Research Programme Group, Department of Energy and Mineral Resources, Republic of Indonesia

Technological progress and commercialization of biodiesel in Malaysia, Dr. Mohammed Basri Wahid, Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB), Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia

Latin America:

Developments in Argentina’s biobuels value chain, Mr. Miguel Almada, Secretariat of Agriculture Livestock, Fishing and Food; and

Bioenergy value chain construction methodology, Mr. Martín Fraguío, Director, Argentine Corn Association, Buenos Aires, Argentina



Last Updated: 09/24/2007