Doe biomass program and algae researchers need to be investigated!
DOE BIOMASS PROGRAM AND ALGAE RESEARCHERS NEED TO BE INVESTIGATED!
Solydra story is opening a huge can of worms at the DOE GRANT AND LOAN GURANTEE LOAN PROGRAM. Its not just about the Solar loan guarantee program. Look at all the millions in fees collected by the DOE GRANT AND LOAN GUARANTEE PROGRAM with algae projects less than 20% completed. An audit needs to be done on all DOE Biomass Program Grants to algae researchers.
The US taxpayer has spent over $2.5 billion dollars over the last 50 years on algae research. To date, nothing has been commercialized by any algae researcher.
The REAL question is: Does the DOE BIOMASS PROGRAM really want the US off of foreign oil or do they want to continue funding more grants for algae research to keep algae researchers employed at universities for another 50 years?
In business, you are not given 50 years to research anything. The problem is in the Congressional Mandate that says the DOE can only use taxpayer monies on algae research, NOT algae production in the US. So far, algae research has not got the US off of foreign oil for the last 50 years!
A Concerned Taxpayer
ARPA-E halts algae project, citing missed milestones
Jim Lane | February 16, 2012
Share"In Washington, the DOE has halted a research project at Iowa State University funded by ARPA-E to develop biofuel feedstock from an aquatic micro-organism for failing to reach research milestones. About 56% of the $4.4 million grant was used. Politicians against increasing APRA-E funding as proposed by President Obama’s new budget are using it and other halted ARPA-E projects as examples to reject the program."
Developing new energy technologies does take a long time, and most of the teams that start researching a new technology will not be around at the end when the technology becomes a common product. Having said that, spending 50 years researching algae for biofuels does seem a tad too long, unless the target that they were trying to achieve has contantly been changed, requiring further resarch and tests.
It would be unfair to say that all algae resrachers need to be investgated, as I said, many of those researchers are probably new to the field, and can not be blamed for the faliures of past teams. The DOE must keep a close eye on all of the projects it has invested in through its ARPA-E sceme, and if it truly believes there is no future in the technology, it must have the courage to admit its mistake and cut funding, rather than pile more money into the venutre in the hope that one day it will prove its worth, and their investment.
IG's office in Washington, DC investigatiing the DOE Biomass Program
Originally Posted by Tom Hitchcock
Heard 14 Congressmen asked the DOE for their results. The DOE claims less than 20% of all algae research grants ever get completed and there are no results. They claimed that some algae researchers at universities took grant money and tried setting up their wives in businesss. Heard the IG's office in Washington, DC and the IG's OMB office are currrently investigating this matter.
Also, heard Exxon has pulled back their investment in algae for researchers not hitting any of their milestones and has recently shut down their algae raceway ponds.
DOE BIOMASS PROGRAM and Dr. Steven Chu need to be investigated immediately!
DOE Biomass Program Problems - Research for over 50 years with no results
Originally Posted by Tom Hitchcock
1. The DOE Biomass Program admits that less than 20% of all algae research grant recipient projects ever get completed. They claim some algae researchers took grant money and put their wives into business.
Not a good track record.
2. They admit they have 'rooms of algae technologies' they do not understand.
Refused help to better understand algae technologies.
3. They say you have to higher a lobbyist to change the Congressional Mandate that says they can only fund algae research at universities.
Why does an American Citizen need to hire a lobbyist to change the Congressional Mandate? Should'nt that be their job to inform Congress that grant recipients have stated publicly that "all algae technology hurdles have been met. It's all engineering and scale-up going foward". (stated in the newspaper 3 years ago).
Why are more algae research grants needed?
4. According to the IG's dept. they themselves are " being stonewalled by the head of the DOE Biomass Program".
The IG's department claims they will not answer "legitimate questions" and they are getting stonewalled.
5. Sec. Chu will NOT comment or respond for the last 4 years.
There was no mention about algae in his lengthy resignation letter about his acomplishments $2.5 billion dollars later.
6. Heard VC's entrepreneurs in residence put pressure on the DOE Biomass Program for best technologies.
VC's have pulled funding.
7. DOE Biomass Program employees tried to change things but left in frustration.
Last edited by fatalgae; 02-20-2013 at 04:13 PM.
Biogas from anaerobic digestion is a proven technology worldwide, and is as green as anything can be. All waste streams can be used.
California is leading the way with a large plant near Sacramento, but many farms have them. they are all over the world, but especially in asia. Scale is not a problem. They can be large or small, and are proven over decades. The residue can also be used as fertilizer.
Unfortunately, half the carbon comes off as CO2. It is not quite so green as all that. HydroThermal Carbonization captures pretty much ALL the carbon in one useful form or another. And depending on the waste form, i.e. one like algae, the process can be continuous and self supporting.
Originally Posted by ronwagn
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