Energy Secretary Abraham hosts renewable roundtable in S.D.

By | October 01, 2002
U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham highlighted the Bush Administration's energy policy and advances in renewable energy while visiting South Dakota Oct. 21.

The Renewable Energy Roundtable, held in Sioux Falls, S.D., brought together Secretary Abraham, Congressman John Thune (R-S.D.), local representatives from the biofuels and ethanol industry, state corn growers association, state rural electrical association, wind energy companies and alternative energy advocates to discuss biofuels, wind energy, solar energy and electricity generation.

"President Bush and I are convinced that renewable energies must play a large role in meeting our challenging future energy needs and reducing our dependence on foreign oil," Secretary Abraham said. "For every improvement in renewable energy technology we develop, for every new megawatt of electricity or gallon of alternative fuel that is produced, we make our nation a little more secure."

Abraham specifically acknowledged the recent $5.2 million award to Broin & Associates, Inc. Broin will contribute $5.9 million to the joint research and development project between the company and the U.S. Department of Energy. Broin's biorefinery in Scotland, S.D., will house the pilot project.

"Broin will work in partnership with the Department of Energy to develop and perfect a dry mill biorefinery process with the aim of enhancing the economics of existing ethanol dry mills," Secretary Abraham said. "The end result is not just increased ethanol yields but more competitive bioproducts such as plastics, paints and adhesives that are today made from petroleum. This can result in more markets for agricultural products, more profits for farmers and enhanced energy security for America."

President Bush noted the need to increase the production of biomass energy in his National Energy Policy. Organic matter such as plants and wood that can provide heat, make fuel and generate electricity is categorized as biomass.