Advancing Ethanol

The advanced ethanol industry forms a united front
By Kris Bevill | March 10, 2011

A group of advanced ethanol producers, in conjunction with the Renewable Fuels Association, have formed the Advanced Ethanol Council to focus on the commercialization of advanced ethanol. Mascoma Corp. CEO Bill Brady will serve as the group’s chairman. Vice-chairmen include Chris Standlee, executive vice president of Abengoa Bioenergy and John McCarthy, CEO of Qteros. Other founding members include BlueFire Renewables Inc., Coskata Inc., Enerkem, Fulcrum BioEnergy Inc., Inbicon A/S, Iogen Corp. and Osage Bio Energy.

Executive Director Brooke Coleman says the group was formed to re-establish advanced ethanol’s voice within the marketplace. “There are a lot of ways to produce ethanol, and the companies that are trying to diversify the technologies and feedstocks available to the industry have a unique story to tell and unique interests from a policy and messaging perspective,” he says. “We want to stand out and make clear how close we are to getting that accomplished.”

Coleman stresses that while cellulosic ethanol technology certainly qualifies as an advanced ethanol technology, it is not the only technology that meets the group’s eligibility requirements. Pending board approval, any technology that produces advanced ethanol—meaning it meets the renewable fuel standard’s advanced biofuel definition of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent when compared to gasoline—could qualify for membership. 

—Kris Bevill