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March 19, 2023 | Tom Ballard

Four Bioenergy Research Centers renewed with $590 million in funding

ORNL's Center for Bioenergy Innovation is one of the four to share $110 million in FY23 followed by $120 million each of the next four years.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced on Friday that is has awarded $590 million to renew its four existing Bioenergy Research Centers (BRCs). One of those is the Center for Bioenergy Innovation, led by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

According to DOE’s news release, the decision to renew the four BRCs followed a successful review by a panel of outside peer reviewers on each center’s past five years of performance. Initial funding for the four centers will total $110 million for Fiscal Year 2023, outyear funding will total up to $120 million per year over the following four years and is contingent on availability of funds.

The funding will help support DOE’s research into the next generation of sustainable, cost-effective bioproducts and bioenergy from domestic biomass resources, which is critical to reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions, ensuring future energy security, and creating new economic opportunities in rural areas. Since their inception, the BRCs have made groundbreaking scientific contributions to and advancements in biotechnology that are helping to expand the diversity of reliable domestic clean energy sources and ensuring the United States reaches President Biden’s ambitious goal of net-zero emissions economy by 2050.

In addition to the ORNL-managed Center, the other BRCs are the:

  • Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, led by the University of Wisconsin-Madison in partnership with Michigan State University;
  • Joint BioEnergy Institute, led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; and
  • Center for Advanced Bioenergy and Bioproducts Innovation, led by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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