Washington, D.C. (October 23, 2013) – The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) applauds key Members of the House of Representatives for holding today the first meeting of the newly revived Congressional Algae Caucus. BIO especially recognizes caucus co-chairs Scott Peters (D-CA-52) and Matt Salmon (R-AZ-5) for their leadership in this important and emerging area of industrial biotechnology.
“I want to thank Representatives Peters and Salmon for their bipartisan leadership in organizing the Congressional Algae Caucus, especially now as algae companies are beginning to construct their first commercial production facilities,” said Jim C. Greenwood, President and CEO of BIO. “BIO supports the goals and efforts of the caucus in bringing awareness to the evolving role of algae in the production of sustainable, renewable fuels, chemicals and products. We welcome this important new platform for discussion of supportive federal policy, including reauthorization and robust funding of Farm Bill energy programs, maintaining the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and extending support for algae-based fuels and products in the tax code.”
The Congressional Algae Caucus will help educate Members of Congress about the rapidly developing algae industry and how it will soon serve as a source of clean energy, food, and feed.
“I’m excited to co-chair the Congressional Algae Caucus, precisely because of the economic and energy potential that algae holds,” Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52) said. “In San Diego, more than 500 research jobs have been created in the last 5 years and the local algae industry accounted for $80.9 million in economic activity in 2011. Further, we’re seeing exciting partnerships like the San Diego Center of Algae Biotechnology at UCSD. This caucus will enhance the dialogue here in Washington about algae products and the job-creating potential of the industry.”
Some states are already adopting policies to accelerate the jobs formation and economic growth that come with algae cultivation, and Congressional support will further expedite the potential of algae to provide the nation with renewable fuels and other products that can be cultivated without significant impacts on freshwater supplies or valuable agricultural lands.
“Algae-based products deserve a chance to compete on a level playing field with other technologies,” said Representative Salmon. “In my own state we are already seeing the economic development that is possible from a thriving algae sector, from jobs to research and development. High tech jobs will help grow our economy and through this caucus, I hope to draw attention to the great economic and environmental benefits of algae production.”
Additional members of the Congressional Algae Caucus include: Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI-2), Tom Latham (R-3IA), Trey Radel (R-FL-19), Louise Slaughter (D-NY-25), Tim Walz (D-MN-1) , Jackie Speier (D-CA-14), Susan Davis (D-CA-53), Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM-3), Alcee Hastings (D-FL-20), David Cicilline (D-RI-1), Ed Perlmutter (D-CO-7), Jared Polis (D-CO-2) and Duncan Hunter (R-CA-50)
BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIO produces BIOtechNOW, an online portal and monthly newsletter chronicling “innovations transforming our world.” Subscribe to BIOtechNOW.
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