Senate Finance Committee Proposal Is Important First Step to Help Commercialize Cellulosic Ethanol, BIO Says

WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 19, 2007) – The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today expressed thanks to the Senate Committee on Finance and to Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Ranking Member Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) for proposing the “Energy Advancement and Investment Act of 2007.” Among its many provisions, the legislation contains a first-of-its-kind tax credit for small-scale producers (60 million gallons or less annually) of biofuels from cellulosic biomass.

BIO President & CEO Jim Greenwood said, “Pioneering biofuels companies are right now beginning to deploy the technology to produce cellulosic ethanol, using biomass sources from every part of the country – everything from crop residues in the Midwest to paper mill waste in the Northeast. BIO has long advocated a tax incentive such as that proposed today to help these producers overcome the increased risk associated with bringing cellulosic biofuels to the marketplace.”

The legislation would create a new production credit specifically for biofuel producers who utilize cellulosic biomass, while at the same time extending existing ethanol incentives. The combined credits would reward pioneering small producers who bring the first 1 billion gallons of cellulosic ethanol to the marketplace.

Greenwood continued, “The proposed legislation is a good start, but more needs to be done. President Bush has set ambitious goals to reduce U.S. reliance on imported oil and greenhouse gas emissions through increased use of clean, renewable biofuels. To produce the volumes of cellulosic ethanol needed to achieve these goals, we must encourage construction of large-scale commercial facilities, producing 100 million gallons or more. Continued investment in research and development that includes construction of demonstration facilities also is necessary to improve technologies to produce biofuels.”

About BIO

BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and 31 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the annual BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry.

Upcoming BIO Events

BIO Mid-America VentureForum 2007
Sept. 24-26, 2007
Milwaukee, Wisc.

BIO InvestorForum 2007
Oct. 9-11, 2007
San Francisco, Calif.

Pacific Rim Summit on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy
Nov. 14-17, 2007
Honolulu, Hawaii