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01/22/2013

Future Biofuels initiative from the California Energy Commission

Source:  Christer Jannson and Carol Valladao

The California Energy Commission (CEC) has an annual program budget of approximately $100 million to support projects that:

  • Develop and improve alternative and renewable low-carbon fuels.
  • Optimize alternative and renewable fuels for existing and developing engine technologies.
  • Produce alternative and renewable low-carbon fuels in California.
  • Decrease, on a full fuel cycle basis, the overall impact and carbon footprint of alternative and renewable fuels and increase sustainability.
  • Expand fuel infrastructure, fueling stations, and equipment.
  • Improve light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicle technologies.
  • Retrofit medium- and heavy-duty on-road and non-road vehicle fleets.
  • Expand infrastructure connected with existing fleets, public transit, and transportation corridors.
  • Establish workforce training programs, conduct public education and promotion, and create technology centers.

The CEC prepares and adopts an Investment Plan for the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program (ARFVTP) to determine the funding priorities and opportunities and describe how program funding will be used to complement other public and private investments.

As part of the ARFVTP, the CEC recently (January 11, 2013) held a Pre-Solicitation Workshop in Sacramento, which I attended. I attach the link to the WebEx recording of the workshop: https://energy.webex.com/energy/playback.php?FileName=http://www.energy.ca.gov/altfuels/notices/2013-01-11_workshop/2013-01-11_Alternative_and_Renewable_Fuel-Pre-Solicitation_Workshop.wrf

The take-home information from the workshop is:

  • The next solicitation under the ARFVT P will come some time next winter, or early spring 2014.   
  • Both commercial-scale and lab-to-pilot-scale operations will be of interest.
  • Different kinds of biofuels will be considered.
  • Renewable electricity (e.g., from anaerobic digestion) will NOT be considered since it's part of another program (PIER).

If you have specific questions about the program, please send them to me and I can forward them to CEC. The deadline for such ARFVTP-specific questions is February 1, 2013, but I'll be happy to provide more information about the ARFVTP at any time.

Christer Jansson