Algae Biomass Organization Presents First Annual Algae Industry Leadership Awards to Advocates in U.S. Congress, Navy

Recipients’ support of algae critical to accelerating industry’s growth and reducing major barriers to commercialization


WASHINGTON, D.C.  – April 7, 2011 – The Algae Biomass Organization, the trade association for the U.S. algae industry, presented its first annual Algae Industry Leadership Awards to United States Representative Brian Bilbray (CA), Representative Jay Inslee (WA), Senator Bill Nelson (FL) and Rear Admiral Philip Cullom, Director, Energy and Environmental Readiness Division of the United States Navy. The recipients’ support of algae has been critical to accelerating the industry’s growth, facilitating private investment and reducing major barriers to the commercialization of algae-based biofuels.

“Representative Bilbray, Representative Inslee, Senator Nelson and Rear Admiral Cullom have been steadfast advocates for products derived from algae. Their support has helped raise the awareness of the economic and national security benefits of sustainable, domestic algae-based biofuels. On behalf of our more than 170 members, I thank them for their support,” said Mary Rosenthal, Executive Director of the ABO.

The awards capped two days of outreach and education to policy makers by the ABO and dozens of its members in Washington D.C., including more than 50 one-on-one meetings with members of Congress and their staff, and a policy briefing to Congressional staff and industry stakeholders.

Rep. Bilbray and Rep. Inslee are co-chairs of the House Algae Energy Caucus and have supported policies that would spur private investment in algae-for-energy technologies and speed the commercial deployment of algae-based biofuels. Rep. Bilbray recently introduced a bill, H.R. 1449, that would address one of the major barriers to commercialization: a lack of tax parity for algae-based biofuels. If enacted, the legislation would provide algae fuels crucial tax incentives currently afforded to other advanced biofuel feedstocks. Rep. Inslee is a cosponsor of the bill.

Sen. Nelson has been a leading voice in the Senate for the development and deployment of algae-based biofuels. In 2010, Sen. Nelson introduced legislation seeking to address the lack of parity for algae-based biofuels in the current tax code and in the Renewable Fuels Standard.

Rear Admiral Philip Cullom has been a leader in the U.S. Navy’s pursuit of a “Great Green Fleet” by 2016 and its commitment to the use of renewable fuels, including those derived from algae. In October 2010, the U.S. Navy successfully demonstrated a vessel powered by a 50-50 blend of the Navy’s traditional shipboard fuel and algae-based renewable diesel.

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