Event showcases breakthrough algae innovations in human health, agriculture, wastewater and fuel
HOUSTON (October 11, 2018)–Texas-based companies and universities are working with the Algae Biomass Organization to bring the 2018 Algae Biomass Summit, an annual conference of investors, scientists and entrepreneurs to The Woodlands, October 14-17. It is the first time in its 12-year history that the largest algae conference in the world has been held in Texas.
Texas is becoming a natural focal point for a new generation of algae farmers and product developers that are using advanced cultivation technologies to develop markets for agriculture, human nutrition, energy and more. New algae-based products include nutritional supplements, cooking oils, aquaculture feeds and even plastics.
“Today we see more commercial algae cultivation operations than ever, but we also see more room to grow than ever,” said Matt Carr, Executive Director of the Algae Biomass Organization, the trade association for the industry and host of the annual conference. “The favorable business climate in Texas, land availability and a solid resource base is attracting the eyes of those looking to build this industry into a new category of American agriculture.”
Some of the new leaders in the algae industry believe Texas is well positioned to become a home for thousands of acres of algae farming operations and the jobs that would come with them. A Texas A&M regional impact analysis estimates that for every 1,000 acre feet of algae ponds, Texas will see 245 new jobs created and $12.8 million of added value.
Texas is also home to many of the resources that algae farming needs: inexpensive land, saline water, sun and CO2. A 2016 study by the Department of Energy determined that Texas consistently ranked near the top of states where algae can be produced cheaply and efficiently with the local resources available.
The resource base has not gone unnoticed by state officials, who have made Texas one of the few states that have prioritized algae farming regulations. The state recently brought algae farming into the state’s aquaculture farming regulations, allowing for an easy permitting process for companies that want to begin cultivation or processing operations.
“Texas has an unprecedented opportunity to harness waste carbon dioxide, wastewater and underutilized land as resources that can build an entirely new industry and economic base,” said Rebecca White, Vice President Operations at Texas-based Qualitas Health, and co-chair of the Summit’s Local Host Committee. “We wanted to bring algae farmers from around the world to Texas to see how they can do business here.”
Several companies and Universities in Texas are playing leading roles in the emerging algae industry:
- AlgEternal Technologies
- Texas A&M Algae Research and Development Facility
- UTEX Culture Collection of Algae at the University of Texas at Austin
- Midland College
More information about the Algae Biomass Summit can be viewed at: https://www.algaebiomasssummit.org.
About the Algae Biomass Organization
The Algae Biomass Organization (ABO) is a 501 c(6) non-profit whose mission is to promote the development of viable commercial markets for renewable and sustainable commodities derived from algae. Its membership is comprised of people, companies, and organizations across the value chain. More information about ABO, including its leadership, membership, costs, benefits, and members and their affiliations, is available at the website: www.algaebiomass.org.