Interagency Working Groups

Since 2008, the Biomass Research and Development (BR&D) Board has charged several interagency working groups (IWGs) to fulfill certain objectives in accordance with its mission. The BR&D Board formalized eight IWGs to enhance information sharing and program coordination for specific components of the biofuel supply chain. Made up of technical experts from the BR&D Board member agencies, these groups meet more regularly than the BR&D Board and implement annual work plans as part of the Bioeconomy Initiative.

The Bioeconomy Initiative is a coordinated federal effort to expand the sustainable use of the nation's abundant biomass resources for biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. The vision of the Bioeconomy Initiative is a vibrant U.S. bioeconomy that enhances economic growth, energy security, and environmental quality by maximizing sustainable use of the nation's domestic biomass resources for affordable biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower.

Current Interagency Working Groups

Algae

The Algae IWG communicates and coordinates federal research, development, and demonstration activities relating to algae and their production and use for the commercialization of a wide range of biobased fuels and other products. It provides a mechanism for information exchange within the Federal community and with outside stakeholders. It recognizes that this production and use of algae biomass and bioproducts must be achievable in a sustainable manner within an appropriate regulatory framework.

Feedstock Genetic Improvement

The Feedstock Genetic Improvement IWG advises, communicates, and coordinates federal research activities relative to the genetic improvement of terrestrial feedstocks, both primarily cellulosic biomass and oilseeds, as sustainable sources of biobased fuels and bioproducts. The goal is to further development of superior, sustainable, and dedicated terrestrial biomass feedstocks using the tools of genetics and genomics for innovative breeding programs.

Feedstock Logistics

The Feedstock Logistics IWG advises, communicates, and coordinates federally funded research and development activities related to the logistics and transportation of terrestrial, primarily cellulosic and oilseed, biomass feedstocks in an effort to reduce biomass logistics and transportation costs, improve biomass quality, and provide sufficient and on-spec feedstock to conversion process.

Feedstock Production and Management

The Feedstock Production and Management IWG promotes the development and deployment of cost-competitive, sustainable biomass feedstock management and production from agricultural and forestry residues, energy crops, and waste streams. The group effort focuses on feedstock production practices and management systems, from establishment up to the harvest interface with logistics processes. The IWG achieves this mission by coordinating federally funded research activities related to the production and management of terrestrial, cellulosic and oilseed biomass feedstock, and will also extend activities to various carbon waste feedstock production and management when needs arise.

Conversion

The Conversion IWG works to communicate and coordinate federal research, development, and demonstration activities related to biomass and carbon conversion to enable the commercialization of a wide range of new pathways to produce sustainable, renewable fuels, co-products, and materials. It provides a mechanism for information exchange within the Federal community and with university and industry stakeholders.

Transport, Distribution, and End Use

The Transport, Distribution, and End-Use IWG focuses on increasing multimodal transportation using bioproducts and biofuels and explore biomass used for transportation auxiliary purposes.

Analysis

The Analysis IWG coordinates federal analytical activities in the areas of biofuels, biopower, and bioproducts and informs the BR&D Board about the analytical activities various federal agencies are undertaking, identifying areas to leverage resources, and ensuring that analysis products focus on providing value to the administration and to the general public.

Sustainable Bioeconomy

The Sustainable Bioeconomy IWG fosters collaboration and communication between agencies with diverse missions and capabilities to accelerate analyses and research on the contributions the bioeconomy can make to a sustainable future. The IWG exchanges and synthesizes information on costs and benefits to address questions from diverse stakeholders and provides actionable information and frameworks that the Board and relevant agencies can use to inform decisions and investments that optimize economic, social, and environmental outcomes.