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Conference Agenda (tentative)

Please note: Conference times are Central Standard Time (CST)

Introductions and Welcome
9:00 am (CST) Jack Payne, Iowa State University Vice President for Extension and Outreach
9:05 am (CST) Gregory Geoffroy, President of Iowa State University and David Chicoine, President of South Dakota State University
Plenary Session: Webinar:
9:30 am (CST) James E. Lovelock, Keynote address: Conversion of agricultural residues into biochar for incorporation into agricultural soils as the solution to global climate change.
10:00 am (CST) Johannes Lehmann, Plenary address: The potential of biochar production, in combination with bioenergy production, to improve nutrient retention in soils and removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
10:40 am (CST) Matt Liebman, Plenary address: Use of perennial species as biofuels feedstocks at particular locations within agroecosystems can provide important services, including soil, water, and nature conservation, while complementing food and feed production.
11:15 am (CST) (Invited) Thomas Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and Steven Chu, U.S. Secretary of Energy
11:30 am (CST)

Luncheon with panel discussion of plenary session (on site locations only)

Biochar:  Challenges and Opportunities

Robert Brown will discuss what we know and what we don’t know about producing biochar from pyrolysis of biomass.

Jim Amonette will discuss the global estimate of potential net Impact of the pyrolysis biochar.

David Laird will discuss preliminary research results of biochar amendments on soil quality.

Concurrent Session I
1:00 pm (CST)

Track 1: Net greenhouse gas emission from biofuel systems

Robert Larson will discuss potential impacts of life cycle assessment and policies for the biofuel industry.

Shashi Verma, Ph.D.: will discuss how field scale measurements of net greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration are measured and the findings from corn-soybean production systems.

Adam Liska, Ph.D.: will discuss life cycle assessment for corn and cellulosic ethanol production.

Richard Perrin, Ph.D.: will discuss the economics of biomass based combined heat and power as a means of reducing fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions in corn-ethanol production.

Track 2: Non-traditional feedstocks

Kurt Thelen, Ph.D.: will discuss the agronomics of producing perennial grasses including switchgrass and miscanthus.

Cole Gustafson, Ph.D.: will talk about handling, storage and logistics of biomass crops including corncobs and corn stover.

Scott Swinton, Ph.D.: will present a case study that compares the profitability of producing switchgrass and miscanthus to corn.

3:00 pm (CST) On and off-site break
3:30 pm (CST)

Track 3: Advances and Breakthroughs in biofuels

Charles R. Hurburgh, Jr., Ph.D.: will present a summary of advances related to corn based biofuels. Corn based biofuels, if coupled with several emerging technologies, can be more energy efficient than commonly believed and capable of distributing more key nutrients to livestock fed co-products.

 Andrew Zurn: will present information on advances in ethanol production using producer gas from a biomass gasifier.

 Doug Berven: will discuss POET Energy’s plan to use corn cobs for ethanol production and advances in starch based ethanol production.

 Roger Ruan, Ph.D.: will discuss advances in pyrolysis of biomass in the production of bio-oils.

Track 4: Bioenergy economic and policy Issues

Wally Tyner, Ph.D.: will discuss second generation biofuels economic and policy issues with an emphasis on: blending wall, import tariff, market uncertainty, technology uncertainty, feedstock supply, and interaction among all these factors.

Dr. Steven Wu, Ph.D.: will present on contracting issues for second generation perennial crops and will discuss issues of how to design contracts suitable for farmers interested in biomass crops for biofuels production.

Harry Baumes, Ph.D.: will discuss program funding opportunities made available through USDA.

Daniel de la Torre Ugarte, Ph.D.: will discuss where bioenergy crops will become feedstock sources and the economic potential for these crops.   

5:30 pm (CST) Conference adjourns