As a top producer of biomass enabling-products, Illinois has a wealth of natural resources suited for biofuel production.  These resources, coupled with discoveries by our world-class researchers and early, strategic investments by our state and local governments have put Illinois at the forefront of biomass and biofuel development.

To date, the State of Illinois has invested over $25 million to build six new ethanol and biodiesel plants and started a program to help service stations sell E-85 along with traditional gasoline. This has increased the number of stations selling E-85 from 14 in 2004 to over 200 today.   In addition to creating the state’s first program to help build ethanol and biodiesel facilities, Illinois also enacted legislation making it the first state in the nation to completely eliminate the sales tax on E-85 and biodiesel fuels. This tax exemption has made the biodiesel market in Illinois one of the largest in the nation.

Across our state, R&D into higher yield, lower cost Biofuels & Biomass is changing the course of our nation’s energy history.  From the National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center to the USDA’s National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research to private R&D, the future is promising and Illinois is prepared to help move our nation to a cleaner, more secure energy future.

Please explore the materials in this month’s ISTC Catalyst to learn more.

Watch and Listen:

Podcast With Hans Blaschek, Director of The Center for Advanced BioEnergy Research, On A New Biofuels Master’s Degree Program
University of Illinois – Miscanthus Research


Catalyst Exclusive Guest Commentary

Hemoglobin Discovery Launches Biofuels Research
Twenty five years ago Professor Dale Webster of the Illinois Institute of Technology’s (IIT) Biology Department discovered a hemoglobin (known as “VHb”) in the bacterium Vitreoscilla.  This was a startling result, as up to that time hemoglobins had been found only in eukaryotic organisms, and almost entirely in vertebrate animals.  This discovery, while notable on its own, has facilitated cutting-edge research on the efficient and cost-effective production of biofuels.
Learn more about Illinois’ accomplishments in Biofuels & Biomass:

More News:

2010 Sustainable University Symposium
Friday, August 27, 2010
I-Hotel and Conference Center, 1900 South First Street, Champaign, IL.

Join this year’s Green Governments Coordinating Council Symposium, hosted by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, in learning how to make your university or college campus more sustainable. This symposium is an opportunity for college and university administrators, engineers, architects, professors, and student leaders to exchange ideas in the effort to enhance sustainability at Illinois institutions of higher learning and identify new programs to apply at your university.  The annual event also seeks to empower young adults to pursue careers in the environmental sciences and make an investment in the sustainability of our state and our planet.

Speakers, workshops, and panel discussions will cover topics such as sustainable renovation and construction, energy efficiency and conservation, environmental education and service learning, water conservation, and waste reduction.