Today, U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai"i) announced Cellana, a leading biofuel company based in Kailua-Kona, will receive a $3.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop an integrated, high-yield algae biofuel feedstock production system at their Kona Demonstration Facility. Cellana's research efforts have created a successful business model using algae to produce various products including low-cost animal feed, high-quality nutritional oils, and a new form of renewable biofuel.
"Hawai"i's unique environment makes it an ideal place to develop our natural resources into innovative forms of biofuel and high-value products," Senator Schatz said. "This important Energy Department investment will accelerate the development of new local biofuels and help build Hawai"i's research and development industry."
Cellana's new approach to developing high-value nonfuel products and biofuel serves as a successful model for funding biofuel research and production and gives it the potential to grow into a more commercially viable operation. The Cellana project also helps the Energy Department meet its goal of reducing the cost of algal biofuel to a competitive level by 2022.
The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy works with industry, academia, and national laboratory partners to accelerate development and deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality, and economic vitality.