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Workshop Sessions

AFCC Conference Workshop Sessions

Workshop Session Details

All Workshops will be on Tuesday, November 8, from 10 AM to 11:30 AM

The AFCC Workshop sessions will offer a hands-on approach to learning in addition to skills-building. These sessions will offer a moderated, in-depth discussion among a group of experts offering diverse viewpoints around a particular topic.

The Workshop sessions are for those who seek to grow their industrial biotechnology knowledge, investment opportunities, government funding and for those seeking capital and sustainable solutions to real-world problems. These workshops will be packed with high energy and a must-attend event.

The AFCC Global Biobased Economy Conference & Exhibit organizes these workshops in order to connect you, the attendee, to industry leaders’ suppliers, investors, government agencies, engineering and construction organizations, technology insurance solutions, and peers. AFCC workshops are sponsored events from both public and private organizations.

Workshop sessions will be focused on the following four subject areas:



1.   Cutting Edge Debt, Equity and Insurance Project Finance Structuring for the Bioeconomy

Tuesday, November 8 - 10 AM to 11:30 AM - Riverview 1

This workshop will be an expert moderated Q&A discussion of the most unique, challenging, cutting-edge and state of the industry funding and contractual structures currently available for bioeconomy projects and/or technology companies from the perspectives of investment and commercial banks, institutional investors, private equity, insurance companies and energy and chemical developers.


Sponsors and Panelists:

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Lela Jgerenaia

Vice President

The Carlyle Group


David Livingstone

Managing Director

Citibank Global Markets, Inc.

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Justin O’Rourke


Triten Energy Partners

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Mark J. Riedy

Partner-Chair-Energy Practice

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

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George Schulz

Enterprise Risk Management

New Energy Risk LLC

2. USDA’s Role in the Bioeconomy

Tuesday, November 8 - 10 AM to 11:30 AM - Riverview 2

With a recent Executive Order prioritizing supporting the domestic bioeconomy, the US Department of Agriculture is well positioned to support industry and rural business development. Opportunities include the Biobased Markets Program, the 9003 program supporting biorefineries, the climate smart agriculture awards, and new partnerships supporting sustainable aviation fuels.

With the recent passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, sizable new investments in both the Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP) and the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) will deploy billions in the coming years to build renewable energy infrastructure for farmers and small businesses. This creates new opportunities for building new biofuels infrastructure across America. Join USDA to learn about the agency’s role in the blooming bioeconomy.



Dr. Karama Neal


Rural Business-Cooperative Service

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Jeffery O’Hara

Senior Agricultural Economist

Office of Energy and Environmental Policy, within the Office of the Chief Economist

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Peter Vadas

National Program Leader

Agricultural Research Service

3. Research and Development Activities on Sustainable Aviation Fuel
Tuesday, November 8 - 10 AM to 11:30 AM - Riverview 4

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Moderator: Zia Haq, Senior Analyst, U.S. Department of Energy


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Zia Abdullah

Laboratory Manager

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

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Alex Menotti

VP, Corporate and Government Affairs


The private sector and national laboratories are engaged in a wide range of research and development activities to reduce the cost of production of sustainable aviation fuels.  This panel will focus on topics such as: refinery co-processing of bio-crudes, alcohol-to-jet technologies, and use of waste materials (such as wet waste and forest residuals) as feedstocks to produce SAF.  There is also significant research and scale-up activities in utilization of renewable natural gas, micro-algae, and waste carbon dioxide as feedstocks.  The goal of these R&D activities is to bring production cost down while enabling the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions on a life cycle basis for a variety of feedstocks.  Panelists will cover some of these topics and will be able to offer insights into opportunities for collaboration.

4.  Best Practices in Evaluating the Wood Feedstock Supply Chain for Low-carbon Biofuels

Tuesday, November 8 - 10 AM to 11:30 AM - Riverview 5

Since the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in August, Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) has  gained a lot of attention – especially as Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) metrics continue to influence global investment decision making. But what exactly is SAF, and what role will wood biomass play in the development of these innovative new fuels and the trend towards decarbonizing global industry?

SAF is a broad-based segment of biofuels used to power aircraft that has similar properties to conventional jet fuel, but with a smaller carbon footprint. Depending on the feedstock and technologies used to produce it, SAF can reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions dramatically compared to conventional jet fuel. SAF’s lower carbon intensity therefore makes it an important solution for reducing GHGs, as aviation GHGs make up roughly 8% of US transportation GHG emissions, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

This session will include:
1. An update of advances made in the use of woody biomass in the production of chemicals, plastics, fibers and low-carbon fuels (Doris de Guzman, Tecnon OrbiChem)
2. Wood-based SAF investments are flowing into the US South due to the region’s deep inventories of pine forest resources, which are overwhelmingly managed by private timberland owners who manage these resources as economic assets. This makes the South the lowest-cost forest economy in the US, and one of the most competitive in the world. Forest2Market has conducted numerous studies for bio-pathway producers, helping them understand the market drivers of supply & demand, optimal site location to assure long-term sustainability and affordability and historical, current and forecasted wood biomass pricing. We’ll share best practices for evaluating the wood supply chain for SAF production. (Pete Coutu, Forest2Market).
3. We’ll moderate a Q&A session with two of the most innovative leaders in the US SAF industry, Nick Andrews of USA Bioenergy and Ira Dassa of Alder Fuels. Andrews and Dassa will weigh in on several important topics:
a. RFS restrictions on RIN-qualified wood feedstocks and changes required to support the SAF industry
b. The impact of the Inflation Reduction Act
c. Obstacles to the commercialization of SAF

                                        Moderator: Doris DeGuzman, Senior Consultant, Tecnon OrbiChem


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Nick Andrews


USA BioEnergy

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Pete Coutu

Vice President, Operational Excellence


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Ira Dassa

Senior Director, Sustainability & Environmental Affairs

Alder Fuels

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