April 23, 2012
-- After decades of listening to researchers claiming that commercial-scale algae production is years away, and that more federal money is needed to complete the research they claim is needed, NAA members have commenced collaborative growing, harvesting and extraction testing activities at its newly-launched Test Center.
OriginOil recently said that "the algae-fuel industry has a history of over-promising and under-delivering."
NAA Executive Director Barry Cohen agrees with that statement, “Participating in the Biomass Project Reviews last June was quite an eye-opener,”
according to Cohen. After looking at the project timelines and project budgets and comparing the small percentages of completions to the number of fully funded projects, NAA decided to take an even more aggressive approach to try to correct the false and misleading impressions, and has set up the new test center to address commercial algae production issues.
“I haven’t been in a biology lab since high school, and even I have learned how to grow various strains of algae! I can’t quite figure out why educated experts who have had over fifty years of research and a lot of funding can’t get it out of their labs” continued Cohen. “Algae is no longer a research project, and it should not be treated as one. It is one solution to help the US get off of foreign oil, become energy independent and create new jobs right here in the USA. We need to stop trying to create the biggest and best algae strain and the most creative technologies – all of which seem to work in the lab but many of which cannot scale. We need to stop funding algae projects that do not focus on long-term production of fuel. CAPEX continues to decline. What we need to be doing is scaling up commercial production algae farms throughout the US, and that is what NAA intends to do!”