MN Renewable Energy Roundtable Focused on Renewable Chemicals – March 14

Looks like a promising event…

Minnesota Renewable Energy Roundtable
Renewable Chemicals
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
9:00 am-2:30 pm
St. Paul, MN 55114
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8:30 a.m.              Registration, refreshments and networking

9:00 a.m.              Welcome and overview

9:20 a.m.              Keynote Speaker:  Dr. Toby Ahrens, National Program Leader, NIFA-USDA “Opportunities with NIFA”

10:05 a.m.           Sun Grant Panel

Moderator:  Dr. Vance Owens, Regional Director, North Central Regional Sun Grant Ctr., SDSU “Sun Grant Funding for Renewable Chemicals”


  • Gregg Johnson, Associate Professor, Dept. of Agronomy & Plant Genetics, Biomass Cropping Systems, Southern Research and Outreach Center-Waseca, University of Minnesota “Feedstock Development for Renewable Chemicals and Other Bioenergy
  • Goutham Vemuri, Chief Technologist, Sasya LLC “Developing Renewable Chemicals from Crop Residues from Biomass Sugars
  • Qi Hua Fan, Associate Professor, Depts. of Electrical and Computer Engineering & Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Michigan State University “Energy Storage Options Using Renewable products

11:05 a.m.           Networking Break

11:20 a.m.           Bioeconomy Panel

Moderator:  Rod Larkins, Senior Director of Science and Technology, AURI


  • Brendan Jordan, Vice President, Great Plains Institute, Lead Staff for Bioeconomy Coalition of MN
  • Eric Singsaas, Initiative Director-Wood Products and Bioeconomy, NRRI and Entrepreneur

12:05 p.m.           Lunch

12:55 p.m.           Highlight:  Entrepreneur in Renewable Chemicals

  • Dr. Goutham Vemuri, Vice President of Technology Development, Aemetis Inc.

1:15 p.m.             Financing and Technology Support Panel

Moderator:  Michael Sparby, Senior Project Strategist, AURI


  • Kevin Hennessy, Bioenergy Manager, Ag Marketing and Development Division, MN Department of Agriculture
  • Pat Dillon, Director, MN-SBIR, Minnesota Innovation and Commercialization Consortium; Minnesota High Tech Association

1:55 p.m.             Table Discussion

2:25 p.m.             Wrap Up