Sponsor Deadline
Posted: 2/9/2024

Regional Resource Hubs for Purpose-Grown Energy Crops

Significant RD&D is required to reach the goal of affordable, low-carbon Intensity transportation fuels and chemical products. The RD&D activities to be funded under this FOA will support the government-wide approach to addressing the climate crisis by driving innovation and deployment of clean energy technologies.

The 2024 Regional Resource Hubs for Purpose-Grown Energy Crops FOA supports the focus of the BETO Renewable Carbon Resources Program in developing strategies and supporting technology development to reduce the cost, improve the quality, increase the quantity, and maximize the environmental benefits of using renewable carbon resources. The FOA addresses enabling the mobilization of low carbon intensity purpose-grown energy crops across varied agronomic and geographic landscapes through the generation of data and research findings. The FOA seeks applications that will support resource mobilization, including improvements to quality, yield, cost, mechanization of propagation/planting systems, pest management, carbon intensity reduction, ecosystem services, and more from the cultivation of purpose-grown energy crops. Data generated over the course of four to ten years will be used to improve modeling projections, adapt crops and/or crop management strategies to address varying climates, understand variations in soil and belowground carbon storage, quantify ecosystem services, and reduce the carbon intensity for specified purpose-grown energy crop systems. There is a single Topic Area in this FOA with four Subtopic Areas, each focusing on different feedstock categories.

Deadlines:

  • Required Concept Papers: March 14, 2024
  • Full Applications: June 13, 2024
Areas of Interest

The Topic Area in this FOA seeks to address the following R&D needs:

Topic Area 1: Purpose-Grown Energy Crops

The objective this Topic Area is to fund projects that will enable the mobilization of low carbon intensity purpose-grown energy crops across varied agronomic and geographic landscapes through the generation of data and research findings. Each application selected from this FOA will become a member of the larger Regional Biomass Resource Hub Initiative (RBRH) that will work together with BETO’s established Regional Resource Hub Initiative Coordinator, Idaho National Laboratory (INL), to coordinate experimental plans, report data, and collectively achieve the FOA and Initiative objectives. Each submitted application must specify only one of the following Subtopic Areas.

Subtopic Area 1a. Algae

The objective of Subtopic Area 1a is to support projects that seek to cultivate and harvest as much algae from their given system(s) as possible each year for at least three years. The deliberate cultivation of algae with non-potable water, including all types of microalgae, cyanobacteria, and macroalgae, and algae grown to treat wastewaters is of interest.

Subtopic Area 1b: Herbaceous Energy Crops

Subtopic Area 1b is centered on enhancing the mobilization of low-carbon intensity herbaceous energy crops across varied agronomic landscapes. For the purposes of Subtopic Area 1b, “herbaceous energy crops” is defined as perennial plants and grasses that live for more than two years and are harvested annually after taking two to three years to reach full productivity. Examples of herbaceous energy crops include, but are not limited to, switchgrass, miscanthus, high-biomass sorghum, wheatgrass, and energycane.

Subtopic Area 1c: Intermediate Energy Crops

For the purposes of Subtopic Area 1c, “intermediate energy crops” are defined as crops planted between the harvest of a main crop and sowing of the next crop. Typically grown for environmental benefits such as increasing soil carbon or reducing nutrient leaching and soil erosion, intermediate energy crops have the additional potential to be harvested for conversion into low carbon intensity fuels and products.

Subtopic Area 1d: Short-Rotation Woody Crops

Subtopic Area 1d is focused on enhancing the mobilization of short-rotation woody crops across various geographic landscapes by performing regional field trials to examine long term yield and sustainability. For the purposes of Subtopic Area 1d, “short-rotation woody crops” is defined as fast-growing trees that are harvested within five to eight years of planting. Such trees include, but may not be limited to, species such as, hybrid poplar and shrub willow.

Eligibility Requirements

The proposed prime recipient and subrecipient(s) must be domestic entities. The following types of domestic entities are eligible to participate as a prime recipient or subrecipient of this FOA: 1. Institutions of higher education; 2. For-profit entities; 3. Nonprofit entities; and 4. State and local governmental entities and federally recognized Indian Tribes (Indian Tribes).

An entity may submit more than one Concept Paper and Full Application to this FOA, provided that each application describes a unique, scientifically distinct project and an eligible Concept Paper was submitted for each Full Application.

Amount Description

EERE expects to make a total of approximately $27M-29M of federal funding available for new awards under this FOA, subject to the availability of appropriated funds. EERE anticipates making approximately 2-5 awards under this FOA. EERE may issue one, multiple, or no awards. Individual awards may vary between $5M and $10M.

Funding Type
Eligibility
Posted
2/9/2024
Deadline
Sponsor: