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Dr. Thomas Amidon Selected for Top 300 In Bioeconomy

ESF professor recognized for work in biorefinery technologies
2/11/2014

Dr. Thomas E. Amidon of the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) has been designated one of the top 300 most influential people in the bioeconomy, as selected by editors of the field's most widely distributed trade publication, Biofuels Digest.

Bioeconomy is the use of biological material, such as trees, plants, algae, and municipal solid waste, as the basis for creating energy and other commercial goods.

Amidon, professor and former chair in the college's Department of Paper and Bioprocess Engineering, will address leading members of the paper and pulp industry at a conference later this year in Helsinki, Finland. In his keynote address, Amidon will discuss the prospect of using wood and other non-food plants as a raw material to produce a range of everyday products, such as motor fuels and plastic bottles, which are currently made from crude oil.

Amidon co-founded Applied Biorefinery Sciences, which seeks to commercialize this technology in Upstate New York and other forested regions, and which, in turn, could create dozens of permanent, non-exportable jobs in rural communities across America.

Applied Biorefinery Sciences is a developer of biorefinery process technologies headquartered in Syracuse. Empire State Development recently awarded the company $881,960 toward the construction of a facility to commercially demonstrate its biorefining innovations in Lewis County, N.Y.

With this honor, Amidon joins Tom Vilsack, U.S. secretary of agriculture; Ernest Moniz, U.S. Secretary of Energy; and CEOs from around the world whose companies are leading the next-generation development of renewable energy and sustainable products. Amidon was also recently presented with ESF's "Exemplary Researcher Award" for his work at the college.

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