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UK and India form bioenergy partnership

The UK and India have made a £10 million (€11.8 million) deal to collaborate on sustainable bioenergy research.

The programme will see scientific research carried out into plants and algae for bioenergy development.

Funding from the UK Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the Indian Government Department of Biotechnology has helped to put the build of the plant into action.

The research will examine three areas including:

  • The identification, characterisation and improvement of new enzymes for processing plants, including algae, for bioenergy
  • The use of systems and synthetic biology approaches to develop microbes that are capable of producing advanced biofuels from sugars locked within indigestible regions of woody plants and algae
  • The use of genomics to improve the suitability of algae for biofuel production

UK minister of state for universities and science, David Willetts, says:  ‘International collaboration is vital to dealing with shared challenges. Utilising the expertise we have in both of our respective nations will be fundamental to the success of developing bioenergy as a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels and I am delighted that we will have the opportunity to work together to tackle this global issue.’