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Press Release 080530

Wins USDA "Grand Challenge" Competition

Date: May 30, 2008


Contact: Dennis Smith
  (502) 852-6998


Kentucky Rural Energy Consortium (KREC) Wins USDA 25x'25 "Grand Challenge" Competition

LOUISVILLE, Ky.-The Kentucky Rural Energy Consortium (KREC) was selected as one of thirteen winners in a national USDA competition called the "Grand Challenge." The USDA and the National 25x'25 Alliance co-sponsored the competition to support academic institutions as they assume leadership in achieving solutions to the energy supply and consumption challenges facing the nation.

The competition was open to agricultural and forestry colleges and other institutions of higher learning to share their visions of how they will contribute to achieving the goal of the 25x'25 Alliance:

"By the year 2025, America's farms, ranches and forests will provide 25 percent of the total energy consumed in the United States, while continuing to produce safe, abundant and affordable food, feed and fiber."

The joint entry by KREC, the University of Kentucky, the University of Louisville, Kentucky State University and the Governor's Office of Energy Policy, was chosen by the USDA for the consortium's efforts in promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy in Kentucky and for financially supporting research in solar, hydrogen, ethanol, biomass, and other possible energy alternatives. Researchers at U of L and UK have been awarded more than $1.4 million in grants through both KREC and state funding to pursue promising new renewable energy technologies.

"KREC is establishing itself as a leader in the field of renewable energy and rural development research," said University of Louisville President James Ramsey. "Kentucky is uniquely positioned to play a lead role in development of alternative fuels. The University of Louisville, the University of Kentucky and the Governor's Office of Energy Policy are joining forces to ensure a bright future for energy policy and production in Kentucky."

The consortium is administered by the Kentucky Pollution Prevention Center at the J.B. Speed School of Engineering, and partners with the University of Louisville, the University of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Governor's Office of Energy Policy.

KREC will receive the award at the Bio Energy Awareness Days (BEAD II) in Washington, D.C., June 19-22, 2008 and participate in the BEAD event exhibits. Find out more at KPPC's web site -

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