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Innovation Legislation Sponsored by Rose Seeks Boost in Illinois’ Bio-based Economy

Legislation designed to grow Illinois’ bio-based economy has been introduced by Senator Chapin Rose. Senate Bill 1656 provides incentives to Illinois businesses to produce and sell new renewable products made from biomass and other renewable sources.

The legislation builds upon Illinois’ strong agricultural base and seeks to provide new products and markets derived from grain commodities and their by-products. Universities and private companies are investing in a race with other states in research and development to introduce these products to the marketplace.

“This legislation is all about the jobs that will be created in this potential $20 billion new industry,” State Sen. Chapin Rose said. “Central Illinois is perfectly suited to be the center of this new industry with the production and shipping capacity of Decatur on one side, the Integrated Bioprocessing Research Lab (IBRL) in Urbana on the other side, and the best corn and beans in the world in between. The potential for jobs is here - we have something no one else has to offer. This bill will help us capitalize on this and bring these jobs to Central Illinois.”

The legislation compliments Senator Rose’s leadership in securing a $26 million research investment in the University of Illinois’ Integrated Bioprocessing Research Laboratory to work with the industrial biotechnology sector to accelerate growth of this rapidly emerging biotechnology sector.

Industrial Biotechnology is enabling the production of a new generation of renewable chemicals, biobased materials and bioplastics produced from biomass.  These can serve as a replacement or supplement to traditional fossil fuel-based chemicals and products. The emergence of this technology represents a historic opportunity to reverse job losses in the chemicals and plastics sectors, increase energy security, replace fossil fuel-derived chemicals, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, maintain U.S leadership in clean energy and chemistry, and build domestic renewable chemicals and biobased production facilities. 

“We applaud the leadership of Senator Rose to introduce this legislation to advance the innovative agricultural biotech sector in Illinois. These new bio-based products offer great potential to the Illinois economy across the entire State. We need to lead now by leveraging our tremendous assets or forever be playing catch-up,” said Warren Ribley, President and CEO of iBIO.

SB 1656 provides a state tax credit to Illinois companies that produce and sell new manufactured products made from manufactured bio-based molecules of biomass feedstocks. These products represent the next generation of advanced biofuels and include renewable chemicals and food additives.

Iowa and Minnesota have already established these state incentives and legislation is pending in Congress to establish a similar credit at the federal level.

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