BIO Gearing Up for Big Spring 2010, Headlined by Kappos

The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) has just announced that David Kappos, Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, will be a featured speaker at the Intellectual Property Super Session taking place during the 2010 BIO International Convention. The May 3 event, entitled “Leveraging IP to Spur Global Biotechnology Innovation, Investment and Jobs,” will examine the role that intellectual property systems play in attracting biotech investment and how some countries are successfully leveraging their patent policies to foster economic growth.  Among the many events for BIO International, there will be BIO Career Fair, which is free to all job seekers.  Additionally, BIOPark will host academics, tech transfers and early stage companies looking to showcase innovative technologies.

“BIO is thrilled that Director Kappos, a renowned thought leader in IP policy, will be joining us at the 2010 BIO International Convention. His comments will provide attendees with new insight into global IP issues, the future of patent reform and the effect of patent policy on scientific discovery,” said BIO President and CEO Jim Greenwood.

The Convention will include an entire track dedicated to legal issues and IP, featuring judges, legal experts, government officials and academics as speakers. The IP sessions will include:

  • Patenting Genes: In Search of Calmer Waters
  • Follow-on Biologics: The Proposed Legislation and Its Impact on Your Patent Portfolio
  • Global Patent Strategy: Perspectives Of International Patent Leaders

Meanwhile, last week BIO last week released a white paper on the growth and jobs potential of green chemicals and briefed Congressional staff on the commercial status of industrial biotechnologies for algae applications, biobased products, and advanced biofuels.  BIO’s position is that federal tax policies should incentivize commercial deployment of advanced industrial biotechnologies, which can create jobs, reduce reliance on petroleum, and achieve greenhouse gas reductions.

Brent Erickson, executive vice president for BIO’s Industrial and Environmental Section, stated, “Over the last two decades, competitive advantage for petroleum-derived chemicals and plastics manufacturing has shifted away from the United States, and consequently domestic employment in the sector has dropped. Biobased chemicals and plastics can supplement or replace a wide variety of petroleum-based products, and the United States has a substantial potential competitive advantage in their manufacture. Growth of this industry can produce high-paying green jobs across the United States, just as advanced biofuel production.”

BIO’s white paper, Biobased Chemicals and Products: A New Driver of U.S. Economic Development and Green Jobs, shows that even in its nascent state, the biobased chemicals and plastics industry accounts for over 5,700 direct jobs and is likely responsible for over 40,000 jobs economy wide. Total U.S. employment in the sector declined by 20 percent over past two decades. A recent report commissioned by BIO, U.S. Economic Impact of Advanced Biofuels Production, projects that development of advanced biorefineries could create as many as 29,000 jobs over the next few years.”

BIO’s proposals for Congressional policy options include:

  • Fund development and deployment programs for biobased products and renewable specialty chemicals;
  • Provide product parity and early-stage support for biobased products through both a production and an early-stage R&D tax credit;
  • Open existing DOE and USDA loan guarantee programs to biobased product projects;
  • Open existing cellulosic biofuels tax credits to algae-based biofuels and extend the credits through 2017;
  • Double funding for U.S. Department of Agriculture programs to deploy cellulosic feedstocks; include eligibility for value-added biobased materials, products and chemicals;
  • Fund the reverse auction for cellulosic biofuels already incorporated in law.

For more information see Biobased Chemicals and Products: A New Driver of U.S. Economic Development and Green Jobs.

BIO is also gearing up for its semiannual IP Counsels Committee Conference, which over the last 8 years has become a popular and growing event among our members’ IP and legal professionals. The 2010 IPCC Conference will next be held in New Orleans, Louisiana, from April 19 -21 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel.


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