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Alltech president launches science lecture series

Pearse Lyons at podium
Alltech president Pearse Lyons called for more research on cellulose as an alternative fuel source during his Haggin Auditorium presentation.

Alltech President Pearse Lyons discussed America’s quest for renewable fuel in the context of scientific research, agribusiness, macroeconomics, and politics during his February 6 presentation in Haggin Auditorium. It was the first in the four-part
Alltech Lecture Series at Transylvania.

In a wide-ranging discussion of the relationships between corn production, livestock and poultry producers, and energy needs, Lyons made the case for increased emphasis on research into cellulose as the primary source for the five-fold increase in alternative fuels by 2017 that President Bush has proposed to Congress.

Lyons, a member of Transylvania’s Board of Trustees, presented his ideas in the framework of a competition for the use of corn between food and fuel producers. He said that cellulose can hold the key to America’s search for clean burning fuel and energy independence, provided scientists discover the key to converting it economically to ethanol.

“We can get three times the volume of ethanol per acre from cellulose as compared with corn,” Lyons said. “It’s the technology of cellulose breakdown that we need our scientists to focus on.”

Inge Russell of Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, will discuss the science of aging in her presentation “The Fountain of Youth: Does It Really Exist?” on April 25, followed by Ronan Power, Alltech’s director of research, on “Feeding Our Genes for Better Health” on May 8. Karl Dawson, Alltech’s director of worldwide research, spoke on “The Science in Your Glass of Beer, Wine, or Whiskey” in March. All lectures are free and open to the public.

Alltech, a global animal health bioscience company and a leading producer of all-natural animal feed, has its international headquarters in Nicholasville, Ky., employing 1,800 people in 85 countries. World Trade magazine named it one of the 100 fastest growing high tech companies.

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