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U.S. EPA Supports Sustainable Water Management and Clean Energy Innovation at Calif. Brewery

Release Date: 03/11/2014
Contact Information: David Yogi,, Ph: (415) 972-3350

Innovation research investment recipient unveils advanced bioelectric technology

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest Jared Blumenfeld participated today in a ribbon-cutting event at the Bear Republic Brewery in Cloverdale, Calif. showcasing EcoVolt, the world’s first bioelectrically enhanced wastewater to energy system. The system uses electrically active microbes to treat wastewater while simultaneously generating renewable biogas sufficient to generate up to 50 percent of brewery’s electricity needs and greater than 20 percent of the brewery’s heat needs.

The innovative bioelectric technology developed by Boston, Mass-based Cambrian Innovation was funded through the federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) national program, which provides $2.5 billion in funds annually to innovative small businesses across the country.

“Tapping cutting-edge technology for the craft production of 72,000 barrels of beer every year will allow Bear Republic to operate in a more environmentally-friendly manner,” said Mr. Blumenfeld. “Innovation provides the double benefit of meeting energy needs and preserving valuable water in short supply due to California’s drought, while helping businesses thrive and maintain local jobs.”

EPA has provided funding to Cambrian Innovation to research microbial fuel cell technologies that generate electricity while treating wastewater. These solutions complement the EcoVolt process showcased today. EPA is one of 11 agencies across the federal government participating in the SBIR program. Development of the EcoVolt system was support an SBIR from the National Science Foundation.

EPA’s SBIR Program supports small businesses to develop and commercialize innovative technologies that will help protect people’s health and the environment. EPA SBIR supports technology innovation in multiple areas addressing our nation’s environmental and sustainability challenges including water, air, waste, and green manufacturing.

For more information about EPA SBIR program, visit:

For more information about government-wide Small Business Innovation Research program efforts, visit: