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University of Iowa News Release


Oct. 3, 2007

Brookings Institution, UI present energy and national security forum Oct. 17

The Brookings Institution and the University of Iowa Lecture Committee will present an Opportunity 08 forum, "Energy & National Security: Biofuels and Alternative Energy in America's Policy Debate," at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 17 in the Main Lounge of the Iowa Memorial Union, 125 North Madison St. on the UI campus.

The forum, co-sponsored by the UI Office of the Vice President for Research, will feature leading policy experts from Washington D.C. and Iowa on biofuels and energy policy, the environment and national security. The forum will feature two panels, the first will focus on energy security and alternative energy sources, specifically biofuels such as ethanol. The second will discuss the role that energy plays in America's foreign policy.

The Lecture Committee is working with student and activist groups, as well as UI departments and institutes that study energy and energy policy, to generate some of the questions that will be asked during the forum. Questions can also be submitted to

The forum is part of Opportunity 08, a project of the Brookings Institution in partnership with ABC News, to help presidential candidates and the public focus on critical issues facing the nation. Media sponsors for the Opportunity 08 forum include KCRG-TV and the Gazette. Gazette Online will also provide a link on where readers can submit questions to the panelists. UITV will be taping the forum for later broadcast on local cable channels

Panelists include:

-- David B. Sandalow, an Energy and Environment Scholar at Brookings, is an expert on energy policy and global warming. During the Clinton administration, Sandalow served as assistant secretary of state for oceans, environment and science and as a senior director on the staff of the National Security Council. Sandalow will be releasing a book entitled, "Freedom from Oil: How the Next President Can End the U.S. Oil Addiction."

-- William Antholis, managing director of Brookings. Antholis has worked on foreign security and economic policy at the National Security Council and the State Department, and was director of studies at the German Marshall Fund of the United States.

-- Michael O'Hanlon, senior fellow at Brookings. O'Hanlon specializes in Iraq, North Korea, homeland security, the use of military force and other defense issues. He advised members of Congress on military spending as a defense budget analyst. He is the director of Opportunity 08.

-- John Miranowski, professor of economics and director of Institute of Science and Society at Iowa State University (ISU). Miranowski has previously served as director of the Resources and Technology Division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service and was executive coordinator of the Secretary of Agriculture's Policy Coordination Council.

-- Steven Fales, associate director of the Office of Biorenewables Programs and professor in the Department of Agronomy at ISU. Fales coordinates the College of Agriculture's Bioeconomy Initiative, which focuses on developing technologies for converting crops and plant materials into chemicals, fuels, fibers and energy.

-- Jerry Schnoor, co-director of the UI College of Engineering's Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research. Schnoor, who also serves as Allen S. Henry Chair in Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and research engineer at IIHR-Hydroscience & Engineering, has extensive environmental research experience. He recently chaired a U.S. biofuels production colloquium for the National Research Council at the National Academy of Sciences.

-- Mani Subramanian, director of the UI Center for Biocatalysis and Bioprocessing (CBB) and professor in the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering. Prior to coming to the CBB, Subramanian was the global research and development director of biotechnology, bioprocessing and bioinformatics at the Dow Chemical Company.

-- Tonya Peeples, associate professor of chemical and biochemical engineering at the UI. Peeples' work focuses on research in the field of organisms that thrive in extreme environments. She is a member of the CBB and is director of the Ethnic Inclusion Effort for Iowa Engineering.

For more than 30 years, the Lecture Committee has brought some of the world's great thinkers to the UI campus. Speakers have included an impressive roster of national and international figures in science, politics, business, human rights, law and the arts. The UI Lecture Committee is a Presidential Charter Committee whose membership consists of students, faculty and staff. The series is funded through student fees with select lectures supported in part by the F. Wendell Miller Fund. The Lecture Committee also offers opportunities for co-sponsorship for campus departments and organizations.

The Brookings Institution is a private nonprofit organization devoted to independent research and innovative policy solutions. For more than 90 years, Brookings has analyzed current and emerging issues and produced new ideas that matter, for the nation and the world. For more information, visit or

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact the Office of Student Life at 319-335-3059.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500; The Brookings Institution, 1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20036

MEDIA CONTACTS: Brookings Office of Communications, 202-797-6105,; Sharon Benzoni, UI Lecture Committee, 319-335-3255;; George McCrory, University News Services, 319-384-0012,