Media adv: Dec. 10 event to celebrate EBI’s first five years

ATTENTION: Reporters covering alternative energy, the environment

WHAT: A dedication ceremony to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Energy Biosciences Institute (EBI) at the University of California, Berkeley; the completion of the institute’s new home, the Energy Biosciences Building; and the inauguration of the Robert and Mary Catherine Birgeneau Energy Garden, which honors UC Berkeley’s outgoing chancellor and his wife for their support of science education and research.

WHEN: 3 p.m. Monday, Dec. 10

WHERE: Conference room, Energy Biosciences Building, 2151 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, Calif.


  • Chris Somerville, EBI director and UC Berkeley professor of plant and microbial biology
  • Paul Willems, EBI associate director and technology vice president for energy biosciences at BP
  • Robert Birgeneau, UC Berkeley chancellor, and his wife, Mary Catherine Birgeneau

DETAILS: The Energy Biosciences Institute, established in 2007 with a $500 million, 10-year grant from BP, has completed the first half of its mandate to seek biology-based solutions to energy challenges, and along with that milestone, it has moved into a new five-story research facility in downtown Berkeley.

A brief outdoor ceremony dedicating the garden to the Birgeneaus will be followed by a champagne reception in the lobby of the Energy Biosciences Building, which was completed this year. Building tours will be provided upon request. The first of more than 200 scientists and staff began their move from campus to the building last July.

The Energy Biosciences Institute is a four-partner research collaboration that includes UC Berkeley, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and BP. The EBI is dedicated to applying the biological sciences to the challenges of producing sustainable, renewable energy for the world, in particular transportation biofuels.

To interview EBI leaders or scientists, or to receive additional information on the institute or the event, contact Ron Kolb, EBI communications manager, at