I attended a two-day Department of Energy conference this week. Each day started nice and early at 8 am, and they considerately provided breakfast, mid-morning coffee break, lunch and afternoon snack. Surprisingly, the lunch buffet was not the ordinary array of salads and sandwiches but Italian themed one day and Southern-inspired the next.
Green beans, broccoli/bacon, potato salad, biscuits, macaroni and cheese and fried chicken.
Post-lunch, I'm not sure how productive they anticipated the attendees to be. The afternoon snack one day was ice cream bars. There's something amusing about seeing biomass industry people in suits walking around with Magnum and Ben&Jerry's ice cream.
During lunch, they presented alternative lectures involving biomass-related projects not covered in other sessions. One day they spoke about a project to develop biomass-fueled cook-stoves for developing regions, which seemed an ill-conceived project at the price-point possible when fire wood is free and communities live on $1/person/day. The second day we heard about bio-fuel for jets, which seemed a more promising endeavor.