Hi all, I am conducting some research for a masters thesis regarding how the United States governmental biofuel agenda was set, and am inviting comment from forum members. How the national agenda is set is often thought to be the most complex and least understood aspect of the policy-making process. Indeed, why biofuel has come to occupy such a prominent place on the U.S. governmental agenda is an interesting question not only for the inherent reasoning above, but also due to the high level of controversy and debate the issue has generated in recent times. To date however, much of the policy research carried-out on the biofuel topic has neglected to address how biofuel came to garner so much government attention in the first place. It is this neglected area of the biofuel topic that I seek to address through my research project. Because the search for a policys genesis is futile, it has been suggested that the best we can do is to identify critical moments in the history of policies that seem to have turned the tide in favour of new policies or ideas. (Birkland, 1997, p.70) By carrying out this qualitative case study, I aim to identify the critical moments and people that have contributed to the turning of the tide in favour of biofuel policy in the U.S. Using John Kingdons 1984 Multiple Streams agenda setting framework I aim to uncover the factors that contributed to the successful implementation of biofuel-friendly policy in the U.S., exemplified by the enactment of Energy Policy Act 2005 (EPAct2005). Like Kingdon, I seek to understand how the issue was chosen for attention by government, why the issue came up when it did, why this issue was are acted upon while other were shunned, and who brought what problems up for government to resolve. (Kingdon, 1984) To carry out this piece of research I have chosen to use EPAct 2005 (P.L. 109-190) as the focal point of the study. The legislations significance is based on the ten year gap between comprehensive national energy bills passed by Congress in the U.S., and the host of biofuel related provisions included in the Act. For these reasons, Epact 2005 is thought to be suitable choice in terms of a point in time that demonstrates a high level of interest from the U.S. policy community toward the biofuel issue. It is the years directly preceding the passage of EPAct 2005 that will be analysed to determine factors that culminated in the successful implementation of significant biofuel-friendly provisions within the 2005 Act. Brief description of the Provisions within EPAct 2005 that directly deal with Biofuel: Most notably the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which will more than double the current market for biofuels. The RFS requires that 7.5 billion gallons of biofuels (including ethanol and biodiesel) be utilized by 2012. Other significant provisions enacted by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 include the Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit, which was extended for another two years, and the Clean Renewable Energy Bonds (for public power), which are vital to obtaining project financing for the renewable energy industry. Additionally, Senators Lugar (R-IN) and Harkin (D-IA), worked to include significant biofuels, bio-based products and biopower provisions in the Energy Policy Act of 2005, thereby providing legislation for grant-and-loan and loan guarantee programs which will now give biomass renewable energy projects a step-up in the growing renewable energy market. There are specific provisions authorizing funding to spur development of cellulosic biofuels facilities and integrated biorefineries. By carrying out this analysis, it is hoped that revelations regarding the conditions that were conducive to the adoption of strong biofuel-friendly policy in the US will be able to be identified. In addition, it is thought that the findings may aid in the understanding of the processes currently going on in the post-2005 biofuel boom countries, as well as make contribution (however small) to the broader volume of available literature on agenda setting and policy development in the U.S. As I mentioned above, I would be extremely grateful for any comments or insights forum members may have relating to my study.