Seminar on Biodiesel Production and Analysis

Join us to learn about one of the hottest topics in alternative energy, biodiesel!  Trey Teall, the VP of Operations at Biodico, will be joining us on Saturday, May 7th to give a presentation about biodiesel production and analysis on the UC Santa Barbara campus.



Biodico specializes in Alternative Energy Solutions including the design, production, and operation of sustainable biorefineries. Their core competency is biofuel/bioenergy production. In 2003 Biodico started work under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the US Navy, a partnership that continues fruitfully to this day at Naval Base Ventura County in California. In 2010 it became clear that the commercial byproducts of biodiesel production (such as glycerin and inedible seed meal) were significant and they began to focus on energy added uses of these byproducts rather than just disposal methods.

What:  Biodiesel Seminar

When:  Saturday, May 7th, 2016 from 12-2 pm

Where: PSBN, Room 4606, U.C. Santa Barbara

Cost:  Free.  A light lunch with be served.

Parking Information:  Visitor parking is allowed in lots #12 (in front of Phelps Hall) and #10 (Structure next to Elings Hall) on Evenings and Weekends. Permits may be purchased from dispensers in the lot.  UCSB Parking Information Campus Map


Trey Teall is the VP of Operations for Biodico. Since 2000, Biodico has developed five commercial biodiesel production facilities utilizing their patented design process in Las Vegas, Colorado, Texas, Australia, and California’s San Joaquin Valley and has worked with the US Navy under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement since 2003. Biodico is headquartered in Ventura and has an R&D center at the Ventura County Naval Base in Port Hueneme. Mr. Teall has been working for Biodico since 2004. He primarily specializes in plant design, operator training, and operation management; grant funded research procurement and project management; laboratory design, implementation, and new method development; and feedstock development and analysis for both biodiesel production and anaerobic digestion. Mr. Teall has a BS in Economics from Duke University and is a State of California Mechanical Engineering EIT.

2016 Pi Day Public Policy Seminar

Beyond Science Communication: What does it mean to engage with decision-makers? 

Join us for our fourth annual Pi Day Public Policy Seminar on Wednesday, March 9th, 2016 at 7:oo pm!   Dr. Ryan Meyer, our speaker, is a senior scientist at California Ocean Science Trust, a boundary organization that works with government, science, and communities to build trust and understanding in ocean and coastal science. He has worked with the Earth Institute at Columbia University; the Consortium for Science, Policy, and Outcomes in Arizona and Washington DC; and a variety of user-oriented research teams in Australia. Ryan is a former Fulbright Scholar, and co-editor of Climate In Context: Science and Society Partnering for Adaptation, due for release in April.   

What:  2016 Pi Day Public Policy Lecture

When:  Wednesday, March 9th, 2016 at 7:00 pm

Where:  Baker Center for Science (Building 180), Room 362, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo  Campus Map




Much of the discourse around making a difference through science focuses on effective communication, and advocacy for change. These things are important, but communication is not the only relevant skill, and advocacy is not the only entry-point. Focusing on them alone is to misread some of the fundamental challenges of making knowledge useful. This talk will explore what it means and what it takes to collaborate with decision makers. There are many different ways that scientists can become involved with decision-making, and make a real difference with their work. Especially in a place like California where there is a long history of cutting edge environmental policy, and ample political will, scientists who want not only to be relevant, but also useful, can find ways to participate. 

Download the event flyer here.


Tour of Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant

Tour of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant

Nuclear power has been instrumental in driving urban and economic growth over the past 50 years, and nuclear power plants remain marvels of modern engineering. The California Los Padres Section of the American Society is happy to invite you to a rare glimpse inside the operation of our nuclear power plant, the Diablo Canyon facility in San Luis Obispo.

The tour of this facility is scheduled on Friday the 6th of September at 9 AM. Because tour groups are limited to 20 visitors, we cannot accommodate as many members as we would like. Furthermore, strict control of access to the facility requires that every visitor be vetted prior to admission. If you wish to join us on this tour, please read the Diablo Canyon Visitor Information guide carefully, then  use this secure form to make a reservation for this event by August 15, 2013. You will be notified via email if you are included in the group. Spaces on the tour will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. The tour will last approximately four hours, and a light lunch will be provided by the facility.

If you prefer to provide the required information by telephone, please call Professor Gregory Scott at (805)756-2617. You may leave the required information as a voice mail.

Diablo Canyon security requires that CALPACS relay all the information in the RSVP form to them at least 5 business days before entry.

Date & Time: Friday September 6, 2013, 9 AM Place: 6588 Ontario Road San Luis Obispo, CA 93405 (Google Map) Cost: Free. RSVP required

Free Lecture and Pi Day Celebration

The Government Affairs Committee of the California Los Padres Section of the American Chemical Society, in conjunction with the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Student Chapter of the ACS, cordially invite you to an important seminar about the role of science in politics and governing.

Speaker:  Professor Rod Schoonover, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

“Science in the Diplomatic and National Security Spheres”

Thursday, March 14, 2013

7-9 PM

California Polytechnic State University, University Union, Room UU-220.

Parking is $5. You can purchase a parking permit at one of the kiosks near the main parking structure. For parking and room location see map:  Pi Day Talk UU220 MAP. An interactive map is also available from the CalPoly web site.

This seminar is free and open to the public. RSVP is requested via our contact form.

Science and technology are transforming the world at an ever faster pace. Consequently, competent, informed scientific council is vital to task of governing. This is the role to which Professor Rod Schoonover is dedicating his career. Dr. Schoonover has recently returned from a three-year appointment with the United States Department of State where he worked on global issues pertaining to science, diplomacy, and national security.  He will discuss the responsibilities he shouldered under Hillary Clinton in the State Department.  A question and answer session with the speaker will follow the lecture.

At the end of the academic year, Dr. Schoonover will be leaving the Central Coast permanently to continue his work at the interface of science and public policy. This is an extremely rare opportunity to get a firsthand account of the important role that science plays in politics and government. All who are interested in this intriguing topic are encouraged to attend.

Snacks–including pies in observance of pi (3.14) day–and refreshments will be served.

Dr. Rod Wolfcall Schoonover is a Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. He received BS degrees in Physics and Chemistry from the University of Kansas, a BS in Graphic Arts from the Kansas City Art Institute, and a PhD in Chemical Physics from the University of Michigan. In 2009 he joined the United States Department of State as an American Association for the Advancement of Science Diplomacy Fellow, working on the intersection of national security and environmental and science and technology issues. His international experience includes programs and consultancies in the former Soviet Union, the Middle East and North Africa, and sub-Saharan Africa. Dr Schoonover is a three-time recipient of the Superior Honor Award, the State Department’s highest civilian award, as well as the National Intelligence Council Medal of Distinction.

“Nanotechnology: The Smallest BIG Idea in Science” Illustrated Poem Contest

As part of National Chemistry Week activities, the American Chemical Society sponsored an illustrated poem  contest for students K-12. All poems were to be no more than 40 words in various styles: haiku, limerick, ode, ABC poem, free verse, end rhyme, or blank verse. Entries were judged based upon relevance to and incorporation of the NCW theme, word choice and imagery, colorful artwork, adherence to poem style, originality and creativity, and overall presentation.

Our NCW section coordinator and poetry contest judge, Lara Baxley, reached out to local schools, inviting their students to submit poems. She received entries for the 3rd-5th grade and the 6th-8th grade categories.

The Poetry Contest winners, with links to the winning poems are as follows:

6th-8th grade poetry contest – 1st place winner – Isaac Epstein of Cayucos

6th-8th grade poetry contest – 2nd place winner – Victoria Friedrich of Santa Maria

3rd-5th grade poetry contest – 1st place winner – Valerie Best of Creston

Thank you to to all of the students who submitted poems and congratulations to our local winners!