Greg Breining

Greg Breining is a Minnesota-based journalist and author who writes about science, travel and nature for national and regional magazines, including Audubon, Ensia, and National Geographic Traveler. His books about travel and the natural world include Super Volcano, the story of the active volcano beneath Yellowstone, and Wild Shore, an account of two seasons kayaking around Lake Superior. His newest book, Paddle North: Canoeing the Boundary Waters-Quetico Wilderness, with photographer Layne Kennedy, was published by Minnesota Historical Society Press.



  • Tangled up in green

    Tangled Up In Green

    As the forest biomass industry ramps up, harvesting wood for energy is coming under increasing scrutiny.

  • Klaus Puettmann in his 11,250-acre forest “laboratory” near OSU

    Forest Biodiversity: “Managing for Complexity”

    In the future, land managers, ecologists, and the public may have to adjust their ideas about diversity. And what resilience means. And the value of looking back to see what a landscape looked like before European settlers appeared on the scene.

  • Planning a Future Forest

    Planning a Future Forest

    This spring in northeastern Minnesota, contractors for The Nature Conservancy (TNC) fanned out in a pine and aspen-studded forest north of Lake Superior and plunged steel hoedads into the rocky soil.

  • RFS Under Fire

    The Renewable Fuel Standard Under Fire

    During last summer’s blistering drought, meat industry representatives and governors from nearly a dozen states petitioned the federal government to ease up on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which mandates the use of renewable fuels, including ethanol. Since most ethanol in the U.S. is made from corn and corn prices were already high from the drought, they argued that the ethanol requirement would put more strain on the corn supply, forcing up the cost of groceries and livestock feed.

  • The Cellulosic Biofuels Odyssey

    The Odyssey: Cellulosic Biofuels Cross the Finish Line

    When Bioenergy Connection first covered the progress to commercial cellulosic ethanol in 2011, a dozen biofuel companies were claiming they would go big by 2015. After years of industry-wide anticipation and delays, commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol is finally here. What can we learn from the pioneers?

  • Biomass Diesel

    Biomass Diesel: Rising Star of the Renewable Fuel Standard

    While cellulosic ethanol is just getting off the ground, the production of biomass-based diesel has climbed steadily, generally meeting its target volumes in the revised Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2) with capacity to spare.

  • GranBio 101: Secrets to Its Success

    GranBio was created in June 2011. By September 2014, it was producing cellulosic ethanol at commercial scale. How did this dark horse beat out several long-established players in its race to the finish line?

  • Designing a Low-Carbon Fuel Standard: An Interview with Dr. Madhu Khanna

    What could save Americans $441 billion by 2035? According to Dr. Madhu Khanna, an environmental economist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a lead researcher at the Energy Biosciences Institute, it’s a national Low-Carbon Fuel Standard.

  • Lee Lynd: Leading the Sustainability Revolution

    If you talk to Lee Lynd, read his papers and articles, or listen to his public talks, you will likely hear one of his favorite sayings.

  • Biofuels on 'Marginal' Lands

    Land Matters: Sizing Up the Bioenergy Potential of Marginal Lands

    During 2007–8, world food prices exploded. Rising corn prices triggered Mexico’s “tortilla riots.” The sudden quadrupling of rice prices alarmed East Asia policymakers. Soaring prices triggered a wave of speculation about underlying causes.