A country's vision for developing renewable and sustainable energy resources is typically propelled by three drivers: security, cost, and environmental impact. The U.S. currently accounts for a quarter of the world's total oil consumption, with domestic demands necessitating a net import of more than 50% of the oil used in this country. At the same time, Brazil, because of its forward thinking on energy strategy, is energy independent. As emerging economies around the world increase their petroleum use by large margins, and as large fractions of that new consumption are necessarily supplied from unstable parts of the world, the inevitable repercussions on petroleum-driven economies will continue to escalate. In addition, there is an unequivocal imperative to take immediate and aggressive measures to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by decreasing fossil fuel consumption and increasing our use of carbon-neutral or carbon-negative fuels as well as improving efficiency of fuel use. Economic growth and development worldwide depend increasingly on secure supplies of reliable, affordable, clean energy. The First Pan-American Congress on Plants and BioEnergy was held in June 2008, in Mérida, Mexico. Sponsored by the American Society of Plant Biologists, it was designed to initiate Pan-American research collaborations in energy biosciences. At that congress, the organizational committee committed to meet biennially, resulting in the 2nd Congress held with the endorsement of ASPB, July 6-10, 2010, in São Paulo, Brazil. Whereas the 1st congress covered a broad range of topics that bioenergy impacted, the second congress focused on the advances in plant biology: the genetic improvement of energy crop plants, their fit into regional environments, and the development of a sustainable energy agriculture.