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OriginOil and Department of Energy to Develop Direct Conversion of Algae into Renewable Crude Oil for Existing Oil Refineries

Company partners with Idaho National Laboratory to enable algae growers to enter the global crude oil market

Los Angeles, CA January 13, 2012 –  OriginOil, Inc. (OTC/BB: OOIL), the developer of a breakthrough technology to extract oil from algae and an emerging leader in the global algae oil services industry, today announced its plans to co-develop an integrated system with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory (INL) for direct conversion of raw algae into a renewable crude oil that can be used by existing petroleum refineries.

“We believe this is a major breakthrough for OriginOil and a major step forward for the algae industry,” said Riggs Eckelberry, OriginOil CEO. “We already lead the industry with our chemical-free, low-energy, continuous high-flow harvesting system.

“From there it’s a natural step to helping algae growers make a direct crude oil replacement right on site, giving them direct access to the existing world market for transportation fuels, including jet fuel. That’s an instant upgrade from what is now a niche market, to the immediate 86 million barrel per day global crude oil market.”

OriginOil’s planned Biocrude System™ will integrate its own harvesting system with state-of-the-art biomass processing technology being developed under the recently-announced research agreement with INL, to convert raw algae into barrels of renewable crude oil.

This much cleaner replacement for conventional petroleum will be designed to be compatible with conventional petroleum refineries. Renewable algae crude could also be blended with other biomass sources to improve their performance.

Dr. Deborah T. Newby, Project Manager at DOE’s Idaho National Laboratory (INL) commented, “We are excited to work with OriginOil on its Biocrude System and leverage its algae processing expertise and technology. Algae is a high energy biomass and can function as a force multiplier to blend in other biomass waste such as from forestry and agriculture into a uniform renewable crude oil substitute. This may well support the U.S. military’s strategic fuels diversification program.”

In operation since 1949, the Idaho National Laboratory (www.inl.gov) is a science-based, applied engineering national laboratory dedicated to supporting the DOE on energy research and national defense. Its mission is to ensure the nation’s energy security with safe, clean, competitive, and sustainable energy systems and unique national and homeland security capabilities.

Safe Harbor Statement:

Matters discussed in this update contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this update, the words "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "may," "intend," "expect" and similar expressions identify such forward-looking statements. Actual results, performance or achievements could differ materially from those contemplated, expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements contained herein, and while expected, there is no guarantee that we will attain the aforementioned anticipated developmental milestones. These forward-looking statements are based largely on the expectations of the Company and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. These include, but are not limited to, risks and uncertainties associated with: the impact of economic, competitive and other factors affecting the Company and its operations, markets, product, and distributor performance, the impact on the national and local economies resulting from terrorist actions, and U.S. actions subsequently; and other factors detailed in reports filed by the Company.

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