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green and sustainable business

Cellulosic ethanol poised for Obama boost?

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cellulosic-ethanolAn Industry Week article speculates the Obama Administration is poised for a “major expansion” of cellulosic ethanol.

The report says the appointment of Steve Koonin, former chief scientist at BP, to the position of Under-Secretary of Energy, reporting to Energy Secretary Dr. Steven Chu is an indicator. Koonin and Chu are physicists who worked together through Energy Biosciences Institute.

From the IW article: “There are a multitude of folks chasing this cellulosic ethanol grail,” said Joe Skurla, CEO of Dupont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol (DDCE), a joint venture of Dupont; and Danish enzyme and biotech company Danisco. “Those that are aligned with large companies and have their own funding are more likely to succeed.”

Here’s the link to the article: Industry Week

Biofuels Digest has pulled together a list of cellulosic ethanol plants that are open or in the planning stages (sources: IEA Task 39 Group, Biofuels Digest, Reuters). It’s one of the more comprehensive lists of the players I’ve seen.

Company name location capacity in mgy feedstock

-AE Biofuels            Montana           0.15       Corn, corn stover
-KL Energy Corp      Wyoming           1.5         Wood
-Poet                     S. Dakota         0.02        Corn cobs
-Verenium              Louisiana         1.4           Bagasse

Commercial scale plants not yet open:

-Abengoa Bioenergy      Kansas            30          Biomass
-BlueFire Mecca Llc       Calif               17          Green waste
-Colusa Biomass           Calif              12.5        Rice hulls
-Gulf Coast Energy     Florida           25           Woody biomass
-Mascoma Corp           Michigan         40          Woody biomass
-Poet                          Iowa              25          Corn cobs, stover
-Range Fuels                Georgia          20          Woody biomass
-US Envirofuels LLC    Florida           20          Sorghum, sugar cane
-Verenium-BP            Florida           36           Energy cane, sorghum

Pilot, or pre-commercial plants, not open yet:

Company                 location          capacity   feedstock
-Abengoa                Nebraska          10             Corn stover
-BlueFire                 Calif                 3.2           Green landfill waste
-Citrus Energy Llc      Florida             4              Citrus waste
-Clemson University   S. Carolina       10             Wood waste, algae
-Coskata                  Pennsylvania     0.04          Woody biomass, waste
-Dupont Danisco        Tennessee        0.25          Switchgrass, stover
-Ecofin Llc                Kentucky           1          Corn cobs
-Fulcrum                Nevada            10.5          Municipal waste
-GulfCoast Energy      Alabama           0.4           Wood Waste
-Flambeau River        Wisconsin          6              Forest, paper waste
-ICM Inc                   Missouri           1.5       Switchgrass, sorghum
-KL Energy Corp        Colorado           5              Wood pellets
-Liberty Industries      Florida            7              Forest waste
-NewPage                Wisconsin          5.5           Woody biomass
-Pacific Ethanol        Oregon             2.7        Wheat straw, poplar
-PureVision              Colorado           2          Corn stalks
-RSE Pulp & Chem      Maine              2.2           Woody biomass
-SunOpta                  Minnesota        10          Corn stover, waste
-University of Florida  Florida             2              Bagasse
-West Biofuels          Calif                0.18       Wood chips

(Mgy: million gallons/year)

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Written by William DiBenedetto

7 April, 2009 at 10:36 am

One Response

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  1. Yes, jump into this and rapidly go broke!

    Jack Greene

    24 April, 2009 at 10:19 pm


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