Feb 18 An Iowa ethanol plant that will be one of
the first producers of biofuels made from crop waste will be
operating by June, a general manager of the plant said in an
interview on Tuesday.
POET-DSM, a joint operation between leading U.S. ethanol
maker POET LLC and Dutch food and chemicals group DSM,
will be among the largest to make so-called advanced biofuels on
a commercial scale.
The $250 million facility in Emmetsburg, in the
north-central part of the No. 1 corn-growing state, will produce
7 million to 12 million gallons of ethanol this year using cobs
and other corn "stover," said Steve Hartig, general manager for
licensing for the ethanol plant.
"We'll probably be closer to the 7 than the 12," Hartig said
of the ethanol output at the plant that will have an annual
capacity to produce 25 million gallons of biofuel.
Advanced biofuel production is a linchpin of the 2007
Renewable Fuel Standard that was designed to promote homegrown
fuels produced from corn, wood chips, grasses and crop waste.
Partially due to slow progress in large-scale production of
cellulosic ethanol, the U.S. Environmental Agency last year
proposed the first reduction in its volume targets for biofuel
If the EPA's targets are made official - a ruling is
expected by mid-year - the government would mandate that 17
million gallons of cellulosic ethanol are produced to meet the
Renewable Fuel Standard, down from 1.75 billion gallons proposed
in the original mandate. That compares with the proposed volume
of more than 13 billion gallons of ethanol made largely from
"We'll be finalizing construction in March-April. Then we'll
be starting it up. The ethanol will probably be in June, a lot
of the units will be operating in May," POET-DSM's Hartig said
from the sidelines of the National Ethanol Conference being held
in Orlando, Florida, this week.
Abengoa Bioenergy's cellulosic plant in Hugoton,
Kansas, also is expected to open later this year with an annual
capacity of 25 million gallons. DuPont is constructing a
cellulosic ethanol facility in Nevada, Iowa, with a capacity of
30 million gallons.