USDA loans $75M for bioenergy project

The U.S. Department of Agriculture intends to invest $75 million into INEOS Bio's commercial biofuel facility in Florida.
Written by David Worthington, Contributor

It may be green, swampy, or even come from sewage, but biofuel is attracting significant investment from both private and public sources. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has granted a conditional commitment for a $75 million loan guarantee to start up INEOS Bio and its joint venture partner, New Planet Energy, the companies announced today.

The funds will be allocated toward constructing INEOS's first bioenergy facility near Vero Beach, Florida. The facility is designed to create eight million gallons of biofuel per year from sources including yard, vegetative and wood wastes and municipal solid waste, according to the company. That is enough biomass to generate up to six megawatts of renewable power per year.

INEOS has patented a process that allows bacteria to convert gases derived from biomass into ethanol from multiple feedstocks. New Planet Energy will assist in the development and implementation of the project.

Recent happenings in biofuel technology include:

  • Solazyme received US$52 million in series D financing in August.
  • Ford announced it was investing in biofuel research in October.
  • Aurora Algae outlined its business plan to finance biofuel development by diversifying into foods and pharmaceuticals.
  • Lufthansa will fly an Airbus 321 on biofuel in April.
  • The U.S. Air Force is experimenting with alternative fuels for fighter jets.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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