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$70 million for clean, American-made renewable fuels

Staff writer |
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced a conditional commitment for a $70 million loan guarantee to help build a cellulosic biorefinery in central Georgia.

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USDA is providing the loan guarantee conditional commitment, an important milestone in the ongoing development of the project, through its Biorefinery Assistance Program.

"There is a clear consumer demand for clean, American-made, renewable fuels, which our rural communities stand ready to meet," said Secretary Vilsack.

"USDA is proud to support environmentally and technologically sound projects like this one, which will increase biofuel availability nationwide and create jobs in rural Georgia. This loan commitment is the most recent example of our support for President Obama's 'all-of-the-above' energy strategy, which includes alternative and renewable fuel sources."

Ensyn Georgia Biorefinery I will construct and operate a cellulosic biofuel refinery in Dooly County, Georgia. The company will produce 20 million gallons of renewable fuel per year employing its Rapid Thermal Processing (RTP) technology. RTP uses a fast thermal process to convert non-food-based feedstocks into biobased fuels.

Ensyn will convert 440 dry tons of woody biomass into a renewable fuel oil (RFO) product. There is an abundant supply of woody biomass near the plant due to excess forest materials in the region. However, Ensyn can use a variety of other non-food cellulosic feedstocks as well.

The renewable fuel oil will be used as a heating oil replacement and as a renewable feedstock for diesel and gasoline production at refineries.

The project will lead to the direct employment of up to 138 people, including nearly 70 permanent jobs when the plant is fully operational.

Ensyn has a 25-year track record with its RTP technology and currently supports the operation of six commercial RTP facilities. The company has additional commercial plants under development in Canada and Brazil with its joint venture partners.


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