Cool Planet progresses with biomass-to-biofuel plant

Cool Planet Energy Systems, a developer of small-scale biorefineries for the conversion of non-food biomass into biofuels, is to build its first commercial facility in Alexandria, Louisiana.

The $168 million (€125.9 million) plant will produce 10 million gallons a year of cellulosic fuel and biochar, which is a by-product of the refining process and is used as an agricultural supplement.

In a statement Cool Planet said the development of this first biorefinery will 'lead the way for hundreds of additional small-scale biorefineries that is plans to build across the US'.

The chosen location provides access to a number of biomass feedstocks and will allow Cool Planet to transport its fuel via barge, rail and truck.

Cool Planet CEO Howard Janzen says: 'Louisiana is known for its substantial oil interests, but now will also be home to the first production facility for Cool Planet's renewable gasoline and biochar. Our goal for the facility is to be economically competitive with conventional fuels made from non-renewable crude oil.'

Construction on the new biorefinery will begin at the beginning of 2014, with completion expected before the end of the year.

In September the company announced that URS Corp. would carry out the front-end engineering.

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