#innovationIOWA DuPont’s cellulosic ethanol plant opens in central Iowa

The world’s largest cellulosic ethanol plant opened in central Iowa late last week, and hopes are high that the project can serve as a model for solving some big problems. State officials and Congressional representatives gathered in Nevada on Friday to celebrate the completion of the $225 million plant owned and built by DuPont, which will produce biofuels that are 90 percent greener than gasoline, the Des Moines Register reports. DuPont expects to produce 30 million gallons of ethanol at the plant each year, and is looking to replicate the biorefinery’s design and approach across the world. “Our goal is to replicate this process in other rural communities in the U.S. and around the world so that societies everywhere can realize the economic, environmental and energy security benefits of advanced renewable fuel,” William Feehery, president of DuPont Industrial Biosciences, said at the event. The plant’s opening comes as the EPA prepares to release lowered ethanol blending requirements for the coming years, casting a cloud of uncertainty over the project, but officials including U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley and Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad promised to fight for a strong Renewable Fuel Standard. “If we want additional investment of advanced biofuels, Congress and the EPA must reject efforts to undermine a successful program,” Mr. Grassley said.

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