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Officials announce Iowa cellulosic plant loan

Thu, 07/07/2011 - 7:13am
The Associated Press

Officials have announced plans for a $105 million loan guarantee to help develop a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant near Emmetsburg.

When completed the plant will produce up to 25 million gallons of ethanol per year. Unlike existing ethanol plants, which produce the fuel from corn, the new facility will use stalks, corncobs and leaves to produce ethanol.

The announcement came Thursday during a conference call with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

They say ethanol produced at the plant will replace 13.5 million gallons of gasoline annually. Officials say the project is expected to create 200 jobs during construction, then 40 permanent jobs at the plant.

Chu estimated the facility will provide an extra $14 million in revenue for farmers in the Emmetsburg area.

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