POET to Power Ethanol Plant Expansion with Solid Waste Fuel Boiler

An expansion of the POET Biorefining – Chancellor ethanol plant is set to include a technology that will allow ethanol production to from 50 to 100 million gallons per year without increasing fossil fuel use by the same rate. The expansion includes construction of a solid waste fuel boiler, an alternative energy source that will generate enough steam to produce approximately 60% of the expanded plant’s power needs.

Waste wood from pallets, construction sites and area landfills will be the primary fuel source for the solid waste fuel boiler. Mueller Pallets of Sioux Falls, S.D. will supply 150-300 tons of the woodchip fuel for the boiler per day.

“It’s a win-win situation. By recycling instead of disposing of waste wood, companies, cities and towns in the region will together save hundreds of thousands of dollars in landfill costs yearly,” said Margie Mueller, president of Mueller Pallets. “And while saving raw materials from disposal, the fuel product we process will help reduce the need for natural gas.”

The expanded plant is expected to be finished and operational by the third quarter of 2008. If the boiler is a success in South Dakota, POET will look at the viability of using the boiler technology in its other plants in an effort to make ethanol production more environmentally friendly.

“The solid waste fuel boiler will allow us to double our production capacity without increasing our natural gas usage,” said Rick Serie, General Manager of POET Biorefining – Chancellor. “We’ll be reducing our operating costs by using a green fuel source to produce a domestic, green transportation fuel for America.”
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