November 19, 2009

PEAK FREAKS UP THE CREEK:

Corn ethanol maker Poet says it could compete with gasoline in two years (Steven Mufson, November 18, 2009, LA Times)


The nation's largest producer of corn-based ethanol said it has slashed the cost of producing cellulosic ethanol from corncobs and that it would be able to compete with gasoline in two years.

Poet LLC, which currently produces 1.5 billion gallons a year of ethanol from corn, said its 1-year-old pilot plant has reduced the cost of making ethanol from corncobs to $2.35 a gallon from $4.13 by cutting capital costs and using an improved "cocktail" of enzymes.

Moreover, the company said it could use a byproduct called lignin as fuel and that it would provide all the energy needed for the cellulosic plant as well as 80% of the energy that would be needed by a conventional corn-based distillery making twice the amount of ethanol.

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Posted by Orrin Judd at November 19, 2009 6:23 AM
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