07 Dec Biodiesel plant being built in DeForest to make alternative fuel
Anamax Corporation broke ground Monday on a new biodiesel plant in DeForest, the largest of its kind in the state at 12,300 square feet and an expected output of 20 million gallons of biodiesel annually.
Biodiesel is a biodegradable, non-toxic fuel made from vegetable oil or animal byproducts that can be used to fuel diesel engines either in its pure state or blended with petroleum-based diesel fuel.
Executives at Anamax could not be reached for comment, but previously told The Capital Times that the plant should be operational in 2006. The plant will use a variety of sources, mainly soybeans but also recycled oils from food preparation. It will be the 10th biodiesel plant in the country and the first to produce biodiesel from multiple sources.
“It was, from what I hear in the community, fairly well received,” said Village President Jeff Miller. He said the plant would be environmentally friendly and bring multiple benefits to the local economy, including 10-15 new jobs, an increase in the tax base, and increased water usage of 9,000 gallons per day, bringing in more revenue for the local utilities and helping to keep rates stable.
Miller said communities should be on the lookout and study the differences between different types of development projects.
“From my understanding, more and more of these opportunities are going to come forward in the next several years and I think, just keep an open mind.”
Wisconsin Secretary of Agriculture Rod Nilsestuen was on hand for the groundbreaking, and later told WTN of the importance of developing renewable energy sources for the state’s economy.
“The governor has been very focused on developing renewables and alternative energy supplies for the last three years,” Nilsestuen said, “and the need for that has become very apparent this fall, given what’s happened with fuel prices.”
Nilsistuen said the state government has taken new steps in promoting renewable energy and leveraging the state’s agricultural resources, boosting ethanol production capacity from nothing three years ago to 150 million gallons today.
“Almost every state is beginning to recognize now the huge promise and opportunity that bio-development affords,” Nilsestuen said. “What Wisconsin needs to do is figure out what are our comparative advantages, given our natural resources and industry and research base, and focus our efforts in that way.”