Tampa, FL EarthFirst Technologies, Incorporated recently announced details of its plans to establish the United States' first Bio-refinery. This facility will be capable of producing ASTM 6751 biodiesel, as well as other high value products from palm-based methyl esters produced during the biodiesel production process.
Similar projects exist in Singapore and Malaysia, but the facility located in Channahon, Illinois will be the first in the United States.
The key to the Company's Bio-refinery is the use of palm oil based feedstock. The chemical composition and stability of palm oil make it suitable for refinement into numerous products.
To secure the continuous availability of palm oil feedstock, EarthFirst has entered into a 15-year Supply Agreement with LODERS CROKLAAN USA, LLC ("Loders"), a wholly owned subsidiary of the IOI Group. IOI has an existing supply chain for palm oil products from Malaysia to Channahon, Illinois which serves Loders' specialty fats business supplying the requirements of the US food industry. The Company also has a 15-year Agreement with Loders to lease a currently unused vegetable oil fractionation facility, located on its own self-contained site, adjacent to Loders' other operations in Channahon.
IOI Corporation Bhd is a public company traded on the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange and is one of Malaysia's leading palm oil producers. By virtue of a recent acquisition, IOI has also just become the world's largest supplier of fatty acids and related products. IOI is a founding member of the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil and is committed to its sustainable cultivation practices at its plantations.
The leased facility at Channahon will need only minor initial retrofitting to produce 45 million gallons per year of biodiesel, with a production goal of 60 millions gallons per year. Accordingly, the Company's capital cost for biodiesel production at the Channahon facility will be dramatically less than an equivalent capacity green-field biodiesel development project.
EFTI selected a facility in the state of Illinois as its first Bio-refinery site because Illinois is the logistics center of seven Midwestern states that consume almost 90% of the biodiesel currently produced in the US and offers significant financial incentives for the production and sale of biodiesel in the state. EFTI also selected Loders' Channahon, Illinois site because the site has exceptional river access and rail sidings and is a central location for oil and chemical product truck loading. It is also less than one-half mile from a major Exxon refinery and in the heart of an area which can use the other Bio-refinery products.
EFTI has employed one of the US leading biodiesel engineering firms, R.C. Costello and Associates to design the retrofit of the Channahon facility for biodiesel production. Costello has already delivered a complete front-end engineering package. Detailed construction drawings and ground-breaking are expected in the next three weeks. The retrofit is estimated to take five months, with production commencing in November, 2007.
EFTI CEO and Chairman, John Stanton commented, "We are very pleased to be working with the IOI Group. Soybeans have been carrying the biodiesel load thus far, but ultimately can only meet a fraction of US biodiesel needs. The US needs to use all available feedstocks if our nation hopes to produce and use billions of gallons of biodiesel to meet the twin goals of reducing CO2 emissions and minimizing carcinogenic particulates associated with petroleum diesel. Our Bio-refinery concept establishes a new and revolutionary economic model for biofuel production in the US."
About EarthFirst Technologies, Incorporated
EarthFirst Technologies is a specialized holding company engaged in researching, developing and commercializing technologies for the production of alternative fuel sources and the destruction and/or remediation of liquid and solid wastes, and in supplying electrical contracting services to commercial and government customers internationally. Through its subsidiary World Environmental Solutions Company (WESCO), EarthFirst markets solid waste remediation plants utilizing a proprietary Catalytic Activated Distillation (CAVD) process, which is a superior technology developed by EarthFirst to recycle rubber tires and other waste by heating the material without burning it. Through its subsidiary Electric Machinery Enterprises, Inc., the Company provides electrical contracting services both as a prime contractor and as a subcontractor, electrical support for industrial and commercial buildings, power generation stations, and water and sewage plants in the US and abroad. Through its subsidiary, SolarDiesel Corporation, the Company is primarily focused on facilitating commercial scale production and distribution of biofuels produced from palm oil.
SOURCE: EarthFirst Technologies, Inc.