Friday, July 28, 2006

Alt-Fuel Competition From A Nearby Town

Stacy Vogel of The Gazette is reporting that Midwest Biofuel, from Macon, Ga., has received permission from the Clinton Planning Commision to begin the process of building a biodiesel plant in that town's industrial park. The owner of Midwest Biofuel is quoted as saying,
"Governor (Jim) Doyle has put a welcoming stance to manufacturing to step

What does this mean for Evansville's efforts to attract the North Prairie Energy facility? Probably very little. The Midwest Biofuel plant will operate by a different process and, although they are aiming for 5 million gallons of production, will not significantly dent the demand side of the equation in Wisconsin.

Where it will cause heartburn is in the competition for a possible soybean crushing facility. North Prairie has a strong partner in their enterprise in Landmark Co-op. One has to assume that part of Midwest's decision was influenced by the location of DeLong Co's in the Clinton industrial park. It is very clear that there is not enough unmet demand for bean meal, oil, or biodiesel to support two crushing facilities in Southern Wisconsin.

So long as everyone keeps their eyes open on this and doesn't start acting like Ado Annie when the bidding war starts over the crush plant it may be possible for both communities to come out ahead on biodiesel.

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