A local facility that turns wood, agricultural waste, and construction waste into fuel is open for business. Fuel developer Coskata, Inc. has successfully launched a “flex ethanol” plant in Madison, Pennsylvania – 30 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
Coskata CEO Bill Roe says the minimum-scale facility will be used as a “demonstration plant” – that is, while it will produce only about 35,000 gallons of fuel each year, it will express the capability of flex ethanol. He says a full-scale plant would employ up to 700 people to create as much as 100 million gallons of fuel every year.
Roe says the fuel produced by this plant will be used mainly for studies.
“A good portion of it will go to General Motors for use on their Milford test tracks. We also have some strategic partners that are looking to build out full-scale facilities in various locations around the U.S. on different feedstocks, and we’ll be supplying some of that product out of this site for them as well. ”
Roe says the only difference between corn-based ethanol and this fuel is that more sources can be used by this facility. He says Coskata chose Pennsylvania for its first plant because the state has a lot of potential to become a major manufacturer of this new type of ethanol.