Federal officials who backed Range Fuels Inc., a Broomfield-based biofuel company, plan to liquidate its $100 million plant in Georgia, according to news reports. The Bloomberg news service reports that the Soperton, Ga. factory is to be liquidated after Range defaulted on a federal loan and failed to produce cellulosic ethanol, a fuel made from wood chips that the plant was intended to make.
Range Fuels, who broke ground on the Georgia plant in November 2007, had received a $76 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, as well as an $80 million loan guarantee from the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced in early 2009. The company received only portions of the funds, Bloomberg reported. Both federal commitments were made through an initiative under the administration of former President George W. Bush to find alternatives to corn as a raw material to make ethanol fuels.
Range Fuels had hoped to produce 100 million gallons of cellulosic ethanol from wood chips each year at the biorefinery, but the plant closed in January of this year due to technical problems. About 30 workers were laid off in the shutdown, the Macon Telegraph reports.Tags: Broomfield, cellulosic ethanol, DOE, George W. Bush, Georgia biofuel company, Georgia biorefinery, Georgia ethanol plant, Macon Telegraph, Range Fuels, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Energy, USDA