Ralston biodiesel plant breaks ground on major expansion project

By Ron Kotrba | November 11, 2016

Renewable Energy Group Inc. broke ground Nov. 8 on a $24 million biodiesel plant expansion in Ralston, Iowa, a project that will boost capacity from 12 MMgy to 30 MMgy.

”REG Ralston has been an efficient biorefinery with an ample supply of lower cost, lower carbon intensity feedstock next door connected by a pipe, and the original nameplate capacity was tied to the output of soybean oil from the adjacent crush,” said Daniel J. Oh, president and CEO of REG. “This expansion matches the greater output volume from the newly expanded soy crush at Landus Cooperative.”

Brad Albin, REG’s vice president of manufacturing, said the cooperative’s decision to expand its soy crushing presented REG with an excellent, efficient opportunity. “With a greater, adjacent feedstock supply and our history of continuous improvements, this capacity expansion is a logical investment,” Albin said.

The company stated that the project will also include logistics improvements and other site enhancements. Up to $20 million in long-term debt financing is expected to be provided for this project.

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Gov. Kim Reynolds were the featured guests at the ground-breaking ceremony, which was attended by several business leaders and elected officials.

“I was here in the 1990s when biodiesel was just a dream,” said Branstad. “I am honored to participate in the expansion of Iowa’s first continuous flow biodiesel plant. REG has demonstrated an ongoing commitment to investing in Iowa and building a future for this state in home grown, advanced biofuel.”

The Ralston expansion will increase REG’s cumulative nameplate capacity from the company’s 11 active U.S. biomass-based diesel plants to 470 MMgy.

 

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