REG receives $740,000 to staff research lab

By Megan Skauge | November 13, 2008
Web exclusive posted Nov. 19, 2008 at 11:38 a.m. CST

Renewable Energy Group Inc. has received a $740,000 grant from the Iowa Power Fund to staff a new state-of-the-art biodiesel research and feedstock commercialization lab at its headquarters in Ames, Iowa.

Iowa's clean energy future is set by the Iowa Office of Energy Independence, which identifies goals to achieve desired results.
Iowa Gov. Chet Culver and Iowa's Office of Energy Independence Executive Director Roya Stanley made the announcement Nov. 13. The grant awarded to REG's lab will help Iowa move closer to energy independence through partnerships with business and industry, community leaders, government and public agencies, and other stakeholders. "As governor, I have long been committed to building on Iowa's strengths in renewable energy," Culver said. "These Power Fund grants will help keep Iowa on the forefront of the green energy revolution."

The company builds and manages a network of six commercial-scale biodiesel production facilities. REG said the grant will help it build a biodiesel research center to support the existing network of plants and aid in improving the overall industry. According to REG Research Development Manager Glen Meier, the research center will focus on three key issues: alternative feedstocks, biodiesel moisture capacity, and measurement of soaps and sterol glycosides.

"REG has been at the forefront of the biodiesel industry's quality and feedstock research for more than a decade," said REG's Chief Operating Officer Daniel Oh. "This grant will further help REG research how to better understand and utilize alternative feedstocks, challenges in fuel handling due to biodiesel's emission-reducing moisture levels, and the need for continued advancement in fuel purity."

The new lab will employ staff from up to 15 Iowa companies. Construction is scheduled to begin before the end of 2008 and is expected to be completed in the spring of 2009.

"These projects share the vision of Iowa's energy independence and position in the new energy economy. They will support Iowa's economy, creating jobs in the near term and more in the long term," said Roya Stanley, director of the Iowa Office of Energy Independence.
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