Loans, loans, loans!

I can’t believe how busy January has become with so many news popping up all over the place. Here’s my current top news for the month (still subject to changes):

1. DuPont acquiring Danisco

2. USDA launches biobased product label

3. EPA defers GHG permitting requirements for industries that use biomass

4. Butamax files patent infringement against Gevo

5. Gevo targeting between $93-$100m IPO

…and several loans for biorefineries/renewable diesel investments coming from the US Department of Energy (DOE), US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Iowa Power Fund.

The blog already posted the DuPont acquisition and so we’ll start the next one with green loans that seem to have exploded this week.

This news from the DOE caught my attention immediately given the implication of this project to future animal fats/grease supply to the US oleochemical market.  The blog noted in September 2009 Valero and Darling International’s plans to build a 137 million gallons/year renewable diesel production facility in Louisiana near Valero’s St. Charles refinery primarily financed by a DOE loan.

The companies’ JV called Diamond Green Diesel announced yesterday that it was finally able to get the DOE loan of around $241m. I guess it really takes a long time for government loan/grant applications to get through.

The project will produce renewable diesel fuel primarily from animal fats, used cooking oil and other waste grease streams and will be the first in the US to use UOP’s EcoFining technology (see recent post on Green Diesel).

In another loan news, the USDA also announced yesterday that it is loaning a total of $405m to three advanced biofuels projects coming from Coskata, Enerkem and Ineos New Planet BioEnergy.

Coskata will receive $250m loan guarantee to construct and operate a 50m gal/year cellulosic ethanol biorefinery in Greene County, Alabama; Enerkem will obtain an $80m loan to build and operate a 10m gal/year biorefinery in Pontotoc, Mississippi, which will transform municipal solid waste into ethanol; and Ineos New Planet BioEnergy will receive $75m loan to construct and operate an 8m gal/year cellulosic ethanol and gross electricity production of 6 megawatt capacity in Vero Beach, Florida, using vegetative waste, yard waste, wood waste and municipal solid waste as feedstock.

And finally, the state of Iowa through its Iowa Power Fund Board, announced a $9 million grant to DuPont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol (DDCE)for the company’s plans to build a 25m gal/year cellulosic ethanol biorefinery using corn stover as a feedstock. DDCE will match the grant with $226 million from its own funding.

Here are some of Iowa Power Fund’s recent approved projects as of December 8, 2010, which included advanced biofuels from POET Project Liberty, Green Plains Renewable Energy and Bioprocess Algae, Renewable Energy Group, and Syngest (among others). I also heard that Iowa Power Fund is lending Genencor a $2 million forgivable loan and $1 million loan for a $28 million proposal to build a pilot research facility at Genencor’s division in Cedar Rapids.

The pilot facility is focusing on the development of Genencor’s bio-isoprene.

More about Iowa Power Fund in this link.

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