New Biodiesel Plant Nearly Doubles California's Refining Capacity


photo: Crimson Renewable Energy

California currently has a biodiesel production capacity of about 34 million gallons per year, but one single plant by Colorado-based Crimson Renewable Energy is set to nearly double that. The 30 million gallon per year facility in Bakersfield was just completed and officially opened at a ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday. Here are the details:Crimson's new facility will be operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week to produce all that biodiesel, employing 22 people to do so. Rather than concentrate on any one feedstock the facility has been designed to handle a wide variety on inputs: From inedible animal fats (yes, the byproducts of meat production) to used cooking oil to the usual array of virgin vegetable oils.

Low Carbon Fuel Standard Influenced Feedstocks, Sourcing
Harry Simpson, Crimson's president and co-founder, says that they will be "creating a sustainable approach to our business by focussing on the use of a wide variety of feed stocks, trying to source as much as possible within California and by minimizing waste streams."

In reference to California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard -- which didn't look so kindly on the carbon-neutral claims of some biofuels -- Simpson noted that Crimson's strategy to source feedstocks locally and include used vegetable oil in the mix, "has been driven by the shifting economics of various biodiesel feedstocks, and by the changing regulatory environment that will drive long-term demand for low and ultra-low carbon fuels."

Only Glycerine Processing Facility West of Texas
In addition to biodiesel production, Crimson's new plant will also be able to process up to 50 million pounds per year of crude glycerine into refined glycerine -- making it the only glycerine refining facility west of Houston, Texas and one of only four biodiesel plants in the US doing so.

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Tags: Biodiesel | Biofuels | California | Renewable Energy | United States

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