Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) Gets $25 Million DOE Grant For Biomass Plant

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12:34:40 pm on January 6, 2010

Archer Daniels Midland just announced that they have received a $24.8 million grant to build a biomass plant that will convert waste into fuel ethanol and ethyl acrylate. The refinery will use a step called pretreatment that will also be used in ADM’s ongoing biocrude production efforts.

In a press release, Dr. Todd Werpy, vice president, Biofuels and Biochemical Research, commented on the news:

“By helping reduce the financial risk inherent in this kind of cutting-edge R&D, this funding from the Department of Energy will allow ADM to advance development steps concurrently, rather than sequentially, which will reduce the timeframe to commercialization by about two years. Biofuels remain the only widely available alternative transportation fuel available today. This project demonstrates ADM’s commitment to advanced biofuels and our work to meet the goals of the Renewable Fuel Standard Program.”

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Top Stock Picks for 2010: Verenium (VRNM)
Posted by Steven Halpern-Best stocks for 2010

This post is a special report, Top Picks for 2010, the 27th annual survey in which asks the nation’s leading advisors for their single favorite stock for the new year.

“The law codifies the federal production targets for biofuel, which we believe presents a real opportunity for Vernenium (VRNM).”

The advisor continues, “‘Biofuel’ has, for decades, been code for ‘corn-based ethanol.’ But this law also contains provisions for a new, advanced biofuel derived from cellulose, an organic compound found in all plant matter.

“Instead of using corn — which uses valuable farmland and can drive up the price of a staple food — cellulose can be derived from any plant, wheat or rice straw, corn stalks, scrap wood or even grass.

“The law calls for hundreds of millions of gallons of cellulose ethanol. There’s just one problem: Very little of cellulosic ethanol is being produced. By 2022, however, the nation will need, by virtue of federal law, 16 billion gallons.

“All problems, of course, are really opportunities in disguise. Especially for one company: Verenium. This is a biotech company that has mastered the enzymes required to unlock the energy in cellulose.

“It has two partners in this endeavor: Petroleum giant BP and the U.S. federal government, which has begun its due diligence on a federal loan guarantee for the project.

“The demand for cellulosic ethanol will rise many-fold in coming years, and Verenium, the leader in this field, will likely see similar gains as it puts this ground-breaking technology to work in the new plant and licenses the technology to hundreds of others.

“The loan guarantee for the plant will likely be a significant catalyst for these shares, and the continued demand for cellulosic ethanol will fill its coffers — and reward shareholders — for years to come.”

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