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Analyst says farmers could supply soybeans for biodiesel plant

February 28, 2007|by TARA REILLY

A consultant says farmers in and near Washington County would be able to supply the quantity of soybeans needed to run a biodiesel facility proposed for the county.

Mark Soutter, technical analyst with Colorado-based consultant BBI International, presented the firm's study to the Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday.

Chesapeake Bio-Energy LLC has been looking at the county as a possible site for a facility that would use soybeans to generate 30 million gallons of biodiesel fuel annually.

The plant would require approximately 21 million bushels of soybeans per year to produce that much biodiesel, according to BBI's study.

The capital investment for the plant would be $80 million to $100 million.

The plant would crush soybeans to produce the biodiesel and create soybean meal.

Soutter said the soybean meal would be used for feeding dairy and beef cattle, swine and poultry. He didn't expect the soybean meal to be exported beyond the local region, he said.

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