Sector News

Natural Chem Group acquires closed New Mexico ethanol plant

November 17, 2016
Chemical Value Chain

Natural Chem Group plans to redevelop a closed plant it acquired through a Spanish company’s bankruptcy and convert the facility into a biodiesel blending terminal.

The Houston-based renewable energy company has obtained the Abgenoa ethanol plant in Portales, N.M., about 120 miles southwest of Amarillo.

The plant was built in 1984 and closed in 2012. Natural Chem bid on the facility in federal bankruptcy court in St. Louis after its prior owner, Abgenoa Bioenergy, filed for bankruptcy.

Natural Chem officials said in a statement that the facility could generate 4.5 million gallons of B20 biodiesel monthly, which would be used to blend into fuels and help New Mexico meet a goal of having at least a 5 percent biodiesel blend in all diesel fuel dispensed in the state.

“We look forward to beginning plant operations, creating jobs, providing revenue and boosting the local economy,” Natural Chem CEO/President Robert J. Salazar said in a statement. “We envision multiple uses for our Portales facility involving renewable fuels and natural chemicals.”

The plant’s conversion will create 35 jobs and Natural Chem will pay outstanding taxes to Roosevelt Co., N.M., according to a company statement.

By Mike D. Smith

Source: Chron

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