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Australian Biodiesel Producer to Build Plant in New Mexico

Energea 120 t/d CTER process unit. Click to enlarge.

American Renewable Fuels, a subsidiary of Australian Renewable Fuels Limited, will build a biodiesel production facility in Clovis, New Mexico with capacity to produce 75 million gallons of biodiesel each year.

The plant will primarily use local animal tallow as feedstock to produce biodiesel via a patented process that utilizes a Continuous Trans Esterification Reactor (CTER) from Energea, an Austrian company. The Energea CTER technology is a continuous conversion process capable of processing a wide range of fats.

The CTER process. Click to enlarge.

The CTER process is carried out in three main stages: a pre-transesterification and two transesterifications using a patent-pending high pressure process. The process supports the use of fats or oils with a free fatty acid (FFA) content of up to 5%.

American Renewable Fuels owns the exclusive patent rights to the Energea technology in the NAFTA region, and its parent uses the Energea technology in Australia. The Energea CTER process is in use at the Biofuels Corporation 250,000 t/y plant in Teeside, UK.

After careful consideration of a number of potential sites, Clovis was chosen because of its proximity to feedstock (inputs such as fats and vegetable oils), location on the national rail grid, and most importantly the support of the State and Local governments to encourage growth of alternate fuel production in the State of New Mexico.

—Ross Garrity, CEO of American Renewable Fuels

Construction is expected to begin in July or August of this year, with the plant scheduled for operation in fall of 2008. The total capital investment is expected to be $80 million dollars.




So, for an input of 80 million USD and the price of the raw material they are planning to use, they'll produce 1.78 million barrels of oil per year. At 50+ USD per barrel, they'll have revenue of about 90 million USD minus the raw material cost, the energy input (more raw material), the running cost and some waste product (just a dump, I suppose). Sounds great ?

Wait a sec: at the WSJ, you'll find some price indication for tallow: 'Tallow, bleachable; Chicago lb.: 21 cents per lb'. At these prices and if you take '1' as specific weight for tallow, you'll need 73 USD just to get a barrel of the stuff ...

So, they'll have to get it at a serious discount (lower transport costs) and/or lower quality (not food processing grade) than this Chicago tallow to just get even.

Now, how efficient would their process be ?


The important thing here is the support New Mexico's Gov. Richardson is giving alternative energy in his state, including Tesla motors. He has stolen the march on many of the other states and sooner or later someone will hit a target and we will see production taking place and a richly growing New Mexico. Amen!


This sounds like a setting for a bad sci-fi movie. The year is 2050, society, as we know it, has crumbled. The few who remains battle for the the few precious carbon chains that remain - and some will stop at nothing... (big scary music)- cut to fat man being crushed in tallow extractor.

Bill Young


A bit politically incorrect! LOL.



Soylent-Green-Fuel ! "Solyent Green is People" , or at least lipo-suction waste.



I think your math is incorrect. 75M gallons of biodiesel is a refined product, probably worth ~$3/gallon retail. That's ~$225M/year in revenue, or somewhat less at wholesale. They're not creating synthetic crude oil, but synthetic end-user diesel product.


novice math, feel free to correct.

one gallon of oil/tallow weighs 7-8 pounds depending on density
if chicago tallow is .21 per pound, 1 gallon of tallow = about $1.40
if the conversion rate to diesel fuel is 100%, it would sell for here in the mid-west for about $2.35

to the Solyent Green lobby:
i will donate my belly tallow for free, if they just suck it out... there's at lest 20 to 30 pounds there, and they won't have to grind up my whole body in the tallow extractor.....


I too would happily donate 20 pounds if they're careful...


You can't donate your lypo fat to make fuel. The premium soap industry would suffer.


We have 50,000 Hectares of land area available for a JATROPHA (biodiesel source) Plantation in the Philippines. Lowest sale or lease rates.

For any interested parties, please email us at [email protected]

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