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ZeaChem signs binding feedstock agreement with GreenWood Tree Farms for hybrid poplar biomass

ZeaChem Inc., a developer of biorefineries for the conversion of renewable biomass into sustainable fuels and chemicals, has signed a long-term binding term sheet with GreenWood Tree Farm Fund (GTFF), managed by GreenWood Resources (GWR), to supply hybrid poplar woody biomass for its first commercial cellulosic biorefinery. ZeaChem uses a combined biochemical and thermochemical process for the production of ethanol. (Earlier post.)

Under the agreement, GTFF will be the primary feedstock supplier for ZeaChem’s first commercial biorefinery. GTFF will supply cellulosic biomass from its existing poplar plantations to the biorefinery, offering new markets for its wood products. ZeaChem’s first commercial biorefinery is expected to have capacity of 25M gallons per year (GPY) and to be located in Boardman, Oregon.

ZeaChem will integrate feedstock from a portion of GTFF’s residual fiber with local agricultural residue suppliers to achieve feedstock costs 50% less compared to Brazilian sugarcane and 80% less compared to corn based processes. Through this combination of forest and agricultural residuals, ZeaChem has secured 100% of the feedstock supply for its first commercial biorefinery.

ZeaChem is currently constructing a 250,000 gallon-per-year demonstration-scale biorefinery in Boardman, Ore.; the demo-scale plant will begin to come online this year. An existing GTFF hybrid poplar tree plantation near Boardman supplies feedstock to the facility, minimizing the transportation and logistics costs of cellulosic biofuel and bio-based chemical production. Hybrid poplar trees are an excellent cellulosic feedstock because of their high yield per acre, short rotation and ability to regenerate after harvest, providing superior economic and environmental benefits. Additional advantages of woody biomass include the ability to aggregate forestry land and the forestry industry’s common practice of signing long-term contracts.

The company is now developing commercial biorefineries for the production of advanced biofuels and bio-based chemicals.



The problem has not changed that much.

Our current gas guzzling fleet uses about 1000 gal/year/vehicle.

Best plants can produce (gross) up to 500 gals equivalent/year/acre.

(Net at the pumps) is closer to 250 gals equivalent/year/acre.

Up to 4 acres of land per vehicle could be required.

Even USA could not afford to use 1,000 million acres to feed our gas guzzlers.

The only way to make it possible would be to reduce our fuel consumption per vehicle from 15 mpg to 60+ mpg. It is possible to do with a mix of improved ICE, mild hybrids, improved HEVs, improved PHEVs and many more BEVs (and e-bikes).


regenerate after harvest

That is good, makes it a bit more like switch grass which will give 12 tons per acre, for 600 gallons of synthetic gasoline per acre which would be one car per acre per year. 100 million marginal acres would be 100 million cars running on non petroleum fuels.


The average switch grass crop is about 7.5 dry tons per acre/year. At 70 gal/dry ton it will give a (gross) average of 525/gal/acre/year. The (net) delivered at the pumps would be below 400/gal/ethanol/acre or about 244 /e-gasoline/gal/acre.

One acre would feed a 15 mpg gas guzzler for only 3660 miles/year.

Four acres would be closer to the requirement.

PS: With time and enough engineering, we could eventually increase switch grass crop by 100% or to 15 dry ton per acre. Two acres would still be required for each gas guzzler.


I posted the data, they are heading higher than 12 tons. The average fuel economy is 20 mpg and heading higher. Believe your 4 acres figure if you want, but you are wrong.


By the way Syntec has already exceeded 100 gallons per ton, not the 70 you quoted. How you go from 524 gallons to below 400 gallons is not clear.

When you start with believing it is 4 acres, you trim the numbers to fit. I have data to support my assertions and I have posted them on here numerous times, but you refuse to acknowledge them. I showed EP the yield per acre with many links, perhaps you missed that.

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