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USDA to award $11M loan guarantee to Oregon biorefinery

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) will support Novus Energy’s new biorefinery project in Boardman, Ore. with an $11-million loan guarantee through the Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program. The Novus plant will process agricultural waste into fuel, natural gas, organic fertilizer and other bio-based products.

Novus will use waste from onion and potato processing plants, dairy manure, seasonal plant by-products and other waste supplied by local growers and processors as the primary feedstock.

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Novus is working with an Oregon lender, Old West Federal Credit Union, to finance the project. USDA hopes to finalize loan terms with Novus and Old West by summer. The total cost for the plant is expected to be $20.2 million.

The biorefinery will be built on land owned by the Port of Morrow, one of the largest ports in Oregon. It is located near large organic and traditional farms and is home to 10 major food producers.

Daily, the plant is expected to generate 3.8 million cubic feet of renewable natural gas, 350 gallons of liquid fertilizer, and 11.2 tons of material that can improve soil physically or chemically to make it more suitable for plant growth.

The plant will return approximately 172,000 gallons of treated water to the Port of Morrow daily.

Since the start of the Obama Administration, USDA has invested $765 million in nine biorefineries that have produced 150.1 million gallons of advanced biofuels. USDA has financed projects in Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina and Oregon. Additionally, since the beginning of the Administration, USDA Rural Development has invested nearly $24 million in 413 renewable energy projects in Oregon.

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