US chemicals group DuPont (NYSE:DD) on Friday cut the ribbon on its cellulosic ethanol plant in Nevada, Iowa.
The biorefinery, the world's largest cellulosic ethanol facility, will be able to produce 30 million gallons (113.6 million litres) of fuel annually from corn stover, or the stalks, leaves and cobs left in a field after harvest, the company said. It will use 375,000 dry tonnes of stover a year, which will be sourced from about 500 local farmers.
Most of the fuel produced will go to California to fulfil the state's Low Carbon Fuel Standard. The facility also will serve as a commercial-scale demonstration of the technology.
DuPont said that biomass-based businesses could create opportunities for rural economies around the world and that as a company present in more than 90 countries it was well placed for a global roll-out of its cellulosic technology. DuPont recently unveiled its first licensing agreement with New Tianlong Industry to build China's biggest cellulosic ethanol plant.