Renewable Energy Group marks $13.2 million investment into Newton plant

Source: by Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register • Posted: Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Renewable Energy Group marked its $13.2 million investment today into its Newton biodiesel plant, a move that’s expected to expand the raw materials that can be used and improve the quality of the fuel produced.

“This investment shows our continuing confidence in biodiesel for the long-term,” said Daniel Oh, the Ames-based company’s CEO. “It furthers our efforts to enhance our lower-cost, multi-feedstock biodiesel business by continuing to broaden our customer base and provide more options for our customers to choose from.”

Renewable fuel proponents have been fighting a proposal from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to cut the amount of ethanol and biodiesel that must be blended into the nation’s fuel supply. EPA’s proposal would roll back the fuel requirement in 2014 to 15.2 billion gallons of ethanol and other biofuels, 3 billion gallons less than Congress required in a 2007 law.

The Newton plant’s improvements will remove impurities and leave behind the purest form of the fuel, the company said, adding that the final product exceeds quality standards set by the biodiesel industry.

Renewable Energy Group has eight active refineries in four states that have a combined production capacity of 257 million gallons.