August 19, 2010
LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today joined company and local officials in Alpena to celebrate the launch of American Process Incorporated's (API) waste-to-cellulosic ethanol clean energy project, which will create 58 jobs (20 direct) and 80 construction jobs. API is one of Michigan's bioenergy Centers of Energy Excellence (COEE).
"Businesses across the state are making significant investments that will diversify our economy and create job opportunities in clean energy sectors like biofuels, solar, wind and advanced batteries," Granholm said. "Projects like this one are helping Michigan become the clean energy manufacturing capital of the world."
In November 2008, API, in partnership with San Antonio's Valero Energy Corporation, received $4 million from the COEE program to establish a pilot scale biorefinery at the Decorative Panels International hardwood plant in Alpena. The biorefinery will convert the process waste effluent from the plant into cellulosic ethanol, sodium acetate and clean, warm water. The project has potential to be replicated across the state in other biorefineries, pulp and paper mills, and food and agricultural processing plants. Michigan Technical University will contribute research to improve fermentation processes and also on the use of sodium acetate for novel de-icing applications.
The $4 million in COEE funding to API helped secure a U.S. Department of Energy grant for $17.9 million. API has invested $10 million in the project and estimates that replication across Michigan in existing industries alone could create annual economic value of $200 million within 10 years.
Because of projects like API's, Michigan was recently ranked third in the country by Business Facilities magazine as a leader in clean energy.
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