Switchgrass-to-Ethanol Plant Planned for Tennessee
Mascoma Corporation announced on September 27th that it plans to work with the University of Tennessee to build the nation's first facility for converting switchgrass into ethanol. The demonstration facility—to be located in Venore, Tennessee, 35 miles south of Knoxville—will draw on 170 tons per day of switchgrass and other cellulosic biomass to produce 5 million gallons of ethanol per year. The project is on a fast track: the University of Tennessee Board approved the partnership with Mascoma on September 19th, but construction is slated to begin this year and the facility is scheduled to begin operating in 2009. Mascoma already has two other cellulosic ethanol demonstration projects in the works, located in New York and Michigan. See the Mascoma press releases from September 19th (PDF 90.8 KB) and 27th (PDF 55.2 KB). Download Adobe Reader.