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Illinois Construction Jobs Created by Ethanol Plant

Posted on November 17, 2008

The construction of an ethanol plant could create many Illinois construction jobs, as well as some other permanent jobs.

The State of Illinois recently announced that Illinois River Energy, LLC has received a $4 million Renewable Fuels Development grant through the state’s Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity to help build a new ethanol production facility in Northern Illinois. The company, which is based in Ogle County, estimates the facility will cost more than $120 million to build and will create 120 construction jobs and 40 permanent jobs, as well as support the state’s drive for energy independence.

“By investing in ethanol and other renewable fuels, we are increasing our energy independence, creating jobs and helping to secure Illinois’ future,” Governor Rod R. Blagojevich said in a press release. “This new ethanol plant represents the next generation of ethanol production in Illinois – using less energy while producing less carbon emissions – and will be one of the cleanest and most efficient facilities in the country.”

The ethanol facility, slated to be located adjacent to the company’s existing 50 million gallon per year ethanol facility, also will create 50 million gallons of ethanol per year. The facility will use about 18 million bushelf of corn each year, and will incorporate the latest energy conservation technologies and efficiencies to help reduce emissions, energy consumption and ethanol production costs. The plant should open by September 2009.

“IRE is committed to demonstrating the potential of these innovative technologies in our plant by creating a showcase facility, with the very best available operating practices and products, that will allow the industry to benefit from our adoption and learning,” CEO Rich Ruebe said in the release. “We are very grateful for the support from the Governor and his staff, as well as the AFL-CIO in helping to get our plant built and the Illinois Corn Growers for their continued commitment.”

The Renewable Fuels Development Program was established in June 2003 under the Renewable Fuels Development Act (Public Act 93-0015). The program is designed to increase the production of ethanol and biodiesel fuels in Illinois and expand the market and demand for Illinois agricultural products.

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