Axiom Energy holds groundbreaking for Texas plant

By | March 01, 2006
Axiom Energy Ltd. of Australia is bringing large-scale biodiesel production to the United States through an agreement with the Safer Energy Group. In February, the companies celebrated the groundbreaking of Axiom Fuels in Conroe, Texas.

The 40 MMgy plant will be located adjacent to existing biodiesel plant Safe Fuels Inc., which is also being upgraded through an Axiom Energy venture. The expansion from 12 MMgy to 20 MMgy will result in a combined capacity of 60 MMgy, making the Houston suburb home to one of the country's largest biodiesel production sites.

The Axiom Fuels facility will be constructed using Safer Energy technology to produce ASTM and Euro standard biodiesel. According to Michael Everton, marketing vice president, soy-oil-based biodiesel will be produced for export to the European Union. A smaller percentage of the output will be tallow-based biodiesel for local consumption.

Everton cited proximity to rail as a primary factor in locating Axiom Fuels. A rail extension will allow 1 million gallons of feedstock to be unloaded at each shipment. The Safe Fuels plant will also access the rail after upgrade completion in April. It will continue to use soy oil for feedstock.

Axiom Energy is familiar with this scale of biodiesel production. While the biodiesel industry is just taking off in the United States, Axiom Energy Managing Director David Vinson said there are six plants under construction in Australia that will produce 40 MMgy each, not counting two additional projects Axiom Energy is developing (see BIObytes, page 16).
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