Community Fuels awarded $4.9 million grant for expansion
Community Fuels was awarded a grant from the California Energy Commission of more than $4.9 million to support the expansion of Community Fuels’ advanced biorefinery at the Port of Stockton, Calif. The grant solicitation was entitled “Commercial Scale Advanced Biofuels Production Facilities” with funding under the Alternative and Renewable Fuel Vehicle Technology Program. The solicitation was designed to provide funding for the development of commercial-scale, California-based biofuels production facilities that can sustainably produce at least 15 MMgy of low carbon transportation fuels.
Notices of proposed awards were announced by CEC on Nov. 7.
“Community Fuels’ biorefinery was specifically designed to allow for multiple phases of expansion,” said Lisa Mortenson, co-founder and CEO of Community Fuels. “This important grant will enable our team to expand our production capabilities to meet the anticipated demand for low carbon fuels expected as a result of the California low carbon fuel standard (LCFS).”
Chris Young, director of operations for Community Fuels, said, “Through years of dedicated effort we successfully commissioned and optimized our biorefinery which has a reputation for producing one of the highest quality biomass-based diesel fuels in the nation. That work will contribute greatly to our ability to install and commission this next phase of expansion. With this new project, we will maintain our focus on quality and compliance.”
“Our initial construction was completed in 2008 and it is gratifying to win this sizable grant to contribute to the next phase of expansion, which was contemplated from the early days of the business,” said William Crooks, who has served as corporate controller since 2006.
“In the initial phase of construction, Community Fuels invested heavily to have a robust, onsite laboratory,” said Steven Sabillon, laboratory manager. “We are the first in the nation to secure both BQ-9000 laboratory and producer certifications. These existing analytical capabilities will be relied upon during the installation and commissioning efforts associated with the expansion.”
“As an active commercial-scale producer, we have a comprehensive environmental, health and safety program in place,” said Patrick Samson, EHS manager. “This strong foundation will allow us to modify existing programs to meet the requirements for construction and ultimate commissioning of the expansion.”
Tammy Martin, procurement and logistics manager, said, “Our site has robust rail and trucking infrastructure along with access to the deepwater shipping channel. These logistical advantages will be leveraged as we work to commission the new installations and increase our throughput volumes.”
American Biodiesel Inc. does business as Community Fuels and is a proven advanced biofuel producer. Its biorefinery, located at the Port of Stockton in California, was built using its proprietary technology and has been in operation since 2008, making it one of the largest continuously operating advanced biorefineries in the Western U.S. Its customers include major oil companies, petroleum refiners and some of the nation’s largest bulk fuel distributors. Its renewable fuel serves as a premium lubricity additive for diesel fuel, helps its customers meet a range of regulatory requirements, and reduces emissions relative to petroleum diesel. As part of its commitment to quality, Community Fuels was the first in the nation to earn both BQ-9000 producer and laboratory certification.