New Energy Investors aims for nothing less than market leadership in biomass refining while delivering a 20+ percent return to our investors. Our vision is producing the new generation of green automotive fuel and renewable baseload electric power, starting right here in the United States and proliferating projects throughout North, Central, and South America.
In the U.S., there are three primary market drivers. First, the federal demand for cellulosic ethanol, which is mandated by the Clean Air Act and the Renewable Fuel Standard. The RFS total biofuels target for 2022 is a minimum of 36 billion gallons annually, of which 16 billion gallons is cellulosic biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol.
What’s it take? About 600 biomass refineries dotting the corn and wheat belts, each with the capacity of our present commercial model. 16 billion gallons will about double the amount of ethanol in gasoline, taking another 10% market share from the oil industry. And it’s just a start.
More important, the nation will double the environment gains already made by ethanol and assure cleaner air and water. The new industry will also create or support an estimated 400,000 jobs, a robust contribution to economic vitality.
The second driver is state demand for low-carbon transportation fuel. Our ability to comply with California air-quality standards, the most stringent in the nation, adds value to our refinery products.
The third market driver is federal and state requirements that the power industry must dramatically reduce CO2 emissions, by at least 30%. Those 600 biomass refineries can produce enough renewable lignin as a co-product for 27,000 MW of green electricity. 100% lignin-powered plants will be built and/or lignin can be co-fired with coal to bring old power plants into compliance until cleaner new facilities can replace them.
We expect the gradual then rapid expansion of biomass refineries over 20 years, a growth pattern that typified the grain-ethanol industry. Even before the U.S. tipping point, refining biomass will prove an attractive alternative to fossil fuels in South and Central America, particularly with feedstocks such as sugar bagasse—ideal for cellulosic ethanol production.
It is impossible to gauge how large the financial rewards will be. We know the personal satisfaction will be incalculable.
Steve Jobs once said he’d like to make a dent in the universe. We’d like to repair a few dents and have that as a legacy.
What will yours be?