Project will use algae in biodiesel

Algae Bioenergy Solutions LLC is on track to start its algae biofuel production in early July.

According to Chuck Pardue, the president of the parent company Green Valley Biofuels, the algae project will open July 15 at its facility on Dixon Airline Road.

"It's an excellent location for us, near several modes of transportation," he said.

The algae will be shipped to Green Valley Biofuels, which produces biodiesel, and currently uses soybean oil as feedstock. Pardue said the algae grown at the Dixon Airline Road facility will replace the soybean oil completely over the coming years.

The idea has been in the works since 2007, he said.

"Our initial funding is here, and we're excited," he said.

The algae is grown in a modular system, which the company will expand and build on as funding is raised.

For the July opening, the facility will have one 1,000-square-foot module and a laboratory. The company will employ 10 to 12 people to start but plans to hire more than 200 over the next two years.

"We certainly have enough funding to get started, but we're also looking forward to growing over the next few years," Pardue said.

Algae Bioenergy Solutions works closely with Pennsylvania-based BARD Holding Inc., which is managing the technical side of the venture.

BARD is hiring the microbiologists and lab technicians, and Pardue said almost all of those positions have been filled.

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