Keokuk, IA – Iowa's former economic development director says the business of renewable fuels is critical to the state's future. Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Mike Blouin, says bio-diesel and ethanol plants have many positive aspects. He says the state should continue to create and provide incentives and tax credits for those who are producing clean alternative fuels. Blouin says too much of a focus has been placed on increasing the required blend of ethanol in gasoline. He says a greater emphasis should be on expanding the opportunities surround E-85 fuel, which is 85% ethanol. Blouin made his comments during a stop at a soon-to-be completed bio-diesel plant in Keokuk.
Meanwhile, Tri-City Energy says its 5,000,000 gallon/year bio-diesel plant, in downtown Keokuk, will be up and running by mid-August. Construction began in early January. The company will employ about 65 people. It is in the process of hiring production line employees. Tri-City Energy plans to start work on a 30,000,000 gallon/year facility, along the Mississippi River, in January.