Thursday, July 19, 2007
Michael Shore, MEDC
Mascoma to invest here, partner with MSU, Michigan Tech
Unlike most current biofuel production operations, Mascoma's Michigan cellulosic plant will make ethanol from mainly wood chips and other non-food agricultural crops. Most of the nation's biofuel facilities now in production, or under construction, convert corn and other food crops into fuel. Because cellulosic ethanol production uses non-food agricultural feedstock, it is critical to producing ethanol on a scale that could substitute for imported oil.
Since becoming governor, Granholm has been a vocal proponent of growing an alternative energy and alternative fuel industry in Michigan for both economic and environmental reasons. She has noted that research shows that ethanol made from cellulose could reduce global warming pollution as much as 88 percent compared to a gallon of gasoline (source: Natural Resources Defense Council).
Mascoma chose Michigan for the new plant based on the abundance of forestry and agricultural materials and the expertise found at Michigan State University and Michigan Technological University who will partner with Mascoma on the project to develop and hone scientific processes and Michigan feedstocks for cellulosic ethanol production.