Press Releases

POET welcomes final USDA rule that will help launch the biomass market for cellulosic ethanol

POET to pursue BCAP certification for three ethanol plants

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Custom balers gather corn cobs and light stover on a farm near Emmetsburg, Iowa for use by Project LIBERTY.

POET welcomed finalization of rules for the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP), saying it will help launch the biomass market near the site of their planned cellulosic ethanol plant. The final rule was announced in a speech by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.

“The 85 farmers we have contracted with to deliver 56,000 tons of biomass this fall are nearly finished harvesting, so the final BCAP rule comes not a day too soon,” said Jim Sturdevant, Director of Project LIBERTY for POET. “We will now apply for our cellulosic ethanol plant to become an approved Biomass Conversion Facility (BCF) so that local farmers can become eligible for matching payments for the biomass they will soon deliver.

POET is in the midst of the world’s largest commercial harvest of biomass for cellulosic ethanol. Farmers around Emmetsburg, Iowa are baling corn cobs and light stover for delivery to POET. In order to store the bales, POET recently completed construction of a multi-million dollar stack yard next to where the first commercial cellulosic ethanol plant will be built.

“For several years, we have been working with university researchers, government agencies, farmers and agricultural equipment manufacturers to develop a system of harvesting, transporting and storing corn cobs and light stover,” Sturdevant added. “While we have made tremendous progress, the matching payments from BCAP help motivate the first farmers to adopt these new practices.”

The commercial cellulosic ethanol plant in Emmetsburg is one of three POET plants that will apply for BCAP certification along with:
1. A pilot plant in Scotland, S.D. that has been producing cellulosic ethanol since 2008.
2. POET Biorefining – Chancellor, which burns waste wood in a solid waste fuel boiler, generating energy to power the 105 mgpy corn ethanol plant.

For more information about POET's work in cellulosic ethanol, check out our new expanded cellulosic ethanol content at or visit our cellulosic ethanol blog at

About POET
POET, the largest ethanol producer in the world, is a leader in biorefining through its efficient, vertically integrated approach to production. The 23-year-old company has a production capacitiy of more than 1.7 billion gallons of ethanol and 9 billion pounds of high-protein animal feed annually from 27 production facilities nationwide. POET also operates a pilot-scale cellulosic ethanol plant, which uses corn cobs as feedstock, and will commercialize the process in Emmetsburg, Iowa. For more information, visit

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