Glen Stubbe, Star Tribune
Workers at the Ever Cat Isanti plant earlier this month were putting finishing touches on the installation.
Ever Cat Fuels aims to put a dent in the amount of oil we import by turning weeds and algae, among other things, into diesel.
Clayton McNeff, a scientist and iconoclastic entrepreneur, inherited the independent streak from his dad.
Larry McNeff, 70, left giant Cargill three decades ago to start SarTec, his own plant-extract company for the agricultural industry in Anoka. He never planned to change the world with clean fuel made from waste products.
But he's on board at the new flagship plant of Ever Cat Fuels, the first of what his son expects to be hundreds of next-generation, compact biodiesel refineries. “I'm kind of the helper,” said the senior McNeff. “Being involved from the ground floor gave me the insight and confidence that this will work.”
Really great, another family-oriented company, these folks in MN are ready to make biodiesel from just about any source of waste oil. I hope we will see more photos of this advanced new production system. Also covered in this story:
The plant creates fuel without water, chemicals or waste. The new process called “Mcgyan”– named after its inventors — converts fats into fuel within seconds. (CBS)
We’ve heard hardly a peep from BioFuelBox, a 3-year-old biofuel startup backed by Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Element Partners, since it raised its first round of $9.46 million back in 2007. But now the San Jose, Calif.-based quiet company says it’s ready to hit the market in a big way. On Monday BiofuelBox announced it has opened – and begun operating – its first biodiesel refinery, a 1-million-gallon-per-year plant that turns waste grease, oil and fat into low-sulfur biodiesel.
Like the company in our first story, this firm intends to start many other biodiesel plants, since they have a way to reclaim the waste oil out of just about anything, another proprietary process. Many secrets in how companies make their particular style of biodiesel. The press release from BioFuelBox may be found here.
Kinetic Vehicles’ Jack McCormack is Autopia’s kind of guy. A transportation geek from birth (it would seem), he also has a habit of being a constant tinkerer. To make him even more interesting, not only has he been doing interesting engine swaps, an endeavor we’ve been avidly following for a while, he also has a thing for the Lotus Seven, one of the best sportscars ever made. He calls it MAX, short for Mother’s Automotive eXperiment. And the cherry on top is that Jack McCormack is a cheapskate: He made MAX for under $10,000.
One of our people, Jack should send us some more photos to publish. Looks like a fantastic ride. Talk about a low-slung car, this Lotus is barely off the pavement. I wonder if he also makes his own biodiesel.
Image from: http://www.ls9.com/news/
LS9, a company which is using a genetically modified version of e.coli bacteria to make diesel from biomass, on Thursday announced it has raised $25 million in its third round of funding. Chevron Technology Ventures’ venture capital arm, CTTV Investments, participated in the round, making this the latest biofuel project from the big oil company. In 2008, Chevron announced a development deal with algae-based fuel company Solazyme, and has been working on a cellulosic ethanol joint venture, called Catchlight Energy, with forest-product company Weyerhaeuser.
If algae can make oil for biodiesel, why not bacteria? Interesting twist in this article, what do you think of Chevron investing in biodiesel? Do you trust that their heart is really in it? Or to them, maybe oil is oil, any kind.
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