by Lance Turner
Posted 10/29/2013 03:09 pm
Updated 10 months ago
Legislators and others got their first look Tuesday at a $27,000, refrigerator-sized biorefinery that converts camelina, a wheat-like crop, into bio-fuel.
Arkansas Business wrote about the refinery two weeks ago. The device is owned by alt.Consulting of West Memphis and leased to local entrepreneur Johnny Davis. It's based on a prototype housed at Mid-South Community College in West Memphis.
The hope is that the refinery can produce an estimated 1 million gallons of fuel per year, which would have a $1.3 million yearly economic impact for camelina farmers and an additional $750,000 for other businesses involved.
Camelina is a winter crop, meaning farmers in the region can grow it in their off-season.
Arkansas State University in Jonesboro also has a biorefinery, a larger version, which it uses to power some of its equipment.
On Wednesdsay, officials showed off the DeWitt refinery for the first time, including to members of the Legislature's Joint Energy Committee. Rep. Stephens Meeks, R-Greenbrier, was there, and kindly provided the photo you see here.
Update: KATV-TV, Channel 7, filed this report on the refinery below: