Corn Ethanol Plant Celebrates Groundbreaking

By Staff | September 23, 2013

A new corn ethanol plant is under construction in North Dakota. The project is the first U.S. corn-ethanol plant to break ground in five years. 

The 65 MMgy Dakota Spirit AgEnergy LLC plant is being built adjacent to Great River Energy’s Spiritwood Station power plant in Spiritwood, N.D., a town located in the southeast portion of the state. The $155 million project is spearheaded by the Midwest AgEnergy Group, owned by Great River Energy. The group also owns the 65 MMgy Blue Flint Ethanol plant near Underwood, N.D., which is similarly collocated with a power plant.

Spiritwood Station will provide process steam to the biorefinery. The combined-heat-and-power configuration is necessary for the plant’s ethanol production to meet the 20 percent greenhouse gas reduction threshold required for all new corn ethanol plants under the renewable fuels standard.

The plant is expected to take in 23 million bushels of corn as feedstock annually. In addition to ethanol, the biorefinery will produce an estimated 6,900 tons of corn oil and 198,000 tons of distillers grains.