Abengoa honored with ‘Edie award' in Illinois

By Holly Jessen | May 21, 2010
Posted May 21, 2010

The Abengoa ethanol plant that started up early this year is one of six Illinois companies awarded an Economic Development in Illinois Award—better known as an Edie Award. The company invested $256 million to build an 88 MMgy corn ethanol plant in the Tri-City Port District in Madison, Ill.

The annual Edie award is passed out yearly by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the Illinois Development Council (IDC) to recognize significant economic development projects finished in the last year throughout Illinois. "Even in times of economic turmoil, companies are out there investing in our state and creating jobs," said Doug Whitley, president and CEO of the state chamber. "The Chamber is proud to be working with the Illinois Development Council to recognize some of the exciting developments that were completed across the state."

The state chamber and development council want to showcase business accomplishments, especially those that mean more jobs, a larger tax base and a boost to the state economy. "These companies and the local economic development teams are in the trenches across the state, creating jobs and investing in our communities," said Ed Sitar, chairman of the IDC. "These successful projects are too often overlooked and we wanted to take a moment and reinforce the notion that economic development like this is central to keeping our state vibrant and healthy."

Abengoa Bioenergy of Illinois is one of two corn-ethanol plants the company completed construction on in the last year, including its plant in Mt. Vernon, Ind. In all, the company owns and operates six ethanol plants with a combined capacity of 374 MMgy. The other four plants are: Portales, New Mexico, a sorghum plant, Colwich, Kan., a corn and sorghum plant, and two more corn only plants in York, Neb., and Ravenna, Neb.

The other five Edie Award winners include: Ascent, which built a data center; the Economic Development Director's Office, Greenville, which attracted companies in an economic downturn; Prince Agri Products, an animal feed company; S &C Electric; Winergy Drive Systems, a wind turbine drive manufacturer, and Siemens Drive Technologies, which expanded a wind turbine manufacturing plant. There are up to 15 Edie Award categories based on geography and development type: manufacturing, commercial, energy, technology and transportation/distribution. Nominations are taken and an awards committee makes the final selections.