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Columbia Pacific Bio-Refinery to restart ethanol production

2 July 2012

US-based Columbia Pacific Bio-Refinery (CPBR) is planning to recommence ethanol production in October 2012, according to a company official.

"Built by contractor JH Kelly, the $200m plant can manufacture 120 million gallons of ethanol a year."

The Oregon plant was originally scheduled to begin operations in February 2012 but the start of production was delayed due to rising corn prices and a declining market for ethanol, leading to the laying off of nearly 50 of the company's 70 employees.

The plant operated for six months in 2008-2009 before shutting down.

The expiration of a 30 year-old federal ethanol tax credit in 2011 has also contributed to the delay.

Dan Luckett, Columbia Pacific Bio-Refinery general manager, told the Associated Press that most plants are at best breaking even or losing money.

"[National] analysts believe the fourth quarter will turn out well. We're hoping to start up around October," Luckett added.

The plant's main focus will be to maintain its facility while making minor upgrades.

Built by contractor JH Kelly, the $200m plant can manufacture 120 million gallons of ethanol a year.