Biofuel crop getting underway

Published 10:09 am Monday, May 18, 2009

SOUTH SHORE, Ky. (AP) — An biofuel company is hoping a new alternative crop will help wean the nation off its dependency on foreign oil.

Midwestern Biofuels unveiled its eastern Kentucky operation earlier last week. Gov. Steve Beshear helped plant the first seedlings of miscanthus at the company’s base in South Shore along the Ohio River.

Miscanthus is a perennial grass native to Asia and Africa. The grass will eventually be turned into energy pellets. The pellets will then be used by coal-fired electricity generating plants as a source of low-emissions fuel.

Email newsletter signup

The company is planting about 800 acres of miscanthus across the area and hopes local farmers will also join the cause.

Beshear said the plant is a natural fit for the area and praised the way it will continue the state’s agriculture and manufacturing traditions.