BEAUFORT COUNTY, N.C. -- Agri-Ethanol Products LLC has announced Phase I of a $150 million ethanol plant to be located in Beaufort County, North Carolina, near Aurora.

The plant will produce 114 million gallons of ethanol per year, as well as co-products consisting of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and CO2. This will be the first ethanol plant in North Carolina and the first on the East Coast of the United States.

The ethanol production will be delivered in each of two, 57 million gallon per year phases, with the co-products output doubling accordingly. Phase I ground breaking and construction start-up is expected during the first quarter of '06. Approximately $2 million will be used through various grant sources from the State for rail improvements critical to the operation of the plant.

Dave Brady, managing member, thanked North Carolina officials for the state and local assistance that is making the plant possible.

Brady said there will be 74 people involved in the ethanol and CO2 production at the site, with several hundred more jobs related to indirect employment such as delivery of grain, shipment of ethanol and the distribution of the DDGS and CO2.

AEP's plant will consume more than 20 million bushels of grain per year for each phase and can use corn or grain sorghum interchangeably. An additional crop -- hull-less barley -- is expected to be integrated into the operation of the facility at some date in the future, as will bio-diesel production.

Agri-Ethanol Products LLC is an energy development group focused on bringing about positive use of renewable resources through the use of ethanol products. The Beaufort County facility is the first of three planned renewable fuel ethanol plants.

SOURCE: Agri-Ethanol Products LLC via PRWEB and PR Newswire.