DALLAS -- Panda Ethanol Inc. intends to build a 100-million-gallon-per-year ethanol plant in Sherman County, Texas.



The facility will annually refine approximately 40 million bushels of corn and milo into a clean-burning, renewable fuel for the nation's transportation needs.



The Sherman plant will generate the steam used in the ethanol manufacturing process by gasifying more than 1 billion pounds of cattle manure a year. Once complete, it will be one of the most fuel efficient ethanol refineries in the nation and equal in size to Panda's Hereford facility which is the largest biomass-fueled ethanol plant in the United States.



The Sherman facility is the fourth 100-million-gallon ethanol project announced by Panda, and the third to be powered by cattle manure.



"This plant will significantly expand our ethanol production portfolio, strengthen the economy of the Texas Panhandle and enhance our nation's energy independence," said Todd Carter, chief executive officer of Panda Ethanol. "We are excited by the community's support for this project and look forward to working with state and local officials in seeing it through to completion."



"This facility will be an economic boon to the area" added Kathy Allen, executive director of the Sherman County Development Committee. "It will create an estimated 61 skilled jobs and 77 additional support jobs. All together, the construction and ongoing operation of the plant is expected to infuse more than $220 million into the area's economy over the next 10 years."



Panda's Sherman refinery will be located on a 1,200-acre site three miles northwest of Stratford, Texas. Construction will take approximately 18 months. The completion date is dependent upon financing, regulatory approvals and other conditions. Panda has submitted its request for an air permit with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.



Panda Ethanol previously announced that it successfully completed the debt and equity financing on its 100-million-gallon-ethanol plant in Hereford, Texas. The company has begun facility construction on the 380-acre site and anticipates ethanol production to commence in the second half of 2007.



The company also announced that it has entered into a merger agreement with Cirracor, a publicly-held corporation which trades over the counter. The merger is currently expected to become effective in the fourth quarter of 2006, subject to the satisfaction of certain requirements, and the combined entity will operate under the name of Panda Ethanol Inc.



Panda Ethanol is headquartered in Dallas and developing fuel ethanol refineries and biomass facilities in the United States. Panda Ethanol's largest single shareholder is Panda Energy International Inc., a privately-held company which has built over 9,000 MW of electric generation capacity at a cost of $5 billion.



SOURCE Panda Ethanol Inc. via PR Newswire.