Fifteen projects across North Carolina will receive grants totaling $2.5 million from the Biofuels Center of North Carolina as part of its effort to “jump start” the state’s biofuels industry.

.“North Carolina imports 5.6 billion gallons of liquid fuels annually,” said John Ganzi, the center’s president, in announcing the grants. “These proposals put North Carolina on the path to reducing its dependency on foreign oil and liquid fuel imports”.

Applications representing 75 projects seeking grants and loans of nearly $13 million were reviewed before the grants were rewarded. The Biofuels Center, which was created and funded by the N.C. General Assembly, is tasked with helping grow the state’s alternative fuels sector.

The grants and amounts:

• $250,000 ~ Building a Bio-Refinery ~ Piedmont Biofuels Industrial LLC

• $197,033 ~ Development and Evaluation of reduced input planting, harvest, storage system strategies for economic production of biofuels from Industrial Sweetpotatoes ~ NCSU – SPARCS

• $250,000 ~ Blue Ridge Biofuels Biodiesel Production Expansion Project ~ Blue Ridge Biofuels, LLC

• $195,000 ~ Biofuels Production Laboratory Equipment Funding ~ Central Carolina Community College

• $135,845 ~ Haywood County Biofuels PET Project ~Haywood Community College Foundation

• $200,000 ~ The Abell Foundation Commercialization-Focused Woody Biomass Gasification Project utilizing NC Pilot Plant ~ The Abell Foundation, Inc.

• $27,314 ~ Renewable Fuels Program ~ Washington High School

• $22,000 ~ NC Biofuels LLC Site Development ~ North Carolina’s Northeast Economic Development Foundation, Inc.

• $200,000 ~High-Value Transportation Fuels from NC Feedstocks ~ NCSU

• $200,000 ~Expansion of the Carbon to Liquids Development Center in Durham, NC – Enabling Development & Commercialization of New Biomass to Fuels Technologies for NC ~ Southern Research Institute

• $138,688 ~ Developing Dekkera bruxellensis for bio-ethanol production ~NCSU

• $198,178 ~ Producing Ethanol from Biomass by Extracting value Prior to Combustion ~ NCSU

• $187,700 ~ Bioenergy Plantations: technical economic study to establish feasibility of affordable, abundant, renewable biomass selected for efficient conversion to transportation fuels and power for NC ~ NCSU

• $148,800 ~ STARworks Biofuels ~ Yadkin-PeeDee Lakes Project, Inc. doing business as Central Park NC

• $199,733 ~ Growing Duckweed on Swine Wastewater for Ethanol Production ~ NCSU