Panda Ethanol’s planned Sherman County, Texas, ethanol plant will utilize biomass gasification to generate the steam used in the ethanol manufacturing process.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality granted an air permit for Panda Ethanol Inc.’s planned 115 million gal/year ethanol refinery in Sherman County, Texas. The facility will be designed to annually refine an estimated 38 million bushels of feedstock-grade corn into a clean-burning, renewable fuel. The biofuel produced by the Sherman plant could displace approximately 2.6 million barrels of foreign oil a year.

Unlike ethanol facilities that burn natural gas to generate the steam used in the ethanol manufacturing process, the Sherman facility will be engineered to gasify up to 1 billion pounds of cattle manure per year. By using biogas to fuel the plant, Panda is both conserving the energy equivalent of 1,000 barrels of oil a day and helping to address a significant environmental problem for the Texas panhandle.

The Sherman facility is the fifth 115 million gal/year ethanol project announced by Panda to receive air permits. Panda’s Sherman refinery will be located on a 1,200 acre site three miles northwest of Stratford, Texas, providing construction financing needs, regulatory approvals and other conditions are met.