Four injured in US biofuels plant explosion and fire
04 September 2015
Four people were injured on September 3 after an explosion and fire at the Renewable Energy Group biofuels refinery in Geismar, Louisiana. Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office said the incident was caused by a hydrogen release from a pipe. Two of the injured are said to be in a serious condition. The plant was being brought back into production when the incident occurred.
In early April, another fire broke out injuring two, after which the plant was closed for several months. At the time, the Company said it would incorporate a one-month maintenance shutdown that was previously scheduled for this summer to bring filtration and other upgrades online during the restoration time period.
Last summer, REG said it would invest $15 million to bring the Geismar plant back online following its purchase from Syntroleum and Tyson Foods.
Part of those costs were related to re-commissioning but funds will also be used to expand the 75 million gallon facility’s feedstock capacity beyond the current animal fats used. It is estimated that purchasing the plant, including buying Syntroleum, cost REG up to $110 million.