Commercial production of ethanol in the San Luis Valley, Colorado. Final Report Page: 85 of 222
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Table 3-7 depicts the craft mix for chemical plant construction. As
discussed in Section 220.127.116.11 of this report, the San Luis Valley historically has experi-
enced a higher rate of unemployment than the State of Colorado as a whole. Perhaps at
least a portion of the labor force needed to construct the proposed ethanol plant will be
recruited from the available labor pool, causing a positive impact on the community.
Production of fuel grade ethanol involves the following steps:
1. initial processing
4. distillation and dehydration
5. by-product recovery
In addition, for the project discussed in this study, geothermal fluid will
be produced for direct heat use. The following discussion describes how the proposed
plant may affect air and water quality, solid wate disposal, noise levels, traffic,
employment, community services and visual resources.
18.104.22.168.1 Air Quality
Oak Ridge National Laboratory recently completed a study for the
Department of Energy on the impacts a commercial scale ethanol plant might have on
the environment. Table 3-8, reprinted from that study, indicates the estimated major
atmospheric affluents from a 60 million liters/year (15.85 million gallons/year) alcohol
plant using various feedstocks and fuel combustion sources.
a. Initial Processing
The proposed San Luis Valley plant will process potatoes and
various grains. Dust and dirt will be generated during unloading of potatoes and pre-
paring them for washing.
The primary air emission during grain processing will be par-
ticulates. The Oak Ridge Report estimated that a 60 million liters/year (15.85 million
gallons/year) alcohol plant (Model Plant) will generate 49.4 kilograms per hour (431 tons
per year) of particulates or dust during the process of dry-milling corn (Oak Ridge
National Laboratory, June 1981). This estimate is based on the assumption that the
ethanol producer will use best available control technology.
The Colorado Department of Health gave initial approval for an
Emission Permit for the Colorado Agro-Energy, Inc. to operate a 1.5 million gallon per
year ethanol plant in the San Luis Valley, Colorado. The permit specifies:
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Hewlett, E.M.; Erickson, M.V.; Ferguson, C.D.; Sherwood, P.B.; Boswell, B.S.; Walter, K.M. et al. Commercial production of ethanol in the San Luis Valley, Colorado. Final Report, report, July 1, 1983; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc874948/m1/85/: accessed August 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.