Aemetis, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMTX), an advanced renewable fuels and biochemicals company is off to the races today with shares ballooning on news that the company successfully built and operated an integrated demonstration unit for more than 120 days of continuous operations with 94% uptime, meeting the requirements for a federal USDA 9003 Biorefinery Assistance Program guaranteed loan.
In partnership with its key technology providers InEnTec and LanzaTech, Aemetis successfully optimized the integration of an advanced arc furnace and gas fermentation technologies to convert waste biomass into low carbon, renewable cellulosic ethanol and fish meal. The unit was built at the InEnTec Technology Center in Richland, Washington and demonstrated the fully integrated system, including biomass handling, gassification, gas cleanup, waste treatment and distillation systems.
"The completion of the successful operation of the demonstration unit is the final technology step in securing a USDA loan guarantee for the $158 million cellulosic ethanol plant Aemetis is building in Riverbank, California," said Eric McAfee, Chairman and CEO of Aemetis.
"We believe that the integration of these technologies, and the high yields generated by the unit, demonstrate that Aemetis can successfully produce high value cellulosic ethanol from the 1.6 million tons of waste orchard wood and other renewable feedstocks in the Central Valley. With plans to expand the Riverbank plant and construct additional plants, Aemetis plans to be a leader in supplying California's low carbon fuels mandates."
With a 20-year feedstock supply agreement and a 55-year lease already signed, the 12-million-gallon-per-year Riverbank plant is expected to begin operations in 2019.
Shareholders of AMTX are applauding today’s news with the stock up an impressive 72% at $1.11 in mid-afternoon trading. With today’s strong rally, shares have broken through a substantial downtrend that has been in place since last summer.