Verbio to commission Iowa biomethane project in fall 2021

By Erin Voegele | February 01, 2021

German bioenergy producer Verbio Vereinigte BioEnergie AG confirmed on Jan. 29 that its straw-to-biomethane facility under development at the site of Dupont’s former cellulosic ethanol plant in Nevada, Iowa, is expected to begin operations this fall.

The announcement was made in a press released issued by the company regarding its annual general meeting on the 2019-’20 financial year, which ended June 30. In a statement issued in September 2020, Verbio noted the project experienced construction delays related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Verbio reached an agreement to buy the former cellulosic ethanol plant from DuPont in late 2018. At that time, the company said it intended to install facilities to produce renewable natural gas (RNG) made from corn stover and other cellulosic crops residues at the site. A similar straw-to-RNG project is under development in India.

“The market conditions for our expansion projects in Asia and North America are extremely positive,” said Claus Sauter, CEO of Verbio, in the company’s Jan. 28 statement. “On the one hand, the Indian government is promoting the expansion of gas mobility as a cheap alternative to expensive fossil fuels in the country. On the other hand, it urgently needs and wants to contain the problem of massive air pollution caused by the large-scale burning of waste straw in the fields. Our straw biomethane technology is so far the only concrete answer to both challenges.”

According to Verbio, the climate goals being pursued by the Biden Administration will create a positive framework for the rollout of its straw technology.