Dynamic Fuels selects renewable diesel site

By Susanne Retka Schill
Dynamic Fuels LLC will build its first synthetic diesel plant in Geismer, La., on a site owned by Lion Copolymer LLC that once housed a methanol plant. Dynamic Fuels, a joint venture between Syntroleum Corp. and Tyson Foods Inc., is behind the $135 million, 75 MMgy facility that aims to start producing renewable diesel and jet fuel in 2010. The site is near two sources of hydrogen, a key ingredient of the production process, and includes rail access.

Dynamic Fuels plans to construct additional renewable synthetic fuel facilities. Syntroleum would provide its Biofining technology to convert animal fat and vegetable oil feedstocks into middle distillate products, and Tyson would provide the feedstocks. The plans include adding Syntroleum's Fischer-Tropsch technology to the front end of the production process in order to convert biomass into renewable synthetic fuels.

A few days after announcing the Geismer site in November, Syntroleum announced that it had realigned its management team, restructured the organization and secured a portion of the financing for the joint venture. In management changes, Chief Executive Officer Jack Holmes announced his retirement, effective Dec. 28, 2007. He was replaced by Edward Roth, who previously served as president and chief operating officer. Founder Ken Agee also announced his retirement from the company, where he served as chairman of the board and chief research officer. At press time, he was negotiating to purchase certain research and laboratory facilities from the company. Board member Robert Rosene was elected nonexecutive chairman to replace Agee.

In November, Syntroleum also announced an agreement with an affiliate of Fletcher Asset Management for $12 million in investments over two years. Wm Smith and Co., based in Denver, Colo., acted as placement agent.