Air Products (NYSE: APD), one of the leading U.S. suppliers of liquid CO2, announced Dec. 17 the signing of a long-term agreement for the production of liquid CO2 with Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy LLC (SIRE).
Air Products will build a facility to produce 400 tons per day (tpd) of liquid CO2 at SIRE’s ethanol production facility in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Air Products will market food and beverage-grade liquid CO2 from the new liquid CO2 plant that is expected to begin production in early 2014.
“Following the EPCO acquisition last summer, we have been focusing our attention on expanding our presence in the Midwest and this project helps us in achieving that objective,” said Nelson Squires, vice president and general manager of North American Merchant Gases at Air Products. “This additional supply source will further strengthen our liquid CO2 network and provide enhanced supply reliability to our food and beverage, as well as our industrial bulk gas customers in the Midwest.”
When onstream, the facility will increase the number of Air Products’ liquid CO2 production plants in the U.S. to 13.
“We are excited to expand the portfolio of co-products produced from our 125 million gallon per year ethanol plant through this new agreement,” said Brian Cahill, president and general manager of SIRE. “Ethanol plants are an important source of liquid CO2 in the Midwest, and we look forward to Air Products beginning production at our plant in Council Bluffs and providing the liquid CO2 co-product that will help serve the needs of the many large users in the region.”
In June, Air Products expanded its portfolio of industrial gases offerings in North America by acquiring EPCO Carbon Dioxide Products of Monroe, La. The acquisition made Air Products a more fully-integrated supplier of bulk industrial gases by increasing its competitive offerings.
Liquid CO2, which Air Products already offers in its other geographic regions around the world, is an important product in markets Air Products currently serves with other merchant industrial gases including for food, beverage, chemical, pharmaceutical, oilfield services, and metals fabrication applications.
SIRE, which operates a 125 million gallon ethanol plant, began producing ethanol in February 2009 and sells its ethanol, distillers grains, corn syrup, and corn oil in the continental United States, Mexico and the Pacific Rim.