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Gate planning $90M biofuels terminal


Jacksonville Business Journal

a 55 million-gallon liquid biofuels terminal in Jacksonville.

The terminal is expected to cost $90 million and will be the first in the state designed primarily for biofuels. It will receive and ship ethanol and biodiesel via rail, ship and truck and provide storage for Gate and for third parties. Gate will build the terminal on 160 acres off Heckscher Drive.

Gate Biofuels President Buzz Hoover said the company hopes to file permits for the terminal in January, break ground in the fall of 2008 and open the terminal in late summer 2010.

Once the terminal is complete Gate will switch from selling gasoline at its Jacksonville-area stores to selling E10, a blend of 90 percent gasoline and 10 percent ethanol.

"The demand [for ethanol] effectively is the demand for gasoline," Hoover said. "As far as the consumer reaction to ethanol, it's been very positive."

In October 2006 Gate scrapped plans to build a $160 million ethanol manufacturing plant in White Springs, citing an escalation in construction costs. Hoover said the price of ethanol fluctuates and Gate is more comfortable building a storage facility and buying ethanol.

"You're better off being a buyer of ethanol than a maker of ethanol," he said.


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