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  • Aemetis Inc.

Aemetis receives ‘authority to construct’ air permits for SAF plant in Riverbank, California

Aemetis Inc. announced March 5 receipt of the “authority to construct” (ATC) air permits for its planned sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and renewable diesel production plant in Riverbank, California.


The plant is designed to produce 90 million gallons per year (mgy) when allocating 50 percent to SAF and 50 percent to renewable diesel production, and 78 mgy when allocating 100 percent of production to SAF for the aviation market.


The ATC permits were issued by the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District following an extensive technical review and two public-comment periods. 


In September, Aemetis received approval from the city of Riverbank for the use permit and California Environmental Quality Act review after a separate technical review and public-comment process.


Together, these are the key permits needed for Aemetis to proceed with engineering and financing to construct the plant.


“Building our sustainable aviation fuel business is a high priority to meet rapidly increasing global demand for SAF from airlines,” said Eric McAfee, chairman and CEO of Aemetis. “Achieving this essential permitting milestone is a critical step in advancing the project to financing, procurement and construction. Reflecting the positive environment for replacing petroleum jet fuel with SAF, the $380 billion Inflation Reduction Act includes specific SAF tax credits to support this type of project, and the USDA has provided financing support for other Aemetis renewable fuels projects to enable attractive 20-year guaranteed funding from lenders.”


Richard O’Brien, the mayor of Riverbank, added, “The issuance of the ATC permits for the Aemetis SAF and renewable diesel plant is a significant milestone in the development of the Riverbank Industrial Complex that will help reduce emissions and create hundreds of high-value local and regional jobs. As the lead agency for the CEQA and use permit that was issued last September, the city of Riverbank is pleased to see support from other regional and state agencies to move this project forward. This Aemetis project will invest hundreds of millions of dollars into the local economy, which will benefit the citizens of Riverbank as well as workers and businesses throughout the region. In addition, this project will enhance the air quality in the Central Valley and reduce greenhouse gases.”


The 125-acre Riverbank Industrial Complex has 100 percent renewable hydroelectricity, a rail line and storage for 120 railcars, 710,000 square feet of buildings, and 50 acres of developable industrial land.


An agreement for the lease or sale of the Riverbank Industrial Complex to a subsidiary of Aemetis was signed in December 2021.


Aemetis’ five-year plan projects that its SAF and renewable diesel plant will generate $672 million of revenues with $195 million of adjusted EBITDA in 2027.


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