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  • Writer's pictureRon Kotrba

Chevron REG to close Ralston, Iowa, biodiesel production facility

The Chevron REG plant in Ralston, Iowa, was built in the 1990s as a 2 mgy batch facility. It was the first biodiesel plant operating in Iowa and one of the first in the U.S. In 2018, the site was expanded to produce 30 mgy. (Photo: Chevron REG)

Chevron Renewable Energy Group is closing its biodiesel manufacturing facility in Ralston, Iowa, indefinitely.

 





In a statement provided to Biobased Diesel Daily®, the company confirmed the difficult decision was due to “poor market conditions.”

 





“This was not an easy decision, and we will support our employees during this difficult time,” Chevron REG stated.






“We remain committed to our belief that the future of energy is lower carbon and advocate for supportive policy that will enable growth of the biofuels sector,” the company added.

 





Chevron REG is also closing its biodiesel plant in DeForest, Wisconsin, Biobased Diesel Daily® reported March 1.

 





The Ralston site was one of the first biodiesel production facilities in the U.S. and the first biodiesel plant in Iowa.






It was established as a 2-million-gallon-per-year (mgy) batch facility in 1996 by Ralston, Iowa-based West Central Cooperative and Interchem.

 





After Interchem went out of business in the late 1990s, West Central Coop reconfigured and expanded the facility in the early 2000s to a continuous-flow 12 mgy biodiesel plant.

 





West Central Coop formed Renewable Energy Group LLC in 2003.

 





In 2006, Renewable Energy Group Inc. was born.

 





The Ralston facility was further expanded to 30 mgy in 2018, a project that cost $32 million.

 





Two years ago, in late February 2022, Chevron announced its plans to acquire REG—including its 10 biodiesel plants in the U.S. and Europe and one renewable diesel facility undergoing expansion in Louisiana—in an all-cash deal worth $3.15 billion.

 





The acquisition was completed in June 2022.

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