• Ron Kotrba

Renewable diesel project developer GCEH provides preliminary Q2 financials, camelina update


camelina, renewable diesel feedstock, HVO feedstock
GCEH 2021 Montana camelina harvesting (Photo: Business Wire)

Global Clean Energy Holdings Inc., the project developer retrofitting a petroleum refinery in Bakersfield, California, into a renewable diesel plant scaled at 230 million gallons a year, provided preliminary financials for the second quarter as well as an update on camelina development by its subsidiary Sustainable Oils Inc.

The company is estimating a net loss of $12 million to $15 million, which it said is “in line with expectations.”

GCEH reported it had approximately $65 million of cash and deposits (advances), $46 million of which, once used, will be recorded as long-term assets since they are expected to be spent this year on the Bakersfield biorefinery. The company said it has drawn approximately $245 million of the $385 million credit available, about $205 million of which “has been incurred as of June 30 for the purchase and retooling of the refinery, operational cost, general and administrative expenses, and interest payments.”

According to GCEH, its wholly owned subsidiary Sustainable Oils has produced enough seed of its proprietary camelina varieties to plant more than 275,000 acres of camelina, the oil from which will be used for renewable diesel. It also announced that its SO-50 patented camelina seed variety was planted by more than 50 large farmers in Montana, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Kansas and Colorado. In drought-stricken Montana, the acres are yielding a viable camelina crop where other crops, such as wheat, lentils and peas, failed to survive this year’s particularly hot and dry conditions.

“Our growers in Montana have had to deal with an extreme weather situation thus far this year,” said Mike Karst, vice president of Sustainable Oils. “However, we have not lost any camelina fields to the drought, and while the camelina yields may average somewhat below normal year expectations, we are demonstrating to our growers and the agricultural community the high drought-tolerance, sturdiness and overall economic viability of our camelina varieties.”

Richard Palmer, CEO and founder of GCEH, said the company continues to devote resources to building a strong intellectual property position. “And our recent acquisition of Agribody Technologies adds numerous patents and technical knowledge to our expanding portfolio,” he said. “Our years of investment in improving the crop is now being witnessed firsthand by our growers in several states, and we believe this positions the company for significant expansion of camelina acreage over the next several years. Additionally, we expect to begin developing our midstream grain aggregation centers later this year, which will allow us to handle the expected increased volumes of grain in 2022 and beyond.”

GCEH still plans to complete its Bakersfield renewable diesel project early next year.

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