Patriot Renewable Fuels

Renewable Fuel And Ethanol (E15) Myths

If the goal is to reduce our carbon footprint, it’s a necessity to significantly increase the use of renewable fuels, especially ethanol, in the next five to ten years.

Taking Ontario as an example, the government of the province in Canada’s southeast proposed not too long ago that ethanol requirements in gasoline blends should be strengthened. The Clean Economy Alliance, a group of more than 100 organizations representing the people of Ontario that have united to address the crucial issues of climate change, supports the idea of new, increased renewable fuel standards. Above that, the alliance promotes the support of innovation in high-blend biofuel produced from waste.

But there are also voices of criticism that argue against the further development of renewable fuels and ethanol in particular. These antagonists claim that ethanol is not a sustainable energy source due to its “lack of effectiveness”. And there are other renewable fuel myths that keep coming up, that we would like to address today.

Renewable Fuel Myth 1: Ethanol Produced From Corn Causes An Increase Of Food Prices

Myth 1 says that if the amount of ethanol produced from corn increases, food prices will go up, since there’s not enough corn available for both ethanol production as well as the food industry and agriculture. This conclusion makes a lot of sense at first. However, it you take in the bigger picture, you will soon recognize that with advancing technologies, producers of renewable fuels including ethanol rely less and less on feedstock. In the next decade or so, the United States will be able to produce more than 500 million tons of biomass energy per year without running short of corn. Furthermore, the biggest contributors to higher food costs are high oil prices as well as transportation costs.

In addition to that, a wider variety of source materials for renewable fuels can already be harnessed today. This includes corn stalks, wood waste, algae and many others. These raw materials might not have been adopted in many different industries yet, nevertheless, their use continues to grow substantially. One of the reasons for this growth is that private and public investors have identified the enormous potential.

Renewable Fuel Myth 2: The Energy Balance Of Ethanol Is Negative

In the past years, many scientists claimed that the production of ethanol demands more energy than ethanol itself later provides. This really depends on each individual case. Generally speaking, ethanol has a positive energy balance, as studies have show. But we also have to take into account the improving efficiency of ethanol production, which increased by about 50% in the last decade or so. This mainly has to do with improved extraction mechanisms. On top of that, increased use of renewable fuels in general helps to reduce carbon emissions in the transport sector.

Renewable Fuel Myth 3: Gasoline Blended With Ethanol (E15) Results In Lower Fuel Economy For Automobiles

Fuel economy is a double-edged sword. Yes, many automobiles will see lower fuel economy with fuel blends, however, technological development could easily compensate the reduction effect, if enough resources were invested into the research that is much needed. Also, making the right modifications with commercial automobiles has shown that it’s possible to even increase fuel efficiency with relatively high ethanol blends.

In the case of E15 ethanol, it’s a fuel or rather gasoline blend that is currently being used in NASCAR Racing proving it’s efficiency. E15 is also the most-tested fuel of any other additive in history and burns a lot cleaner than gasoline.

Renewable Fuel Myth 4: Blending Ethanol With Commercial Fuels Is Not Cost Effective For Producers

The prices of carbon under current trade and tax programs in Canada are much too low, which is why fuel producers don’t want to blend it in. An increase in prices would accelerate the blending adoption and lead to a faster carbon reduction development in the industry. Ethanol blending itself is not the problem here. The real cause of the issue are the cap-and-trade programs. The only viable solution would be to introduce nationwide standards for renewable fuels.

Innovation Drives Change

It seems that necessity is not always the mother of change and innovation. Ethanol blended fuels, especially E15, are the most important tools that we possess, that will help us to reduce our carbon footprint in future. The adoption of renewable fuels, though, has turned out to be more complicated than anticipated. For this, it’s all the more important for us to continue the promotion of renewable fuels in the coming years.

Posted in Ethanol Talk

The Production Of Ethanol And Why It’s Called A Renewable Fuel

How We Produce Ethanol

Ethanol is ethyl alcohol and it’s the same substance that can be found in alcoholic beverages. As a biofuel, ethanol is merely used as an additive for gasoline, however, there are also automotives that can run entirely on it. When it comes to the production of ethanol, corn is a common raw material and it’s what PRF also uses for its production plant. An alternative to corn is sugarcane, which is most often found in the ethanol fuel production industry of Brazil.

World Ethanol Production

As a gasoline type fuel, world ethanol production has increased from 4.5×109 U.S. gallons in the year 2000, to 1.4×1010 U.S. gallons in 2007. In 2008, ethanol held a market share of 5.4% of all global gasoline type fuels.

Patriot Renewable Fuels’ Ethanol

We use nothing but state-of-the-art technology to produce high-octane ethanol fuel from corn. The majority of our ethanol comes from a dry milling process. A smaller percentage is gained through wet milling.

Dry Milling

The first step of dry milling is to grind corn. Then water is added, which together with the corn meal forms a thick mash. In order to break down the contained starch into sugar, enzymes are added. After a cooking and cooling process, yeast is added to the mixture with the objective to turn the sugar into alcohol (fermentation). As a last step, we separate ethanol through distillation and dehydration.

Wet Milling

The first step of wet milling is to soak the corn and separate it into its components. When ready, the sludge is processed in multiple grinders to separate the corn germ from the husk. The next step is to separate the starch, which is then fermented into alcohol by adding yeast. As with dry milling, pure ethanol is won through distillation followed by dehydration.

Cellulosic Ethanol

In conventional ethanol production, starch is first broken down into sugar, which is then fermented into alcohol. The majority of the globally used ethanol is produced that way. Cellulosic ethanol is a second-generation biofuel. It’s the fermentation product of cellulose, so the building material of plants. Cellulose is also made up of sugar, but it’s not digestible and we therefore refer to it as fiber. In contrast to first-generation biofuel made from edible feedstock, cellulosic ethanol can be produced by using wood, grass and other non-edible plant parts. The only problem with cellulosic ethanol is that the efficiency of the biofuel production process is lower than what can be achieved for first-generation fuels.

wood and grass

Why Ethanol Is Called A Renewable Fuel

Ethanol is called a renewable fuel, because it’s a form of renewable energy. Corn, sugarcane, potatoes, hemp and other crops suitable for its production can be grown and re-grown without depleting natural resources. The impact of cellulosic ethanol on our food chain is smaller than biofuel from first-generation feedstock and can even be produced from waste products that accrue in agriculture.

Ethanol And Its Uses

What is ethanol alcohol used for?

  • Ethanol can be used as an additive for alcoholic beverages and in food products to extract and concentrate flavors and aromas.
  • Ethanol is also contained in perfumes, deodorants, and other cosmetics.
  • Ethanol is an important part of many antiseptics and antibacterial soaps

There are many more ethanol alcohol uses, which underlines the substance’s versatility.

The Future Of Ethanol

Wind back a couple of years and you will find supporters convinced that ethanol will one day make us independent from oil sourced from the Middle East. This still remains a promising idea until today, however, the relatively new biofuel still needs to be adopted by most industries. Thanks to new technologies, investors look ahead with optimism and hope that one day ethanol will replace petroleum as the primary fuel with which we satisfy the energy demand of our planet.

Unfortunately and partly due to the financial crisis in late 2008, the transition to higher ethanol gasoline blends has slowed down in recent years. E10 is widely known, but blends containing as much as 85% ethanol remain a very rare occurrence. As long as prices for fossil fuels are kept at an artificially low price and with the fracking boom that came up in the U.S., ethanol has a long way to go.

Posted in Uncategorized

Automotive Expert & Car-Talk Host Bobby Likis Will Talk with Judd Hulting, Patriot Renewable Fuels, Live this Saturday


(PRWEB) March 13, 2015

Bobby Likis, automotive expert and host of nationally syndicated car-talk program “Bobby Likis Car Clinic,” will share the microphone with Judd Hulting, Commodities Manager, Patriot Renewable Fuels, on Car Clinic’s live globalcast on Saturday, March 14, 2015 at 10:25a ET.

Bobby Likis, automotive expert and host of nationally syndicated car-talk program “Bobby Likis Car Clinic,” will share the microphone with Judd Hulting, Commodities Manager, Patriot Renewable Fuels, on Car Clinic’s live globalcast on Saturday, March 14, 2015 at 10:25a ET.

Hulting will speak to the operations, products and statistics of Patriot Renewable Fuels, a 10-year old, successful ethanol plant operation, 3 hours outside Chicago. “Demand for American-made ethanol and distillers grain is growing worldwide as countries are coming to understand and value the cost-saving and environmental benefits of high-octane ethanol and farmers continue to demand the high-protein distillers grain. Patriot Renewable Fuels has stepped up to the plate and is exporting product to existing markets while also working with industry groups to grow new markets abroad,” noted Judd Hulting, commodities manager at Patriot Renewable Fuels.

Hulting will also report on Export Green, his recent trade mission to Brazil in collaboration with the U. S. Department of Commerce. Brazil – with the same types of vehicles as driven in the United States – pumps fuel containing a variety of percentages of ethanol, starting at a mandated level of at least 27% ethanol.

Reflects Likis, “The advantages to the production and use of ethanol nationally – and export internationally – are striking. Join us to hear Judd discuss the export of U.S. produced ethanol and his trade mission to Brazil. You may be surprised to learn that E27 (27% ethanol) – up from E25 – is now the baseline for retail gasoline in Brazil.”

To view Hulting’s interview in its entirety, tune it to on Saturday, March 14, at 10:25a ET.

About Bobby Likis Car Clinic and the Car Clinic Network:

Bobby Likis Car Clinic is the largest car-talk program/network on commercial radio, multiple web audiocasts, live video streaming webcast, podcasts (including iTunes), iPhone, chat room, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, American Forces Radio Network & television. Car Clinic can be heard and seen in high-definition video on Saturdays, 10a-12n ET, live at, on and on Host Bobby Likis is the only car-talk host on commercial multi-media platforms named for five consecutive years to the “Talkers 250,” the prestigious list of the top 250 talk-show hosts in America. Likis also owns and operates a 15000sf automotive service center, whose awards include “Best Automotive Service Shop,” “Best Oil Change,” and most recently, “Best Reputation in Automotive Service.”

About Patriot Renewable Fuels, LLC:

Established in 2005 and headquartered in Annawan, IL, Patriot Renewable Fuels, LLC., produces approximately 130 million gallons of ethanol per year, 350,000 tons of Dried Distillers Grain with Solubles (DDGs) and 20 million pounds of crude corn oil using ICM technologies. Patriot has created a new market for approximately 40 million bushels of corn annually, and provides more than 60 full time jobs. It is creating both fuel and feed that contribute to the US balance of trade, independence from foreign oil, stronger economy, and feeding a growing world population.

Contact Information
Diane Somer
Bobby Likis Car Clinic Network
+1 850-478-3139
Posted in News, Press

Patriot Is Proud To Offer Scholarship to Henry County High School Seniors

Patriot Renewable Fuels, LLC will offer a $1,500 scholarship to at least one 2015 high school senior.   The requirements to be eligible for this scholarship are listed below:

  1. Applicant must be a 2015 high school senior from a High School within Henry County, Illinois.
  2. Applicant must have a minimum high school GPA of 3.5 (out of 5.0) or 3.0 (out of 4.0).
  3. Applicant must plan to attend full-time any trade or technical school, community college or four-year college or university.
  4. Applicant must complete an application and include one letter of recommendation from someone other than family or friends.  In addition, applicants must include a typed 500-word essay on the future challenges, benefits, and growth opportunities for the renewable fuels industry. In lieu of the essay, applicants may submit a three (3) minute video where they creatively express these same areas of interest.   Applications are available at the high school, at the administrative offices of Patriot Renewable Fuels.
  5. Deadline for applications is April 13, 2015.
  6. Winners will be notified by mail and recognized at the high school awards ceremony.
  7.  Scholarship funds will be payable directly to the school, college or university.
Posted in Uncategorized

Patriot Announces the Appointment of Audie Sturtewagen as new Plant Manager, for Patriot Fuels Biodiesel, LLC

(Annawan, IL. – December 3, 2014) – Patriot Chairman/ CEO, Gene Griffith announced today that Audie Sturtewagen has been appointed as Plant Manager of Patriot Fuels Biodiesel, LLC .  The new five million gallon per year biodiesel plant is expected to come on  line in the first quarter of 2015.   Griffith said, “Audie has been a valuable part of the PRF team since 2008 when the ethanol plant started production.  In the six years he has been with us as Safety Manager, and then as Production Manager, Audie has proven his dedication and ability to learn and operate new and complicated processes”.

Audie Sturtewagen said “I’m excited to have the opportunity to manage this important new Patriot subsidiary.  We believe this new plant will be one of the most cost efficient biodiesel plants in the country.  I am proud to be part of this new plant in my hometown, Annawan, IL.  It’s great to see Patriot grow and diversify its business here, and I can’t wait to work with the new employees that will be brought on to operate the plant”.

Rick Vondra said “Patriot Fuels Biodiesel, LLC will use a new “Super Critical” production process that involves high pressure and heat.  It will use less chemicals than many other processes.  Feedstock will be corn oil extracted from the corn/ethanol process, but if we want to expand production, we can use any of the other feedstocks such as soy oil, brown grease, or yellow grease as well”.  The plant has been designed by Jatro Diesel, Miamisburg, Ohio.  Patriot is acting as general contractor for the project.  Construction Manager,  Joe Lillion is coordinating and supervising all the engineering, procurement and subcontractor activities.

Griffith added “This will be the first Advanced  biofuel produced by Patriot.  Biodiesel produced from corn oil extracted by an ethanol producer will have one of the lowest carbon scores of any renewable fuels produced today”.  Patriot announced in October that it is also exploring the possibility of adding another Advanced/Cellulosic biofuel by fermenting the corn fiber that is presently being left in the Dried Distillers Grain “DDGS”.  The decision to add this second process known as Generation 1.5 will be made by Patriot’s board, when the engineering is completed shortly after the first of the year.

The addition of the production of biodiesel and potentially cellulosic ethanol will help grow our business, diversify our end products, support agriculture, and contribute further to clean air and energy independence.

Posted in News, Press