OPPOSITION: Local officials (City Councilor Chris Harris); local residents
BACKGROUND: Osage BioEnergy planned to build a barley ethanol facility in Hopewell, Virginia that was scheduled to go online in the spring 2010. Upon completion, the facility will employ approximately 55 people in various capacities.
According to Ethanol Producer Magazine, in December 2007, Hopewell approved, by a 4-3 vote, building the ethanol plant after months of study and internal strife. Opposition to the plant immediately mounted from within. Mayor Steve Taylor wondered about the long-term effects, stating, "[e]thanol is a short-term solution to our country's problems. . .[w]hat happens when we find another solution .”
The City Councilor, Curtis Harris, filed an appeal over the site selection after the vote to stall construction, contending the land sale was illegal. Residents voiced concerns about construction problems, the uncertain ethanol market and the construction timetable. There was also a movement to locate the plant at a different location farther away from the city. In February 2008, the State Supreme Court blocked the appeal.
As of November 2010, the project was wrapping up construction and scheduled to go online in the first quarter of 2011.
SOURCES: Osage BioEnergy: http://osagebioenergy.com/company/Company-Locations.shtml;
Ethanol Producer Magazine: http://www.ethanol-producer.com/article.jsp?article_id=3854&q=&page=all;
Stock Analyst: http://www.istockanalyst.com/article/viewiStockNews/articleid/4671263
Last updated December 2, 2010