Ground’s been broken on yet another ethanol-making plant in the Hawkeye State, this one in northwest Iowa’s Osceola County near the town of Ashton. Monte Shaw is spokesman for the Renewable Fuels Association. The latest plant is the fourth in Iowa now under construction that will join 12 others already producing the corn-based fuel. But how many plants it -too- many? Shaw says Iowa is the nation’s number-one corn producer, but we’re not number-one in ethanol production. He says Iowans can expect more of these plants to open in the coming years, to churn out more of the cleaner-burning renewable fuel, to help reduce dependence on foreign oil.Illinois is producing more gallons of ethanol than Iowa, even though Iowa is the leader in corn production. He says there aren’t ethanol plants in every state in the nation yet, but ethanol-blended fuel is being sold in nearly every state. He says the mountain states burn a lot of ethanol because of their air pollution restrictions. In addition to the plant being built near Ashton, others are under construction in: West Burlington, Hanlontown and Steamboat Rock. Plants are already operating in: Galva, Coon Rapids, Blairstown, Sioux Center, Hopkinton, Lakota, Hamburg, Marcus, Muscatine, Eddyville, Clinton and Cedar Rapids.
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