Range Fuels opens plant to commercialize methanol

Range Fuels, one of the more successful biofuel startups backed by Khosla Ventures, announced today that it has opened up its first commercial plant to make cellulosic methanol out of non-food feedstocks. Located in Georgia, the facility is expected to pump out 20 million gallons of ethanol and biodiesel every year.

Mendel Biotech raises fourth round for biofuels

Hayward, Calif.’s Mendel Biotechnology, an agricultural biotech, raised an undisclosed sum in a fourth round of funding, VentureWire reports (subscription required). The funding accompanied a development deal with the U.K. energy giant BP; Monsanto, a major developer of genetically modified seeds and a longtime Mendel partner, also participated.

Big Oil and UC Berkeley supporting cellulosic research

There’s a notable story in the SF Chron about miscanthus, a tropical “superweed” so tough and prolific that it looks to be a promising source for cellulosic ethanol — good for the environment and potentially translating into bundles of cash for farmers.

Feds add fuel to fire of cellulosic ethanol trend

Range Fuels, the Broomfield Colo., company racing to build the first commercial plant for producing a more efficient form of ethanol, got closer to that goal after being awarded a $76 million grant by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Mascoma gets $14.8M to produce ethanol from biomass

Mascoma, a Cambridge, Mass. start-up that is trying to become the first commercial developer of cellulosic ethanol — something some environmentalists see as the most promising prospect for alternative, anti-global warming fuel — has won $14.8 million more in financing.