During a conference call this afternoon, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm announced that the U.S. DOE will invest $26 million dollars in the state's first cellulosic ethanol production plant, being built by Mascoma in the Upper Peninsula. Granholm, speaking with a sore voice thanks to a cold, said that this is the first time that Michigan has gotten a DOE grant in partnership with the private sector.
Granholm was joined by Senator Debbie Stabenow, Senator Carl Levin, Congressman Bart Stupak and others, both in Lansing and Washington, D.C., during the call. Mascoma CEO Bruce Jamerson called it a great day for Michigan, Mascoma and the country. Stabenow said that a new federal $1.01 per gallon tax credit for cellulosic ethanol should do for the second-generation biofuel what the previous 54 cent a gallon credit did for corn ethanol. All of the speakers highlighted that this plant will be a job creation engine for the UP, and Levin emphasized that this is a bit of good news amid a lot of bad economic news.

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