2009-12-27 / Front Page

Cutting edge project coming to HC?

BY CHRIS OGRYSKI EDITOR

HURON COUNTY – The county could be on the cutting edge of technology if funding can be procured for a major environmental project.

A meeting of investors was held last week at the Pigeon District Library for those interested in making the possibility of a local plasma oven project a reality. The plasma oven project would likely utilize plasma arc gasification technology, which allows most waste from trash to tires, from plastic to manure, from muck to medical/hospital waste to be broken down primarily into elemental gases and solid waste.

John Horny, who has been instrumental in attempting to bring this project to fruition, told fellow commissioners in November that the plasma oven could produce carbon free energy and pollution free power in the form of electricity and ethanol. He noted that by using two steam generators additional electricity could be produced.

Horny told the Huron County Press on Tuesday that at this point there is “a lot of interest” from investors and potentially two who could pay for the entire $2.2 million in estimated start-up costs. He said they are both looking at yearend figures before possibly making a commitment.

Once funding is procured, Horny believes the $500 million project, which would be funded by a private company whose name is being withheld at this time and not tax payer dollars, could begin as soon as January 2011.

“This looks quite positive,” Horny said. “I’m very optimistic about this project.”

Horny explained that the investors would be providing what amounts to a bridge loan, paid back in 18 months. For that initial investment, they would be entitled to five percent of the profits from the project.

He added that while an actual site has yet to be determined, the project will definitely be in Huron County. He also noted the plasma oven project, which would produce ethanol and electricity, would be the largest of its kind in the world.

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