While the headlines are filled with the effect Hurricane Ike had on oil refineries in Texas — and the speculation surrounding oil prices that drove gasoline prices wild — green fuel took a hit, too. GreenHunter Energy, Inc. said its Houston biodiesel refinery, the largest in the country, would be out of commission for six to eight weeks due to damage sustained during the storm.
The Green Car Advisor reports that the zero-emissions Texas plant can produce 105 million gallons of biodiesel on its 20-acre site. When Ike came ashore, the plant suffered flood damage, and its power was knocked out. The utility company said it can restore electricity and natural gas service to GreenHunter in six to eight weeks. The company will use diesel- and gas-powered generators in the meantime.
GreenHunter officials stated that the damage to the main equipment seemed to them to be minimal, and that the company would be back up and running ASAP. The second-largest biodiesel refinery is the Imperium plant located in Grays Harbor, Washington, which refines 100 million gallons of biodiesel per year. Here’s hoping they, along with the smaller plants around the country, can pick up GreenHunter’s slack until the Houston location comes back online in November.