Bond Authorization Opens Door to Lake County Biofuel Project
by Kurt Leidtke (Herald and News) Jeff Manternach, CEO of Red Rock Biofuels, says the company was created in response to widespread and devastating wildfires in the Western U.S. caused by forest debris and the rising demand for drop-in, cost competitive renewable jet and diesel fuels.
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown authorized up to $245 million in state bonds on Monday to assist the development of Red Rock Biofuels, a renewable energy project planned for Lake County that would generate jet fuel from forest bi-products and ag waste.
Among those who pressed for action was District 56 Rep. E. Werner Reschke, who back in December wrote a letter to Laura Lockwood-McCall, chair and designee office of the State Treasurer Private Bond Committee, urging action.
Reschke’s letter, dated Dec. 18, requested an allocation to Red Rock Biofuels of up to $245 million, giving his full endorsement to the project. Reschke highlighted its jobs impact, providing 30 direct and over 100 indirect jobs for the rural community in Lake County, as well as the over-reaching economic impact to Southern Oregon, its positive psychological impact on the community and subsequent incentive for future generations to stay locally for work.
Reschke also highlighted the importance of forest bi-product removal to the overall health of Oregon’s forests, reducing catastrophic forest fire risk.
“Opportunities like this project only come around once in a generation,” said Reschke in his December letter. “If we miss this opportunity, who knows when the next big project will consider the rural community in Lake County? READ MORE