LETTSWORTH, La. (AP) — A Florida company has plans to build five plants in Louisiana's Pointe Coupee Parish that will convert agricultural waste into fertilizer.
BioNitrogen Corp., of Doral, Fla., said it has been granted preliminary approval by the Louisiana Community Development Authority to issue up to $1.25 billion in tax-exempt bonds to acquire land for the plants and build and develop the facilities.
BioNitrogen said it signed a letter of intent to buy about 250 acres of land next to the Pointe Coupee Parish Port near Lettsworth that will be used for the plants.
The LCDA's move clears the way for BioNitrogen to go to the Louisiana State Bond Commission for final approval to issue tax-exempt bonds for the project, said Bryan Kornegay Jr., president and chief financial officer of BioNitrogen.
Kornegay tells The Advocate (http://bit.ly/13tmWLJ ) each of the Pointe Coupee plants would hire about 52 full-time employees, so the entire facility would create 260 jobs.
Kornegay, who grew up in Baton Rouge, said there would be two sources of fuel for the Pointe Coupee fertilizer plant: scrap trees and waste from saw mills and sugar cane bagasse.
Last week, BioNitrogen received approval from the state of Florida to issue up to $175 million in tax-exempt bonds to build the plant in the central part of the state. BioNitrogen also has a deal with CF Industries to remove trees from lands in Florida where it mines phosphates; the scrap wood will be used by the Hardee County plant to make fertilizer.
BioNitrogen will use its proprietary technology to turn the agricultural waste into urea fertilizer, which is about 46 percent nitrogen. Nitrogen is a key component of fertilizer.
Kornegay said U.S. farmers import 10 billion tons of fertilizer a year, so the demand exists for an environmentally friendly product.
Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com