One of the big knocks against ethanol is that it uses too much water. But an ethanol plant in North Dakota is finding a way to limit its use of freshwater.
This AP story on the KXMC-TV (Minot, ND) web site says what could have been a one-million-gallon-a-day drain on the local freshwater source has been significantly reduced:
Duaine Espegard is the lead director for the Newman Group. He says taking water from the Spiritwood aquifer would hurt others that use the aquifer.
Espegard says the aquifer already is being drawn down. Cargill Malt uses nearly 4 million gallons of water each day from it.
Espegard says the Spiritwood Ethanol plant needs only about 140,000 gallons of fresh water a day to make ethanol. He says the plant could get that from other sources and the rest of the water can come from Cargill after it’s been used in the malting process.
Officials expect to break ground and start construction of the plant next spring.