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North Dakota biorefinery project clears hurdle

SPIRITWOOD, N.D. (AP) -- A biorefinery project in southeastern North Dakota has cleared a hurdle.

Great River Energy's Dakota Spirit AgEnergy project at Spiritwood has received its Renewable Fuels Standard certification from the federal Environmental Protection Agency, clearing the way for the company to begin seeking financing for the $130 million plant.

The planned biorefinery would use 23 million bushels of corn a year to produce 65 million gallons of ethanol. The facility would be located next to Great River Energy's Spiritwood Station, a combined heat and coal-fired power plant that currently is idled. That facility would provide excess steam to produce ethanol at the biorefinery.