CleanTech Biofuels Inc. is an early-stage company capable of converting municipal solid waste into cellulose, a high-quality fuel that can serve as a feedstock to make other fuels. The biomass can be co-fired with coal to produce electricity. It is also an ideal feedstock for producing syngas or biofuels.

By using the existing infrastructure for municipal solid waste collection and disposal to collect biomass at low or possibly negative feedstock cost, CleanTech expects to achieve profitability relatively quickly. The company’s technology, to turn garbage into fuel, is already operating in Australia and is being implemented in Chicago.

CleanTech announced today that the company’s Biomass Recovery Process, which cleans and separates cellulosic biomass from municipal solid waste, has been selected by the County Commission and Public Works Authority of Pawnee County, Oklahoma for implementation at a proposed recycling and biomass recovery facility to be constructed in Pawnee County.

According to Dale Vance, the Pawnee County Commissioner leading the effort on the recycling program, it will be a unique facility. The proposed plant will sit on 40,000 square feet of enclosed space and initially process up to 600 tons of municipal waste a day. It will reduce landfill consumption by 85 percent, generate its own energy to operate and produce renewable energy at a profit.

CleanTech Biofuels’ CEO Edward Hennessey spoke about the Pawnee County project, saying that he believes the company’s Biomass Recovery Process can be used to “provide feedstock for energy production for a number of existing and developing alternative energy technologies.” He also believes the company “offers a compelling solution,” particularly “in a market where energy demand continues to grow and the cost of handling waste continues to increase.”