Aurora Algae Secures $2 Million LEED Grant
September 27, 2012
urora Algae has announced the successful completion of requirements for a two million dollar (AUD) Low Emissions Energy Development (LEED) grant, which has been used to advance the Company’s algae-based biomass production at its demonstration facility in Karratha, Western Australia.
Full payment of the Australian State Government-sponsored grant has enabled Aurora Algae to develop a pilot production facility that is producing between 12-15 tons of algal biomass per month, within six 4,000 square meter (one acre) ponds. According to Aurora, the grant has helped allow the Company to develop cost-effective and resource-efficient methods for growing, harvesting, extracting and producing high-quality, algae-derived products.
With the project now complete, biomass produced by Aurora Algae can be used to develop products across a number of markets including nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, aquaculture and renewable energy.
Because Aurora’s algae is grown in seawater and thrives in hot, dry, climates, the Company is able to leverage arid land in Western Australia that is typically unsuitable for other forms of agriculture. As a result, the water requirement for growing and producing algae in Karratha is less than one percent of that used to grow similar products from soybeans. The next phase of the program will be to expand Aurora Algae’s facilities and produce biomass on a commercial scale.
“Aurora Algae plans to break ground in Maitland in 2014 for an expanded commercial facility consisting of 100 hectares of algae ponds, capable of producing up to 600 tons of biomass per month, and scalable to 2,000 hectares,” said Matthew Caspari, managing director at Aurora Algae. “LEED funding for the pilot program has been critical to the success of the project and our ability to expand in Western Australia.”