Express Advocate Gosford

By Terry Collins

A SMALL company in Somersby could be a supplier of biofuel to US Navy one day.

Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy Thomas Hicks was one of a small group of American bigwigs to pay a visit to the Licella plant on Monday.

In town for an international conference on sustainable maritime fuels, the American contingent was on the lookout for Australian fuel suppliers as President Barack Obama pursues his dream of the Great Green Fleet.

“The president wants to have an entire fleet of warships running on biofuels by 2016,” Licella business development manager Stuart Rayner said.

“The visitors went to the Somersby plant to get an understanding of our technology and timeframes for production - they were very interested to see our operations.

“There are no agreements in place but the Americans are looking at standout biofuels in Australia, which could provide renewable fuels in future for the Green Fleet program.”

Licella and its parent company Ignite Energy have already entered into agreements with joint venture partners TRUenergy and Norske Skog and a memorandum of understanding with Virgin Australia.

Mr Hicks was accompanied by Special Assistant from the Office of the Secretary of the Navy Kate Brandt, Director for Operational Energy Navy Energy Office Chris Tindal, and Navy Energy Co-ordination Office director James Goudreau.