October 29, 2005--Posted at 9:40 p.m. CST
BATESVILLE--The first biodiesel production plant has opened in Arkansas.
Kingsport, Tennessee-based Eastman Chemical Company has started making the soybean-based alternative fuel at its plant near Batesville. The soybean oil used to produce the biodiesel comes
from Arkansas growers and is produced in Stuttgart and England.
Plant officials say they have the capacity to make three (m) million gallons of biodiesel a year and they expect that to double by the end of the year.
Local soybean experts say biodiesel has a chance to compete with rising gasoline and diesel prices.