Financial troubles cut work at Ore. biofuels plant

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PENDLETON — A Colorado company planning an ethanol refinery in Eastern Oregon with federal government backing has curtailed work while it tries to raise money.

The financial troubles for ZeaChem Inc. of Lakewood, Colo., come weeks after it announced it had created ethanol from sawdust at a demonstration plant at Boardman.

The East Oregonian reports the company failed to close on a bridge loan, leading to layoffs at the Oregon plant as well as a lab in California and the Colorado headquarters.

The company hopes to build a commercial refinery for nearly $400 million. It has $37 million in grants from the federal government, as well as a $235 million loan guarantee.

— U-B wire reports

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