Dec 13, 2010 7:29 PM by Jenise Fernandez
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Cleco are gearing up to build an alternative energy center at the Industrial Park in Crowley.
The project has been in the works for about three years, but with the help of a $1 million research grant from the state, the project is on its way.
"We see this as a tool to develop Cleco's alternative energy future and we will be able to use this to gauge how the process works and to determine costs associated with it," said Ben Russo of Cleco Power.
"I think it's great for the state of Louisiana that so many people want to move in the alternative energy area. This is the first critical step in moving our state in that direction," said Dr. Mark Zappi, the Dean of Engineering at UL.
One of the technologies the center will be developing includes a gasifier, which will be able to produce fuel by using natural resources like woodchips or sugar cane by-products.
"This is huge for UL because it positions us to have one of the finest research centers in the United States," said Dr. Zappi.
The center will also make Crowley the home of one of the finest high-tech alternative energy centers in the state.
Construction is scheduled to begin early next year.