Bob Doughty is a man with a plan for Stanfield - a $1.37 billion plan.

Doughty and his wife, Chris, have been criss-crossing the state for three years, building support for and promoting his Inland Pacific Energy Center.

Some folks, including Stanfield Mayor Tom McCann, say they'll believe in Doughty's deal when the plant opens.

Doughty recognizes there are plenty of skeptics who think his biofuel and byproduct "campus" will never be built.

But among those who do believe - someone who has a lot of credibility in these parts - is Art Hill, a Blue Mountain Community College administrator who also does some private business consulting on the side.

It was in that capacity Hill worked with Doughty, completing the latest business plan for the venture. Hill said he sees potential in Doughty's project, otherwise he wouldn't have accepted the job.

"I wouldn't have wasted my time," Hill said. "I don't have any time to waste."

The proposed Inland Pacific Energy Center includes a biodiesel plant, an ethanol plant and a feed mill. The entire project calls for an eight- or nine-phase buildout in 10 years. Doughty has plans for every possible byproduct and has created a revenue stream for each one.

Doughty described the reaction of one who read his business plan.

"He was intrigued by the fact that we were, in essence, using every part of the pig, including the squeal," he said.

Doughty credits Hill for his hard work on the business plan.

"He did an immense amount of research on the industry," Doughty said.

One of the biggest changes in the latest business plan is bringing forward some of the byproduct production that originally was scheduled in Phases IV, V and VI.

"We've bought these other products right up to Phases I, II?and III," he said, adding that one such product is pharmaceutical-grade glycerin.

Hill said Doughty has done that because of the marketing possibilities.

"Bob has the ability to be very, very well dialed into the market," Hill said.

In recent months, Doughty has broadened his vision to include a larger co-generation plant burning solid waste.

"We always did plan on a small co-gen plant," he said, "eight to 10 megawatts for our own use."

Now the project includes three 30-megawatt turbines built in three phases.

"This waste-to-energy co-gen, for example, generates waste steam that can be pumped to the fuel plants," he said with excitement. "The steam condenses and is recycled and goes back to the co-gen plant."

That would destroy the odors from burning the garbage, he said.

"It makes a very synergistic, closed-loop system," he added.

Doughty said investors like the project because it involves producing food and animal feed products, plus energy, from the same feedstock.

"It's hanging on the edge of being a humanitarian project," he said.

Hill confirms the proposed energy center has gained investors' attention.

"There is serious interest on the part of serious money ... that is currently going through the approval process," Hill said. "The potential investors think we've been doing the right thing, and the homework."

One of the project's greatest assets, Hill said, is that Doughty's using no untested or unproven technologies.

"There's nothing that I have seen related to this project that has led met to believe it could not be viable," Hill said. "This is a bioproducts center. It offers the equivalent of a portfolio of products within one operation."


Dean Brickey is a senior reporter for the East Oregonian. Readers may call him at 541-564-4536 or e-mail

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