HOPKINSVILLE, Ky (WBKO) -- An ethanol plant in Hopkinsville, Ky is leading the way for cleaner, more efficient gasoline.
Commonwealth Agri-Energy is ran by Hopkinsville Elevator Company and Kentucky Corn Growers Association.
It is the only corn-to-ethanol plant in Kentucky.
"We provide the general consumer with as much as a dollar a gallon cheaper gallon of gas," said Mick Henderson, General Manager.
This corn-to-ethanol plant thrives off the support of 3200 local farmers, whose harvest is delivered to the Hopkinsville facility.
For every bushel of corn processed at the plant, about 2.8 gallons of ethanol is made.
The ethanol is then transported to a terminal in larger markets, such as Nashville and Knoxville.
The fuel is then blended to 10% ethanol gasoline and dispersed to retail gasoline stations, such as Exxon Mobile, Shell or Marathon.
" We're about seventy five cents cheaper than whole sale gasoline. So when we are in 10% of the blend of gasoline for your vehicle, or about every vehicle on the road today, it is going to make gasoline lower cost," said Mick Henderson, General Manager.
Compared to the average 87-octane in today's vehicles, the ethanol fuel allows a car to run up to 105-octane.
"Ethanol being 105-octane, you can blend it was 84-octane base gasoline and get your 87-octane. That is going to make gasoline cheaper because ethanol is cheaper than gas," said Mick Henderson, General Manager.
Although the ethanol plant is in Hopkinsville, the distribution center is closer to Warren County, which allows for lower prices in Bowling Green.
However, Hopkinsville's gasoline provides higher ethanol blend for flex fuel vehicles.
“Here in Hopkinsville, you can get Ethanol-85. It's going to be forty to fifty cents cheaper than gasoline because it has more ethanol in it and they get it here locally," said Mick Henderson, General Manager.
Although this thriving industry has expanded in the last ten to fifteen years, the idea for this fuel has been around as long as cars have been on the roads.
"Cars have been running on higher ethanol blends since Henry Ford built the Model T. He actually designed the Model T to run on ethanol in an agricultural economy, a farm based economy, in early 1900's a farmer could grow and use his own fuel," said Mick Henderson, General Manager.
There are more than 200 businesses similar to this Hopkinsville plant, found mostly in the mid-west.