North America's first industrial scale eFuels facility to be built in Texas

Project is expected to create and sustain thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the region.

Published: April 29, 2022 11:38am

Updated: April 30, 2022 11:13pm

(The Center Square) -

Another international company is making another first for Texas. This time, Highly Innovative Fuels Global, a global eFuels company headquartered in Chile, announced it’s making a $6 billion capital investment to build the first industrial scale eFuels facility in North America – in Texas.

The facility will be built in Bay City in Matagorda County, just south of Houston.

HIF’s capital investment of approximately $6 billion is expected to create approximately 3,000 direct jobs during the construction phase of the HIF Matagorda eFuels facility and more than 125 permanent operating jobs, the company says. The project is also expected to create and sustain thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the region.

Construction of the site is expected to begin in 2023. Once completed, the facility is expected to produce eFuels by 2026.

"As the leader in the future of eFuels, HIF will be an excellent addition to the Texas economic juggernaut," Gov. Greg Abbott said. "This investment is great news for Texans in Matagorda County and the Coastal Bend, with more jobs, opportunity, and enhanced technology coming to the Lone Star State. Texas is proud to be the energy capital of the world, and I look forward to a continued partnership with HIF to keep our state the energy leader."

Abbott made the announcement in Bay City on Thursday with HIF USA CEO Renato Pereira and Matagorda County Judge Nate McDonald.

"I am grateful to the citizens of Matagorda County for welcoming the first American eFuels facility to the south coast of Texas," HIF USA CEO Renato Pereira said. "Once again Texas has shown its leadership as the heart of America’s energy sector, galvanizing new energy supplies for the United States and the world.”

He said HIF chose Texas “because of its unique combination of incentive support, available real estate, tax and regulatory stability, and commitment to protecting the environment through responsible and sustainable economic development.”

Matagorda County Judge Nate McDonald said that Texas “has long been the champion of energy in the United States.” The county’s economic development team and the governor’s office, he said, “have brought to fruition a new energy sector that will put Matagorda County on the map. I’m proud of the work Matagorda and HIF teams displayed throughout this process and could not be happier they selected Matagorda County for their U.S. flagship."

A substitute for fossil fuels, eFuels are used in cars, ships and airplanes and require no technological modifications. HIF uses a combination of wind energy and CO2 captured from the atmosphere to create a gasoline substitute that works in existing engines and infrastructure, it explains on its website. Through a filtration process it’s developed, HIF produces carbon-neutral gasoline by combining CO2 captured from the atmosphere with green hydrogen from renewable wind power.

When the eFuels facility is fully operational, HIF anticipates producing approximately 200 million gallons a year of a carbon-neutral gasoline substitute that will decarbonize over 400,000 vehicles in the U.S.

“Carbon-neutral eFuels represent the energy sector’s next frontier, enabling renewable resources to fuel our mobile economy," Pereira said.

HIF’s current operations are underway in Santiago and Magallanes, Chile, and Sydney, Australia.

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