Several cellulosic ethanol plants are expected to go online in the next 18 months, brightening the prospects for meeting the cellulosic biofuel goals of the Renewable Fuel Standard. Among those plants is DuPont's $200 million Nevada facility, which is slated to enter service by mid-2014. An environmental group once dubbed cellulosic ethanol a "unicorn," but now several companies "are about ready to saddle that unicorn up and ride it," said Andy Suby, manager of the Iowa State University BioCentury Research Farm.

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