It's the climate, lots of solar radiation, high temperatures and warm nights. Other parts of the country have this type of weather a dozen days a year. Southwest Arizona, the Sonoran desert has this extreme weather for almost half the year. High solar radiation and heat can quickly harm most plants, but algae lives in water and thrives in the heat which creates the perfect environment for several specific strains of algae.
We have developed the systems and methods necessary to grow algae on a high-volume basis using high-intensity open ponds. The system allows production of a homogenous algae species and manages the contamination problems encountered in most outdoor systems.
The Desert allows us to grow the algae outdoors, in an environment in which we can cultivate a specific algae at a cost competitive with traditional fuels.
We believe that most algae production in the United States will be concentrated in Southwest Arizona and a small part of Southeast California. Other areas of the country will also grow algae for biofuels but not to the extent or production levels.