Competitive Strengths of Clark County
Locally Available Feedstock
Clark County is one of the leading counties in Arkansas in terms of number of acres of forest land. Wood and wood pellets are excellent sources of cellulosic material which can be used to produce biofuels.
Clark County also has a high production of soybeans which are used to produce biofuels, producing 50,000 to 499,999 bushels of soybean per year.
Clark County is within a day's drive of major population centers along the East coast and in the Midwest, including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, New Orleans, Oklahoma City and Houston.
Clark County is located off of Interstate 30, about halfway between Little Rock, Arkansas and Texarkana, Texas.
United States Highway 67 and Arkansas State Highway 7 also cross the county.
The Union-Pacific Railroad, which runs from St. Louis, Missouri to the Texas-Mexico border, provides mainline rail service for Clark County.
The transportation infrastructure in Arkadelphia/Clark County, with a location off of Interstate 30, will allow biofuels manufacturers to easily ship components to the end-user via truck or rail.
Available and Affordable Sites
The 313-acre Clark County Industrial Park is located on U.S. Highway 67, five miles south of Arkadelphia. The site is also located within two miles of Interstate 30 and has approximately 160 acres remaining for development.
Gurdon also has a 186-acre rail spur site and there is at least one other marketable site in Gurdon.
Skilled and Educated Workforce
Clark County has a total labor force of more than 10,000 people and there is a labor force of more than 91,000 within a 50-mile radius of Arkadelphia.
The leading industry based on employment in Clark County is manufacturing, which employs more than 20 percent of the workforce. Workers possessing skills used in traditional manufacturing facilities could be easily retrained to perform jobs at biofuels facilities.
Approximately 57 percent of residents in Arkadelphia and 45 percent of residents in Clark County hold an Associate, Bachelor or Graduate degree or have attended some college classes.
The two colleges in Arkadelphia/Clark County, Henderson State University and Ouachita Baptist University will be a valuable resource for training workers for indemand green collar jobs.
Henderson State University has an enrollment of more than 3,700 students and grants Associate's, Bachelor's and Master's degrees. HSU has more than 50 program areas and offers Bachelor's degrees in areas such as biology, chemistry, and physics, among others, that may be of interest to biofuels companies.
Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia is a four-year liberal arts college which has an enrollment of approximately 1,500 students. OBU offers Bachelor's degrees in more than 60 program areas of study including biology, engineering, and physics, among others, that may be of interest to biofuels companies.
Competitive State Incentives
The state of Arkansas offers competitive state incentives, some of which are specifically tailored to the biofuels sector.
The Clark County Industrial Park, located on U.S. Highway 67, approximately five miles south of Arkadelphia, covers 313 acres and is developed for industry with sites from 4.5 acres to 26.5 acres.
Leadership Clark County was established by the Arkadelphia Regional Economic Development Alliance & Area Chamber of Commerce pursuant to one of the goals of the Clark County Strategic Plan.
The Business Retention & Expansion program of the Alliance focuses on facilitating job growth of existing business and industry and retaining jobs due to possible downsizing or relocation.