California Energy Investment Center (CEIC) an EB-5 Regional Center under the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), identifies programs pursuant to the USCIS EB-5 Investor Visa Program. The CEIC has offices in Cupertino (California’s Silicon Valley), Fresno (California’s Central Valley), and near Sacramento (California’s State Capitol).

The CEIC specializes in identifying projects in various sectors including alternative energy and fuels, technology, and real estate development in California. All EB-5 investment categories and technologies that reduce waste and otherwise enhance the environment.

Approved Sectors:

Biofuels (Ethanol)

Low-carbon ethanol is a clean-burning, high octane, renewable fuel produced from abundant agricultural and cellulosic feedstocks. Ethanol is used as an effective octane-boosting fuel additive or high-blend fuel. Ethanol is the only low-carbon alternative to gasoline available today. All comparisons to gasoline demonstrate a clear reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions with ethanol.

Ethanol biorefineries produce valuable co-products, such as wet distiller’s grains (WDG), and sell this high-protein animal feed to dairies and cattle feedlots. In addition, producers will extract distillers corn oil (DCO) during the production process, which is then sold as animal feed or used in the production of low carbon fuels such as biodiesel or jet fuel. These practices will reduce the use of petroleum natural gas.

Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) & Renewable Diesel [hydrogen]

Through a process called gasification, CEIC future projects will distill the wood fibers to create hydrogen. This hydrogen is then combined with vegetable oil and animal fat to produce sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel.

Biomass is generated from scrap agricultural products like orchards and vineyards, combined with renewable vegetable oil and animal fats. There are more than a million acres of almond orchards in California. Almond trees are removed, and new trees are planted every 15-25 years. Farmers, typically, burn more than two million tons per year of agricultural waste, resulting in high emissions and poor air quality for surrounding communities. New laws limit the ability for farmers to burn agricultural waste in California.

Facilities will be designed with flexibility in mind, as well as with the ability to adjust the outputs to produce either renewable diesel only or a mix of renewable diesel and up to 50% SAF, thus allowing CEIC projects to respond to changing market conditions for the two products.

Renewable Natural Gas

Dairy manure, when left to decompose naturally, can contribute massive methane emissions to our atmosphere. Aemetis captures these damaging greenhouse gas emissions from local dairy farms to create renewable natural gas that is used as transportation fuel to displace petroleum-based fuels including diesel and gasoline.

Carbon Sequestration

Throughout the central valley lies extensive shale deposits perfectly suited for long-term carbon sequestration. Deep injection wells at these locations will allow us to sequester millions of metric tons of CO2 per year. The impact of this kind of sequestration is equivalent to removing half a million cars from the road annually.

Carbon capture and sequestration is the process of collecting carbon dioxide from the atmosphere or industrial sources and returning it to underground geological formations. California’s Central Valley is a prime area for subsurface carbon storage. The area has multiple alternating layers of shale and sands. The shale creates an impermeable seal over sand layers into which CO2 can be injected. The two Aemetis’ facilities in California are located over rock layers that are approximately 7,000 feet and 8,000 feet underground. Aemetis has estimated that approximately one million metric tons of liquified carbon can be extracted.

Ethanol generation was identified by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory as one of the most promising industrial processes for carbon capture. The CEIC Region benefits from being located above prime geology for sequestration. Proximity to Bay Area refineries provides further advantages to the CEIC location and will allow the CEIC projects to sequester 400,000 metric tons/year of CO2 from operations and an additional two million metric tons/year from third-party fuel producers in the area.

Solar Energy

Solar Energy is the conversion of energy from sunlight into electricity, either directly using photovoltaics, indirectly using concentrated solar power, or a combination. Photovoltaic cells convert light into an electric current using the photovoltaic effect. Concentrated solar power systems use lenses or mirrors and solar tracking systems to focus a large area of sunlight on a hot spot, often to drive a steam turbine. As demonstrated in the success of the CEIC’s three solar projects the California’s Central Valley is an ideal location for the generation of solar power. This fact has been documented by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) which maintains the database regarding target sites for solar power in the U.S.


Clean hydrogen is a zero-emission fuel source that can be produced from a variety of energy resources, including natural gas and biomass as well as renewables like solar and wind. These qualities make it an attractive fuel option for electricity generation and industrial applications, such as in buildings and manufacturing. Hydrogen has many potential uses, including marine, aviation, cars, trucking, trains, to heating homes and powering businesses, ports, and ferries–all with clean, reliable energy.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Hydrogen Shot initiative, launched in 2021, seeks to reduce the cost of producing clean hydrogen from $5 per kilogram to $1 by 2030, via improvements in both technology and manufacturing. The U.S. Department of Energy is launching major clean hydrogen initiatives of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law: $8 billion for Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs that will create jobs to expand use of clean hydrogen in the industrial sector and beyond; $1 billion for a Clean Hydrogen Electrolysis Program to reduce costs of hydrogen produced from clean electricity; and $500 million for Clean Hydrogen Manufacturing and Recycling Initiatives to support equipment manufacturing and strong domestic supply chains.

Advanced Technologies for Water Recovery

The water crisis continues in California due to prolonged drought conditions. Snow melt from the Sierra Nevada Mountains is a significant source of water in California, feeding the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers as well as federally-owned canals that deliver water to Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area. Irrigation accounts for over 75% of water use in California. Water used for agriculture in the Central Valley comes from snow melt and large underground aquifers. The efficient recovery of agriculture water runoff is important to the regeneration of these underground aquifers.

Tech-Assisted Healthcare and Real Estate

Advancements in communications technology have led to the development of telemedicine which has reduced the need for related travel and beneficial to reducing emissions. In addition, much of the focus of new health technologies has been towards assisting senior citizens—a large and growing segment of the population – to remain in their homes and this has helped alleviate shortages in facilities and staffing. The CEIC has an approved project in this area which has grown significantly throughout the pandemic and is engaged in innovative technologies –such as electronically stimulated would care – which reduces the need for travel and provides greater comfort to people with chronic health issues.

Rural areas like the CEIC region are underserved. Digitization of health care services has made outreach and efficient connections between providers and those in need possible, desirable, and available. During the pandemic, there has been an explosion of medical services and products that are facilitated by communication technology. This has been of great benefit to keeping costs down. According to PEW Research, 96% of Americans own a cell phone of some kind. 81% of adults own a smart phone, nearly 75% own desktop or laptop computers, and more than 50% own tablet computers.

CEIC’s Core Strategy

Focus its capital investment and economic activity on projects which have high employment and income producing potential in communities with chronically high unemployment. CEIC believes that the CEIC Region has unique attributes– including an abundance of sun days and agricultural products, and an existing transportation infrastructure which includes international and regional airports and road systems — all of which facilitates alternative energy-related projects. It should be noted that jobs in the alternative energy sector typically pay more than agricultural jobs. As a result, CEIC believes that the impact of its projects on the CEIC Region, including income and purchasing power, as well as income, sales, and property tax revenues, will be substantial. It is estimated that more than 75% of the population in the Central Valley lives within proximity of Highway 99 and Interstate 5. In some of the towns along these highways general unemployment is well over 30% and, in certain age groups, well over 50%. CEIC’s investment categories will be in proximity to large concentrations of unemployed people.

“We decided in 2014 to apply for the EB5 program and selected CEIC as the regional center. The CEIC team was always available through phone or email and answered all our queries promptly. We are now in the US on our conditional green card. CEIC was very cooperative when we applied for removal of conditions and provided required documentation to file with USCIS. Due to our positive experience, we would wholeheartedly recommend CEIC.”


“The CEIC team has provided excellent customer service, I wholeheartedly endorse CEIC. Thank you very much!”

“I worked with the CEIC for my EB-5 visa process. The overall process was really smooth with great communication from Maryanne and rest of the team. I would recommend others going through this process to also work with this regional center. Thanks.”