Enerkem opens world’s first full-scale biorefinery from waste feedstocks
Enerkem officially inaugurated its first full-scale municipal waste-to-biofuels and chemicals facility in Edmonton, Alberta, the company announced on Thursday.
This announcement was shared by Enerkem's CEO, Vincent Chornet, Mayor Don Iveson from the City of Edmonton, and Robin Campbell, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development, and Government House Leader, representing the Government of Alberta.
"Our breakthrough technology uses garbage instead of fossil sources for the production of chemicals and liquid transportation fuels," said Chornet. "We are proud of the inauguration of our first full-scale biorefinery facility as it is the culmination of more than 10 years of disciplined efforts to scale up our technology from pilot and demonstration, to commercial scale.
"The completion of this game-changing facility is by far one of the most significant development the waste and biorefinery sectors have seen yet," he added. "We are thrilled that it is becoming a model for many communities and industries around the world."
This facility, operated by Enerkem Alberta Biofuels, is among the world's first commercial facilities to be built for the production of renewable chemicals and advanced biofuels. During its construction, more than 600 direct and indirect jobs were created for the modular manufacturing of the facility's systems and their on-site assembly.
The industry breakthrough is a collaboration between Enerkem, the City of Edmonton and the Alberta Innovates -- Energy and Environment Solutions committee. The pioneering facility will have a production capacity of up to 38 million litres/year, will help Edmonton increase its residential waste diversion rate to 90%, and is expected to generate net economic spending in the local area of nearly C$65 million annually.
The start-up of the biorefinery follows a rigorous commissioning plan which is nearing completion. Biomethanol production will begin progressively during the start-up. A module converting the biomethanol into advanced ethanol will be added by the end of 2015.
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