Top Cdn BE: Enerkem & Ethanol

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June 12, 2017,

Sixth Element is a boutique consulting firm, providing services on pro forma design and analysis, feasibility studies and business plans, technology/venture vetting and audits (see Projects for recent studies).  Our focus sectors are emerging biofuels and Indigenous bioeconomy ventures in the forestry sector, including lumber, logging and bioenergy.

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Waste-to-biofuel firm Enerkem’s Edmonton, Alberta, facility was a long time in the making. After years of development, the company’s first full-scale commercial facility met all operational milestones set by its senior lender in early April. Now the company is poised for its next steps. The facility turns the city’s nonrecylable and noncompostable trash into methanol and ethanol. The project enables diversion from landfill, cuts gas emissions and helps oil companies meet obligations to use alternative, renewable fuels… by Arlene Karidis.

Growing up in the Ottawa Valley, Derek Nighbor witnessed firsthand how integral the forestry sector is to small, rural communities across Canada. Today, as the President and CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) visits many of the 200 communities that depend on the industry for their livelihood, there’s one constant – the challenge of change. “The forestry sector has changed dramatically. It’s not our grandfather’s industry anymore,” Nighbor says. “It’s a leading-edge, innovative sector…”  by EDC.

Federal and provincial governments should abandon some long-standing environmental policies, such as rebates for electric cars, as carbon pricing is put in place across the country starting next year, argues a new report from the Ecofiscal Commission. The commission is made up of economists who evaluate governments’ environmental policies and is chaired by McGill University economist Chris Ragan… by Susan Lunn.

Cheap natural gas may deliver Alberta’s phase-out of coal much faster than the government’s 2030 deadline, but converting some coal plants to burn biomass instead could turn out to be cheaper still, according to researchers. The province’s two largest coal-fired electricity producers, ATCO and TransAlta, said last month that they plan to transition away from the carbon-intensive energy source much earlier than expected. ATCO said it is to switch its plants over to gas by 2020, and TransAlta wants to make the move by 2022…  by PICS

As reported in The Telegram May 24th, the province’s minister responsible for forestry, Steve Crocker, has agreed to allocate 140,000 cubic metres of wood fibre per year for a period of 20 years to Active Energy Group (AEG), a London-based consortium. This is a significant commitment of wood to a new and unknown operator, and has the potential to greatly affect the ecology and economic value of Newfoundland’s forests. Does it make sense?…  by John Jacobs and Ian Goudie.

June 9, 2017 – For over 70 years the petrochemical industry drove significant global growth and expanded the chemistry industry. But control of greenhouse gas is creating transformation and development of a hybrid chemistry industry, setting a new global standard for the 21st century. This shift puts Canada in a unique position to become a global leader in the world of chemistry. We have the resources to create a sustainable hybrid chemistry industry… by Julia Strufy and Sandy Marshall.

June 9, 2017 – Shaw Resources has been keeping Atlantic Canadians warm throughout harsh winters for more than 20 years. The Shubenacadie, N.S.-based company has been producing wood pellets for residential heating under its Eastern Embers brand since 1995. Shaw Resources has an even longer history throughout the region. The company has been a fixture in the aggregates business supplying Atlantic Canada for more than 60 years… by Andrew Snook.

Vancouver startup makes waves treating manure and sewer sludge. Asha Srinivasan, co-founder of Boost Environmental Systems, joins BNN’s Andrew Bell for a look at how her company hopes to make waves in safeguarding the world’s water quality by commercializing a process that treats dairy farm manure and sewage sludge so it turns into cleaner water… video by BNN.