TORONTO and MONTREAL, Canada, March 11 /PRNewswire/ -- GreenField Ethanol, Canada's largest ethanol producer, and Enerkem, a leading gasification and catalysis technology company, have signed a Binding Term Sheet outlining their plan to produce cellulosic ethanol on a commercial scale.
"We are excited to work with Enerkem to make cellulosic ethanol a commercial reality in Canada," said Bob Gallant, President and CEO of GreenField Ethanol. "Canadian consumers are looking for a greener, affordable alternative to fossil fuels and GreenField is delivering by expanding its corn ethanol business to include new bio-based fuels," added Frank Dottori, Managing Director of the company's Cellulosic Ethanol division.
The companies agreed to terms that will see them collaborate 50/50 on joint projects to design, build and operate commercial cellulosic ethanol plants using Enerkem technology in specified geographic areas. The first plant location has been secured within Canada and will be announced in the coming weeks. A second plant is also in development.
Enerkem's technology converts biomass such as sorted municipal solid waste and urban wood residues into cellulosic ethanol and other biofuels. It eliminates more than two tonnes of greenhouse gases (GHGs) per tonne of residues used as feedstock. The company's founders have been active in gasification for many years. Enerkem's pilot plant, which has run more than 3,000 hours since 2003, produces syngas, methanol and cellulosic ethanol. The company is currently building a commercial scale cellulosic ethanol demonstration plant in Westbury, Quebec.
"This partnership is an important milestone in achieving Enerkem's goal to commercialize cellulosic ethanol", said Mr. Vincent Chornet, Chief Executive Officer of Enerkem. "By joining forces with GreenField Ethanol, we are poised to become the Canadian leaders in the production and distribution of new generation biofuels. GreenField's experience in building and operating industrial plants will be key to scaling up our production."
Ethanol is a renewable transportation fuel made from grains such as corn and wheat, or from the cellulose found in a wide array of plants and other biomass. Ethanol is affordable and offers unique environmental benefits. National Resources Canada's GH Genius model shows that corn ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) by 40 to 60 per cent compared to gasoline. Cellulosic ethanol has the potential to reduce GHGs by up to 87 per cent according to the US Department of Energy's GREET model. The federal government's commitment to requiring gasoline to contain an average of five per cent ethanol by 2010 will bring GHG reductions equivalent to removing one million cars from Canada's highways each and every year.
Headquartered in Montreal, Quebec with engineering offices in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Enerkem is a leader in the production of cellulosic biofuels. Enerkem's gasification, sequential gas conditioning and catalysis technology converts sorted municipal solid waste and forest residues into cellulosic ethanol and other biofuels. The company has operated a pilot plant since 2003 and is currently building a commerical demonstration cellulosic ethanol production plant in Canada. For more information, visit http://www.enerkem.com.
About GreenField Ethanol
GreenField Ethanol Inc., formerly Commercial Alcohols Inc., is Canada's leading ethanol producer. The company produces 250 million litres a year of fuel ethanol at its plants in Chatham and Tiverton, Ontario and Varennes, Quebec. Its largest plant to date, a 200 million litre facility in Johnstown, Ontario, will be operational in December 2008. A 145 million litre plant is in development in Hensall, Ontario. GreenField is actively involved in the development of biochemical process technology to produce cellulosic ethanol at its state of the art research facilities in Chatham, Ontario. GreenField's ethanol is available at more than 1,500 gas stations across Canada. For more information, visit http://www.greenfieldethanol.com.
Melissa Armstrong, GreenField Ethanol, +1(416)304-1700 x8431, m.Armstrong@greenfieldethanol.com; Marie-Helene Labrie, Enerkem Inc., +1(514)875-0284 x224, firstname.lastname@example.org