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New research facility recovers value from waste, lowers emissions


Edmonton, AB – A sophisticated waste-to-biofuels research facility has officially opened its doors. The $12.5-million Advanced Energy Research Facility – a partnership between Alberta Innovates – Energy and Environment Solutions (AI-EES), the City of Edmonton, and waste-to-biofuels/chemicals company Enerkem – features a pilot plant and laboratory.

The facility will focus on developing technologies to convert non-hazardous waste from the oil and gas, agricultural, forestry, and municipal sectors into green transportation fuels and chemicals, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Funding for the city-owned facility comes from AI-EES, while Enerkem is providing the anchor technology for converting waste into biofuels and chemicals.

Dr Esteban Chornet, a specialist in the development of fuels and chemicals from waste, and Enerkem’s chief technology officer, will be leading some of the company’s advanced research at the facility.

The company says the research facility will focus on the conversion of various waste into biochemicals and will expand its proprietary technology platform to include additional products such as polymers and higher alcohols.

“Enerkem is proud to take part in this innovative project, by providing its leading technology and expertise in the conversion of waste into biochemicals and clean fuels,” says Vincent Chornet, the company’s president and chief executive officer. “This state-of-the-art facility will attract high-calibre researchers from around the world, and will lead to the production of more sustainable products.”