Enerkem Inc. announced the initial production of cellulosic ethanol from waste materials at its demonstration facility in Westbury, Québec.
“The start of ethanol production at our Westbury facility is a significant milestone”, said Vincent Chornet, President and Chief Executive Officer of Enerkem. “Enerkem has already produced cellulosic ethanol at its smaller scale pilot laboratory facility in Sherbrooke. This new achievement in Westbury allows us to confirm the process design of our proprietary methanol-to-ethanol technology for its deployment at Enerkem’s full-scale commercial plants in Edmonton and other locations. ”
The newly installed equipment for the conversion of Enerkem’s methanol into cellulosic ethanol is now used in combination with the larger methanol equipment already in operation at Westbury.
This pioneering facility was built in phases, in line with the three main steps of Enerkem’s process, and was part of a comprehensive program to scale-up the company’s proprietary technology. This technology has been developed and tested during the past 11 years, at both the pilot laboratory facility in Sherbrooke, Québec, and the Westbury demonstration plant.
The primary purpose of the Westbury facility is to validate the technology process design before full-scale commercial production, to test various waste feedstocks coming from customers and partners, as well as to continuously improve the technology. The construction of the Westbury facility was supported by the Québec Ministry of Natural Resources and Wildlife as well as by Sustainable Development Technology Canada.