Edmonton a World Leader......... Yet Again

Posted by Ryan Dutka . on Friday, June 6th, 2014 at 10:01pm.

Most people don’t give much thought to where their garbage goes once it’s in the trash.
The city has been giving it lots of thought.
They have been thinking about it since the 1990’s.
All that thinking lead to doing and now
Edmonton which is already considered a leader in municipal waste management.
with its' facilities being visited by officials from all over the world,
has introduced an innovative new facility 
which can give Edmontonians a reason to pay attention - maybe even brag.
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Edmonton's innovative waste management system
is based on principles of sustainability and integration of all components.
The renowned Edmonton’s Waste Management Centre,
situated on a 233-hectare site in the City's Northeast,
encompasses the world's largest collection of integrated state-of-the-art facilities
for solid waste management.
As if that were not enough in and of itself,
Edmonton has taken it one step further and Wednesday 04 June/14
opened the world’s first municipal facility to convert household garbage into biofuels
at the Edmonton Waste Management Centre.
The technology behind the facility has been in the works for 10 years.
This focus on recovering the value in waste
enables the City to currently divert up to 60% of residential waste from landfill,
increasing to 90% in 2016 with this addition of the Waste to Biofuels and Chemicals Facility.
Edmonton is known for its leadership in waste management practices,
and every comparable municipality in the world is looking at Edmonton and this facility.
Edmontonians can be proud to be global leaders as we are the first to create this project.
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Enerkem, the Quebec-based company which owns the plant,
will handle the operations, with the city supplying 100,000 tonnes
of sorted municipal waste which cannot be recycled or composted.
This is the first commercial advanced biorefinery
to exclusively use municipal solid waste to produce advanced biofuels and chemicals
The breakthrough technology uses garbage instead of fossil sources
for the production of chemicals and liquid transportation fuels.
first full-scale biorefinery facility as it is the culmination
of more than 10 years of disciplined efforts to scale up technology
from pilot and demonstration, to commercial scale,
The completion of this game-changing facility
is by far one of the most significant developments
the waste and biorefinery sectors have yet seen.
It is becoming a model for many communities and industries around the world.
This material includes but not limited to
-a mixture of non-recyclable plastics,
-non-recyclable fibre,
- wood,
even shingles — which gets shredded down
From there, the waste is converted into gas, and then again into liquid methanol.
About 10 per cent of the material going to the plant will be left over.
Items like metal, ceramics and glass
can’t be converted into methanol and will be taken to the landfill.
One common use of bio fuel ( methanol) is windshield washer fluid,
because it doesn’t freeze.
It’s also a building block for other chemicals.
A large portion will be purchased by a local chemical company
which produces products for the forestry sector,
Ethanol, is commonly used as a blend for gasoline
The plant will break down the waste using heat and convert it into a gas
which is as clean as natural gas.
Then the gas is converted to liquid methanol all in the space of three minutes
It's expected that, at full capacity, the Enerkem plant will produce 38 million litres
of clean fuels and biochemicals annually.
It will initially produce methanol and later ethanol
enough each year to fill the tanks of 400,000 cars using a five per cent ethanol blend.
Since it is mandated in Alberta to have a five per cent ethanol blend,
it can be sold to one of the refineries nearby and be used to power your vehicle.
Currently, the city is paying $70 per tonne to transport and landfill waste.
The new system costs $75 per tonne.
The extra $5.00 is an investment with returns outstripping the investment
in creating an additional 600 jobs , in revenue from selling the bio fuels
and the health of future generations 
who will not have to give up their land for more and more landfill.
The production capacity of up to 38 million litres per year,
is expected to generate net economic spending in the local area
of nearly C$ 65 million annually.
It is a game-changer for dealing with household waste
Not only will it create 600 jobs but it will be helping support innovation in Alberta
and the Canadian economy
The city is looking at possibly changing the way it collects garbage in the future,
but for now, everything will be processed the same way
and then what’s remaining will be processed again and turned into biofuels.
The Waste to Biofuels and Chemicals Facility is owned by Quebec company
Enerkem which is the world's first full-scale waste-to-biofuels facility.
Enerkem is to handle operations and the city is to supply 100,000 tonnes annually
of sorted municipal waste that cannot be composted or recycled.
This industry breakthrough is a collaboration between Enerkem,
the City of Edmonton and Alberta Innovates - Energy and Environment Solutions.

Enerkem makes biofuels and renewable chemicals from waste
using its proprietary technology, Enerkem converts non recyclable municipal solid waste
into methanol, ethanol and other widely used chemical intermediates.
Enerkem operates both a demonstration plant and a pilot facility in Quebec
and has inaugurated Enerkem Alberta Biofuels,
which is its first full-scale commercial facility.
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.
The company is developing additional biorefineries in North America and globally,
based on its modular manufacturing approach. Enerkem's technology and facilities
help diversify the energy mix and make greener everyday products
while offering a sustainable alternative to landfilling and incineration.

AI-EES is the research, innovation and technology implementation arm
of the Government in the areas of energy and environment. AI-EES s
serves as a catalyst for the development of innovative,
integrated ways to convert Alberta's resources
into market-ready, environmentally responsible energy.

The fishing is best where the fewest go
And the collective insecurity of the world
Makes it easy for people to hit home runs
While everyone else is aiming for base hits.
There is less competition for bigger goals
             Timothy Ferriss



Until next time
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