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Sinobioway invests in Canadian biofuels manufacturer Enerkem

EBR Staff Writer Published 22 January 2018

Sinobioway Group, a Chinese bio-industrial conglomerate has made an equity investment of C$125m ($100.2m) in Canada-based Enerkem, a manufacturer of waste-to-biofuels and renewable chemicals.

The investment from Sinobioway is expected to accelerate the global expansion of Enerkem by introducing the latter’s waste-to-biofuels technology to the Chinese market. Sinobioway’s investment will also cover future licenses, equipment manufacturing and sales of Enerkem.

Through a joint venture, the partners intend to build more than 100 Enerkem biofuel facilities in China by 2035.

An announcement regarding the partnership was made during the visit of Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard to China as part of a trade mission.

Enerkem said that the new joint venture with its Chinese partner will lead the development of a clean economy, bringing down air pollution through the production of renewable fuels from non-recyclable garbage.

Sinobioway chairman Aihua Pan said: “We are excited to partner with a leading Canadian cleantech company to help meet our country's commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and move towards renewable energy.”

Based in Montreal, Enerkem uses a disruptive technology to convert non-recyclable garbage into cellulosic ethanol, methanol and other renewable chemicals.

Enerkem president and CEO Vincent Chornet said: “Our breakthrough clean technology produces a much needed low-carbon transportation fuel and sustainable waste management solution to help China achieve its climate change objectives.

“We are proud to collaborate with a leading Chinese bio-industrial partner to expand our commercial footprint.”

Enerkem maintains a full-scale commercial facility in Edmonton, Canada along with an innovation centre and a pilot facility in Quebec. The cleantech company claims to be developing a number of cellulosic ethanol and methanol production plants across North America and in other parts of the world, based on its modular manufacturing method.

In September 2017, Enerkem began commercial production of cellulosic ethanol from its Edmonton facility.

Image: Enerkem’s biofuels facility in Edmonton, Canada. Photo: courtesy of Enerkem.