Kelowna, B.C. company to turn wood waste into renewable natural gas
Kelowna, B.C. ©2019 canadianimmigrant.ca (canadianimmigrant.ca)
With the help of the B.C. government and Fortis BC, REN Energies International will take bio-mass waste from the forestry and lumber industries and turn it into renewable natural gas. REN Energy President Philip Viggiani describes the project as the first of its kind in North America.
“This is a very unique idea because there is landfill, there is AG waste that people are using, so, you’ve got anaerobic digestion. No one has ever dealt with something like wood waste to renewable natural gas – wood waste to almost anything,” explained Philip Viggiani, president of REN Energy.
“We’ve made a hybrid of that, and we’ve gasified the wood waste — it’s not lumber, it’s not merchantable lumber — I want to make that really clear, it’s nothing but wood waste from the lumber mills.”
The company has also been approved to build its first plant in Fruitvale, B.C. According to Viggiani, after the wood waste is turned into pure methane, it will then be transferred from the plant directly to Fortis BC.
The process is also environmentally friendly.
“It’s a closed loop, we’re not putting anything into the atmosphere except C02, if we want to.”
“It’s tailor-made for wood waste to use the energy for that. There’s an abundance of wood waste with great partners from the Interior Lumber Manufacturers – they’ve all signed on for 10- and 20-year contracts which has changed the way we’re buying wood in B.C.”
The project will be located 10 kilometers north of Fruitvale and is projected to break ground early next year, with the facility fully operational by spring 2024.
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