The Alberta government announced it will use $4.7 million from the TIER fund through Emissions Reduction Alberta to build a facility in Lethbridge to produce renewable fuel.
The Canary Biofuels facility, with an estimated worth of $28.6 million, will produce approximately 70 million litres of high-value renewable fuel. The facility is slated to be the first of its kind in Canada, turning local agricultural waste, inedible animal fats, and used cooking oil into biodiesel and glycerin.
The facility will buy more than $375 million of local feedstock from farmers over the next five years, the government estimates, generating about $500 million in revenue and supporting up to 130 local jobs in fields like engineering, construction and transportation.
It is proposed that the facility will also cut about 224,000 tonnes of emissions each year – the equivalent of reducing emissions from the electricity used by 41,000 homes.
Minister of Environment and Parks Jason Nixon says that Alberta is home to world-renowned expertise on cutting agricultural emissions, and the Canary Biofuels facility is another world-class project the government is supporting to diversify the economy and create jobs. “I’m pleased to see the expansion of another groundbreaking Alberta-based technology that is cutting emissions and getting Albertans back to work.”
“Canary Biofuels is Alberta’s first Generation 2 biodiesel producer with its flagship facility in Lethbridge,” says George Wadsworth, CEO of Canary Biofuels. “Canary is excited to lead the path in Alberta in abating emissions through sustainable waste-based biodiesel production that supports the energy and agriculture industries in Alberta and the Prairies. Canary would like to thank all its investors and partners, including the Government of Alberta, for their tremendous support. Canary is proud to support Alberta in creating new jobs and helping Alberta industry on its journey to net zero.”
The facility’s biodiesel will have up to one-third the carbon intensity of petroleum diesel. The renewable fuel produced at the facility has also been pre-sold to a Canadian supplier of biodiesel whose customers include fuel retailers, wholesalers, distributors, and fleet managers across Canada and the United States.
“Canary Biofuels will provide long-term diversified business opportunity for R.K. Heggie Grain and Transmark,” says Brent Peterson, vice president of transloading at Transmark/RK Heggie Grains. “Local canola producers will have direct market access to the growing biofuel industry, and the livestock industry will get a much-needed supply of canola meal. Canary Biofuels is natural fit with R.K. Heggie Grain and Transmark to provide the company with feedstock for the plant and rail infrastructure to the get finished product to international markets.”
The funding is part of the province’s commitment of up to $750 million for emissions reduction and economic diversification programs and projects through the TIER fund and other funding that will directly support about 9,000 jobs and inject $1.9 billion into Alberta’s economy.