A new biorefinery that will turn organic waste into natural energy was announced in Lacombe on Oct. 15. From left to right: Steve MacDonald, CEO of Emissions Reduction Alberta, Grant Creasey, Mayor of the City of Lacombe, Ron Orr, MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka, Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks and Chris Thrall, President and CEO of BioRefinex Canada Inc. (Photo Courtesey of The City of Lacombe)

A new biorefinery that will turn organic waste into natural energy was announced in Lacombe on Oct. 15. From left to right: Steve MacDonald, CEO of Emissions Reduction Alberta, Grant Creasey, Mayor of the City of Lacombe, Ron Orr, MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka, Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks and Chris Thrall, President and CEO of BioRefinex Canada Inc. (Photo Courtesey of The City of Lacombe)

Lacombe to become world’s first site for a new type of clean energy facility

A biorefinery will be built in 2021 creating temporary and full-time jobs, the province announced.

The provincial government announced Lacombe as the new site for a first-of-its-kind biorefinery to be built in the next year.

The biorefinery will use new technology to turn animal and plant waste into renewable energy. This will cut down on 40,000 tonnes of emissions every year, according to the Government of Alberta.

Lacombe was chosen as the build site because of its central location and important ties to the agriculture and energy sectors, Jason Nixon Minister of Environment and Parks said Thursday at a press conference.

“The Lacombe biorefinery is a leading-edge example of Alberta innovation in action,” said Nixon. “The province is fast becoming a hub for projects that process waste while creating more value for key industries like livestock and farming, and substantially reduce emissions.”

The project will be partially funded through Alberta’s Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) program. TIER will contribute $10 million to the $45 million dollar facility. Alberta companies, who pay into the fund when they don’t meet emissions targets, help to finance the program.

According to a press release provided by the Alberta Government, there is more than $1.9 billion in total TIER funding that will be reinvested into the province through projects such as this.

This new facility will generate approximately 80 construction jobs while it is being built and 25 full-time operation jobs when it is completed.

Lacombe Mayor Grant Creasey thanked the provincial government for investing in the city’s local economy, “This development is consistent with Lacombe’s long-standing leadership in farming and agriculture innovation.”

The company BioRefinex Canada created the technology used at the facility and will be leading the Lacombe biorefinery development.

Chris Thrall, president and CEO of BioRefinex, said the company plans on breaking ground on the project in the spring of 2021. The goal is for the facility to be fully operational by 2022.

This will be the world’s first facility to fully apply BioRefinex thermal hydrolysis technology. This Alberta-made technology works by utilizing extreme heat, high pressure and water to turn waste created in agriculture and food processing industries into renewable natural gas and organic fertilizer which will be available to Alberta customers. The province estimates the facility will have the capacity to generate enough clean energy to heat 1,000 homes per year.

Both local and provincial governments are hopeful this new venture will attract more green businesses to the area.

“This project will put Lacombe and Alberta literally on the map of global leaders in emissions management and climate action,” said Ron Orr, MLA for Lacombe-Ponoka.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID
Red Deer down to 313 active cases of COVID-19

Alberta reports an additional 411 COVID-19 cases

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Alex Panetta
Economists “cautiously hopeful” for economic recovery in Alberta

Charles St. Arnaud says Alberta’s recovery will rebound along with roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw acknowledged that Friday would be one year since the first case of COVID-19 was identified in the province. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Three more Red Deer COVID-19 deaths, 331 active cases in Alberta

Red Deer is down to 362 active cases of the virus

Image curtesy Metro Creative Connection
County of Wetaskiwin addresses unpaid oil and gas taxes

The County of Wetaskiwin is addressing unpaid oil and gas taxes and… Continue reading

Caitlin Kraft, the sister of Jeffery Kraft, stands third from the left, holding a sign calling for the maximum sentence for Campbell, who is charged with manslaughter. (Photo by Paul Cowley)
UPDATED: Judge again rejects submission of 7-year sentence for slaying of Kraft

Tyler John Campbell charged with second-degree murder for December 2019 homicide

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Supporters rally outside court as Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church is in court to appeal bail conditions, after he was arrested for holding day services in violation of COVID-19 rules, in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday March 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Law remains valid:’ Pastor accused of violating health orders to remain in jail

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms is representing the pastor

A decommissioned pumpjack is shown at a well head on an oil and gas installation near Cremona, Alta., Saturday, Oct. 29, 2016. The Alberta Energy Regulator says it is suspending all of the licences held by an oil and gas producer with more than 2,200 wells and 2,100 pipelines after it failed to bring its operations into compliance. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Alberta Energy Regulator suspends licences of oil and gas producer that owes $67M

The company is being asked to comply with past orders to clean up historic spills and contamination

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa Friday, March 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau holds firm on premiers’ health-care funding demands, COVID-19 aid comes first

Premiers argue that the current amount doesn’t keep pace with yearly cost increases of about five per cent

Seniors in the 65-unit Piper Creek Lodge are among those waiting for COVID-19 vaccinations. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Central Alberta senior lodges anxiously waiting for COVID-19 vaccinations

“Should be at the front of the line, not the back of the line”

Pictured here is Stettler’s Jenner Smith with a guide dog from Aspen Service Dogs. An online auction will be running soon to help raise funds for Jenner to receive his very own service dog later this year. Jenner, who is four years old, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in 2019. photo submitted
An online auction is planned to raise funds for a service dog for a Stettler family

Jenner Smith, four, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in 2019

Walter Gretzky father of hockey hall-of-famer Wayne Gretzky waves to fans as the Buffalo Sabres play against the Toronto Maple Leafs during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky, father of the Great One, dies at 82

Canada’s hockey dad had battled Parkinson’s disease and other health issues

Most Read