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From wood waste to renewable natural gas: A Kelowna company’s plan

A Kelowna company has a plan in the works to turn biomass fuels into renewable natural gas.
A Kelowna company has a plan in the works to turn biomass fuels into renewable natural gas. Courtesy: REN Energy

A Kelowna company has plans in the works to turn wood waste into renewable natural gas.

REN Energy says it’s been working on developing the method for the past several years.

The company says that renewable natural gas can be generated from biomass wastes, including sawdust, wood chips, hog fuel, municipal solid waste and paper.

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The process involves gasification, gas cleaning and methanation that results in a high output of methane, the primary component in natural gas.

REN Energy says its production system will be fully enclosed, and its process uses all of the solids, liquids and gases produced.

The company plans to build the renewable natural gas plant with Thermo Design Engineering in Fruitvale, which is located in B.C.’s Kootenay region.

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“Our priority has been focused on pioneering sustainable projects, and so we are very excited to partner with REN Energy to bring innovation to the RNG market,” says Sean Montgomery, president of Thermo Design Engineering. “Working alongside our partners, we are creating jobs and boosting the Canadian green energy economy through cutting-edge technology.”

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According to a news release, REN Energy will build, own and operate the facility.

However, the company also says FortisBC will own an interconnection facility on the site that will connect the project to its natural gas transmission system.

The companies called the project the first of its kind for North America.

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