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LATEST NEWS  Heavy Equipment

September 17, 2004

First commercial scale biodiesel facility in Canada

AMEC designing $24M alternate fuel plant

International engineering and project management services company AMEC has been awarded a $1.9-million contract to design a $24-million alternative fuel production plant for Biox Corp. in Hamilton, Ont.

The plant will be the first commercial-scale biodiesel production facility to be built in Canada.

“AMEC is very pleased to help develop leadingedge Canadian environmental technologies and assist our client in producing a cost-competitive alternative to diesel,” said Angus Maciver, president of the company’s Industrial & PharmaChem division, which is managing the project.

“AMEC is also very pleased to be part of a venture that could further Canada’s goals for energy self-sufficiency and effectively help lower emissions of carbon dioxide, the leading greenhouse gas.”

The company is providing engineering services and procurement assistance on the project, which is subject to environmental approvals.

AMEC begins its work on detail engineering immediately.

The plant will be designed to produce 60 million litres of biodiesel a year, increasing North American biodiesel production capacity by 50 per cent.

Construction is expected to begin in late fall.

The project is being led by AMEC’s Oakville office, with geotechnical services support from Earth & Environmental offices in Hamilton and St. Catharines.

“This is an emerging technology that offers a viable and cost-effective product,” Maciver said. Huge potential

“The market has a huge potential to grow throughout the world in the next five to 10 years.”

AMEC said the facility will be designed using state-of-the-art technology to convert vegetable oils, agricultural seed oils, waste animal fats, greases and recycled cooking oils into biodiesel, which is renewable, non-toxic, biodegradable and sulphur- free.

Biodiesel can be used purely as an alternative fuel or blended with regular petroleum diesel at any level in any unmodified diesel engine.

Oakville-based Biox owns the technology developed by a University of Toronto professor, to convert any feedstock into biodiesel in a continuous process performed at nearambient temperatures and atmospheric pressures.

The company plans to build additional plants elsewhere in Canada and eventually expand internationally.

—Patricia Williams

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