MONTREAL, Dec. 7 /PRNewswire/ - Enerkem Inc. today announced that Enerkem Corporation, its wholly-owned U.S. affiliate, has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to receive US$50 million in funding for the construction and operation of its waste-to-biofuels facility to be located in Pontotoc, Mississippi.
Enerkem's application is one of only four that have been selected in the larger demonstration scale project category of the Recovery Act - Demonstration of Integrated Biorefinery Operations Program. DOE announced the selected advanced biorefinery projects on December 4: http://www.energy.gov/news2009/releases.htm.
"I appreciate Enerkem's decision to locate its new biofuel manufacturing facility in Mississippi," said Governor Haley Barbour. "The development of our energy resources is one of my top priorities. Projects like Enerkem fit the definition of what America needs to solve our nation's energy problem, more abundant, affordable American energy."
"This federal investment in the biorefinery project at Pontotoc has the potential to add to the job and economic diversity of North Mississippi," said Senator Thad Cochran. "At the same time, this biomass venture strengthens our state's stake in the growing drive to generate renewable and alternative energy sources."
"This represents an exciting and important investment in Northeast Mississippi," said Senator Roger Wicker. "There is no question our nation needs to take steps to secure an affordable, stable energy supply. The Department of Energy's decision to partner with Enerkem means Mississippi will be at the forefront of this important national undertaking."
"The construction of Enerkem's new biofuels facility will help create significant numbers of jobs and much-needed business right here in Mississippi's First Congressional District," said Congressman Travis Childers (MS-01). "During today's tough economic times, efforts to increase job opportunities and encourage economic development are more important than ever. In addition, ethanol produced by Enerkem will promote the use of alternative energy sources, contributing to both American energy independence and a cleaner environment. This DOE grant is yet another example of how the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is working to get our local and national economies back on track."
"We are extremely proud to have DOE as a partner in our Mississippi advanced biofuels project", said Vincent Chornet, President and Chief Executive Officer of Enerkem. "We want to thank Governor Barbour, Senators Cochran and Wicker, Congressman Childers and our local partners in North Mississippi for their continued support. Enerkem's Mississippi waste-to-biofuels project is a model of high energy, economic, and environmental performance, which we intend to reproduce throughout the United States."
Enerkem Corporation will build and operate the 300 ton-per-day biorefinery in Mississippi, which will produce 10 million gallons of ethanol annually, as well as green chemicals, from sorted municipal solid waste and wood residues and will reduce the pressure to landfill. Since the announcement of its Mississippi project last March, the company has made substantial progress on the environmental permitting process and has further developed the project with its local partners, the Three Rivers Planning and Development District and the Three Rivers Solid Waste Management Authority. The project is expected to create 130 jobs. The company also intends to double the size of its Mississippi biorefinery plant by adding a second module, bringing the total production capacity to 20 million gallons.
Enerkem (www.enerkem.com) is a leading waste-to-biofuels and green chemicals technology company. It has developed a unique thermo-chemical technology platform, capable of transforming a wide variety of materials, such as sorted municipal solid waste, forest biomass and agricultural residues, into advanced biofuels, green chemicals and electricity. The company is headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, and has engineering offices in Sherbrooke, Quebec. It has a pilot plant, in operation since 2003, in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Enerkem's first commercial-scale plant is based in Westbury, Quebec. In addition to its waste-to-biofuels plant in Edmonton, Alberta, the Company is also developing a second-generation biofuels production facility to be located in Pontotoc, Mississippi. Enerkem is a private company, financed by leading U.S. venture capital firms Rho Ventures and Braemar Energy Ventures, the Canadian investment fund BDR Capital and the Company's management.
SOURCE Enerkem Inc.