The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has granted Enerkem Inc. approval to sell cellulosic ethanol produced at its facility in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, under the US Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS).
The biofuels facility has successfully completed all the necessary steps required by the EPA and is the first ever municipal waste-to-cellulosic ethanol plant to receive approval to sell in the US.
Under the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act, 16 billion gal. of cellulosic biofuels are to be blended in the conventional transportation fuel pool by 2022.
Vincent Chornet, President and Chief Executive Officer of Enerkem, said: "With this EPA approval, we are now able to sell one of the lowest-carbon transportation fuels into the world's largest biofuels market […] This provides further validation of Enerkem's leading position in the global race to decarbonising the transportation fuel sector, which is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions."
Enerkem is now registered for D3 Renewable identification numbers (RINs) credits, which are purchased by US refiners to comply with the US RFS program. The EPA has established that cellulosic biofuels reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 60% when compared to gasoline.
Earlier this year, Enerkem expanded its Edmonton biofuel facility to produce some 13 million gal./yr of cellulosic ethanol following the commissioning of its methanol-to-ethanol conversion unit. This pioneering facility has been financed by private sources and received funding support from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC), Alberta Innovates and Alberta Energy.