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Licella and Canfor to form JV to collaborate on advanced biofuels project

Australia-based Licella Fibre Fuels and Canada-based Canfor Pulp Products, through its subsidiary Canfor Pulp, have signed an agreement to form a joint-venture under the name Licella Pulp Joint Venture.

Licella Pulp Joint Venture will investigate opportunities to integrate Licella’s Catalytic Hydrothermal Reactor (Cat-HTR) upgrading platform into Canfor Pulp's kraft and mechanical pulp mills to convert biomass—including wood residues from Canfor Pulp’s kraft pulping processes—economically into biocrude oil to produce next generation biofuels and biochemicals.

This additional residue stream refining would allow Canfor Pulp to further optimize their pulp production capacity.

Upon successful integration of the Cat-HTR technology, the Licella Pulp Joint Venture would look towards offering this solution to other third party Kraft and mechanical pulp mills.

This agreement follows a successful program of preliminary trials conducted on feedstock from Canfor Pulp’s Prince George, British Columbia pulp mill at Licella’s pilot plants located in New South Wales, Australia.

Biocrude oil

In these trials, wood residue streams from Canfor Pulp’s kraft process were successfully converted into a stable biocrude oil.

"Biofuels and biochemicals represent the next frontier in the utilization of sustainable wood fibre to produce green energy and chemicals," said Don Kayne, CEO of CPPI.  

He added: "This initiative underscores Canfor Pulp's commitment to innovation and the importance of green energy and chemicals in our future product mix, and we look forward to developing this potentially transforming technology with Licella."

"The Cat-HTR process is a strong technical fit for the kraft process," said Brett Robinson, president of CPPI. 

He added: "The opportunity to directly produce advanced biofuels from our existing streams could transition Canfor Pulp from being strictly a pulp and paper manufacturer to a bio-energy producer as well. The Licella technology has significant similarities to our existing processes which makes this partnership a natural fit.

"Licella's Cat-HTR technology may add significant value to Canfor Pulp's kraft process by creating new products from Canfor Pulp's waste streams," said Len Humphreys, CEO of Licella.  

He added:"What we are potentially building towards is a bio-refinery to utilise the entire tree, rather than part of the tree."