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Cielo Waste Solutions’ Aldersyde renewable fuels refinery operating continuously

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Canada-based Cielo Waste Solutions and its contractors have completed optimisation of the design of the world’s first waste to renewable fuels refinery at Aldersyde in Alberta, Canada.

The work required extensive changes to the process, as well as the installation of multiple new pieces of equipment required before being able to bring Cielo’s green refinery back into continuous-flow production.

The Aldersyde refinery is now operating full-time on a continuous-flow basis, producing renewable naphtha and diesel from wood biomass. The refinery is currently operating at around 100 litres per hour, however production is expected to ramp up over the coming weeks to process more waste into high-grade renewable fuels, beginning immediately with 200 litres per hour.

Don Allan, president and CEO of Cielo, said: “We are extremely pleased to finally announce that we are flowing continuously and moving closer to revenues. While we still have more work to do and our refinery remains in the final stage of being commissioned, we are confident that once our Aldersyde refinery is up and running at commercial production levels, the world will understand just how significant our company will be in making the planet a better place for generations to come. We so appreciate the unwavering support of Renewable U Energy and their subsidiary companies as well as Seymour Capital as we move forward with validating our technology, which has the potential to reduce the amount of garbage going into landfills.”

Operational progress

In an operational update, Cielo added that it is continuing to work with the Alberta Government to secure amendments to the company’s operating permit, to allow additional waste feedstocks to be utilised.

In collaboration with its joint venture (JV) companies – Renewable U Grande Prairie, Renewable U Medicine Hat, Renewable U Brooks, Renewable U Lethbridge and Seymour Capital – an agreement has been reached to extend the deadline by which they will enter previously announced JV agreements to 31 March 2020.

These agreements will govern the building and operation of the first five follow-on refineries in Alberta and Ontario. The recent enhancements to the company’s Aldersyde refinery has resulted in plans to scale up production at the follow-on refineries, to produce 4,000 litres of renewable fuels per hour and operate 24 hours per day, 341 days per year – double the original production capacity.

Each follow-on refinery is expected to cost around CAD$50 million (€34.5 million) to build, commission and bring into production, to be funded by the respective JV companies. Collectively, the five refineries are anticipated to convert 327,360 tonnes of rubbish into 163,680,000 litres of renewable fuels annually.

“We are working closely with Cielo to advance the building of our follow-on refineries as quickly as possible,” commented Raphael Bohlmann, president of Renewable U Energy, which holds the controlling interest in four of the five follow-on JV refineries. “We are very impressed and appreciative of the tenacity and work ethic that Cielo’s management and their contractors have exhibited while overcoming multiple challenges in bringing on stream the world’s first waste to renewable fuels green refinery at Aldersyde, Alberta.

“We are in the final stages of securing the land to build our first follow-on refinery to process scrap railway ties into high grade renewable diesel pursuant to Cielo’s Service Supply Agreement with CP Rail…. We are looking forward to announcing with Cielo its location in the near future.”