A potentially promising ethanol advance

From: Dr. Blake Nelson <bnelson301@yahoo.com>
Date: Fri Apr 23 2004 - 15:13:06 EDT

Of course, it would appear that there is a lot still
to be demonstrated as feasible.


Company delivers straw waste ethanol to refinery
Last Updated Thu, 22 Apr 2004 14:11:41
OTTAWA - After more than 20 years and $110-million
worth of research, a Canadian company has found a way
to make "greener" gasoline on a commercial scale.

Iogen Corporation of Ottawa has developed enzymes to
break down waste straw and wood chips into ethanol on
a commercial scale.

Jeff Passmore

"This is our big Eureka moment, because this is the
first time in the world that such large quantities of
cellulose ethanol have been made," said Jeff Passmore,
vice president of Iogen on Wednesday, the eve of Earth

Until now, the ethanol blend used in commercial
gasoline was made from the food portion of crops like

Critics said conventional corn and grain-based ethanol
requires as much energy to produce as it releases when
burnt, once the energy for tractors and pesticides are
taken into account.

Environmentalists prefer cellulose ethanol because it
is made from farm waste and produces fewer greenhouse
gas emissions.

"Iogen has figured out how to weave gold out of
straw," said Elizabeth May, executive director of the
Sierra Club of Canada, who was among the invited
guests, including Prime Minister Paul Martin.

The federal government has stressed the importance of
alternative fuels to meet Kyoto protocol targets. It
has invested $21.1 million in the company, of which
$10 million is repayable.

"The government of Canada will continue to support the
development of clean energy technologies, technologies
that pay not only environmental dividends but economic
ones as well," said Martin.

The first shipment of 5,000 litres of cellulose
ethanol will be blended with regular unleaded gasoline
at a Petro-Canada refinery in Montreal. It will then
be shipped to some of the company's gas stations.

Both Petro-Canada and Royal Dutch Shell are supporting
the project with $24.7 million and $46 million

Iogen plans to build a full-scale commercial plant
next year.

Written by CBC News Online staff

H e a d l i n e s : S c i - t e c h

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Received on Fri Apr 23 15:13:26 2004

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