New low carbon biofuels plant comes to Canada


Canada Arbios Biotech (Arbios), a joint venture of Canadian Forest Products (Canfor) and Licella Holdings (Licella), has made the decision to move forward with the building of a groundbreaking biomass-to-low-carbon biofuel plant in Prince George, British Columbia.

The factory will use cutting-edge, first-of-its-kind technology to convert sawmill leftovers, predominantly bark, into high-value renewable biocrude, which can then be refined into low-carbon transportation fuels.

New plant to begin operation in 2023

Arbios intends to begin with a single processing line that will transform 25,000 dry tonnes of wood residue per year into 50,000 barrels of sustainable bio-oil, a direct substitute for fossil crude, from post-consumer waste wood biomass. The project, which is set to begin producing renewable biocrude in the first half of 2023, will be built on a section of Canfor’s Intercontinental Pulp Mill site, and Arbios will have the ability to add up to four processing lines within the existing footprint. Licella’s unique Cat-HTRTM decarbonization platform will be used in the new Arbios facility. The plant represents the next scale-up of Arbios’ hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) technology, following the recent commissioning of Arbios’ CS-1 facility on New South Wales’ Central Coast (Australia), which continues to demonstrate the technology’s ability to generate low-carbon products.

The project is located on the traditional territory of the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation, with whom Arbios has been collaborating on a plan for jointly developing the project in order to understand their interest and ensure meaningful commercial and practical participation for the Nation in the project. The proponents are also working with the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation on an environmental due diligence procedure.

Strong government support

The project is receiving strong support from both federal and provincial government programs, including the issuance of credits under BC’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Renewable and Low Carbon Fuel Requirements) Act, the Sustainable Development Technology Canada Fund, and the BC Ministry of Energy and Mines and Low Carbon Innovation’s Innovative Clean Energy Fund.

Canfor has committed to supporting this phase of the project, demonstrating the company’s commitment to playing a leading role in the world’s desire and need for a low-carbon economy.