Local company plans to build waste-to-energy refinery

Red Deer-based Cielo Waste Solutions Corp. has announced plans to build a $10-million waste-to-energy refinery in Edmonton. Last Friday, the company signed a long-term lease on two acres and a right of first refusal on eight more acres in an industrial park near Anthony Henday Drive and Yellowhead Hwy in west Edmonton. Cielo CEO Don Allan said the company plans to construct a 1,000-litre-per-hour refinery that can be expanded to 20,000 litres per hour with additional refinery “modules.”

Red Deer-based Cielo Waste Solutions Corp. has announced plans to build a $10-million waste-to-energy refinery in Edmonton.

Last Friday, the company signed a long-term lease on two acres and a right of first refusal on eight more acres in an industrial park near Anthony Henday Drive and Yellowhead Hwy in west Edmonton.

Cielo CEO Don Allan said the company plans to construct a 1,000-litre-per-hour refinery that can be expanded to 20,000 litres per hour with additional refinery “modules.”

Allan said the refinery will use waste, such as wood shavings, contaminated plastic and other typical municipal garbage to produce a renewable diesel. The product will meet both provincial and federal green mandates when blended with petroleum diesel.

In 2014, Cielo had announced it was working with Red Deer County on an agreement to build a 200-litre-per-hour plant, to be upgraded to 700 litres per hour at the Horn Hill Waste Transfer Site.

Cielo said the county was supportive but the company ran out of time in getting all of the necessary planning steps completed.

“We spent a lot of time working with Red Deer County. They were a pleasure work to work with.

“I would love to have done business at the Horn Hill facility,” he said, adding the county’s plans for the area were going to take too long to come together for Cielo’s project timelines.

“(It) was going to take them years to develop, and we just didn’t have that type of time to work with them.”

The City of Red Deer had also been approached, but showed little interest, he said.

Allan said they looked at many other sites, as far as the U.S. and Ontario before choosing Edmonton.

“The site in Edmonton, is by far, the best location for us in North America,” he said. “There are lots of available waste streams for us there. Our clients to buy the fuel are close by. There were just a lot of synergies with that location.”

It also has good transportation links and Cielo received a warm welcome at the Eco Industrial Business Park.

Mohammed Farooq, Eco Park’s chief operating officer, issued a statement expressing support for Cielo and what it represents for Alberta.

“This is what the province needs — value-added businesses in our own province to rejuvenate the economy and what better place to locate than our Eco Park site, a success story in itself,” Farooq says.

A garbage supply has been lined up with private providers and the process has begun to line up necessary permits and provincial approvals.

Allan said he hopes to be operating by late 2016 or first quarter 2017.

Over the last 12 years, millions has been spent developing the technology behind Cielo’s processes that are unique, he said.

“There’s nothing else in the world that does what we do today.”

All types of plastics, rubber tires, anything wood-related or typical household garbage, as well as compost, grass clippings and blue box items can be used.

From that they can make aircraft-rated kerosene, naphtha gas and renewable diesel. Cielo is listed as CMC on the Canadian Securities Exchange.