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Saskatchewan to be home to massive biofuels plant

In a bid to continue building on the strength of Saskatchewan's agricultural production and processing, Canadian Green Fuels Inc. announced recently it will build a massive biofuels plant near McLean and upgrade its current plant in Regina.

April 7, 2008  By Sasktoon Leader-Post

April 05, 2008

Regina, SK -Canadian Green Fuels Inc. of Regina announced Friday that it plans to make Saskatchewan home to the largest biofuel processing plant in the country.


"We would like to announce for the province that we anticipate here within the next six to eight weeks, possibly between May and June, that we are going to launch Canada's largest biofuel processor," said Troy Metz, chief development officer for Canadian Green Fuels, at a press conference.

Canadian Green Fuels says it plans to build a new bio-diesel processing plant at a proposed site near McLean and plans to upgrade the existing plant located on 1620 McAra St. in Regina.

Construction on the estimated $50-million project is set to begin in the next six to eight weeks and will take 12 months to complete, said Metz.

According to Mike Shenher, president and CEO of Canadian Green Fuels, the expansions would allow the company to produce approximately 200 million litres of bio-diesel a year, with an estimated revenue potential of $300 million.

"We are bringing to the province a new type of oil patch. It is renewable, it is green, it has long term potential," said Metz.

"It is encouraging to hear companies looking at biofuel opportunities in Saskatchewan," said Judie Dyck, president of the Saskatchewan Biofuels Development Council. But Dyck said she did not have the opportunity to look Canadian Green Fuels' specific project plans.

The City of Regina approved the current manufacturing plant in Regina during council meeting on Monday. The plant is classified as a "hazardous materials processing/storage facility," which required the building to meet a number of city and provincial environmental and building standards.

The village of McLean will also have to approve the construction of the facility, but sources at the town office refused to comment to the Leader-Post.

The current operations of the Canadian Green Fuels produce primarily bio-diesel, with some other biofuels, bio-oil and bio-additives. The plant does not use high end technology, rather innovative ideas with many traditional farming tools, said Metz.

The manufacturing site in Regina takes off-grade canola and grinds it into oil. The oil is then used to create bio-diesel and other bio-products, while the leftover meal is sold to animal feedlots.

"Every litre of bio-diesel that we make is a litre of petroleum diesel that will never be burnt," said Shenher.

The expanded plant would create approximately 55 to 60 new full-time jobs and would require approximately 460,000 tonnes of oilseed input, which Metz anticipates will come from contracts with Saskatchewan and other Western Canadian producers.

"We are (currently) profitably operational, but we are continuing to finance a lot of our growth out of our cash flow, so like any new venture it is fragile," said Shenher.

Canadian Green Fuels also plans to sell shares in the near future. The exact details of the shares have not been confirmed.

"We are planning an initial public offering most likely on the (TSX Venture Exchange), but we haven't finalized those details yet," said Shenher.

Representatives from the city and the province were also present at the former Saskatchewan Party candidate's project announcement.


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