Sugar beets – an alternative to petrochemicals?
Feb. 14, 2013, Lethbridge, AB - The federal government is investing close to $600,000 to help the Alberta Sugar Beet Growers (ASBG) study the use of sugar beets and energy beets in the production of sustainable alternatives to petrochemicals.
The funds will also be used to provide business advice concerning the creation of a value chain related to the commercialization of these alternatives. The products include bio-glycol, a renewable and sustainable alternative to traditional petrochemicals that can be used to produce a wide variety of goods including plastics, polyester fibre and resin; and bio-butanol, a promising biofuel that can be used in unmodified gasoline engines.
"This funding will allow us to bring leading-edge green technology and significant outside investment to Alberta," says ASBG president Rob Boras. "Once this project is completed we expect to see that energy beets are a viable feedstock for the technology being tested, that they are commercially viable from a technical and an economic standpoint, and that moving to commercial production is achievable in Alberta."