FPInnovations, Resolute invest in $21M biochemical pilot project

P&PC Staff
January 23, 2018
By P&PC Staff
FPInnovations, Resolute invest in $21M biochemical pilot project
Photo: Twitter/@FPInnovations
Jan. 23, 2018 - A pilot project to produce and commercialize biochemicals derived from wood at Resolute Forest Products’ pulp and paper mill in Thunder Bay, Ont., has received a new round of funding.

The $21-million project will establish a biorefinery for TMP-Bio – a patented technology developed by FPInnovations to produce biochemicals, including cellulosic sugars and high-quality H-lignin, from wood.

Part of an initiative to renew and transform the forest products industry, the project builds on investments made in 2012 by Resolute, the Ontario Centre for Research and Innovation in the Bio-Economy (CRIBE), and Natural Resources Canada. The investment covers cost of capital and R&D and has the support of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC), CRIBE, FedNor, the City of Thunder Bay CEDC and Natural Resources Canada.

Resolute is contributing $3.5 million, while the federal government is contributing $5.8 million to the project — $3 million through FedNor and $2.8 million through Natural Resources Canada. The Ontario government announced funding for the project in 2016.

“Our government values innovation and is committed to building collaborative working relationships to help support the forest sector. FPInnovations has shown leadership in transforming the industry, promoting a culture of collaboration, and demonstrating results by developing bio-products with a low carbon footprint,” said Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr.

Thunder Bay-Rainy River MP Don Rusnak called the project is a significant step towards developing a bioeconomy in Northern Ontario and all of Canada. “The project has the potential to completely transform the forest products industry of our region, and I look forward to seeing the positive impacts it will have.”

“This project highlights the importance of investing in de-risking new technologies and products, and points the way for developing and delivering a transformative technology that contributes to the Canadian bio-economy,” said FPInnovations president and CEO Stéphane Renou. “This major initiative strengthens the industry’s position as a leader in the bio-refinery sector.”

Richard Garneau, president and CEO of Resolute, said the company is pleased to provide a host facility and funding for the project. “This project will help create opportunities to diversify the use of wood fibre into higher-value-added products.”

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