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Government invests in renewable natural gas technology

Government invests in renewable natural gas technology

Investing in the production of renewable natural gas (RNG) from forest industry residue can diversify Canada's energy mix, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve industrial efficiency and create new economic opportunities for Canadian companies and good middle-class jobs that benefit rural communities. 

Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, Jim Carr, has announced an $800,000 investment in G4 Insights Inc. for the development of technology to convert forestry waste into RNG that can be distributed through existing natural gas pipelines in Canada. 

"Our Government values innovation and we are proud to support this renewable natural gas project. By investing in clean technology industries we can help them be more innovative, more competitive and more successful," said Carr.

G4 Insights is partnering with the Canadian Gas Association members Enbridge Gas Distribution, FortisBC, Gaz Metro, Union Gas, utility host ATCO, the Natural Gas Innovation Fund, Alberta Innovates, and FPInnovations, who are contributing a combined $1.35 million towards this project. 

"The support from Natural Resources Canada for renewable natural gas is essential to creating a pathway to greenhouse gas reductions that are affordable, reliable and sustainable," said Edison Ng, Principal, G4 Insights Inc. "This project will advance G4 technology toward commercialization through field trials of enhanced subsystems for robust continuous operation and grid injection." 

"CGA and the natural gas delivery industry have made driving innovation a key focus for the last six years with initiatives and investments around the use of natural gas and natural gas delivery infrastructure," said Timothy M. Egan, President and CEO, Canadian Gas Association. "Improving the technology to convert biomass to RNG will support the industry's aspirational target of blending 10 percent RNG in the Canadian natural gas distribution system by 2030." 

Renewable natural gas produced from sustainably managed forest residue can emit up to 85 per cent less greenhouse gas emissions than traditional fossil fuels. Forest residue, which includes all parts of the tree, can be converted into solid, liquid or gaseous biofuels such as RNG that can then be burned for energy or used as fuel substitutes for transportation or industrial processes.  

G4 Insights will build a RNG demonstration plant and test it under operational conditions with a range of biomass types to generate relevant technical operating and economic data. The optimal site location has been chosen in Edmonton, Alberta to support all-season operation in outdoor conditions. The announcement reaffirms the Government of Canada's commitment to preserving our natural environment and resources for future generations — to put in place real actions that will work toward Canada's climate goals.

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