Saturday, September 25, 2021
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Memorandum of Understanding reached for renewable diesel refinery in Lethbridge

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Lethbridge has become the latest community on the list for a green refinery which could be converting garbage to diesel fuel in fairly short order.

Cielo Waste Solutions has announced it’s entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Renewable U Lethbridge to build a high grade renewable diesel refinery. The two organizations are currently working toward a joint venture agreement.

Cielo President and CEO, Don Allan, tells the goal is to eliminate the need for landfills, adding “if it burns or melts” they can turn it into fuel.

He says that includes everything from cardboard to telephone poles, paper, agriculture waste like corn husks and potato peels, tires, and all kinds of plastics.

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Allan says “clamshells are getting a lot of attention right now” as something that can’t be recycled but are “perfect feedstock for us.” He says even contaminated oil pails can be used in the refinery because “plastic is a hydrocarbon, it’s already made from oil to diesel to plastic so to take plastic backward to diesel, it’s quite simple.”

A Lethbridge location has yet to be secured but Allan says that’s one of the next steps, adding he hopes to be scouting land by the end of September and speaking with locals about securing feedstock.

Cielo aims to build 40 green refineries across North America in the next four years. It’s first waste to high grade renewable diesel refinery held its grand opening in Aldersyde, north of High River, July 11th and is expected to be running at full capacity, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by mid-August.

Plans for joint venture refineries have previously been announced for Medicine Hat, Brooks, Calgary, and Grande Prairie.

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Tina Karst

A Lethbridge College alumnus, Tina moved back to the community two years after convocation, in September 2007, to become a member of the CJOC News Team. She started as a weekend reporter/anchor and now serves as Associate News Director. When Tina’s not tracking down local news, she’s either busy at home with Jordan and their two kids or creating custom macrame pieces for a growing list of clients.

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