Bioenergy

NetCo Acquires Technology to Produce Ethanol

NetCo Investments Inc. signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire all the assets, including patents of Syntec Biofuel Inc., a scientific research company located in British Columbia that has developed and patented a catalyst to convert Syngas into ethanol. This is in response to the expected U.S. demand for ethanol (3.7 billion gallons in 2005) to increase to more than 7.5 billion gallons by 2012, claims the release.

Syntec has spent the past five years developing its catalytic research in laboratories at the University of British Columbia, and at its own laboratory, where it has demonstrated proof of concept using precious metals. Syntec is now in Phase 2 of development, with funding through private equity and the Canadian government agencies, National Research Council of Canada and Natural Resources Canada. A prototype plant has been constructed and commissioned using landfill gas. NetCo has undertaken to raise USD$1 million to fund the program and will file a Private Placement Offering Memorandum. Syntec technology uses a Gasification-Catalytic Synthesis, which is a thermo-chemical process that converts Syngas into ethanol. Unlike the traditional grain fermentation processes using corn, wheat or barley, which currently comprise more than 90% of ethanol production in the U.S., Syntec’s catalysts will produce ethanol from unlimited sources of feedstock using waste gas, i.e., biogas from landfills, sewage, manure, wood waste, and producer gas (thermal gasification of biomass or other carbonaceous material such as municipal solid waste). This process reduces both CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions. “We believe that catalytic agents are going to spawn the next generation of growth in the ethanol industry,” said Michael Jackson, president of NetCo Investments. “With oil prices now exceeding $60 barrel, this acquisition will become a major part of the company’s development strategy.”