Consultations for Canadian Ethanol Project

Suncor Energy Products committed to renew and expand community consultations on its proposed ethanol plant project. Suncor is considering building a CAD $120 million (US$94.1 million) ethanol plant on land in the Sarnia area. In addition, Suncor has applied to Natural Resources Canada for funding for this proposed facility under the Canadian federal government’s ethanol program. A decision on funding is expected later in January.

Sarnia, Ontario, Canada – January 13, 2004 [SolarAccess.com] “Suncor has evaluated the project internally and we believe it has promise,” said Sarnia Refinery Vice President Kirk Bailey. “Now, we need to hear and respond to what the Sarnia community and our neighbours think.” According to Suncor Energy Products, the proposed ethanol plant would be a world-class facility capable of producing more than 200 million liters of ethanol that would be blended into Sunoco gasolines. (Sunoco retail stations in Ontario are owned by Suncor Energy Products). Suncor plans to make the ethanol at the plant from regionally grown corn. “Consultation is very important to us,” said Bailey. “We want to keep the community informed about what we’re doing, and we want to try to respond to the concerns of the community when we make decisions.” Suncor will consult with members of the Sarnia community over the next few months. Open house meetings, to be scheduled in the first part of the year, are intended to involve the Sarnia community in project planning, and will help to identify any issues that could be addressed before Suncor makes its final decision. “We are committed to understanding the community’s concerns and issues,” said Bailey. “Through discussion and dialogue, we’ll make an effort to find ways to address those concerns to the greatest extent possible.” Should Suncor receive final approvals, construction would begin by mid-2004 and be complete by mid-2006. If the project proceeds, Suncor intends to construct an ethanol facility similar to those recently built in the United States. Suncor has praised these facilities for using state-of-the-art technology to produce ethanol in a safe and efficient manner. Suncor plans to use thermal oxidizer technology, which scrubs emissions and reduces odours, at its proposed facility in Sarnia. Sunoco claims they are the only major gasoline retailer to sell ethanol blend gasolines in Ontario, and one of few retailers in Canada. All Sunoco gasolines contain ten per cent ethanol at no additional cost to customers. According to Suncor, ethanol-blend gasolines burn cleaner and help reduce emissions that contribute to smog. They cut emissions of carbon monoxide by up to 30 per cent and reduce unburned hydrocarbons in older vehicles. “Suncor prides itself on being a leader in providing premium products that combine advanced performance with environmental leadership,” said Bailey. “This potential investment in an ethanol facility is part of our commitment to environmental innovation and sustainability.”
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