University opens biofuel CHP plant in Canada

The University of British Columbia (UBC) on Sept. 13 officially opened a $34 million energy facility, making it Canada’s first university to produce both heat and electricity for its campus from renewable bioenergy.

UBC’s Bioenergy Research and Demonstration Facility (BRDF) will generate enough electricity to power about 1,500 homes and will supply up to 12 percent of UBC’s heat requirements. The facility will reduce UBC’s natural gas consumption by 12 percent and campus greenhouse gas emissions by 9 percent, UBC said in a press release.

The four-story facility, which runs on tree trimmings and wood chips from local landfills, is a partnership with Nexterra Systems Corp. and GE (NYSE: GE), and is the first commercial demonstration of a new application that combines Nexterra’s gasification and syngas cleaning technologies with GE’s Jenbacher engines.

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