FortisBC seeks energy innovators to grow BC's biogas supply

FortisBC, a regulated utility company based in British Columbia, Canada, is seeking expressions of interest from potential biomethane suppliers for its renewable natural gas programme.

The call for applicants will help the Canadian province grow its supply of this renewable and carbon neutral energy source. The company is seeking interest from suppliers for an additional supply of up to one petajoule, or enough natural gas to provide heat and hot water for approximately 10,000 homes annually.

'Demand from our renewable natural gas customers has resulted in the need for further biogas supply in our system,' says Doug Stout, VP of energy solutions and external relations. 'Our focus is to help put waste to good use by working with suppliers to develop this energy source for our customers.'

The company is seeking submissions from:
 Wastewater (sewage) treatment plants
 Landfills
 Farm operators and other agricultural businesses
 Food and beverage processing businesses
 Entrepreneurs who can facilitate the development of biogas production from any of the above listed or other organic material sources.

Capturing and using biomethane, which is the purified natural gas derived from biogas, significantly reduces greenhouse gases over simply allowing it to vent directly into the atmosphere, as is traditionally done at waste sites. Upgrading this biogas to pipeline-quality biomethane provides the additional benefit of replacing traditionally sourced natural gas for FortisBC customers.

Two projects are currently supplying biomethane to FortisBC's system, with five others under development or construction. Projects currently supplying biogas to FortisBC are Fraser Valley Biogas in Abbotsford and the Salmon Arm Landfill. Currently under development are Seabreeze Farm in Delta, Dicklands Farms in Chilliwack, Earth Renu Energy in Delta and the Lulu Island Wastewater Treatment Plant in Richmond.

The Glenmore Landfill in Kelowna is expected to begin supplying natural gas this year following the completion of construction. The completion of these projects will mean that FortisBC will have an annual supply of up to about 500,000 gigajoules, enough to provide heat and hot water for approximately 5,000 homes.

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