Utilizing the full potential of Alberta’s biomass
Alberta is investing in the conversion of the province’s biomass resources beyond traditional commodities into higher-value products. These new products increase economic returns from Alberta’s renewable natural resources. Accelerating growth of the bioeconomy can help diversify the provincial economy and strengthen rural communities.
Biomass includes agriculture and forestry fibre, byproducts and other feedstocks such as livestock manure and municipal solid waste.
Alberta Innovates aims to advance the bioeconomy in Alberta by investing in research and development in areas such as feedstock improvement, purpose-grown crops and in technologies to produce new products.
Products generated by new technologies that utilize biomass may include:
- Specialty chemicals
- Composite materials
- Cellulose nanocrystals (formerly called nanocrystalline cellulose)
New Conversion Processes
Biorefining presents a growth and diversification opportunity for effective biomass utilization. Through investment in research and the expansion of biorefining networks, Alberta Innovates facilitates the development of new technologies, the optimized efficiency of thermal, chemical and biological conversion processes for biomass, and pilot and scale-up of technologies and products.
Alberta Bio Future
Alberta Bio Future, led and managed by Alberta Innovates, is AIberta’s flagship bioindustrial program. It aims to expand a competitive, sustainable and profitable bioindustrial sector. The focus is primarily on projects that add value to biomass in agriculture and forestry, and create new and improved bioindustrial products and bioindustrial technologies.
ABF provides funding in three strategic priority areas: research and innovation, product and technology commercialization, and equipment utilization.
This program is slated to run until December 2020.
Advanced Materials and Chemicals Program
This program launched in 2011. Projects funded under the Advanced Materials and Chemicals Program (AMCP), focused on commercializing the conversion of Alberta’s biomass to advanced materials and chemicals. The program closed in 2017.
Alberta Forest Products Roadmap – downloadable pdf
In collaboration with stakeholders in government, academia and industry, Alberta Innovates led development of recommendations to advance Alberta’s bioeconomy, focusing on the non-food, non-pharma bioindustrial sector. Released in May 2013, strategies arising from the report may lead to new approaches to investments and alignment of resources in those areas of the bioeconomy with the highest potential. Learn more.
Bioeconomy Alberta Initiative
BioEconomy Alberta is an informal network supporting the development of Alberta’s bioeconomy sector by providing technical and business knowledge to new and expanding bioventures. The Bioeconomy Alberta team, which includes Alberta Innovates staff, promotes the sector outside of the province and at trade shows and conferences, including the annual BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocessing.