Pytrade’s bio-fuel/greenhouse project for Kitimat
is a signature away from getting into gear.
In late July the provincial government approved
a $1 million ICE (Innovative Clean Energy)
grant for the project.
Since then, says Pytrade CEO Erich Fussl, the
company and government have been negotiating
the terms and conditions for the grant.
Last Thursday he told the Northern Sentinel
a “contribution agreement” had been reached and
the deputy minister of the Energy ministry was
expected to sign off on the deal “within the next
And with that signing, the fi rst instalment of
the ICE grant would be paid to the company.
Asked how much that would be and what the
rest of the payment schedule was, Fussl said, “that
information is confi dential between the province
and us and I can’t share it with you.”
But that fi rst payment will set the wheels in
That included shipping the equipment and
components that had already been manufactured
in Germany and had been stored there awaiting
fi nalization of the ICE grant.
Pytrade paid the cost of manufacturing that
equipment which Fussl said the province agrees is
worth $5.25 million.
If all goes according to plan he said construction
would start in March or April with a start-up
date of June.
The company has already identifi ed a site for
the project, a piece of property adjacent to the
railway line and to the north of the old railway
station in the Service Centre (Northern Sentinel,
Fussl said last week that talks with Rio Tinto
Alcan were ongoing regarding the purchase of
that approximately 20 acre site.
And he had a surprising piece of news regarding
the future of the project – once it had been up
and running for 10 years, Pytrade was going to
give it the BOOT.
That’s the acronym for build-own-operatetransfer
and means that after that period the company
would surrender ownership of the plant.
Fussl suggested options could be transferring
ownership to a special Crown agency (the
province) or some form of foundation involving
“direct involvement” of the public and/or fi rst nations.
“We will offer a model whereby Pytrade carries
all the risk associated with the project (and)
the recipient will take over with a 10-year history
of successful operation”.
While the proposal may sound astonishing,
he said, “it is fairly common in developing countries
where investment dollars are scarce and the
government is seeking solutions to the benefi t of
Why do it? Fussl said the company would be
taking taxpayer dollars to make the project a go and
wanted to give something back beyond just creating
“We hope that our model and initiative will become
a standard practice in public funding and grant
program and that more project sponsors will take responsibility
to give back,” he added.
Fussl said this proposal had been put to the province
which is reviewing it, adding, “We hope to start
talks as soon as possible.”
And he encourages the public to be involved in
the discussion of just how this eventual transfer is
So if anyone has an idea or suggestion, he says
they can e-mail it to offi email@example.com.
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The pyrolisis process takes wood waste such as
wood chips or hog fuel and produces a bio-fuel that
can be used in a modifi ed diesel engine.
Which in turn will produce the electricity and
heat required to run four greenhouses, each 30ft x
Emphasizing this is not a pilot project, Fussl
points out they have had a pyrolisis plant operating
in Germany since 2006.