Highbury CEO addresses BC – Korea Forum

Delegates hear Thomas Hobby speak on company’s renewable syngas technology and future

How feasible is it to turn waste wood into jet fuel? Very, according to the Chief Executive Officer of a new startup company, Vancouver-based Highbury Energy Inc. (HEI).

Speaking to the British Columbia-Korea Trade and Investment Forum on June 23, Thomas Hobby detailed Highbury’s project with the Korea Institute of Energy Research (KIER) to adapt a syngas conversion process to HEI’s high-value synthesis gas process, with the ultimate aim of creating renewable diesel or jet fuel from biomass.

“KIER and HEI are collaborating on the design of a small demo plant to be constructed in BC to process about 10 tonnes of dry biomass per day into heat, power and liquid transportation fuels,” he said. “Long-term we are targeting a number of sectors as potential customers – in particular the forestry, mining and airline industries. We believe our technology will transform the forest industry and support a third leg of the forest resources economic stool, which includes lumber and value added products, pulp and paper and bioenergy development.”

The forum session focused on research and commercial development between Canada and Korea. The HEI-KEIR project, which is sponsored by the BC Bioenergy Network and Korea Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning, takes advantage of Highbury’s acclaimed breakthroughs in renewable energy technology.

Mr. Hobby has conducted extensive research into renewable energies including torrefaction, pilot-scale pyrolysis, gasification and combustion of biomass, and has been interviewed by national and provincial media on a myriad of forest industry topics including forest fuels management, non-timber resources and bioenergy. The forum was attended by 350 representatives from businesses dealing with agrifoods, technology, forestry and bioenergy as well as by officials of the Korean government, and comes in the wake of the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement ratified last January.

South Korea is BC’s fourth-largest goods export destination, and Canada’s third-largest trading partner in Asia.

Highbury teams up with Korean governments to create high-quality fuels from Highbury synthesis gas

Highbury is working with a Korean government agency to convert our syngas into jet and diesel fuels. The process will combine a syngas-to-liquids process developed by the agency – Korea Institute of Energy Research, or KIER – and Highbury’s propriatery biomass gasifier technology. The aim is to produce simpler syngas cleaning and more efficient production of wax-free diesel from biomass,  and to improve the quality of the liquid yields, which span a range from jet-fuel to diesel.

The partnership began in late 2013 after Highbury was one of four winning applicants in a bioenergy competition for a grant sponsored by the BC Bioenergy Network and the Korean Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP). The two-year, $300,000 project aims to develop a process for converting Highbury’s syngas to diesel liquid through Fischer-Tropsch processes, which are a series of chemical reactions that convert a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen into liquid hydrocarbons. In testing, Highbury’s gasifier technology has yielded the lowest well-to-wheel CO2 emissions per kilometre of any liquid fuel used.

Korea Institute of Energy Research

Highbury CEO to make presentation at BC-Korea trade and investment Forum  

Delegates will hear Thomas Hobby speak on Liquid Fuels from Woody Biomass

– for immediate release June 22, 2015 –

 VANCOUVER, BC – Thomas Hobby, the Chief Executive Officer of Highbury Energy Inc., will be speaking on the topic ‘Liquid Fuels from Woody Biomass’ at the British Columbia-Korea Trade and Investment Forum in Vancouver.

Mr. Hobby has worked over 25 years in the forestry, agriculture and biomass energy sectors, and has more than 10 years of bioenergy commercialization and executive experience. A Professional Agrologist in British Columbia, he has worked in education, farm and forest management, commercial agricultural lending, natural resources academic research and start-ups, and has led non-profits. His company has conducted extensive research into renewable energies including pilot-scale pyrolysis, gasification and combustion of biomass and coals, and he has been interviewed by national and provincial media on a myriad of forest industry topics including forest fuels management, non-timber resources and bioenergy.

Highbury Energy is engaged in a joint BCBN-KETEP project with the Korea Institute of Energy Research (KIER) to adapt KIER’s Fischer-Tropsch process to use syngas from Highbury’s unique gasifier in order to produce renewable diesel or jet fuel from BC biomass.

Held in Burnaby, BC on June 23 and 24, the BC-Korea Trade and Investment Forum was created to strengthen the economic ties between BC and Korea. Participating in it will be Korean government representatives along with a wide range of businesses with a focus on agrifoods, technology, forestry and bioenergy. It comes in the wake of the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA) engineered by the federal Government and ratified in January, 2015.

South Korea is BC’s fourth-largest goods export destination, and Canada’s third-largest trading partner in Asia.

For information about  Highbury Energy Inc., visit www.highburybiofuels.com

Highbury inks gasification partnership agreement to heat BC mine

Highbury Energy Inc. is pleased to announce an agreement with international power management company Eaton and mining company MGX Minerals Inc. to convert organic matter into syngas at a mining operation in southestern BC.

Using its proprietary biomass gasification technology, Highbury has committed to provide a clean, low-cost energy source of syngas for continued operations at MGX’s Driftwood Creek magnesite property in the East Kootenays region of BC.

Terms of the agreement establish a comprehensive working business relationship between MGX, Eaton and Highbury to work together on several aspects of designing, developing and financing Driftwood’s proposed mining and processing project. The project will deploy Highbury’s proprietary dual-bed gasification technology to produce a hydrogen-rich syngas to heat industrial kilns as part of the production of calcined caustic magnesium. Feedstock will be waste biomass from the forest products industry within the region, possibly along with other biomass sources from forest ecosystem restoration and fuel hazard reduction programs within the area’s wildland/urban interface.

The project is slated to utilize an estimated first phase of 50,000 bone dry tonnes of biomass per annum. MGX says it will produce 100,000 tonnes of MgO (magnesium oxide) per year and operate for more than 40 years. The project will be supported by Eaton’s global experience and expertise in the mining and heavy industrial electrical industries, and will build a business case to determine its financial support as financial partner of the MGX project.

The project will provide local jobs and long term benefits for the East Kootenays region and will support economic growth within British Columbia.