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Varennes Carbon Recycling

Green Infrastructure
Varennes, Quebec
$277 million
(Under construction)
Shell, Suncor, Proman and the government of Québec joint venture

Building North America's largest green hydrogen electrolyzer

A joint venture involving Shell, Suncor, Proman and the government of Québec to build a biorefinery and an electrolyzer to convert waste into biofuels and circular chemicals, based on a technology platform developed by Enerkem.

Fast facts

One of the world's first large-scale biorefinery coupled with an electrolyzer producing biofuels and circular chemicals
Supports new industry key to Canada's aim to be net zero by 2050
Reduces greenhouse gas emissions by more than 170,000 tonnes annually
Creates 500 construction jobs and about 100 permanent jobs during operations

Powered by Enerkem’s exclusive technology, the Varennes Carbon Recycling project will convert non-recyclable waste and residual biomass into biofuels and circular chemicals. This supports Canada’s goal of accelerating efforts to be net zero by 2050.

The plant will be an example of Canadian know-how and leadership in the development and deployment of innovative clean technologies. Enerkem was able to bring together world-class global strategic partners who are taking a leading role in this flagship facility of the green economy.

The Varennes biorefinery will also include North America’s largest electrolyzer that supplies green hydrogen and oxygen. The facility will have a capacity of up to 130 million litres of biofuels per year after commercial operations are launched in 2025.

The CIB’s investment of $277 million will help support project financing with flexible terms commensurate with the risk profile.

Benefits of CIB’s Involvement

Our first investment in low carbon fuel, carbon capture utilization storage and hydrogen sector supports innovative technology and sustainable development while also filling structural lending gaps caused by uncertainty over biofuel prices. The sales strategy of biofuels will be based on the ability to generate the highest green premium in either North America or Europe.

Learn more

A rendering of the Varennes Carbon Recycling facility
A worker oversees machinery in the ethanol plant in Enerkem Westbury Innovation Center, QC
Enerkem green hydrogen hydrolyzer process
Enerkem Varennes Carbon Recycling Biorefinery
Government of Canada

The largest biorefinery in Canada will open its doors in Varennes, with the help of a loan from the Canada Infrastructure Bank. By supporting innovation here at home, the Canada Infrastructure Bank is giving Canada more tools to continue the fight against climate change, creating good jobs and generating wealth, here in Quebec.

Hon. Pablo Rodriguez
Government of Canada

Clean fuels are an essential part of the clean technology mix in a net-zero world. While electrification will be a chosen route in some sectors, clean fuels will also play a very significant role going forward. Projects like this will accelerate important work to help Canada achieve its ambitious environmental and economic objectives – I look forward to continuing to work with the Canada Infrastructure Bank and private sector partners to produce the clean hydrogen the world needs.

Hon. Jonathan Wilkinson

We are pleased the Canada Infrastructure Bank has agreed to support Varennes Carbon Recycling and charted a path forward for this important project. The transition to a lower carbon energy system requires collaboration that brings technology, expertise and governments together with industry for society to achieve its climate ambitions.

Andrew Murfin, General Manager New Fuels

Suncor is proud to be a partner in Varennes Carbon Recycling, a project that will divert non-recyclable waste from landfills and turn it into renewable methanol for use in marine transportation and the production of circular plastics. We sincerely appreciate the financial support provided by the Canadian and Quebec governments, which will enable this project to become one of the largest producers of renewable methanol in the world.

Mark Townley, Senior Vice President, Supply, Trading & Optimization

Proman is excited to contribute our marketing, logistics, and operational experience to Varennes Carbon Recycling, and we look forward to working with all the project partners to make this innovative waste-to-low carbon fuels plant a great success and contribute towards meeting global sustainability targets.

David Cassidy, Chief Executive Officer
Varennes Carbon Recycling

We are pleased with the support of the CIB to Varennes Carbon Recycling that now combines the electrolyzer with the biorefinery into one single project. CIB’s participation enables this first-of-a-kind, fully commercial project, based on Enerkem’s waste to methanol technology platform. This sends a powerful signal to investors and the biofuels and circular chemicals sectors.

Dominique Boies, Chief Executive Officer