Calgary-based Nauticol Energy announced on 9 October that it intends to build a CA$2bn methanol manufacturing facility in Grande Prairie
The planned facility would be capable of producing 3mn metric tonnes of methanol a year.
Methanol itself has a multifarious range of applications, with its use in low-emission alternative fuels creating a spike in global demand.
It is also used in solvents and petrochemicals, electronics, and construction.
Nauticol’s press statement said that the project would create around 1,000 construction jobs, with 200 permanent jobs in the province following the project’s completion.
“Development will take place on existing disturbed land, adjacent to the existing International Paper Canada pulp mill,” the statement said.
“Building a highly modularized facility and optimizing infrastructure with industrial neighbours in this industrial zone limits impact to local communities and reduces the project’s ecological footprint by 50% compared to a traditional methanol facility of this scale.”
Nauticol plans to ship its product to Asian markets primarily, stating that around 70% of global methanol demand is found in Asia.
Mark Tonner, president and CEO of Nauticol, said:
“This is a made-in-Alberta/made-for-Albertans project that will add tremendous economic, environmental and societal benefits both here and around the world.”
Canada’s petrochemical industries have been going through a difficult period recently, particularly with regards to pipeline permits and resistance from locals, environmental activists, and First Nation groups.
Nauticol’s statement said that the firm has signed an agreement with the Western Cree Tribal Council (WCTC) that will make the WCTC equity participants in the project, setting “a new precedent in Alberta”.
“Nauticol truly values the meaningful relationships we have developed with the Western Cree Tribal Council,” Tonner said.
“Our company is committed to a partnership built on reciprocity, shared knowledge and shared opportunities.”