Enerkem’s breakthrough technology is the ultimate result of a desire to create clean energy and value-added products from otherwise wasted materials. This technology was initially inspired by the research and development led by Dr. Esteban Chornet, Professor Emeritus at the Université de Sherbrooke (Québec, Canada). Professor Chornet and his son Vincent saw the opportunity to develop a revolutionary technology and bring it to the market.

Vincent Chornet, as President and CEO, was the guiding force behind Enerkem’s development since 2000, obtaining over C$750 million in private financing and government support, and growing the company to 200 employees. Enerkem recently started operating its very first commercial facility in Edmonton, Canada, and additional biorefineries are currently being developed in North America and around the world.

As Chief Technology Officer, Esteban Chornet has been providing vision, mentoring and engineering expertise in catalytic reactions and process integration, while leading the team that developed the company’s proprietary technology. 

Below is a list of the company’s major milestones since its inception:

2019

  • Q3: Dominique Boies is named the new Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Enerkem following the passing of Vincent Chornet.
  • Q2: Enerkem raises C$76.3 million. The financing comes from Enerkem’s existing investors, as well as a new investor, Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Q1: A consortium of world-leading companies comprising Air Liquide, Nouryon (formerly AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals), Enerkem and the Port of Rotterdam – has announced that Shell will join as a partner in Europe’s first advanced waste-to-chemicals facility in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

2018

  • Q4: Cofounder, President and CEO, Vincent Chornet received the 2018 EY Quebec Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in the Cleantech category.
  • Q3: Enerkem successfully produced a clean, renewable bio-dimethyl ether (Bio-DME), a by-product of biomethanol at its innovation center in Westbury, Québec. The company also engaged discussions with The Ocean Legacy Foundation to explore ways in which soiled plastics can be recuperated from oceans to produce low carbon transportation fuels and chemicals.
  • Q1: Enerkem succeeded in producing a new high-performance biofuel that could improve the octane rating of fuels sold on the market and reduce their carbon footprint at the Enerkem Innovation Centre in Westbury, Quebec. Enerkem makes the top 3 of the 50 hottest companies in the advanced bioeconomy, the company’s highest-ever ranking. The company also won at the 2018 Bio-Based World News Awards in the “Best use of alternative feedstocks” category. Enerkem signed an agreement with Sinobioway Group worth over C$125M in the form of equity investment in Enerkem Inc. that will lead the construction of over 100 Enerkem state-of-the-art facilities in China by 2035. Enerkem is named in the 2018 Global Cleantech 100 list for the fourth time.

2017

  • Q4: Enerkem’s Edmonton waste-to-biofuel facility receives registration approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to sell its ethanol under the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard
  • Q3: Enerkem begins commercial production of cellulosic ethanol from garbage at its state-of-the-art Edmonton biofuels facility
  • Q2: Enerkem’s second-generation ethanol obtains the lowest carbon intensity ever from the British Columbia government

2016

  • Q2: Enerkem’s facility in Edmonton becomes the first ISCC certified plant in the world to convert municipal solid waste into biomethanol

2015

  • Q3: Enerkem raises C$152.6 million in financing and initiates methanol production at its commercial facility in Edmonton, Alberta

2014

  • Q4: Enerkem partners with global chemicals leader AkzoNobel to jointly explore the development of waste-to-chemicals facilities in Europe and was named in the 2014 Global Cleantech 100
  • Q2: Enerkem launches world’s first, game-changing full-scale municipal waste-to-biofuels and chemicals facility in Edmonton, Canada

2013

  • Q2: C$50 million raised in latest financing round. Investissement Québec joins as an investor.

2012

  • Q3: Enerkem is named in the 2012 Global Cleantech 100 as ethanol production from waste begins at Enerkem demonstration facility in Westbury, Québec

2011

  • Q4: Enerkem raises C$15 million in project equity financing for its commercial facility in Edmonton and Enerkem voted 7th in the 50 Hottest Companies in Bioenergy
  • Q3: New financing round reaches C$88 million as methanol production start at Westbury
  • Q2: Valero joins Waste Management as a key Enerkem investor in a C$75.5 million financing round
  • Q1: Fast Company names Enerkem one of The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies

2010

  • Q4: Biofuels Digest names Enerkem one of The Top 50 Hottest Companies in Bioenergy and the Cleantech Group names Enerkm as a 2010 Global Cleantech 100 Company
  • Q2: Site preparation begins with the construction of the Enerkem Alberta Biofuels full-scale waste-to-biofuels facility in Edmonton, Alberta
  • Q1: Enerkem closes financing round of C$53.8 million with Waste Management as a strategic investor

2009

  • Q2: Permits granted to Enerkem to build a municipal waste-to-biofuels facility in Edmonton, Alberta
  • Q1: Enerkem Westbury enters the start-up phase for syngas production

2007

  • Enerkem begins construction of the Westbury demonstration facility

2003

  • Enerkem starts operating its pilot facility in Sherbrooke, Québec

2000

  • Esteban and Vincent Chornet cofound Enerkem Inc.