Manitoba Hydro, in partnership with Natural Resources Canada's National Renewable Diesel Demonstration Initiative (NRDDI), is supporting a $340,000 project that will demonstrate the use of biodiesel blends (5%) and long term storage under extreme cold weather conditions in electric generators in a remote northern Manitoba community.
According to Manitoba Hydro, this study on the quality and reliability of biodiesel will contribute to a better understanding of the technical issues related to the use of the fuel. This research will also identify the best solutions to overcome any potential challenges to biodiesel implementation in Canadian operations.
The NRDDI, as part of the Government of Canada’s renewable fuel strategy, supports new projects that demonstrate how renewable diesel fuel will perform under typical Canadian conditions. Through the NRDDI, the Government of Canada will support this research, which will help to ensure Canada’s stability in the global market and strengthen key agricultural and technological investments.
Manitoba Hydro and the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association will also provide funding support and technical expertise is being provided by the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association.
The project is a follow up to an initial test conducted by Manitoba Hydro in which 173,000 litres of 5% biodiesel were shipped to Brochet, Manitoba, in January 2008, stored for over a year and then burned successfully in the winter of 2008/2009.
This project includes an additional 170,000 litres of 5% biodiesel, which was blended and stored in late 2009 and shipped to Brochet on winter roads in January 2010.
Testing of the original diesel fuel, the straight biodiesel and the blend will continue over several months and will be conducted by the Manitoba Hydro laboratory at Selkirk, the BIOX laboratory in Hamilton and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado. The project will study the ability of biodiesel blends to be stored and used in northern diesel sites.
In addition, some vehicles in the Manitoba Hydro fleet in Winnipeg have been using biodiesel blends since October 2006. The project includes analysis of various effects of the long-term use on the vehicles’ fuel tanks including the impact of long term storage on dispenser filters.
Bob Brennan, president and CEO of Manitoba Hydro, said: “Biodiesel is a way to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions caused by diesel generators and we are pleased to cooperate with Natural Resources Canada with the help of the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association to confirm the positive results of earlier trials.”