Bioenergy Mission to Europe

May 28 - June 6, 2012
Sweden, Denmark & Germany

The Biomass Innovation Centre recently helped to organize a bioenergy mission to Europe, which took place from May 28 to June 6, 2012. Initiated by Alain Thivierge of RDÉE Ontario, the bioenergy mission received government support from FedNor and Foreign Affairs and International Trade (GFAIT). The purpose of the trip was to help accelerate bioenergy projects in northern Ontario. Six northern Ontario businesses and three not-for-profit organizations (BIC included) took part in the trip, with the intent of bringing back information and resources that will help to develop northern Ontario’s bioeconomy. RDÉE Ontario and the Biomass Innovation Centre also represented and attended meetings on behalf of another four northern Ontario businesses and one First Nation, who are looking to expand into the biomass sector. The trip was an overall success, and below are some of our trip highlights.

Northern Ontario delegation at World Bioenergy 2012. From left to right: Alain Thivierge (RDÉE-Ontario), Daniel Sigouin (Hearst Economic Development Corporation), Angela Spreng (Consulate of Canada), Normand Verville (Normand Verville Ent. Ltd.), Megan Smith (Biomass Innovation Centre), Mario Léveillé (NorArc), Jason Naccarato (Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre), Francois Blais (Solar Power Solutions), Bill Smith (Cuna Railway Innovation). Absent from photo: Ivan and Christine Filion (Sturgeon Falls Brush).

Click here for a list of Delegates.

Part A: World Bioenergy 2012 – May 28 to June 1

Conference Description:
  • Very high-profile conference, organized by the Swedish Bioenergy Association (SVEBIO) every second year in Jönköping, Sweden.
  • Based on the unique “taking you from know-how to show-how” concept, where academic research and developments blend with commercial experience.
  • Leading meeting point for the international bioenergy sector with four major components: an international trade fair, an extensive conference program, B2B matchmaking and a large number of study visits.
  • Three combined conferences including World Bioenergy, World Pellets and World Biorefinery.
  • Theme for 2012 was “bioenergy solutions that work” – overall focus on applied and currently available technology, as well as efficient, sustainable, and economic solutions.

Conference Highlights:
  • Choice of four pre-conference tours: 1) bioenergy in agriculture and CHP, 2) biofuels for transport and CHP, 3) pellets, CHP and trade, and 4) solid biomass, CHP and pellets.
  • Anna-Karin Hatt, Sweden’s Minister for Information Technology & Energy, opened the trade fair and conference with a very inspiring message
  • The 2012 World Bioenergy Award was announced during opening plenary session. It was given to Mr. Harry Stokes, USA, who has developed, funded and managed Project Gaia to improve the health, economic status and quality of life of a significant number of families in the developing world.
  • A Canadian Networking Reception was sponsored by the Canadian Embassy. Opening remarks were given by Kenneth Maccartney, Canada’s Ambassador to Sweden and Catherine Cobden, President of Forest Products Association of Canada.
  • Canada Speaker’s Corner took place at the Canadian Government’s exhibition. Presentations were given by two members of our northern Ontario Delegation:
    • Alternative energy from mixed sources in Sault Ste. Marie by Jason Naccarato, Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre
    • INOVO, a community model to develop the green economy by Daniel Sigouin, Hearst Economic Development Corporation
  • Six concurrent conference sessions were available – World Pellets, World Biorefinery, Market Outlook, Energy Systems, Transportation, and Sustainable Bioenergy.
  • Over 600 conference participants listened to 90+ oral presentations, given by speakers from 34 countries.
  • Conference delegates could chose from 10 daily study visits to sites near Jönköping.
  • There were 52 poster presentations, including a poster and drink reception with 15 oral presentations.
  • An indoor/outdoor trade exhibition took place with approximately 150 exhibiting companies from 19 countries. Over 1,300 companies from 63 countries participated in the trade exhibition.
  • B2B meetings (aka matchmaking) were organized by Enterprise Europe Network. 351 B2B meetings took place with 136 participants from 34 countries. 13 Canadian companies/organizations participated in the matchmaking event.
  • Choice of three post-conference tours: 1) biofuels and bioliquids, 2) local district heating and waste to energy 3) biofuels from agriculture, CHP and biogas.

Part B: Value-added Visits in Denmark and Germany – June 3 to 5

Dall Energy – Sunday, June 3 – Denmark
  • Met with Jens Dall Bentzen, Managing Director for Dall Energy
  • Company designs updraft gasification systems – 2MW and 8MW thermal systems currently available, but also designing a 25 MW thermal system

Stirling DK – Sunday June 3 – Denmark
  • Met with Lotte Glarkrog, CEO and Tanja Groth, Head of Marketing for Stirling DK
  • Company designs the stirling engine (aka reverse heat pump) – 35 kW engine currently available, but can modularize the units

Marstal Fjernvarme District Heating Facility – Monday, June 4 – Denmark
  • Met with Leo Holm, Engineer for Marstal District Heating Jan Depenau, Director for Euro Therm and Hans Grydehoj, Director for Sunmark.
  • Marstal Fjernvarme is a large-scale district heating facility with a yearly heating production of 28,000 MWh, based on 55% solar energy and 45% biomass energy. The site also includes a CO2 heat pump and electricity production from biomass energy through an Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) unit.

Model Region Harz – Tuesday, June 5 – Germany
  • Tour of one of the six model regions in Germany that are supported by the Federal Government.
  • Model Region Harz is intended to support the development and use of a mix of renewable energies, and using advanced information technology systems with the objective of becoming a 100% renewable energy region.
  • Harz Region is using a mix of wind, solar, waterpower and biomass to meet their energy needs.

Click here to see photos from the bioenergy mission!

Click here to see an overview of the Bioenergy Mission to Europe.

Click here to read the Biomass Innovation Centre's trip report.

Click here to read the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre's trip report.

As part of the bioenergy mission, two information sessions were organized and delivered prior to departure for Europe.

Information Session 1: Exploring the Possibilities

On May 7, 2012, an information session was held for delegates of the Bioenergy Mission to Europe. The main purpose of the session was to give an overview of the bioenergy sector in Europe, but it also gave the delegates an opportunity to meet each other for the first time. The session was hosted in North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie and North Bay via WebEx, and offered an opportunity for other interested parties to attend as well.


Welcome and Introductions
Alain Thivierge, RDÉE Ontario

Overview of Renewable Energy Policies in Europe
Megan Smith, Biomass Innovation Centre, Nipissing University

Why Europe Matters: Experience and Expertise
Noam Sugarman, Canadian Bioenergy Association

MNDM and their support of Ontario's Emerging Wood Pellet Producers: Finding European Offtakers
Todd Eastman, Trade, Investment & Strategic Sectors Unit, Ministry of Northern Development & Mines

World Bioenergy: What to Expect
Roly Kilpatrick, Industrial Research Assistance Program, National Research Council

Sault Ste. Marie Combined Heat & Power Project
Jason Naccarato, Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre

Background Information:

Report – Renewable Energy 2010: Key Facts and Figures for Decision Makers
Report – Global Competitiveness Report 2010-2011
Report – 2011 Key World Energy Statistics
Presentation – IPCC Special Report on Renewable Energy and Climate Change Mitigation: Bioenergy Highlights
Presentation – European Bioenergy Mapping
Report – Energy 2020: A Strategy for Competitive, Sustainable and Secure Energy
Chart – Europe 2020 Targets
Report – National Action Plan for Renewable Energy in Denmark
Report – National Action Plan for Renewable Energy in Sweden
Report – National Action Plan for Renewable Energy in Germany
Report – Energy Roadmap 2050

Information Session 2 & Press Conference: Group Briefing

A press conference for the launch of the Bioenergy Mission to Europe took place on Tuesday, May 22, 2012, at the Travel Lodge Hotel in Sudbury. Alain Thivierge gave a brief overview of the Bioenergy Mission to Europe followed by statements from each of the delegates. Radio Canada, CTV, and CBC were in attendance and conducted individual interviews of the delegates and mission organizers. A group briefing took place following the press conference.

Click here for Alain’s presentation
Click here for an overview of delegate objectives

Additional Information:

Initial Invitation – Bioenergy Mission to Europe (English)
Initial Invitation – Bioenergy Mission to Europe (French)
Information Session 1 – Agenda
Information Session 1 – Participants
Media Package – Press Conference (English)
Media Package – Press Conference (French)

In the News:

May 22, 2012 – Radio Canada – Northern Ontario trade mission to Europe
May 28, 2012 – Canadian Biomass – Getting Started in Sweden
May 29, 2012 – Canadian Biomass – Strong Canadian presence at World Bioenergy