Port Fuels and Materials Services Inc. (PFMSI) proposes to build a plasma gasification energy-from-waste facility at Port of Hamilton’s (HPA) Pier 15. The proposal is currently in the environmental screening stage. Plasma gasification is a non-combustion process that converts non-hazardous organic matter into synthetic gas (‘syngas’) using high temperature.

The syngas is used to feed engines, which in turn produce electricity. For a more detailed explanation of the plasma gasification process, please visit www.pfmsi.com. The ideal feedstocks are high-calorie, non hazardous industrial waste such as roof shingles, auto fluff, construction waste, wood, railway ties, plastics, as well as recycling and composting residue. These are stable, low-odour materials that are currently trucked to landfills. HPA is interested in working with PFMSI to invest in site development, and to provide support on materials transportation. HPA may also facilitate the sourcing of feedstock from other port tenants, and the use of the produced green energy within port facilities. Will the facility impact air quality? Initial public feedback indicates that air quality impact is a key concern. The environmental screening process will review all aspects of plant operation, including the engine-driven generation of green power. But what many people want to know is, what’s the impact of the primary treatment (plasma gasification) process? The gas plasma process is a fully contained, non-combustion technology, which means there are none of the byproducts of combustion – no ash, dust, or other forms of air pollution. The gas plasma plant will not have a large smokestack. PFMSI is working with McMaster’s BioInterfaces Institute to deploy the most advanced impact monitoring and mitigation technologies. Why this facility at this site? A port is an ideal location for a gasification facility because of the proximity of a large number of industrial operations to feed waste into the facility, reducing the need to truck the waste elsewhere for disposal. Efficient transportation connections are useful for bringing in additional feedstocks, by truck, rail, or vessel.

HPA believes the proposed facility represents a special opportunity for Hamilton to establish itself as a leader in clean technology. Important connections with the scientific and research community are already being made. New investments and related clean technology businesses will be driven by this anchor investment. Hamilton has had past experiences with energy-from-waste facilities, and PFMSI is serious about addressing the community and environmental concerns. International experience suggests that within ten years, plasma gasification will be the Canadian standard in diverting waste from landfill, and processing it close to its source. Subject to further study and examination, HPA has chosen to embrace this new technology as a way to move Hamilton forward, environmentally and economically.

Port welcomes new brewry

A new brewery is calling the port of Hamilton home. Arts & Science Brewing Ltd., a partnership between Collective Arts Brewing and Nickel Brook Brewing Co., will occupy the HPA-owned building at 201 Burlington St. E. The historic building was purpose-built by brewer Andrew Peller in 1947; the last bottle of beer was shipped from the facility in 2010 by Lakeport. “The building was meant to be a brewery,” says John Romano, co-founder of Nickel Brook Brewing Co. “The 50,000-square-foot space will become our main brewing site, essential in increasing production and meeting the demands of our beer lovers on a larger scale.” Brewing operations will occupy 40,000 square feet of the building and the balance of the space is slated for hospitality and retail, including a gallery and live music space. Arts & Science Brewing Ltd. is committed to creating a destination for craft beer lovers, artists and musicians. “Arts & Science Brewing is proud to bring a brewery that not only gives great beer back to the city, but also offers a new artistic hub,” says Matt Johnston, co-founder of Collective Arts Brewing. “We recognize the current cultural renaissance happening in the city, and we are confident Hamiltonians will embrace our commitment to excellence and creativity in our beer making and in our support of the arts,” said Bruce Wood, HPA President and CEO. “We’re committed to attracting new jobs and investment to Hamilton, and Arts & Science Ltd. is an example of the diverse mix of tenants we’re bringing on-board.” Once open, the new brewery is expected to support between 30 and 40 jobs.