July 18, 2005

Sask task force to advance biodiesel industry

REGINA, SASK-A new task force representing the Saskatchewan government and relevant industry interests will lead the development of the province's biodiesel industry. The Biodiesel Development Task Force will: determine the current status of the biodiesel industry and its potential for the province; determine the challenges and opportunities; consult and communicate with key stakeholders; and make recommendations for advancing the industry. Darin Egert, president of the Saskatchewan Canola Growers Association (SCGA), along with SCGA executive director Judie Dyck, will co-chair the task force, whose findings and recommendations will be forwarded to Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food Minister Mark Wartman. "Developing this industry will benefit our agricultural economy through further value-added activity and help protect and preserve the environment through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions," Wartman noted. Biodiesel is a renewable alternative fuel made from crops such as canola, as well as from animal fats. "It is important that producers play a major role in moving a biodiesel industry forward in this province," said Egert. "We use about one-third of the diesel fuel in Saskatchewan so we have the most to gain, since we are both feedstock suppliers for the production of biodiesel as well as users. We want biodiesel plants in our backyards, along with the jobs."

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