All but one senior officer of Greenfield Project Management Ltd, which for the past five years has been attempting to develop a major bioethanol project in Belarus, have resigned, according to a web-posted statement.

The statement, placed on the former company website last Tuesday (August 10), said: “All of the senior officers of Greenfield Project Management Ltd have resigned, with the exception of Mr Michael Rietveld, chief executive officer and a director of the company.”

The list of those who have resigned reportedly includes former chairman Anne McClain, chief financial officer John Scott, Per Sjöberg, chief technical officer, Basil Miller, director of corporate communications, Andrei Aleinikov, director of the Belarus Representative Office, Iryna Ananich, director of the Chernobyl Bio-clean Programme.

“The reason why we have placed this announcement on this site, which is otherwise closed, is that two new websites set up by Greenfield claim that the above are still employed by or connected to Greenfield Project Management Ltd,” the statement said.

“None of the above are associated with Greenfield or its activities and do not wish to be associated with it in any way.

“We have been forced to make this announcement because our demand to have our names and biographies removed from the new Greenfield websites have been ignored.”

Greenfield Project Management Ltd is an investment and project development company specialising in energy, with a regional focus on Belarus, Russia and Ukraine.

It is part of a joint venture agreement with the state-owned Belbiopharm company in Belarus to build €240 million-plus bioenergy facilities to produce 570 million litres of bioethanol annually, together with biogas and green electricity.

The ethanol will be blended with petrol to make E5, E10 and E85 and other petrol/ethanol blends for European and local markets.

The bioenergy complex will be located in the city of Mazyr, inside the zone contaminated by the Chernobyl nuclear explosion of 1986, producing some 570 million litres of ethanol a year and biogas and electricity.

The company is understood to be working with the Belarus government to boost production of biomass for biofuels to speed up decontamination of lands affected by radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear explosion in 1986.

The idea is that the grain crops used for biofuels would remove radionuclides from the soil faster than they decay on their own while producing biofuels for profitable export to the European market.

These in turn will cut greenhouse gas emissions.

David Gibbs

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