The Carbon Corner - Issue #81

In this week's edition of The Carbon Corner, we delve into a series of groundbreaking initiatives propelling advancements in carbon capture technology. From notable partnerships such as Chevron and ION Clean Energy to collaborative efforts led by companies like Rolls-Royce, ASCO, and Landmark Power Holdings, these endeavors represent significant progress toward cleaner power generation and achieving carbon neutrality. Furthermore, the ongoing support from the Department of Energy for innovative projects, exemplified by the deployment of CORMETECH's cost-effective carbon capture technology, underscores a dedicated push towards sustainable energy solutions.

Join us as we explore these narratives shaping the future of carbon capture!

Project Cypress: Pioneering Direct Air Capture with Solid-Sorbent Technology

Project Cypress, a significant direct air capture (DAC) initiative, received over $50 million in funding from the US Department of Energy’s Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) in March. This funding, part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will support the initial phase of the project, expected to span 2 to 3 years, including planning, design, and community engagement.

Managed by Battelle and partnering with Heirloom Carbon Technologies and Climeworks, Project Cypress employs diverse approaches to CO2 capture and storage. While Heirloom uses limestone for absorption, Climeworks utilizes a solid-sorbent technology developed by Svante Technologies. The captured CO2 will be transported to a sequestration partner for permanent geological storage. Svante, a key player in the project, specializes in solid-sorbent-based filter technology for carbon capture, with applications ranging from industrial point sources to DAC. Their recent collaboration with Delek marks a significant step towards commercial-scale deployment of this technology, with a manufacturing facility underway to support both industrial and DAC markets.

ExxonMobil Expands Carbon Capture Horizon with Innovative Pilot Plant in Rotterdam

ExxonMobil, through its affiliate Esso Nederland BV, is embarking on expanding carbon capture technology with the construction of a pilot plant at its Rotterdam Manufacturing Complex. Teaming up with FuelCell Energy, the venture seeks to assess the performance and feasibility of innovative carbonate fuel cell (CFC) technology, addressing technical and cost challenges for potential commercial-scale deployment. CFC technology represents a breakthrough in carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), offering a multifunctional approach that enhances efficiency and economic viability.

Unlike traditional methods, CFCs not only capture carbon dioxide but also generate electricity, heat, and hydrogen as valuable by-products, contributing to lower operational costs and new revenue streams. This integration aligns with global efforts to transition to cleaner energy sources, offering a sustainable pathway for industries to reduce their carbon footprint. With support from the European Union and the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, this collaborative effort underscores the importance of public-private partnerships in advancing sustainable technologies. ExxonMobil's commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 drives its pursuit of innovative solutions, reflecting its dedication to environmental stewardship and sustainable development.

Pennsylvania Senate Advances Bill Paving the Way for Carbon Capture Future

The Pennsylvania State Senate recently passed Senate Bill 831, championed by Sen. Gene Yaw, to lay the groundwork for carbon dioxide capture, utilization, and sequestration (CCUS) within the state. Sen. Yaw emphasized the bill's role in positioning Pennsylvania as a leader in CCUS technology, offering a pragmatic approach to reducing carbon emissions while maintaining energy grid reliability. Currently, CCUS falls under the jurisdiction of the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), but the bill seeks to establish state-level regulations. Estimates suggest Pennsylvania could store billions of metric tons of carbon dioxide underground, equivalent to emissions from millions of gas-powered vehicles annually.

The bill has garnered support from various business, labor, and industry groups, highlighting its potential to create both construction and permanent jobs. Senator Yaw stressed Pennsylvania's suitability for developing a robust CCUS network, citing its energy industry and geological advantages, urging swift action to foster economic growth and opportunity. The bill now awaits consideration in the House of Representatives.

Chevron Invests in Carbon Capture Future with ION Clean Energy Partnership

Chevron has announced its investment in ION Clean Energy, becoming one of the newest equity holders in the carbon capture firm. The US supermajor led a $45 million Series A financing round in the Colorado-based company through its New Energies Division, although the exact investment amount remains undisclosed. ION specializes in developing amine-based carbon capture technology tailored for hard-to-abate industrial emissions, aiming to commercialize post-combustion capturing technology.

Their process involves funneling flue gas into an absorption tower where liquid solvents absorb up to 99% of CO2 before the remaining gas is vented. With a focus on efficiency and stability, ION’s technology has received significant backing, including over $80 million in grants from the US Department of Energy. Additionally, ION is collaborating with Calpine on a federally funded demonstration test, with plans for a commercial-scale project in California, emphasizing their commitment to advancing carbon capture solutions. The company has also undergone a change in leadership, with Timothy Vail assuming the CEO role, signaling a new phase in their mission to combat carbon emissions.

Rolls-Royce, ASCO, and Landmark Power Team Up for UK Carbon Capture Advancement

Rolls-Royce, ASCO Carbon Dioxide Ltd (ASCO), and Landmark Power Holdings Limited (LMPH) have joined forces to advance clean power generation in the UK through carbon capture technology. The partnership aims to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from mtu gas reciprocating engines, with potential applications in various industries like food production, sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), and cement production. Rolls-Royce’s Power Systems division will contribute its expertise in decentralized power generation, while LMPH will bring its patented technology for high-efficiency decarbonized combined heat and power (CHP) projects.

DOE Advances Lower-Cost Carbon Capture Tech for Natural Gas Plants

The Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is set to deploy a "lower-cost" carbon capture technology developed by CORMETECH Inc. to the U.S. National Carbon Capture Center (NCCC) in Alabama for testing. This technology, aimed at large natural gas combined-cycle (NGCC) plants, is designed to capture at least 95% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from flue gas.

Funded by DOE-NETL, the project utilizes a monolithic amine contactor, featuring a honeycomb structure with tiny flow channels for CO2 absorption. The captured CO2 can then be desorbed using steam for storage or reuse. While similar to Global Thermostat’s direct air capture process, this technology is specifically tailored for NGCC plants, catering to more than half of the country's natural gas-fired electric-generating capacity. The CORMETECH project is part of a broader federal initiative, with 12 projects receiving funding to advance point-source carbon capture and storage technologies, addressing emissions from both power and industrial facilities.

Schaper Energy Consulting is a professional engineering firm offering carbon strategy services to CCS site developers. Check out some examples of our projects here:

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We hope you enjoyed reading this week and hope to see you back next week for more!

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