Who knew? Is it really possible to take all those emissions that are causing global warming and turn them into something useful? It seems possible and the DOE is investing $106 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to find out.
By turning CO2 emissions into an inexpensive raw material, we may be able to mitigate global warming by creating an economic resource. CO2 is being sought after to become fuel, plastics, cement, and fertilizers.
Six companies have been chosen that will enter into the design, construction, and operation of their proposed CO2 projects. The companies are:
Alcoa, Inc. (Alcoa Center, Pa.): Pilot-scale process will demonstrate the high efficiency conversion of flue gas CO2 into soluble bicarbonate and carbonate using an in-duct scrubber system featuring an enzyme catalyst.
Novomer Inc. (Ithaca, N.Y.): Teaming with Albemarle Corporation and the Eastman Kodak Co., Novomer will develop a process for converting waste CO2 into a number of polycarbonate products (plastics) for use in the packaging industry.
Touchstone Research Laboratory Ltd. (Triadelphia, W. Va.): This project will pilot-test an open-pond algae production technology that can capture at least 60 percent of flue gas CO2 from an industrial coal-fired source to produce biofuel and other high value co-products.
Phycal, LLC (Highland Heights, Ohio): Phycal will complete development of an integrated system designed to produce liquid biocrude fuel from microalgae cultivated with captured CO2.
Skyonic Corporation (Austin, Texas): Skyonic Corporation will continue the development of SkyMine® mineralization technology-a potential replacement for existing scrubber technology.
Calera Corporation (Los Gatos, Calif.): Calera Corporation is developing a process that directly mineralizes CO2 in flue gas to carbonates that can be converted into useful construction materials.