Australia’s Woodside (ASX:WPL) and US-based technology developers ReCarbon and LanzaTech have launched a collaborative studies campaign aimed at converting carbon emissions into useful products.
Together, Woodside, ReCarbon and LanzaTech, are investigating the viability of a proposed carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) pilot facility in Perth, Western Australia.
The proposed pilot facility would recycle greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane into value-added ethanol using ReCarbon and Lanzatech’s technologies. The ReCarbon technology would convert carbon dioxide and methane into synthesis gas, with the LanzaTech technology fermenting the synthesis gas into ethanol. Traditionally, ethanol manufacture relies on land and water use for source crops, such as corn. CCU reduces the reliance on these natural resources, said Woodside.
Woodside said it believes CCU is an emerging field with growing demand from existing and potential customers seeking alternative solutions for lower carbon.
This collaboration and proposed pilot highlight Woodside’s commitment to developing new energy products and lower-carbon services. In 2021, Woodside set a US$5 billion investment target by 2030 for new energy products and lower-carbon services such as hydrogen, renewables and carbon capture utilisation and storage (CCUS).
The project is now in the front-end engineering design phase.
“What’s notable about CCU is the wider co-benefits. Some end products have a further decarbonization benefit. Products such as ethanol can be used as raw materials in the chemical manufacturing industry,” Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill said today.
“We also see a potential role for the technology in helping to abate some of our Scope 1 and 2 emissions,” she said.
Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator is currently leading a co-design process to develop a carbon capture use and storage method under the Emissions Reduction Fund.
ReCarbon Founder and CEO Dr. Jay Kim welcomed the collaboration. “We are grateful to be selected as a leading technology solution to transform greenhouse gases into decarbonised products.”
LanzaTech CEO Dr. Jennifer Holmgren noted the scale of the opportunity. “Waste carbon can be transformed into critical resources like ethanol without adding CO2 to the atmosphere. Together with Woodside and ReCarbon, we can create an opportunity to reuse greenhouse gases for meaningful applications,” she said.
Woodside said it aims to thrive through the energy transition by building a low-cost, lower-carbon, profitable, resilient, and diversified portfolio.