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Indian Chemical Firm Makes Carbon Capture Breakthrough Turning CO2 into Baking Soda

January 5, 2017

Indian Chemical Firm Makes Carbon Capture Breakthrough Turning CO2 into Baking Soda

January 5, 2017
by Libby MacCarthy

Whether it be turning food scraps into cold-pressed juices or transforming PET waste into raw materials or converting beer waste water into batteries — just a few of the latest examples of the circular economy at work — companies are increasingly finding unique ways to transform and repurpose their waste, byproducts and emissions.

Tuticorin Alkali Chemicals & Fertilizers (TACFL), a chemical and fertilizers company based in the Southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, has made a global breakthrough in carbon capture technology, one that promises to prevent emissions of 60,000 tons of CO2 annually. It also has the potential to push forward the circular agenda in India, which the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and United Nations Conference for Trade Development (UNCTAD) believe could put India on the path to regenerative and value-creating benefits.

According to the company, the plant is now close to achieving its zero-emissions goal, operating with almost no emissions seeping into air or water thanks to a patented carbon-stripping technology from UK-based Carbon Clean Solutions. The technology employed at the Tuticorin plant converts captured carbon into soda ash, a base chemical used in glass manufacturing, paper production and detergents.

The chemical strips CO2 emissions from boiler chimneys through the form of a fine mist. As the chemical plant’s coal-fired boiler releases flue gas, a spritz of Carbon Clean’s new patented chemical removes the CO2 molecules. To create soda ash, the captured CO2 is mixed with rock salt and ammonia. While Tuticorn appears to be motivated by the financial benefits that the technology offers, Carbon Clean has suggested that it has the potential to capture between 5% to 10% of the world’s coal emissions.

Read more at Sustainable Brands.

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