Demonstration project in Canada to convert CO2 to synthetic wax
Photo courtesy of Lafarge Canada

Demonstration project in Canada to convert CO2 to synthetic wax

Lafarge Canada Inc., Canada’s largest provider of sustainable and innovative building solutions including aggregates, cement, ready mix and precast concrete, asphalt and paving, and road and civil construction, announced an with Svante Technologies Inc., and Dimensional Energy, Inc. to bring a demonstration of Dimensional Energy’s carbon dioxide utilisation technology to their cement manufacturing facility located in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada.

The project will combine the CO2 captured at the Lafarge cement plant in Richmond with hydrogen to create a carbon neutral synthetic wax.

Svante Technologies Inc., is a carbon capture company based in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. Dimensional Energy specializes in making carbon-neutral fuels and is based in Ithaca, New York, U.S.A. 

Since 2019, the Lafarge cement plant in Richmond has been using Svante carbon capture technology to capture one tonne per day of CO2. One of the challenges for carbon capture is what to do with the CO2 once captured. 

Given the lack of CO2 transportation and sequestration infrastructure in southern British Columbia today, utilisation of captured CO2 is fundamental to the decarbonisation of large industries in the region.

Unless an industry has access to a dedicated CO2 pipeline and geological sequestration, it needs to find some use for the CO2.

Phase 3 of this three-phase project will convert the one tonne per day of CO2 captured by Svante to produce approximately 1.5 barrels per day of synthetic hydrocarbons. Dimensional Energy’s technology will convert the CO2 with green hydrogen to syngas using their patented reactor and catalyst technology. This renewable syngas will be further processed into liquid hydrocarbons with Dimensional’s proprietary integration of downstream hydrocarbon synthesis. The synthetic hydrocarbons can be used in the production of industrial wax products and other high value products that place previously emitted carbon in an industrial use cycle.

Premium-grade pure waxes produced from Dimensional’s process will be of interest to other offtake partners such as manufacturers of plastics, lubricants, cosmetics, among others. By utilising this technology for production of the fuels and products that people use every day, the goal is to lower the carbon intensity of Canada’s entire economy once scaled.

The project will include an ISO verified life cycle analysis (LCA) performed by a third-party to aid in the overarching goal by the three companies involved, which is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. 

“Carbon capture is an important lever in our net-zero roadmap. However, for a carbon capture project to succeed, it must be paired with permanent geologic sequestration or utilization technology that will permanently isolate the CO2 in a specific media or product. If this pilot can be scaled to capture and use all facility emissions, it would be a first of its kind project for Lafarge and advance export and global adoption of this technology,” said Stephanie Voysey, head of Sustainability, Lafarge Canada (West).

“Finding pathways to the viable use of the CO2 we capture from industrial sites is key in developing a circular carbon economy,” said Claude Letourneau, president and CEO of Svante. “We must do everything we can to capture and remove CO2 before it reaches the atmosphere, so we are thrilled to be working with Dimensional Energy and Lafarge Canada on this important project. This type of partnership and project could make a significant impact on the world if deployed at scale.”

“It is an absolute honour to be collaborating with both Lafarge and Svante on this ground-breaking project.” said Jason Salfi, Dimensional Energy’s CEO. “Together, we will transform carbon emissions from one of the world’s most persistent problems of our time to one of our greatest assets to grow a circular economy in better harmony with nature. Leveraging existing infrastructure in difficult to decarbonise sectors of our economy is where we, as technology providers, can have an immediate impact on abating carbon dioxide while providing growth and opportunity for all future generations.”