Taiwan’s largest integrated steel maker, China Steel Corporation (CSC), has announced formal Board approval of a 1400-million TWD (US$46 million) capital investment in a LanzaTech commercial ethanol facility. This follows the successful demonstration of the carbon recycling platform at the White Biotech (WBT) Demonstration Plant in Kaohsiung using steel mill off gases for ethanol production.
LanzaTech’s gas fermentation process uses proprietary microbes to capture and reuse carbon rich waste gases, reducing emissions and pollutants from industrial processes such as steel manufacturing, while making fuels and chemicals that displace those made from fossil resources. (Earlier post.)
In November 2012, China Steel Corporation (CSC) and LCY Chemical Corporation formed a joint venture, White Biotech (WBT), as part of a Green Energy Alliance with LanzaTech. The resulting demonstration plant met or exceeded all ethanol production milestones and the CSC Board have formally approved the capital to move to commercial scale.
A 50,000 MT (17 million gallons) per annum facility is planned for construction in Q4 2015, with the intention to scale up to a 100,000 MT (34 million gallons) per annum commercial unit thereafter. Initial product focus will be industrial ethanol and gasoline additives, with plans for increased product diversity utilizing LanzaTech's unique microbial capability.
CSC has long been a champion of utilizing new technologies to create a better future and we are proud to help make this a reality. We need to keep fossil resources in the ground and carbon recycling is one way we can achieve this. If we are to keep within our global carbon budget we need all technologies to contribute and, more importantly, we need forward looking industries and organizations, such as CSC, to bring these technologies to market.—LanzaTech CEO Jennifer Holmgren
Globally, up to 150 million tonnes of CO2 emissions could potentially be avoided by re-using available steel mill gas residues using LanzaTech’s process. The process is currently protected by more than 100 granted patents, and produces sustainable fuels and platform chemicals that serve as building blocks for everyday products such as rubber and plastics.
Founded in New Zealand, LanzaTech has raised more than US$200 million from investors including Khosla Ventures, K1W1, Qiming Venture Partners, Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund, Petronas, Mitsui, Primetals, China International Capital Corp and the New Zealand Superannuation Fund.
China Steel Corporation (CSC), located at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, was founded in December 1971. With annual production (in terms of crude steel) around 10 million tonnes, CSC produces a range of products. The domestic market takes roughly 65% of CSC’s production and the exports take the remaining 35%. CSC is the largest steel company in Taiwan, enjoying more than 50% of the domestic market. Major export destinations are Mainland China, Japan and Southeast Asia.