Interview with Margrét Ásgeirsdóttir and Sindri Sindrason from Carbon Recycling International (CRI).
CRI is a world leader in carbon capture and utilisation technology. Its pioneering GO Plant in Iceland, produces green renewable methanol that is mainly sold as clean transportation fuel and as chemical intermediates for various goods.
All the presidents of the world, except for maybe one, have acknowledged that climate change is a real threat. We need to do something about the greenhouse gas pollution. The world is searching for environmental technologies to solve the problem.
You don’t stop using fossil sources of energy overnight, it will take a long time scale down. Some of it you will always have to use. We still need liquid transport fuel for a long time to serve these markets. We have a solution there; we can make methanol out of renewable energy sources.
The market opportunity
There is a guideline from EU saying that at least 10% of all transport fuel must be from renewable sources by 2020. A cap has been put on biofuel usage in the future: only 7 of the 10% target for renewable transport fuel can be biofuel.
We also have electricity and electric vehicles, but taking notice of these things: both the cap on the biofuels and the development of other fuels and electric cars, there is a gap of at least 6 million tons of methanol worth by 2020 in the EU alone. From there on increasing as first generation biofules will be faced out from that point. So, only counting on the EU, there is a huge market.
We take CO2 and hydrogen and we make methanol out of it. You can take hydrogen from any source. It doesn’t matter where it comes from. The same goes for CO2. It can be waste from different kinds of industries, but you can also take if from the air.
A proven business model
CRI makes its profits and revenues through licensing its technology, as a turn-key green production plant provider and as EPC contractor. In the future, to create a recurring revenue stream, we of course have maintenance service contracts with our production plants worldwide.
CRI will invest in these project companies as we have a strong belief in the future profitability and upside of these projects. We want a share of that profitability as well.
Our competitive advantage
CRI’s technology is competitive on today’s regulations. We can operate within a wide range of industries. We can use their by-product gases and waste gases to create value today. However, the future market and regulations are all in our favour; whether it is a green premium on prices, or carbon taxes – they are just creating a large upside for our future business model.
CRI is operating, and has been operating since 2012, an industrial scale plant here in Iceland.
Therefore, CRI has at least 4-5 years competitive advantage on any competitive emerging technology. We need to keep this advantage by being first movers worldwide and building these plants.