Air Canada invests in carbon capture technology

Air Canada has made a multi-billion dollar investment in a climate solutions company that is working to implement technology that removes carbon dioxide from the air at industrial-scale levels, the airline announced Thursday.

The C$6.75 million (US$5.06 million) investment in Squamish, British Columbia-based Carbon Engineering Ltd. is designed to support the company’s direct air capture technology, which, it says it uses large fans to suck in air and then separates the carbon dioxide “through a series of processes” and returns the remaining air to the atmosphere. The captured CO2 can be stored underground or used to create sustainable aviation fuel, according to CE.

“We remain focused on finding innovative, sustainable and long-term solutions [greenhouse gas] emissions reduction solutions for aviation and carbon capture is one we have outlined in our strategy to achieve net zero GHG emissions by 2050,” Air Canada President and CEO Michael Rousseau said in a statement. .

Air Canada last year announced a memorandum of understanding with Carbon Engineering “to advance transformative new technologies toward commercial viability of SAFs and carbon removal.”

The airline has earmarked C$50 million to invest in technology to reduce carbon emissions. Financing for CE comes from this investment fund, according to Air Canada, as does the $5 million the airline plans to use to buy 30 ES-30 hybrid-electric planes being developed by Sweden’s Heart Aerospace.

Carbon Engineering announced in June that it would work with 1PointFive, a partnership between an Occidental subsidiary and Rusheen Capital Management, to implement carbon capture projects around the world. United Airlines, an Air Canada partner, announced in 2020 that it would make a multi-million dollar investment in 1PointFive.

1PointFive in a June statement said it expects its first facility to open in Texas by the end of 2024. The company said it could produce 70 direct air capture plants worldwide by 2035, each with an expected capacity of one million. metric tons of carbon dioxide captured. under current policy and compliance and voluntary market scenarios.” That number could grow to 135 plants “with an increase in global policy initiatives and demand in the voluntary market.”

Aircraft maker Airbus also announced an investment in Carbon Engineering on Thursday. The company did not disclose the amount invested, but Carbon Engineering CEO Daniel Friedmann told The Globe and Mail it was significant.

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