How CO2 is turned into green fuel

REintegrate makes green methanol out of black CO2

In our series of articles about GreenLab’s P2X partners, we now zoom in on REintegrate. REintegrate produces eMethanol from the CO2 that comes from GreenLab’s biogas plant. When production is fully up and running in 2022, REintegrate will be able to remove the amount of CO2 equivalent to 7000 cars every year.

Easy to make, easy to use
Let’s start with the basics. What is eMethanol and how can it be used? Søren Knudsen Kær, REintegrate’s CTO, explains: “eMethanol is produced by combining CO2 and hydrogen. The CO2 can come from many sources, but we use the leftover CO2 that is a by-product when a biogas plant makes methane. The CO2 is then combined with hydrogen and turned into eMethanol through a series of processes. EMethanol is the electro-fuel that is most easy to produce, and it is very easy to use. In fact, it can be picked up from the plant by tank trucks and taken directly to the harbor terminal where it can be used as fuel for tank ships”. And that’s not all – the production of eMethanol has oxygen and heat as by-products and they can easily be used in the industrial sector and for district heating.

From pilot plant to scaled-up production
REintegrate started its journey by designing an eMethanol pilot plant in collaboration with the Aalborg University. The plant was a success and REintegrate was eager to scale up and start an actual production.

GreenLab offered them the opportunity to do just that by using the CO2 produced by the GreenLab biogas plant. “It makes a lot of sense for us to be placed in GreenLab”, Søren Knudsen Kær explains.

“Not only do we have access to the CO2 we need form the biogas plant, we have also become part of a green community that shows what a greener future can look like. A future where industrial energy communities share resources and run on green power delivered behind the meter. Our GreenLab plant will be 40 times bigger than our pilot plant and show how eMethanol can really be ‘produced and used’ in practice”.

A seamless transition to green is possible
The e-methanol that REintegrate produces is chemically identical to fossil methanol, and that makes it seamless for transport and chemical sectors to convert to the carbon-neutral version. However, the success of eMethanol’s market penetration hinges on legislation.

“It is of massive importance that legislators start giving P2X fuels a fair playing field, so we can compete equally with bio-fuels. Among other things, we hope to see demands to reduce CO2 in fossil fuels that will encourage producers of fossil fuels to mix P2X fuels in their fossil products”, says Søren Knudsen Kær. “We also hope to see a roadmap for the scale-up of eMethanol production. We have the ability to produce fuel from recirculated CO2 and green hydrogen – what are we waiting for?”

REintegrate at GreenLab

  • REintegrate will be at full production capacity in 2022
  • They will produce 8000 tons of eMethanol every year – that’s 10 mio. liters (or the equivalent of eliminating CO2 from 7000 cars)
  • REintegrate will get the CO2 they need from GreenLab’s biogas facility