4. nov 2021
Dirik Beckers, Director at the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency, and Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir, CEO of Carbfix, have signed a EUR 3,9 million grant agreement where the EU Innovation Fund supports further development of the Carbfix carbon sequestration method at Hellisheidi Geothermal Power Plant.
Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir and Dirik Beckers signed Silverstone's sponsorship agreement in Brussels November 4th.
The grant amounts to almost half of the total cost of the project, called Silverstone, which aims at near-zero energy production at the power plant.
The signing took place in Brussels at one of the COP26 side events, where the European Union’s General Director of the Directorate-General for Climate Change, Raffaele Mauro Petriccione announced EU’s support for three projects, all of which aim at carbon neutrality. Edda Sif delivered a speech at a seminar hosted by the European Union on the occasion of the agreements.
Carbfix had already been brought to the attention of COP26 attendants, but Icelandic Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir paid special attention to the company and its method of permanent carbon sequestration in an address at the opening session of the Glasgow climate conference.
"The goal of the Silverstone project is to build a new treatment plant at the Hellisheidi power station, which will capture almost all of the carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulphide from our power plant's emissions, which will then be pumped into nearby basalt rock layers for permanent mineralisation with Carbfix technology. With this, ON Power will be at the forefront of green geothermal utilization with uninterrupted production of electricity and heat," says Berglind Rán Ólafsdóttir, ON Power's CEO.
Carbfix has been developing technology for the permanent sequestration of carbon dioxide at the Hellisheidi Geothermal Power Plant since 2007 in collaboration with domestic and foreign research institutes. The technology only requires electricity and water, and the operation has an insignificant environmental impact. The technology involves dissolving carbon dioxide in water and pumping it into the basalt bedrock, where natural processes permanently absorb the greenhouse gas through mineralisation. In this way, the carbon dioxide is permanently bound in the rocks deep in the bedrock, thus preventing its impact on the climate. The method can also be used for other gases such as hydrogen sulphide, but that geothermal gas has also been captured from the power plant and mineralised since 2014.
The current treatment unit at Hellisheidi Geothermal Power Plant captures about 30% of carbon dioxide and about 75% of hydrogen sulphide from its steam-emissions, or about 12 thousand tonnes of carbon dioxide and about 7 thousand tonnes of hydrogen sulphide per year. The grant received by the Silverstone project will be used for the design and construction of a larger and more powerful unit at the power plant, which is planned to be commissioned in 2025. This will absorb almost all carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulphide emissions from the power plant, or about 34 thousand tons of carbon dioxide and about 12 thousand tons of hydrogen sulphide per year.
Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir, CEO of Carbfix: "It is a great recognition for a young innovation company like Carbfix to receive such significant support from the Innovation Fund and a sign that carbon disposal with Carbfix technology is both an economical and environmentally friendly climate solution that can have an impact far beyond Iceland."