28 Oct 2020, 14:52
Edgar Meza

German science ministry ups support for CO2 conversion in industry


Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is set to increase funding to convert carbon dioxide emissions in heavy industry into useful chemical products, Barbara Gillmann writes in financial daily Handelsblatt. Heavy industry is considered one of the biggest producers of CO2, but efforts are underway to reduce emissions. German steelmaker Thyssen-Krupp is already testing the process of converting CO2 emissions into substances like ammonia and methanol. Education and research minister Anja Karliczek is eager to promote the technology in other sectors and in order to help reduce industrial emissions. Karliczek is increasing the funding for the conversion efforts by a further 75 million euros. "The potential is enormous," Karliczek told Handelsblatt ahead of a conference on sustainable chemical conversion in industry. "It is our largest project to date in using carbon dioxide from industrial waste gases economically and thus reduce the CO2 footprint of core German industries on a scale relevant to climate protection," she added.

The steel industry alone is responsible for 6 percent of global CO2 emissions, according to Karliczek. In the first phase of the project, which the research ministry supported with 60 million euros, a model plant was set up at Thyssen-Krupp that captures, cleans and converts exhaust gases containing CO2 during steel production into basic materials for chemicals, fuels or fertilisers using green hydrogen. The company is already producing ammonia and methanol in this manner.

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