Heading for the US market

Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir, framkvæmdastýra Carbfix, og Bergur Sigfússon, jarðefnafræðingur …

Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir, framkvæmdastýra Carbfix, og Bergur Sigfússon, jarðefnafræðingur hjá Carbfix. Ljósmynd/Atli Már Hafsteinsson

“This project is similar to what we did at Hellisheidi, and we applied for a grant from the European company Climeworks. We took advantage of the fact that we had all the infrastructure, had an indoor capture plant, and had the drill holes. All we had to do was get Climeworks to bring in its own, tiny vacuum cleaner, and to fit in with our system. This helped them to take the lead on a world class level. Because of this, they learned incredibly fast and were able to build the next system called Orca, and since it was so successful, we are building a ten times larger project called Mammoth.”

This is what Dr. Bergur Sigfússon, head of carbon capture and injection at Carbfix, tells Morgunbladid about the company’s new project, which is now extending the plants westwards. Carbfix, along with RMI and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), will lead a partnership of thirteen parties in the northwestern United States, with the project receiving a grant from the US Department of Energy of three million ISK, which amounts to about 396 million ISK, in the US.

Exciting times ahead

“We use this strength to create this project, but it is also our first step to enter the US market,” says Sigfússon, who sees many opportunities in the near future. Carbfix is actually the world class leader in the method of removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and tying it up in basalt deposits. Sigfússon says that no companies have done as much in this field. “We reach up to a hundred thousand tons every year on Hellisheidi and we are starting to pump down at Nesjavellir and Helguvík by the sea. We’ve done the most.”

The Swiss company Climeworks has been in close cooperation with Carbfix here in Iceland, while Climeworks is participating in a large project in the United States in the coming seasons. The US government announced on Friday that it plans to invest up to US$1.2 billion in a project in the southern United States with the same technological solution that was first implemented in Iceland at the Hellisheiði power plant in the fall of 2021, where Climeworks and Carbworks set up the Orcu air purification plant.

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