Australian cleantech developer Mineral Carbonation International (MCi) has closed a deal with Japanese giant ITOCHU Corporation (ITOCHU) to promote applications of MCi’s low emissions carbon utilisation technology using ITOCHU’s group network.
MCi uses carbon engineering processes to transform captured carbon dioxide emissions from most industrial sources into solid materials known as ‘carbonates’ that can be used to manufacture a range of building and construction products including building materials, chemicals, cements, concretes or consumer products. Turning carbon emissions into value this way is known as Carbon Capture and Utilisation, or CCU.
MCi and ITOCHU have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) giving ITOCHU rights to identify and develop market applications for MCi’s technology with Japanese groups.
MCi CEO Marcus Dawe said: “Thanks to this partnership with ITOCHU, Japanese organisations will be able to use our technology to lock emissions away for good by transforming their industrial carbon dioxide into solid materials that have numerous practical uses.
“Carbon Capture and Utilisation is emerging as a significant technology field that could not only help us remove carbon emissions, but also plays into a new circular economy that addresses both climate change and sustainability goals, and enables users to create value by treating carbon dioxide as a resource and not a waste,” Mr Dawe said.
MCi’s technology , which emerged in 2020 after more than seven years of R&D funded by Australian Governments and industry, is the first that does not need a price on carbon to be profitable.
ITOCHU Chief Operating Officer of Metal & Mineral Resources Division, Metals Company, Jun Inomata said partnering with MCi and commercialising its carbon dioxide will mark a step-change in ITOCHU’s contribution to a decarbonised society.
“Through integration of MCi’s technology and ITOCHU’s Global Network I am confident that this business model will be successful. Together with MCi, we wish to advance our ongoing contribution to achieve a carbon free society,” Mr Inomata said.
Mr Dawe described the partnership with one of Japan’s great trading companies as hugely significant.
“ITOCHU has a corporate philosophy called ‘Sampo-yoshi’ which focuses on bringing ‘good for the seller, good for the buyer and good for society’. ITOCHU’s spirit of contributing to a sustainable society for all makes it an ideal partner for MCi, which aims to enable new advanced manufacturing that creates jobs and value while locking away carbon dioxide.
“In the near future there will be vast volumes of captured carbon dioxide that need to be used or stored. There are many technologies that are being developed and scaled to meet this US$6 trillion global emerging carbon product market and all will need to be assessed if we are to meet Paris Agreement targets,” Mr Dawe said.
ITOCHU, which was founded in 1858, has bases in 62 countries and operates in export/import, machinery, metals, minerals, energy, chemicals, food, IT and finance markets.