17 Feb

Cutting-edge Power-to-Liquid project transforms municipal waste-derived CO2 into sustainable aviation fuels (SAF)

One of the first synthetic eFuel production units in Europe could be implemented at LIPOR’s Energy Recovery Plant in Maia/Porto; innovative technology configuration and design set to revolutionise the waste-to-energy industry while simultaneously decarbonizing the aviation sector.

Maia, 17 February 2022 – An interdisciplinary consortium, formed by LIPOR (Intermunicipal Waste Management of Greater Porto), P2X Europe and Veolia Portugal is moving forward with feasibility studies evaluating the development and implementation of a fully integrated industrial-scale Power-to-Liquid (PtL) facility at the Maia Energy Recovery Plant (Waste-to-Energy, WtE). The PtL project will combine renewable energy derived green hydrogen with CO2 captured from the waste gas stream of the WtE plant to produce green fuel for the aviation industry. 

Carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) technology can be seamlessly integrated into the existing energy recovery plant, resulting in near-zero - or even negative - CO2 emission power generation, thus significantly improving the environmental and energy balances of municipal waste incineration. 

The envisaged CCU implementation at LIPOR’s Energy Recovery Plant consists of capturing, extracting and purifying the biogenic part of CO2, present in about 60% of the carbon dioxide emissions generated as a result of the incineration process. In combination with green hydrogen, synthetic hydrocarbons, also known as eFuels, can be produced. In a first phase, up to 100.000 tons of captured biogenic CO2 will be recycled for conversion into eFuels and ultimate upgrading into synthetic green end products, such as drop-in eKerosene, eDiesel and specialty chemical products.

This initiative is a decisive strategic step for LIPOR in achieving its mission of transforming municipal waste into new resources through the implementation of innovative and circular practices. The project provides a first-of-its-kind blueprint for the decarbonization of the waste-to-energy sector.

The project sets a milestone in the WtE industry as it moves away from the linear "take-make-use-dispose” model and offers a ground-breaking alternative to accelerate the world’s transition to a credible circular economy, which is fully in line with Portugal’s energy and climate policies and the country’s ambition to achieve Carbon Neutrality latest by 2050.

José Manuel Ribeiro, President of LIPOR said:
"This project sets a good example on how waste management systems can make a relevant contribution to the decarbonization of the economy and to Carbon Neutrality. And more than contributing, they can lead, paving the way through innovative projects like the one that we are going to implement and which will also contribute to position Portugal among the first countries to invest in the circular carbon economy.”

José de Melo Bandeira, Veolia Portugal CEO added:
 "Carbon capture technologies are part of the journey for decarbonizing our industrial processes. Reducing or eliminating greenhouse gas emissions has its own limits, therefore capturing, storing or using these gases is critical for successful global results. This project, is an excellent example of transformational collaboration between different entities, towards innovative and challenging solutions that will create a benchmark and hopefully inspire others to follow.”

Christoph Weber, P2X Europe co-CEO added:
"By capturing CO2 from the waste gas stream before being released into the atmosphere, the "Waste-to-Jet” project gives non-recyclable municipal waste a climate-friendly afterlife. Integrating PtL technology into existing WtE plants provides a unique solution for the simultaneous decarbonization of waste management and air travel.”

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