Fizzy Drinks To The Rescue?
Carbon air capture technology has got one of its biggest opportunities yet. Soft drink giant, Coca Cola, looks to deploy carbon capture facilities as part of its Switzerland operations. Coca-Cola HBC Switzerland is on the verge of introducing air-captured CO2 in the beverage industry, collaborating with Swiss firm Climeworks. Coca-Cola HBC Switzerland is a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company, one of the largest bottlers for The Coca-Cola Company.
This project to capture CO2 is a strategic experiment, as the beverage industry is one of the world’s largest users of CO2 feedstocks using 10 million tons of CO2 per year. Carbon capture technology aims to allow Coca Cola to innovate in its supply chain by simultaneously reducing costs and removing CO2 emissions from the earth’s atmosphere. A very lofty target.
Carbon capture and its subsequent storage describes the process of capturing carbon dioxide (CO2) from sources such as fossil fuel power plants, transporting it to a storage site, and then depositing it where it will not enter the atmosphere. Normally in an underground geological formation, but in this case, the carbon will be reused to carbonize our favorite soft drinks. A win win situation by most people’s standards.
One of the aims of the project is to prevent the release of large quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere (from fossil fuel use in power generation and other industries). This technology presents a potential means of mitigating the contribution of fossil fuel emissions to global warming and ocean acidification. The concept of capturing CO2 emissions is a relatively new one. But comes as a response to the growing pressures of human caused climate change.
Pioneering firm, Climeworks, is one of the main actors leading the development of these carbon capture technologies. Climeworks is one of the few companies that has developed technology that captures CO2. The carbon capture technology is powered by either waste or renewable energy. Further improving the technologies overall environmental benefits.
Climeworks air-captured CO2 is targeting its technologies towards customers in the food, beverage, agriculture, and renewable fuels market. Creating a new market in reusable carbon emissions. Drink carbonation could provide a great use case for deployment of these technologies at scale.
But this certainly won’t be the first rodeo for Climeworks. One of the first demonstrations of the innovative technology was deployed with Swiss municipal waste disposal company, KEZO, in 2017. Eighteen Climeworks CO2 collector plants were installed on top of the roof of the KEZO’s waste utilization plant. The collectors were powered by waste heat from waste incineration plant. The captured CO2 is then delivered to a neighboring greenhouse. According to company case studies, the gas pumped into the greenhouse atmosphere has enhanced vegetable and lettuce growth by up to 20 per cent. The project was supported by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy.
With this real world proof of concept under its belt, the Swiss firm hopes to deploy more of these carbon capture facilities, ushering in a new recycled carbon market.