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Blue Planet Systems secures US$10 million for synthetic limestone tech

In the United States (US), Blue Planet Systems Corporation, a Silicon Valley company that has developed proprietary carbon capture and mineralization (CCM) system that it says permanently removes carbon dioxide (CO2), is economically viable and can be deployed at gigatonne (GT) scale. The US$10 million round of financing was comprised of leaders dedicated to addressing climate change.

Blue Planet Systems Corporation, a Silicon Valley company that has developed proprietary carbon capture and utilization (CCU) system that permanently removes carbon dioxide (CO2), is economically viable and can be deployed at gigatonne (GT) scale. The US$10 million round of financing was comprised of leaders dedicated to addressing climate change (photo courtesy Blue Planet Systems).

A cleantech startup company located in Los Gatos, California (CA), Blue Planet Systems is developing technology, products, and services related to economically sustainable carbon capture and mineralization, whereby carbon dioxide (CO2) is permanently sequestered in building materials for beneficial reuse, specifically as aggregate for concrete.

According to Blue Planet, its proprietary process creates synthetic limestone (CaCO3) sand and gravel that can be used to make carbon neutral and carbon negative concrete, with the same structural integrity of conventional concrete.

By offsetting the carbon footprint of the cement in concrete, Blue Planet’s aggregate more than compensates for the cement component’s carbon footprint, making the concrete a net carbon storage sink. The process also creates upcycled concrete aggregate as a by-product, reducing the need to further mine the environment and consume aggregates.

Our investors are also our advisors in many cases because of their dedication, experience, and presence in the Climate Change arena, said Dr Brent Constantz, Blue Planet’s Founder and CEO.

Novel carbon capture and mineralization

Most carbon reduction schemes are not permanent and instead allow the captured CO2 to re-enter the atmosphere at some point. Unlike most carbon capture methods such as conventional geological CCS, which require an energy-intensive CO2 purification step for liquefaction, transport, and injection, the Blue Planet System directly converts the CO2 to carbonate for mineralization as a synthetic limestone, thus avoiding significant costs and parasitic loads of purifying the CO2 from a dilute stream in order to liquefy it for underground disposal.

The Blue Planet System directly converts CO2 to carbonate for mineralization as a synthetic limestone (graphic courtesy Blue Planet Systems).

CO2 sources include flue gases from bioenergy plants, natural gas and coal-fired power plants, steel mills, cement plants, and refineries, as well as directly from the atmosphere – direct air capture (DAC).

Instead, the synthetic limestone rock produced is distributed to concrete plants for incorporation in concrete where the CO2 is stored permanently. The synthetic limestone can replace natural mined limestone aggregate as the principal constituent of concrete, thus avoiding CO2 emissions by substitution.

By offsetting the carbon footprint of the cement in concrete, Blue Planet’s aggregate more than compensates for the cement component’s carbon footprint, making the concrete a net carbon storage sink. The process also creates upcycled concrete aggregate as a by-product, reducing the need to further mine the environment and consume aggregates.

The rock market represents one of the largest potential sinks for CO2 at over 50 GT annually. According to Blue Planet, the production and distribution of synthetic aggregate for concrete make the operations profitable. The plants can be financed, owned, and operated under well-established project financing structures without subsidies.

New technologies are one of our greatest tools in reversing course on our continued path of climate change. I am pleased to support the continued dedication and innovation at Blue Planet in our shared push for a more sustainable future. New processes and scalable systems like theirs are instrumental components of reducing the impact we have on our planet, said investor and advisor Leonardo DiCaprio.

First plant underway

Blue Planet’s first plant is being constructed in Pittsburgh, CA adjacent to a natural gas-fired power plant and the Sacramento Delta, for barged material transport of raw materials and finished goods.

Blue Planet concrete has already been incorporated at Terminal 1 at San Francisco International Airport (SFO), establishing a model for cost-neutral public procurement of low carbon building materials for carbon mitigation.

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