C-Capture awarded £1.7m in BEIS funding to demonstrate feasibility of next generation, low-cost carbon capture solutions in hard-to-decarbonise industries

  • C-Capture, developers of world-leading chemical processes for carbon dioxide removal, has secured £1.7m in funding from the BEIS £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio (NZIP). The funding is part of the £20 million Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage (CCUS) Innovation 2.0 programme aimed at accelerating the deployment of next-generation CCUS technology in the UK.
  • Pioneering project ‘XLR8 CCS’ will prove that C-Capture’s next generation carbon capture solvent is compatible with harsh, real-world industrial emissions, which are major contributors to global carbon levels.
  • World-first for the glass industry: the first time a carbon capture and storage unit has been deployed at a glass-manufacturing site.
  • Innovative technology developed in the UK will demonstrate that a credible, low-cost carbon capture solution is a reality for difficult-to-decarbonise industries in the race to net zero.

C-Capture will use the funding to finance a major, national £2.7m project today as a critical step in the race to net zero.

The multi-industry, multi-million-pound project will see C-Capture’s unique, next-generation carbon capture technology deployed on numerous sites across the country, within industries that are particularly difficult to decarbonise. Demonstrating that a low-cost, carbon capture technology is a credible solution in the fight against climate change.

The compatibility of C-Capture’s unique, solvent-based technology will be trialled and assessed with real-world flue gas across three hard-to-abate sectors – at sites owned by project partners Hanson Cement, part of the Heidelberg Group, Bioenergy Infrastructure Group (BIG), Glass Futures and one of their member sites Pilkington UK Ltd – in conjunction with leading consulting and engineering company, Wood.

The project ‘XLR8 CCS – accelerating the deployment of a low-cost carbon capture solution for hard-to- abate industries’ will deliver feasibility studies and deploy carbon capture solvent compatibility units (CCSCUs) across the cement and Energy from Waste (EfW) and – in a world first – the glass industry.

Glass and cement industries are essential to the economy but also major carbon dioxide (CO2) contributors. Concrete is the most consumed material by weight globally after water and one of its key ingredients is cement. The cement industry is valued at approximately £1bn and produces approximately 7.5 million tonnes of CO2 in the UK each year. The UK’s glass industry contributes around £2bn every year to the economy and emits over 2 million tonnes of CO2 annually in the UK. EfW plants offer a solution to residual waste, whilst helping to meet the demand for low-carbon energy by converting waste that would otherwise be sent to landfill, into power for homes. Incorporating carbon capture into the process could further lower emissions of the sector and, in cases where waste wood material is used as fuel, allow it to become negative emissions.

All three of these industries are also particularly challenging to decarbonise due to the level and type of impurities in their flue gas emissions. The success of the XLR8 CCS project will benefit UK industry by making a credible, low-cost technology a reality in the route to decarbonisation within these sectors.

CCUS has been identified as an essential component in the route to decarbonisation but barriers to adopting CCUS technology currently exist – such as technology maturity, flue gas compatibility in multiple industries, and cost. XLR8 CCS aims to alleviate these barriers, demonstrating the robust performance of C-Capture’s innovative technology in removing CO2 within hard-to-abate industries. The project will demonstrate that a credible, low-cost carbon capture solution is a reality for difficult-to-decarbonise industries in the race to net zero.

C-Capture’s Process Engineer, John Mackay with a carbon capture solvent compatibility unit (CCSCU). CCSCUs such as this will be deployed across selected cement, waste from energy and glass manufacturing sites to help mitigate climate change as part of the XLR8 CCS project led by C-Capture and funded by BEIS announced today.

Energy and Climate Change Minister, Greg Hands, said:

“As we accelerate the UK’s energy independence by boosting clean, home-grown, affordable energy, it’s crucial that our industries reduce their reliance on fossil fuels.

“This investment will help them to not only cut emissions, but also save money on energy bills, on top of supporting jobs by encouraging green innovation across in the UK.”

Tom White, CEO, C-Capture, said:

“The amount of CO2 being generated and released into the atmosphere is currently at a scale that is hard to imagine. The deployment of carbon capture technology is essential – and urgent – to achieve net zero by 2050. Our solution has the potential to be a game changer for carbon capture. It uses less energy than currently available technology meaning it can significantly reduce the cost of carbon capture to a point that makes it affordable globally. It is also environmentally benign, well suited to the large-scale capture of CO2 and robust enough to withstand even the most aggressive flue gases. These advantages mean it has potential to break the barriers that are preventing the widespread adoption of carbon capture and storage technology, to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

We are delighted to be collaborating on our XLR8 CCS project with Wood, a global top tier engineering firm headquartered in the UK, and with companies within the glass, cement and EfW industries who have strong commitments to decarbonisation and are early adopters of novel carbon capture technology. Together, we will deploy our unique solvent across a wider variety of applications– and in this case some of the most challenging industries to decarbonise – demonstrating how the UK is leading the way to develop and export industrial decarbonisation technologies. The project is a huge step forward for these industries and a critical stepping stone in the path to net zero.”

XLR8 CCS encompasses several sites across the country in hard-to-abate industries:

  • Hanson Cement, part of the Heidelberg Group at their Ketton cement works in Rutland, UK. Ketton cement works in Rutland, owned by Hanson Cement, part of the Heidelberg Group.
  • Energy Works Hull, an EfW site whose major owner is BIG.
  • Glass Futures’ research facility in St Helens, and at a site of one of their members – Pilkington UK Ltd in St Helens.

Project success will see C-Capture and its project partners well placed for deployment of commercial-scale carbon capture facilities across the three industries by 2030 which could capture millions of tonnes of CO2 per year.

Azad Hessamodini, Executive President of Wood Consulting said:

“Decarbonising hard-to-abate sectors is a critical challenge that needs to be addressed to deliver on net zero goals. As the project’s engineering partner, our team is looking forward to collaborating alongside the other XLR8 CCS project partners to deploy our technology integration and delivery expertise to help achieve a low-carbon future.”

Hanson Cement is a leading supplier of building materials and one of the six major players in the UK’s cement industry. 

Simon Willis, Hanson CEO, said: “Carbon capture is a critical part of our strategy to decarbonise cement production and essential if we are to reach net zero carbon by 2050.

“Our Padeswood cement works in north Wales is already part of the HyNet North West carbon capture and storage project and this new venture at our Ketton works is another example of our commitment to developing new technologies. If successful, it has the potential to be rolled-out across other HeidelbergCement Group sites.”

BIG is a renewable energy provider that is establishing one of the UK’s largest portfolios of Waste Wood and EfW facilities.

Alex Young Head of Development at Bioenergy Infrastructure Group, said:

“Upscaling C-Capture’s technology on energy from waste facilities means our industry can get one step closer to a net zero energy system. This project, which will be implemented at our Energy Works Hull plant, follows on from our related collaboration with C-Capture at Ince Bio Power, in the North West. We are delighted to be a part of this partnership, which will support our ambitions to become a leading provider of low-carbon energy.”

Glass Futures is a not-for-profit membership organisation, in collaboration with the global glass industry and academia it is delivering the world’s first openly accessible Global Centre of Excellence for glass in R&D and innovation to decarbonise the glass and foundation industries.

Rob Ireson, Innovation and Partnerships Manager at Glass Futures, said:

“Glass is the perfect material to support a circular economy because it is infinitely recyclable, however, glass manufacturing is currently a major contributor of CO2 emissions, arising from combustion of fossil fuels to heat the furnaces and released during the melting of the raw materials used to make glass. Carbon capture technologies can therefore play a key role in helping the glass sector to decarbonise. 

“This project has the potential to build a better understanding of the technology and associated economics and risks, thus breaking down barriers for the glass sector to develop and adopt carbon capture technologies. As such we’re delighted to have this opportunity to work with C-Capture and NSG to help lead the first demonstration of a carbon-capture technology on an industrial glass furnace.”

XLR8 CCS builds on C-Capture’s work in demonstrating the benefits of the company’s carbon capture technology in other essential industries following the successful completion of pilot plants on biomass fired power, biogas and landfill gas upgrading applications.

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