Carbon Recycling: Microbes, Jet Fuel and Leggings

Shayle has been brewing up an investment thesis around how decarbonization will create stratification in traditional commodity sectors, like chemicals and materials.

Should you can produce the identical thing in the identical cost range — but you may accomplish that in a CO2-free or carbon-negative — you may reap the rewards.

Lanzatech is an awesome test case for that thesis, in addition to an awesome story to inform in regards to the history of this sector. It was founded in 2005 as a biofuels company. Now, it captures industrial waste gasses, equivalent to CO2 and CO, and recycles them into the chemicals used to make the whole lot from plastics to medical supplies to fabric for Lululemon. It has even spun out a whole company focused on jet fuel.

Shayle talks to CEO Dr. Jennifer Holmgren about carbon recycling and the massive dent it could make in global greenhouse gas emissions. They break down the economics of competing with undifferentiated ethanol, jet fuel, and chemicals and the brand interest driving interest in carbon recycling tech.

Jennifer hints on the potential for applying genetics expertise from medicine to industrial biotechnology; at some point Lanzatech hopes to supply acetone, isopropyl alcohol and other precious chemicals directly from its carbon-eating microbes. She reflects on leading considered one of the few corporations to survive booms and busts of cleantech over time. And he or she explains why the Lanzatech team decided not to ask their bacteria to do cartwheels. 

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