POET, the world’s largest biofuels producer, has completed construction on an addition to its POET Bioprocessing – Portland facility in Indiana, US, which allows the company to capture renewable carbon dioxide (CO2) to be sold for commercial use.

Source: POET

POET’s plant in Portland, Indiana

Renewable CO2 is a co-product of POET’s bioethanol production process, and part of the POET Pure line of bioproducts which includes plant-based purified alcohol, CO2 and dry ice. POET says it “is the highest-grade sustainable liquid carbon dioxide on the market”.

Brad Jones, POET’s Director of Business Development CO2, said, “Carbon capture has proven to be not only a really exciting business opportunity for POET, but it’s great for the planet as well. CO2 is already a part of the natural growing cycle of corn. The CO2 our facilities produce is reabsorbed by the upcoming corn crop, meaning no new CO2 is added to the atmosphere. So our regenerative process results in a CO2 product that’s one of the most sustainable on the market.”

POET, which has headquarters in Wichita, Kansas, supplies customers with CO2 for beverage carbonation, food processing, municipal water treatment, fire suppression, and various industrial uses.

Jones added, “POET’s bioethanol production process utilises the entire corn kernel. The starch produces bioethanol, while the remaining protein, oil and micronutrients go towards our other bioproducts. POET’s mission is to work in rhythm with nature to make the world a more sustainable place, and this addition to the Portland facility brings us another step closer to our carbon goals and enables us to increase the availability of our Earth-friendly CO2.”

Sam Rushing, gasworld US editorial board member and President of Advanced Cryogenics, Ltd, said on the development, ”POET’s CO2 business recently added new capacity at their Portland, Indian 68 million GPY ethanol plant, while adding to their traditional CO2 sourcing from ethanol, to bolster their supply capabilities in the markets they serve. This location is another CO2 facility located in the heart of the greater corn belt, where most ethanol plants reside. POET is unique among those supplying CO2, where they control the corn going into the fermentation process, control the ethanol plant, and ultimately the CO2 source and supply. This makes for more control over their destiny in markets where they supply product.”

According to Intelligas Consulting’s Maura Garvey’s 2021 CO2 Market Report, published in gasworld last year, POET Ethanol Products accounted for a 5% share of the US  merchant CO2 capacity in 2020.