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MBD Energy Plans to Expand its Facility

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Managing director Andrew Lawson says testing at James Cook University in Townsville suggests for every two tonnes of carbon captured, the MBD technology can produce almost 1 tonne of algae, of which one-third can be made into oil products and two-thirds into meal. With meal sales about $400/tonne (rival soymeal product sells at about $780/tonne) and oil selling at $800/tonne, that equates to about $570 of revenue from each tonne of algae, or more than $250 for each tonne of CO2 captured.

The first 1ha display plant of its “fuel synthesiser” is to be installed at the Loy Yang A coal-fired power station in the next six months. If the concept is proved over six to 12 months, MBD will move ahead to build a commercial pilot plant over 80ha. 

That will require a $25 million investment, but Lawson estimates it will produce earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation of $15 million. If that project succeeds, the facility can quickly be scaled up to a $300m demonstration facility. 

Australia’s largest power station, NSW’s Eraring Energy, and a large-scale emitter in Queensland have signed agreements with MBD to instal display plants over the next 12 months.

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