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Carbon Upcycling Technologies Awarded C$3.6M for Sustainable Concrete

Carbon Upcycling Technologies facility

Carbon Upcycling Technologies Awarded C$3.6M for Sustainable Concrete

Rev member Carbon Upcycling Technologies, a startup making durable and sustainable concrete additives, has received C$3.6 million (approximately $2.8M U.S. dollars) in funding from U.K. Research Innovation. With the new funding, the Calgary, Canada-based company will utilize carbon dioxide sequestration and waste glass to manufacture cement at a first-of-its-kind plant. 

By extending the lifetime of 50 tons of glass daily, the project will prevent approximately 16,500 tons of local crushed glass from entering landfills. Additionally, the plant will sequester up to five tons of CO2 emissions from a glass recycling facility each day, keeping approximately 1,600 tons of CO2 from reaching the atmosphere. 

“By creating a valuable product from one of the toughest waste streams in the glass industry, and using cement flue gas directly in its process, Carbon Upcycling will provide the UK market with a low-cost, low-carbon alternative to imported cementitious materials,” said Carbon Upcycling CEO Apoorv Sinha.  

The funding will allow Carbon Upcycling to work in tandem with other organizations, namely CEMEX UK, a major cement supplier, and glass support company Glass Technology Services. 

“We aim to reach net-zero by 2050, and this project with Carbon Upcycling is an important milestone toward utilizing captured carbon to help achieve this goal,” said Gonzalo Galindo, President of CEMEX Ventures

Sinha launched Carbon Upcycling in 2014 with partners Greg Boser and Randy Cusson, and the startup has been hard at work since then. In 2019, Carbon Upcycling won $250,000 in the 76West Clean Energy Competition, presented by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The company was also a finalist in the Calgary track of the $20 million NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE competition in 2021. 

In 2018, Carbon Upcycling received a $1.8 million grant from Alberta Innovates to design a reactor vessel that creates enhanced additives using reclaimed fly ash and captured CO2. The project finished in 2021, and now, Carbon Upcycling produces 20 tons of additives per day at their plant.  

These additives have been supplied to cement and concrete manufacturers, resulting in concrete that is 40% stronger and more durable, in addition to a 40% improvement of rebar protection. Carbon Upcycling is the first company in the world to reduce the carbon footprint of cement and concrete by double digits. 

The startup’s additives have been used for driveways, retaining walls, and foundation bases, in addition to applications in fertilizers and plastics.  

Earlier this year, Carbon Upcycling raised $6 million in a funding round led by Clean Energy Ventures, a venture capital firm focused on early-stage climate tech startups. The company is working to scale its innovation at facilities in North America and Europe.   

Learn more about Carbon Upcycling Technologies’ latest milestone.