The valorisation of industrial CO2 emissions is a cornerstone in EU strategies for climate change and circular economy. Bio-based Industries (BIs) are perfect candidates to apply this CO2 valorisation, since they could to turn their biorefineries’ emissions into feedstock and close the carbon loop. Nevertheless, there is still a strong need of reliable and cost-efficient CO2 conversion technologies to make it possible.
VIVALDI proposes an integrated solution allowing the conversion of biogenic CO2 into added-value organic acids, powered by ground-breaking advances in CO2 purification, electrochemical catalysis, microbiology, synthetic biology, and bioprocess engineering. The solution comprises 4 main steps:
1. CO2 purification/enrichment from industrial streams and electrochemical reduction to formic acid (FA) and methanol (MeOH) using electrochemical reactors and gas diffusion electrodes.
2. Nutrient recovery (NH4+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+) from industrial wastewaters using bioelectrochemical systems.
3. Bioproduction of target organic acids using a microbial platform based on specific engineered yeast strains (P. Pastoris), using as feedstock MeOH/FA/CO2 from step 1 and nutrients from step 2.
4. Industrial validation of the bioproduced organic acids (i.e. efficient downstream processing and on-site industrial validation).
VIVALDI will use real gas emissions from 4 key BIs and will focus on the bioproduction of 4 industrially relevant organic acids with different applications and market penetration (LA,SA,IA,3-HP). These acids can re-enter the production process flowchart of biorefineries, thus enhancing the sustainability of their current products or even opening new business possibilities.
Moreover, VIVALDI’s feasibility will be confirmed also through an integral sustainability assessment (technical, environmental and socio-economic) to ensure that the proposed solution can be adopted and integrated in any biorefinery.