Texas Department of Energy and Skyonic Corp. officials have announced opening a $40 million project at a San Antonio plant, which will convert 75,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) into commercial products, including sodium carbonate and bicarbonate, hydrochloric acid and bleach.

State Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said the operation provides “commitment” to carbon innovation “that can have a positive impact on the economy while reducing emissions;” SkyMine’s operation, partly underwritten by $28 million from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act as well as state assistance, will create 40 full-time permanent jobs.

The project has designed to be retrofitted to coal-burning power plants, but it could also be used in other industry applications, such as the production of cement, glass, steel and natural gas power, according to company representatives. Byproducts will offset higher carbon footprints with indefinite storage capacity, they added; further testing will manipulate feedstock for algae-derived biofuels by removing sulfur oxides, nitric oxides, mercury and other heavy metals from flue gas.

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