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OGCI re-ups investment in Econic for CO2 for plastics

Illustration of a dollar sign within a recycling symbol.

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

The Oil and Gas Climate Initiative has injected another round of funding into Econic Technologies, which is developing technology to convert captured carbon dioxide into polymers used in household products like mattresses, textiles and cleaners.

Why it matters: The investment "is part of a first round of a multimillion capital raise for Econic," OGCI tells Axios. If successful, Econic's technology would add to the growing number of companies providing a market for waste CO2.

The details: OGCI declined to disclose the size of its investment, which was made by OGCI Climate Investments.

  • Climate Investments first invested in Econic in 2018 through its $1 billion Catalyst Fund I.

Catch up fast: OGCI is made up of oil and gas majors that together account for about a third of global production.

What's next: Econic reduces the amount of oil used in polyols by replacing it with captured CO2. Those new polyols can then be used in certain household and industrial products.

Thought bubble: The investment, especially coming from OGCI, represents the dichotomy around carbon-capture technology.

  • Supporters of carbon capture investment say that products like those from Econic help reduce emissions. Detractors say that they simply lock in further reliance on fossil fuel production.
  • That latter argument is becoming less common: There seems a growing recognition — accelerated by Russia's invasion of Ukraine — that fossil fuels aren't going anywhere anytime soon, and that certain sectors like plastics, chemicals, cleaners, concrete and shipping will depend on them for the long-term. That means not only capturing emissions, but figuring out what to do with them.
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