BP invests $10M in methanol startup WasteFuel
Energy giant BP this morning announced a $10 million investment in WasteFuel, a California startup that is raising a $45 million Series B to produce methanol for the shipping industry, Axios has learned.
Why it matters: As the industry shifts from heavily polluting fuel, shipping companies like Maersk are buying every drop of methanol they can find .
Driving the news: BP Ventures is leading the Series B, joined by Maersk, i(x) Net Zero, and philanthropist Aileen Getty.
- WasteFuel began fundraising in June. It expects the round to close by the end of the year.
Context: Roughly 90% of the world's goods are moved by ships that generate about 3% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
How it works: WasteFuel, based in Pacific Palisades, Calif., plans to make methanol by capturing gas from landfills and farms.
- The startup is developing its first plant in Dubai, and it's in talks to develop another plant, either in the U.S. or other locations.
- The company for now plans to produce and transport the fuels itself rather than license the technology.
- BP is one of its offtakers.
Zoom out: The funding announcement comes as diplomats and shipping execs meet in London to hammer out a potential new goal for reducing shipping emissions.
- The UN's International Maritime Organization has slowly pushed countries and shipping conglomerates to transition their ships to cleaner fuels.
The big picture: Methanol, which is basically liquid methane, and liquefied natural gas have emerged as the two leading alternative fuels.
- They're relatively easy to make and move, and while they require different engines, the tech is well-established.