Carbon-Negative Plant Opens in Turkey Turning Algae Into Bio-Jet Fuel and So Much More:
İMBİYOTAB Bogazici University
Europe’s first large-scale biorefinery for turning algae into fuels and feedstocks has been completed on the Black Sea shore of Istanbul. Set to head up a new “bio-economy,” the refinery, powered entirely by wind energy, will turn microalgae and macroalgae species into carbon-negative jet fuel, feedstocks, supplements, and fertilizers. They are carbon negative because algae absorb CO2 as plants do, but far faster and in much greater amounts than woody plants like trees. Once processed into products, more of that carbon pulled from the atmosphere remains imprisoned than is released during production, hence it being carbon negative. The project was funded in partnership by the government of Turkey and the European Union and is just one of several initiatives dubbed Project INDEPENDENT. The biorefinery, located at Boğaziçi University’s Sarıtepe Campus, can process 1,200 tons of algae per year. Reporting on the refinery says that the algae will be used to produce jet fuel that, when mixed with 5-10% fossil fuels, will power a flight leaving Istanbul by the end of the year.