Eddyline Brewery says it will be the first craft brewer in New Zealand to capture and reuse carbon dioxide emissions in the production of its beer.

The Nelson brewery has invested in the US-based firm Earthly Labs’ CiCi® small scale carbon capture technology to capture and refine its waste CO₂ so it can be re-used in its brewing and packaging processes.

Eddyline said it was “a significant investment”, but considered it an important part of their sustainability focus.

“Eddyline has always sought to ensure its environmental footprint is as small as possible using sustainable processes,” co-founder Mic Heynekamp said.

“It is shameful to be producing CO₂ that is usable, yet wasting it into the environment. Recapturing CO₂ is a better way for the planet and creates superb beer too.

“CO₂ is critical to the brewing industry and recent moves, such as the closure of the Marsden refinery, highlight how important it is for businesses to be forward-thinking. This investment, along with our centrifuge processes to reduce our water use, and soon-to-be installed solar panels, will ensure our carbon footprint is as minimal as possible.”

Mic said Eddyline had been looking for a carbon capture solution for several years and had in fact begun the process of designing their own system. But on learning of Earthly Labs’ recapturing unit he said it would be their “perfect solution”.

Earthly Labs, whose technology has already been harnessed by numerous North American craft breweries, wineries and distilleries, was founded in 2016 with a vision to affordably capture one billion metric tonnes of CO₂ from small scale emission sources.

Mic said their CiCi® technology, that transforms a mixed gas waste stream to a reusable format while reducing greenhouse gas emissions, will enable Eddyline to capture more than 10,000 kilograms of carbon dioxide in 2023.

“For every hectolitre of production, a typical craft brewery will use approximately four kilograms of CO₂. As Eddyline grows, it will be able to maintain a minimal carbon footprint.”

Earthly Labs’ founder Amy George said:“Eddyline is an example of how small businesses can tackle the climate change challenge with practical solutions that deliver a compelling payback.

“We are inspired by all the ways Eddyline is meeting their commitment to their community and the environment, making great beer, creating jobs, adding solar, saving water, and now recycling CO₂. It is great to see them be the first New Zealand craft brewery among sustainability leaders in the world.”

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