Eni and Maire Tecnimont sign waste to hydrogen and methanol technology agreement

Source: press release, 10 June 2019

Eni was the first company to convert a traditional refinery into a biorefinery, transforming organic raw materials into high-quality biofuels
Eni was the first company to convert a traditional refinery into a biorefinery, transforming organic raw materials into high-quality biofuels (photo: Eni)

Eni and NextChem, Maire Tecnimont’s green chemistry subsidiary, are working together to turn waste into new energy, hydrogen and methanol.

The two companies have signed a partnership agreement to develop and implement a conversion technology, which uses high-temperature gasification to produce hydrogen and methanol from solid urban waste and non-recyclable plastic with minimal environmental impact.

Together, Eni and NextChem will assess the technical and financial impact of the new technology, which could be implemented at Eni’s industrial sites in Italy. Eni has already expressed interest in evaluating the “Waste to Hydrogen” project at its bio-refinery in Porto Marghera, Venice, and carried out a feasibility study in collaboration with NextChem.

The agreement will position Eni as co-developer of NextChem’s technology. It will also provide a tangible example of the circular economy: It reuses hundreds of thousands of tonnes of non-recyclable waste to produce chemical products and fuel. This will contribute to environmental sustainability at Eni’s industrial sites, forming part of an increasingly integrated and efficient system designed to contain and reduce atmospheric emissions of CO2.

“This partnership will see Eni acquire highly innovative technology. When this technology is combined with the rich technological assets that Eni has accumulated over decades of refining, it will help to establish a tangible circular economic process whereby fuel is produced from waste with low environmental impact,” says Giuseppe Ricci, Eni’s Chief Refining & Marketing Officer.

Maire Tecnimont Group’s CEO, Pierroberto Folgiero, states, “This technological partnership with Eni, a leader in the sector, is an exceptionally important step for our green acceleration project. Energy transition requires the industrialisation of new transformation processes, and with NextChem we are ready to respond to the growing demand for change.”