LONDON - Miner Rio Tinto has restructured its investments in carbon capture and storage, it said on Friday, with the sale to partner BP Plc of its interest in an Abu Dhabi hydrogen-fueled power generation project that uses gas as the original feedstock.
Rio said it will now focus its investment in the sector on a hydrogen-fueled power generation project in California that uses coal to produce the hydrogen.
The Abu Dhabi project is a ground-breaking and important project based on gas feedstock, but Rio Tinto prefers to focus on projects with solid fuel feedstocks, which are better aligned with our other businesses, said Preston Chiaro, Rio's group executive for technology and innovation.
Rio said it sold its 50 percent interest in Hydrogen Energy International Ltd (HEIL) for an undisclosed sum.
BP and Rio set up HEIL in 2007 and much of its activities have been focused on bringing the Hydrogen Power Abu Dhabi project to fruition.
Rio, a coal producer, will now focus on the Hydrogen Energy California project, also a joint venture with BP, in Kern County in central California.
In that project coal or petroleum coke will be used to produce hydrogen and the resulting carbon dioxide emissions will be sequestered deep underground.
Hydrogen, a clean fuel, will be used instead of natural gas to run turbines to generate electrical power, providing enough power for 150,000 homes.
(Reporting by Eric Onstad; Editing by Greg Mahlich)