BHP invests in bio-tech – by Esmarie Iannucci ( – September 12, 2019)

PERTH ( – Mining major BHP has taken a strategic stake in US biotech start-up Cemvita Factory, which is developing bio-engineered pathways that support carbon dioxide (CO2) sequestration and utilisation.

Cemvita Factory is developing a portfolio of CO2 conversion microorganisms, including a platform that mimics photosynthesis and other natural processes.

BHP’s chief geoscientist Laura Tyler, said BHP is interested in the potential for biomimetic technology to enhance remediation of mine-impacted soils and water. “Biomimetics have the potential to convert CO2 into useful downstream products such as chemicals and polymers, and it also holds promise for the remediation of mine sites.

“This strategic investment fits well with BHP’s vision of the future: reducing operational greenhouse gas emissions, reducing environmental impact and the development of low-emissions technology, including increased application of carbon capture, utilisation and storage technology.”

Cemvita Factory’s technology is based on established methods of synthetic biology to improve the metabolic capacity of environment-friendly photosynthetic microorganisms for CO2 use.

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