Sasol is looking to find potential partners in developing technology that will reduce its carbon footprint, in line with its emission-reduction goals. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg
Sasol is looking to find potential partners in developing technology that will reduce its carbon footprint, in line with its emission-reduction goals. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

Sasol looks for partners in quest for emission reduction

By Dineo Faku Time of article published Sep 7, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - PETROCHEMICALS giant Sasol is looking to find potential partners in developing technology that will reduce its carbon footprint, in line with its emission-reduction goals.

Sasol, which is South Africa’s second- biggest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitter after Eskom, said on Friday that it was exploring different initiatives and projects with the intention of enabling technology development to achieve large-scale GHG reductions.

“Sasol aims to be an enabler for the development and demonstration of CO2 utilisation technologies and wants to partner with other companies to reduce GHG emissions at its South African operations based in Secunda, Mpumalanga, and in Sasolburg, Free State,” said the company.

The group said carbon dioxide (CO2) utilisation had been identified as a promising lever to reduce GHG emissions globally and had the potential to increase the implementation of carbon capture and utilisation technologies.

Sasol said that it was inviting interested parties to participate in a request for information (RFI) process regarding the development and demonstration of CO2 utilisation technologies.

The group said the purpose of the RFI process was to identify partners who were interested, or involved, in the use of CO2 utilisation technologies on CO2-rich streams.

Entities had until the end of the month to make submissions.

The executive director of non-profit shareholder activism organisation Just Share, Tracey Davies, said on Friday that Sasol’s invitation to interested parties to participate in an RFI process for CO2 utilisation technologies reflected what was hopefully the company’s growing commitment to achieving net-zero emissions.

Davies said to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, based on currently available technology, there would need to be some CO2 utilisation, and Sasol appeared to be testing the market to assess what might be achievable, and by when.

“This is a positive development, but it is essential to remember that this is at present only a potentially viable option. Investors, who are increasingly concerned about the risks posed by Sasol’s carbon-intensive operations, will also be aware that even if this technology does prove to be viable, it will only partially contribute to the company’s emission reduction targets.

Also, these targets are at present not aligned with the Paris goals and will need to be significantly strengthened in the near future,” Davies said.

Sasol last year committed to at least a 10 percent reduction in GHG emissions by 2030, off a 2017 baseline.

As part of the target, last month Sasol invited interested bidders to participate in a request for proposals process for the development of two 10 megawatt (MW) solar photo-voltaic facilities in Secunda, Mpumalanga, and another in Sasolburg, as part of its response to climate change.

Sasol’s roadmap to achieving its 2030 target includes the reduction in emissions of 4 percent and 5 percent between 2020 and 2025, driven by “energy and process efficiency” and the introduction of 300MW of renewable energy to reduce scope 2 emissions.

In its 2020 Climate Change Report released last month, Sasol it was in the process of defining a 2050 reduction roadmap, which it intended communicating at Capital Markets Day in 2021.

BUSINESS REPORT

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