Published: March 31, 2014


Company Tries to Catch CO2 Before it Touches the Sky

Andre Boulet, (former) chief executive officer of Svante Inc. (Formerly Inventys Thermal Technologies Inc.) in Burnaby, British Columbia, holds up a 6­inch piece of charcoal, showing how light passes through toothpick­sized air shafts. He says the crevices in this filter offer a cheap way to capture carbon dioxide before it ascends into the atmosphere and haunts future generations.

Boulet, who has spent $12 million on his seven­year­old company, predicts Svante’s sales may reach hundreds of millions of dollars in five years ­­ driven in part by North America’s natural gas boom, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its May issue.

President Barack Obama calls gas a bridge fuel for the U.S. economy. Power plants, factories and refineries are jumping onboard, lured by a 73 percent plunge in U.S. prices from 2005 to March 31. The country generated 28 percent of electricity with gas in 2013, up from 22 percent six years earlier, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Buoyed by gas, the fossil ­fuel industry is trying to bask in a newfound green image.