Google Ventures has bought a stake in CoolPlanetBiofuels, a start-up company working on a technology to convert biomass into fuel.
Based in California, CoolPlanet uses non-food biomass like grass or woodchips to make fuel, using a thermal-mechanical processor to turn it into gas streams and then fuel. The process also delivers a by-product that can be used as a soil conditioner, hence rendering the process carbon-negative, according to the company.
“The company has come up with an innovative solution to one of the world’s biggest problems,” said Wesley Chan, partner at Google Ventures. “The technology is a win-win as the company is developing a sustainable and renewable energy source that also helps reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere.”
The acquisition follows from Google Ventures’ investment in Transphorm, a power-saving energy conversion technology company. Google is also now using Google Maps to help people locate charging points for electric vehicles.
Google has stated it is looking for financial return on its investments, meaning the cleantech investments aren’t just for show. Let’s hope Google is right to have faith in its green ventures – they will certainly benefit from having such a big name onboard.