Energy Technology Ventures, a GE-NRG Energy-ConocoPhillips Joint Venture, Invests in Israeli Wastewater-to-Electricity Company Emefcy
CAESAREA, Israel, June 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ –
Energy Technology Ventures – a GE, NRG Energy and ConocoPhillips joint
venture – is making its first non-US and first water-related investment by
providing capital to Emefcy Ltd, an Israeli company that can turn wastewater
treatment from a huge energy drain to an electricity generator.
Emefcy’s technology uses naturally occurring bacteria in an electrogenic
bioreactor to treat wastewater. The organic material in the waste produces
power and treated water, transforming wastewater treatment from an
energy-intensive, cost-intensive and carbon-intensive process, into an
energy-generating and carbon-reducing process.
The benefits are both economic and environmental: Conventional
wastewater treatment uses 2 percent of global power capacity (80,000
megawatts and 57,000,000 tons per year of carbon dioxide), costing $40
billion per year. Rather than using conventional energy-intensive aerobic
processes or methane-producing anaerobic digestion to treat wastewater,
Emefcy harvests renewable energy directly from the wastewater and feeds it
to the power grid, enabling the energy-positive wastewater treatment plant.
The primary initial applications are for wastewater treatment in the food,
beverage, pharmaceutical and chemical industries, with total market
potential of US$10 billion annually.
Energy Technology Ventures was joined in the funding round for Emefcy by
Pond Venture Partners, Plan B Ventures and Israel Cleantech Ventures.
Financial details were not disclosed.
“We will use Energy Technology Ventures’ investment to continue
development of our technology into full-scale commercial implementation by
the end of this year for municipal and industrial wastewater treatment,”
said Emefcy’s CEO, Eytan Levy. “All told, wastewater treatment is a US$100
billion industry, and our technology can significantly reduce the economic
and environmental costs.”
One of the partners in Energy Technology Ventures, GE, is active in
wastewater treatment and is expanding its technology focus on Israel, called
the “Silicon Valley of water technology.
Israel is an important center for innovation and scientific discovery.
GE this month opened its newest multi-disciplinary Research and Development
Center, in Haifa. A dozen researchers will be hired to evaluate and work on
clean energy, water and healthcare technology projects. The new Israel
Technology Center will facilitate the introduction of advanced technologies
to GE through partnerships with local technology companies and academia.
The GE investment was made through business unit GE Energy Financial
Services, which has made one other investment in an Israeli technology
company — SolarEdge, a provider of smart, holistic solar photovoltaic power
harvesting and monitoring solutions for maximum energy and cost efficiency.
SolarEdge is based in Hod Hasharon, Israel.
Emefcy http://www.emefcy.com was founded in early 2008, by serial water
technology entrepreneurs Eytan Levy and Ronen Shechter, who also founded
AqWise http://www.aqwise.com Marked as one of the most promising water
technology start-up companies, Emefcy is a laureate of many technology
leadership awards such as Guardian’s Cleantech 100, Global Water
Technologies top 10, Artemis Top 50 and more.
About Energy Technology Ventures
Energy Technology Ventures is a joint venture involving GE (NYSE: GE),
NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG), and ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) focused on the
development of next-generation energy technologies. Bringing together three
market-leading companies with a wide range of deep technical and financial
expertise, relationships, services and products, the joint venture invests
in, and offers commercial collaboration opportunities to, venture- and
growth-stage energy technology companies in the renewable power generation,
smart grid, energy efficiency, oil, natural gas, coal and nuclear energy,
emission controls, water and biofuels sectors, primarily in North America,
Europe and Israel. For more information, visit
About GE Energy Financial Services
GE Energy Financial Services’ experts invest globally with a long-term
view, backed by the best of GE’s technical know-how, financial strength and
rigorous risk management, across the capital spectrum, in one of the world’s
most capital-intensive industries, energy. GE Energy Financial Services
helps its customers and GE grow through new investments, strong partnerships
and optimization of its US $21 billion in assets. GE Energy Financial
Services is based in Stamford, Connecticut. For more information, visit
GE (NYSE: GE) is an advanced technology, services and finance company
taking on the world’s toughest challenges. Dedicated to innovation in
energy, health, transportation and infrastructure, GE operates in more than
100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. For more
information, visit the company’s Web site at http://www.ge.com.
LINK TO YOUTUBE VIDEO [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7S1Wy7CV9bA ]
STILL PHOTO ATTACHED
Contacts: Andy Katell, GE Energy Financial Services +1-203-961-5773 Ely Cohen, Emefcy +972-4-627-7555
SOURCE Energy Technology ventures and Emefcy Ltd