CARBONLITES - Enabling the Circular Economy

Organization Name
Renewable Energy
Proposed Investment
USD3,000,000 - Equity



Last Updated
Thu, 03/08/2018 - 11:22

Carbon Masters is a carbon management company with a passion to help organizations reduce their carbon impact and adapt to inevitable climate change by replacing fossil fuel consumption with innovative, clean energy and other low carbon solutions. It seeks to deliver its purpose of reducing carbon emissions via a large scale disruption of the energy, municipal solid waste management and agricultural sectors in India behind their Carbonlites initiative. This is achieved by the combined deployment of: - An asset lite business model, - Innovative low carbon products & technology, - Complete end to end control and integration of the waste to energy supply chain. The end goal is the rapid deployment of a large scale, decentralised waste-to-energy infrastructure across both rural and urban India that produces at scale Carbonlites biomethane in applications for cooking, transport and back-up power generation as well as organic fertilizer. Carbon Masters strives to facilitate a low carbon circular economy by collecting biodegradable wet waste and turning it into compressed bio-CNG under the Carbonlites brand. Gas is stored in cylinders and sold to restaurants as an alternative to LPG. It has been reported to generate 8 - 10% cost savings because it burns longer and stronger than alternative fuels like LPG and cooks at a constant pressure making it preferred by chefs for cooking. Carbonlites is also suitable as vehicle fuel. Carbon Masters' collection and delivery trucks run on Carbonlites. Carbon Masters close the loop by processing the digestate slurry into organic fertilizer and selling that to farmers. The whole circle displaces wastes from landfills, mitigates methane emissions, generates carbon neutral energy product that displaces fossil fuels, and produces high-value carbon-enriched fertilizer that can displace chemical fertilizers and improve soil health and fertility. Carbon Masters is raising USD3 million to finance its projects and expansion.
What problem are you trying to solve? Who has this problem?
In cities like Bangalore, India, more than 4500 tons of waste is sent to landfills every single day. Landfills adversely affect communities around them and pollute groundwater tables. The organic waste dumped at landfills releases methane - a toxic greenhouse gas that is the major contributor to climate change. India is now the second largest market in the world for LPG but imports 39% of its requirements. This reduces its energy security and increases its overall carbon emissions. The indiscriminate use of chemical fertilizers coupled with low addition of organic matter over the years results in nutrient deficiencies in Indian soils. Excessive use of nitrogenous fertilizers could also cause ground water contamination. This is leading to flat to declining yields that are now impacting farmers' incomes. Carbonlites addresses all three issues.
Value Proposition
Carbon Masters (CM) produces Carbonlites (bottled bio-CNG) and Carbonlites Organic Manure from biodegradable wastes through anaerobic digestion in its facility in Karnataka. For waste bulk generators, CM developed Carbonlites-in-a-box - a fully functioning biogas plant housed inside shipping containers. Fully customizable, it processes organic waste on-site in just one-third of the space occupied by a conventional biogas plant. Recently, CM secured a contract with Mahindra Powerol, the generator manufacturing arm of Mahindra & Mahindra Group(M&M). Under this partnership M&M invested 90% of the capex for a large scale waste-to-energy facility. CM have an 8-year contract to operate the plant and sell the products under the Carbonlites brand. M&M plans to build 100 such plants across India, 8 in the next 24 months. CM developed a landmark pubic-private partnership with the BBMP in Bangalore. CM will design, build and operate 5 x 10tpd waste-to-energy facilities in 5 wards in Bangalore. This is an innovative Capex no Opex model for the BBMP whereby they invest 85% of the total capex and CM invests the balance. CM will build the plants and then operate them recovering opex and a return on its capital contribution from sales of Carbonlites gas and fertilizer.
  • Every tonne of organic waste diverted from landfills saves 650kgs of CO2e emissions, every tonne of LPG displaced by Carbonlites Bio-CNG saves 3 tonnes of CO2e from entering the atmosphere
  • Eliminates and reduces the load on landfills.
  • Reduces oil imports
  • Helps farmers to access low cost organic fertilizer that displaces use of chemical fertilizers and improves soil health. Every 1 tonne of chemical fertilizer displaced saves 7tonnes of CO2e
  • Contributes in increasing energy security of the nation and creates local employment both in rural and urban areas
Akaksh Karekar, Plant Manager, Malur
Ashwin HG, Project Engineer

End-to-end design, implementation and commissioning of projects

Kevin Houston, Co-Founder

Branding, Sales, Marketing, and Strategy

KS Prasad Rao, Manager Fertilizer Operations
Pallavi Koodur, Projects Manager
Pradeep Kumar, Customer Service Manager

Responsible for customer installations and on-going service at customer site

Som Narayan, Co-Founder

New Partnerships, Innovation, and Business Development

Sumedh Rao, Operations Manager
Indian Angel Network
Sangam Ventures

Maturity Level
  • Prototyping and Validation
  • Commercial Operations
  • Growth and Expansion