C8S milestones


Carbon8 Systems formed in February 2006, as a spin out from the University of Greenwich.

The company wins a number of awards for innovation, including Kent Environmental Business of the year in 2006, the IChemE Green Chemical Award in 2006, and the national Shell Springboard award in 2007.


New company, Carbon8 Aggregates Limited (C8A) formed, with a licence to use ACT to treat APCr in the UK.


C8A commissioned the first fully-commercial ACT plant at Brandon in Suffolk.


Carbon8 Systems continues to work with a number of multinational organisations, expanding the use of ACT to other wastes and other territories.

Our history

Carbon8 Systems was formed in February 2006 as a spin-out company from the University of Greenwich, in order to commercialise the results of more than 15 years of research. Over the next few years, the company won a number of awards for innovation, including Kent Environmental Business of the Year (2006), the IChemE Green Chemical Technology Award (2006) and the National Shell Springboard Award (2007).

Kent Innovation Challenge winners 2007

The prize money from these awards, combined with funding from the Technology Strategy Board and Kent County Council, allowed C8S to undertake pilot scale trials of the technology. Carbon dioxide from a landfill site flare was used to treat Air Pollution Control Residues (APCr) from municipal waste incinerators, and to manufacture an aggregate for use in the construction industry.

The trial at North Farm Landfill in 2010

The successful trials led to the formation of a new company, Carbon8 Aggregates Limited (C8A), with a license to use ACT to treat APCr in the UK. Following significant investment in C8A by Grundon Waste Management in 2012, C8A commissioned the first fully-commercial ACT plant at Brandon in Suffolk, with a further line commissioned in 2014 and a new two-line plant opened at Avonmouth, near Bristol, in 2016.

Carbon8 Systems continues to work with a number of multinational organisations to expand the commercial application of ACT to other wastes and other territories.

Our mission

To strengthen our technological leadership through continuous research and development.

To leverage our extensive experience to accelerate advances in the emerging technology of engineering materials with CO2.

To be a valued partner for our customers in:
Developing turnkey sustainable, low carbon waste management solutions.
Designing and building thermal ash, slag and sediment treatment plants.

Our key people

Dr Paula Carey

Dr Paula Carey

Managing Director

Dr Carey is a founding director of Carbon8 Systems, and has been working on the development of accelerated carbonation for more than 10 years.

Paula has expertise in aggregates, rocks and soils in the construction industry, particularly their durability in service. She is the co-author of the review of the science of stabilisation and solidification for the Environment Agency.

Following graduation in geology from the University of St Andrews, Paula studied for a PhD at Keele University and was a post-doctorate at the University of Liverpool. She joined the University of Greenwich’s School of Science in 1985.

In 2010, Paula left the university to concentrate on running C8S, and to contribute to the formation and development of Carbon8 Aggregates.

Paula has been quality assurance and research director of Carbon8 Aggregates since 2010, developing expertise in the commercialisation of accelerated carbonation, alongside expertise in environmental legislation, materials testing and integrated management systems. This has ensured Carbon8 Aggregates gained certification for ISO 14001, 9001 and OHSAS 18001 for its two plants.

Paula resigned as a director of Carbon8 Aggregates at the end of 2016 to concentrate on the global development of C8S and its ACT patented capabilities.

Dr Colin Hills

Dr Colin Hills

Technical Director

Prof Hills is a founding director of Carbon8 Systems, and the inventor of the accelerated carbonation process for the treatment of hazardous wastes and contaminated soils.

He has an extensive research record involving the encapsulation of waste and soil and was the principal author of the Environment Agency’s 2004 guidance on the use of stabilisation and solidification for the treatment of wastes and soils.

Colin worked as a field geologist throughout the Middle East and West Africa, prior to undertaking R&D of novel cementitious products for the construction industry. His doctoral studies (hazardous waste management, Imperial College) were followed by several post-doctoral positions before his appointment as reader at the University of Greenwich, and subsequent formation of C8S.

Colin is now a professor within the Department of Engineering Science and also the director of the Centre for Contaminated Land Remediation, and the Indo:UK Centre for Environment Research and Innovation (IU-CERI), in partnership with the Indian Government (CSIR-CIMFR) at the University of Greenwich.

A chartered scientist, Colin is a member of The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, where he has held the position of Chair of the Cement & Concrete Group. He is also a fellow of the Geological Society, a member of the European Science Foundation Review Panel, and a founding committee member of the European Association for CO2 Transformation (ASCOT).

Mark Orsbourn

Mark Orsbourn

Commercial Director

Mark Orsbourn has been involved with waste, recycling and resource recovery technologies for more than a decade and was the managing director for the Skipaway group of companies until its sale to Viridor Waste Management.

Mark holds a BSc in business management and has developed a strong operational understanding alongside the application of training in business process re-engineering.

Before Skipaway, Mark held senior positions for multinational companies, including Conoco, Calor Gas, DHL and Inchcape Group.

Mark’s various voluntary roles include chairman of the Medway Waste Forum and regeneration ambassador for Medway. Initially forming Carbon8 Aggregates Ltd as managing director, Mark held the role of sites and operations director, and oversaw the construction of Carbon 8 Aggregate’s two manufacturing plants in Suffolk and Avonmouth.

Mark is a qualified member of the Institute of Directors and the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.

John Pilkington


John worked for 20 years as a director of Ove Arup & Partners, international design consultants, leading project teams in Hong Kong, Bahrain, Qatar, France and Germany, as well as in the UK.

He then became Carillion’s development director on a number of large PFI projects in the health, education and defence sectors, including the redevelopment of GCHQ in Cheltenham, before moving to Amey, where he was managing director of their Investments businesses.

John has been chair of the CBI working group on Procurement & PFI, and chair of the Bradford Local Education Partnership. He has also worked with HM Treasury’s agency, Partnerships UK, advising DCLG on ways to stimulate the housing sector and the Department for Education & Skills on the £45 billion Building Schools for the Future programme.

Over the past ten years, John has had a number of non-executive director roles and is currently chair of the boards of GBSH plc, Fortel Services Ltd and BWB Regeneration, as well as Carbon8 Systems Ltd, responsible for steering these companies towards successful 3-5 year exit targets.

He is a member of Acumen7, a network of business leaders and investors, and a visiting professor at the London School of Economics and also at ESADE business school in Barcelona. John is a mentor to members of the Cambridge University Entrepreneurs’ Society, which supports post-graduates as they work towards commercialisation of new ideas and technologies.

John is also involved in a number of charitable organisations particularly supporting vocational rehabilitation health professionals.

Recent news stories for Carbon8 Systems

Read about how we’re transforming industrial carbon dioxide emissions

Carbon8 Systems awarded an Innovate UK Open Award

Innovate UK has awarded Carbon8 Systems, in collaboration with Wright's Engineering and Rapid Innovation Group (RIG), a grant funding for a £311,502 project through the Open Award Scheme. The duration of the project is 12 months, starting from March 2019 to February...