How capturing CO2 from air can combat climate change

► Try the Financial Times for 4 weeks for just £1. Start your trial now –

Think about climate change and you may not picture the foothills of the swiss alps but one company here is trying to save the planet one carbon dioxide molecule at a time their name is climb works and their business is pulling carbon dioxide out of the air so luiza tell me what is happening here at this facility around it sure what we have behind us is a climb

Works director capture plants here we have 18 co2 collectors they draw ambient air through in this direction and the co2 molecules essentially stick to the filter material inside that and once that filter material is saturated it’s full of co2 then we close the collector we heat it to about 100 degrees celsius and the co2 then unsticks once the co2 unbinds from the

Material it can be siphoned off leaving the filter free to collect more this plant is able to capture 900 tons of co2 every year but it takes heat and electricity to work and where does this facility get the energy that powers this process in this particular setup we’re using energy from waste so we’ve built these plants on the roof of a waste incineration plant

And through the burning of the rubbish energy is generated and we make use of that energy to power our direct air capture machines some of the co2 that climb works captures is injected underground the company already has a facility in iceland where the co2 is pumped into basaltic rock and mixed with water to form solid carbonate effectively turning it into stones

See also  The 5 Types Of Spenders: Which Are You? | The 3-Minute Guide

But the core of their business right now is selling the gas to be used again the co2 that climb works is capturing just a few hundred meters away it is pumped through an underground pipeline directly into this greenhouse and you can see the black pipes hanging below that’s where the co2 is released into the greenhouse and what role does it play when it arrives here

Vegetables plants say they love co2 they require it for photosynthesis and so with higher concentrations of co2 within the greenhouse the better those plants can grow this particular greenhouse has seen an increased crop yield of 20% there are only 3 startups in the world that operate direct air capture facilities and climb works was the first to land payne but

They’re a long way from achieving their ultimate goal removing one percent of global annual co2 emissions by 2025 to do that they’ll leave customers who want to sequester co2 rather than just reuse it at present there is no market for carbon dioxide removal so the real exam question is how do we generate a market where one doesn’t exist right now from a standing

Start until that happens the capacity for the negative emissions market to develop to the scale that’s needed of gigaton scale will be highly problematic climb works believes there’s a huge potential market for captured co2 if they can drive down costs to a level that’s attractive working with new technology and on a small scale means it costs six hundred dollars

See also  Everything You Need To Know About Student Loans

To remove a ton of carbon dioxide from the air for them the challenge is to make their product cheap enough to be rolled out on a large scale what about the costs there’s a critics who say that currently the costs are too high and that it will never be economical enough to really impact climate change our goal is and what we are working towards which we are very

Confident also that we can arrive there in the next couple of years is taking a ton of co2 out of the air at a cost of around $100 per tonne and that’s what we believe is the same level at which policies and policies will be active and that will on the on the very large scale pay for removing co2 from the earth so that is then a level where we can scare to the

Ketone level which is required to have an impact scientists estimate that by 2050 we’ll need to be removing 10 billion tons of co2 from the atmosphere every year in order to limit the worst effects of global warming direct air capture isn’t the only way to do this but it could be one tool among many with today’s technology direct air capture is still an economic

And critics say it can never be built on a large enough scale to make a difference to the climate but at a time of rising emissions and rising global temperatures more people are coming around to the view that this technology does have a role to play

See also  Snapchat IPO! Will I be Loading up on Snapchat shares?

Transcribed from video
How capturing CO2 from air can combat climate change By Financial Times

Scroll to top