Our approach to permanent carbon removal via DAC technology
Climeworks kick-started the global expansion of its carbon removal projects with direct air capture and storage plants announced across the U.S., Kenya, and Canada.
In Iceland, our second and larger direct air capture and storage facility Mammoth made steady construction progress as we continued to produce third-party verified carbon removal services from Orca.
Significant long-term partnerships with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and BCG, among others, underlined the enduring demand for Climeworks’ high-quality, high-integrity approach to remove CO₂ from the air.
Take a look at what Climeworks achieved in the past 12 months to continue shaping the industry and its global scale-up.
The global expansion of carbon removal has begun
2023 marked the start of Climeworks’ global roll-out of high-quality carbon removal as we look beyond Iceland to establish large-scale direct air capture and storage (DAC+S) projects. In the U.S., all three applications that Climeworks participated in for the Regional DAC Hubs program – an unprecedented initiative by the U.S. Department of Energy to catalyze the build-out of DAC facilities on U.S. soil – were selected as frontrunners in the race for final awards.
Climeworks began to chart the path to large-scale DAC+S projects in Kenya with Great Carbon Valley to advance responsible DAC+S deployment in the Global South. Shortly after, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Deep Sky to explore large-scale DAC+S projects in Canada, expanding the carbon removal momentum in North America. In both countries, we envision projects to remove up to one million tons of CO₂.
Operating large-scale facilities across diverse locations will fast-track our scale-up to megaton and ultimately gigaton capacity. Mammoth, which has made steady construction progress, is living proof of Climeworks’ approach to deployment-led innovation. Importantly, DAC also has the potential to help scale green economies around the world by creating quality jobs and further incentivizing the build-out of renewable energy with long-term renewable energy offtakes.
Strengthening the foundations of the industry
Climeworks, now counting a team of 400 dedicated minds committed to a net-zero future, is determined to deploy its carbon removal solution with integrity. We were proud to announce a major milestone at the beginning of the year as we delivered third-party verified carbon removal services to our first corporate customers. Based on our proven track record of removing CO₂ from the air, more leading businesses chose to partner with us, among them Partners Group, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and BCG.
Their exemplary long-term commitments bring stability to Climeworks’ ambitious path ahead and support our growth planning. At the same time, they demonstrate strong demand for carbon removal at large in what is poised to become a supply-constrained market, as illustrated by this recent report by BCG. Such commitments also prove that there is a need to develop policy frameworks further as the appetite grows to account for carbon removal in climate roadmaps. Climeworks initiated an industry-wide call for the clear distinction between emissions reductions and removals in climate pathways, target setting, as well as in industry standards. In addition, we co-founded the first U.S. policy coalition that aims to drive technology-neutral policies that focus on a holistic portfolio of carbon removal solutions: the Carbon Removal Alliance.
Remove to zero with Climeworks: looking ahead to 2024
This January, Climeworks will be at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting to raise awareness about how carbon removal technologies can help fight global warming and realize powerful benefits for businesses and communities. We will facilitate events, conversations, and connections at our Climeworks Net Zero Café to help leaders progress toward net zero. As only a fraction of companies with SBTi targets have purchased durable carbon removal, we look forward to connecting with world-leading businesses to grow the momentum further - a topic we are actively committed to with the recent launch of our ‘Remove to zero’ campaign.
New countries, new players, same high quality
The global expansion of Climeworks’ carbon removal solution will continue over the coming months as we explore new locations for the rapid, just, and equitable deployment of large-scale DAC+S projects. This internationalization effort goes hand in hand with building the supply chain for DAC to enable the removal of CO₂ at gigaton scale.
Beyond the voluntary carbon market, we also expect to see more direct engagement from governments in the form of pilot procurement programs, frameworks for high-quality standards, and goals toward their value chains to drive the commercialization of carbon removal forward. This will certainly continue to increase the focus on quality criteria such as durability, additionality, and measurability. They have been and will remain central to Climeworks’ high-quality and high-integrity approach to remove CO₂ from the air.
Bringing Mammoth to life
We will put the world’s largest DAC+S facility in operation when we start producing carbon removal services with Mammoth in early 2024. The commissioning of our second DAC+S plant only a couple of years after the world’s first commercial DAC+S facility, Orca, will be a major milestone for Climeworks. Mammoth’s nominal capture capacity is a new order of magnitude that will provide key learnings for the next steps on our journey. With our growing team of 400 Climeworkers, including our new Chief Science Officer Simon Weston joining in January, we are looking forward to this pivotal milestone.
Mammoth will add another layer to our track record of operational experience, which, together with the supply chain build-up, will be key themes in 2024 for the industry at large. We look forward to fruitful discussions on these topics and more at the Climeworks Carbon Removal Summit on June 4-6 2024, in Zurich. Following the previous Climeworks Direct Air Capture Summits, this new edition will be the occasion to connect with all key stakeholders in the industry once again. Inspiration, engagement, and concrete action for the journey to climate impact at scale will no doubt transpire from our flagship event for lasting impact.