Climeworks, the direct air capture innovator, announces a deal reached with one of its clients Microsoft. The two companies signed a 10-year carbon removal offtake agreement, where Climeworks will permanently remove 10,000 tons of CO2 emissions from the atmosphere on Microsoft’s behalf. The agreement comes after Microsoft purchased 1,400 metric tons of carbon removal in 2021.
Soon after the tech giant announced in 2020 it is committing to be carbon negative by 2030 and remove all of its historic CO2 emissions by 2050, Climeworks’ carbon dioxide removal solution was on Microsoft’s first carbon removal portfolio. It was the only chosen direct air capture solution and was approved after a rigorous review process.
“Microsoft’s multi-year offtake agreement with Climeworks is an important step towards realizing the ‘net’ in net zero… Paired with Microsoft’s Climate Innovation Fund investment in Climeworks’ direct air capture plant, this agreement with Climeworks can help kickstart the commercial and technical progress in a nascent but crucial industry to achieve IPCC targets,” said Lucas Joppa, Chief Environmental Officer at Microsoft.
The company uses innovative technology in collaboration with Carbfix to take away CO2 directly from the atmosphere and store it permanently in a solid form underground, eliminating the risk of leakage.
Climework’ fans suck huge amounts of air into the system. Chemicals react with the CO2, leaving nitrogen, oxygen and other gasses to return to the atmosphere. The captured CO2 in the filters is heated with renewable energy to be released.
Then, it is dissolved in water, and injected into basaltic rock 1,000 meters underground. Carbfix provides the permanent CO2 storage solution that turns the gas into rock. Over two years, the dissolved CO2 crystallizes into a mineral that locks it inside.
The permanent storage aspect of the technology is making it an attractive carbon removal solution. Other carbon capture and storage methods inject the CO2 underground as a gas, which leaves a risk of it escaping back into the air. Climeworks stores it permanently in a solid form which solves the issues with constant monitoring and leaks.