Ebb Carbon – an ocean carbon dioxide removal company founded by former Tesla, SolarCity, and Google X executives – announced today that it has raised a $20 million Series A round.
The company is set to use the funds to deploy its first installations and an initial system with a removal capacity of 100 tons of CO2 is expected to be operational in the next few months. A second, 1,000 ton version is slated to follow shortly after that.
“The ocean is a natural and vastly underutilized ally in this [climate change] fight. Our approach combines capture and storage into one step, by accelerating naturally occurring processes that benefit from the immensity of the ocean’s surface area. This enables one of the lowest cost solutions for atmospheric CO2 removal at scale. We’re incredibly excited to have the support of our new investors and to deploy our first system in the coming months,” said Ben Tarbell, CEO and Co-Founder of Ebb Carbon.
The impressive $20 million round came after two closes, led by Prelude Ventures and Evok Ventures, respectively. The second was completed at an increased valuation at the end of March and combined with a seeding round f $3 million, brings the total raise to $23 million. Some of the other investors in Ebb are prominent names in the climate tech space like Congruent, Grantham, and Incite.
Gabriel Kra and Mike Biddle, partners at Prelude Ventures and Evok Innovations respectively, both shared their enthusiasm about working with Ebb and helping the company remove gigatonnes of carbon dioxide.
The technology Ebb has developed relies on enhancing the ocean’s alkalinity with an electrochemical solution. It’s a process that already takes place in nature but it takes millions of years.
The proprietary system accelerates this by rearranging salt and water molecules in salt water into acid and slightly alkaline salt water solutions. The return of alkaline salt water to the ocean mimics the natural alkalization process and creates a chemical reaction that pulls CO2 out of the air and converts it into bicarbonate, the ocean’s most abundant form of carbon storage.
One of the issues other carbon removal methods have is their permanence but Ebb’s approach passes this test with flying colors – the company says bicarbonate can sequester cabon dioxide for a minimum of 10,000 years.
The list of potential partners for deployment of Ebb’s technology is quite broad, as the systems themselves are modular and can be adapted to different needs. Partner sites can include desalination plants, aquaculture facilities, and manufacturing or energy plants that circulate ocean water for cooling.
Ebb Carbon is part of a growing list of startups working on ocean carbon removal that has rapidly in the last year, with impressive Series A funding rounds raised by multiple initiatives.