Carbon removal is seeing an unprecedented influx of investment announcements. The new investment commitments are coming under the umbrella of the First Movers Coalition – a group launched by the US at COP26 last year that brings together companies across a number of emissions-intensive sectors, pledging to decarbonize.
The First Movers Coalition (FMC) announced that its members Alphabet, Microsoft and Salesforce are collectively committing $500 million in carbon removal by 2030 as the coalition is pushing to expand its operational footprint.
Salesforce will be providing $100 million through the purchase of carbon credits in technologies that remove carbon from the atmosphere at scale. Microsoft and Alphabet are committing $200 million each to carbon removals.
Since its launch last year, the First Movers Coalition has collected $10 billion in commitments to new technology developments that aim to decarbonize the heavy-emitting sectors of the economy.
FMC has more than 50 companies and nine governments under its umbrella, agreeing to push for green alternatives in aviation, shipping, steel and trucking.
“Today is a great milestone in a very difficult longterm project,” said Bill Gates, founder of Breakthrough Energy – advising the FMC on operations.
On top of the $500 million investments, it was also announced that consultancy Boston Consulting Group committed to remove 100,000 tonnes of carbon by 2030. AES, Misui O.S.K Lines and Swiss Re have each said to either spend $25 million on carbon removal, or eliminate 50,000 tonnes of carbon from the air.
Massive investments are going into carbon removal projects, however, there is always the danger of those projects not delivering on the CO2 removals they are meant to. Therefore rigorous scrutiny should be exercised on the validity and efficiency of carbon removal credits and those investment spurs to make sure the money will actually go to eliminating emissions from the atmosphere.