As the need to act on climate change becomes ever more pressing, more companies and organizations are investing in carbon removals, and with them, the number of carbon removal marketplaces is also growing.
Carbon removal marketplaces are the bridge between companies that sell the removals of CO2 from the atmosphere and businesses or individuals, who are willing to purchase these removals, in order to offset their emissions and help mitigate the climate crisis.
We’ve listed 10 of the most promising and rapidly developing marketplaces, based on the statistics made available by CDR.fyi – a carbon removal market registry and reporting platform. The platform was launched in 2022 with the aim of providing a means to reliably track the swiftly expanding market for carbon dioxide purchases and deliveries.
At the core of CDR.fyi are industry experts, such as Filippo Varinil, Chris Nixon, and Kevin Niparko, with much of the project building on work done previously by Niparko and Robert Höglund.
And before we list the top 10 current carbon removal marketplaces, let’s start with an honorable mention of Klimate.co with 824 tons of CO2 removals purchased so far, according to the latest available data on CDR.fyi. The platform provides businesses with a diverse portfolio of carbon removal solutions to help offset their unavoidable emissions and thus reach their climate objectives.
The list is based on the carbon removals (in tons) sold by the marketplaces included in CDR.fyi at the time of writing.
- 10. Compensate
- 9. Stripe Climate
- 8. Pledge
- 7. Patch
- 6. GECA Environment
- 5. Miklywire
- 4. Supercritical
- 3. Watershed
- 2. Puro
- 1. Carbonfuture
Compensate is a very fast-growing company with a mission to improve the quality of voluntary carbon markets. At the time of writing, the marketplace has a total of 980 tons of carbon removals purchased. In 2021, Compensate received €2,031,310 euros (~ $2,485,368) in compensation payments from clients, only two years after its launch in Helsinki, Finland.
This company caters to small businesses and even freelancers with a product called Compensate Plus and offers a convenient mobile app that allows users to easily calculate their emissions and access carbon offsetting options.
Compensate’s philosophy is that in order to bring about meaningful change, everyone must have easy access to climate action, but that climate action must also be of the highest quality. Their team of experts emphasizes strongly on the rigorous evaluation of the carbon projects it offers, with only 10% of the projects accredited by international standards meeting their high standards.
Launched by tech billionaire brothers and co-founders of the global electronic payments company Stripe, Patrick and John Collison, the Stripe Climate fund allows environmentally conscious customers to redirect part of their income towards different climate projects.
The marketplace works with Frontier, its very own in-house team of scientists and commercial experts, who specialize in carbon removal technologies and carbon removal purchases. With the help of leading science experts, Frontier is able to assess the most promising and effective means of removing CO2 from the atmosphere.
Stripe Climate has funded a number of different projects that have become among the top carbon removal companies to date, such as Running Tide (sequesters carbon dioxide with kelp), Heirloom (CO2 removal via enhanced rock weathering), and others.
The latest information provided by CDR.fyi at the time of writing shows that, so far, a total of 1,255 tons of carbon removals have been purchased via Stripe Climate.
Pledge is a London-based integrated carbon offsetting platform that has currently sold 1,758 tons of carbon removals, according to the data available on CDR.fyi at the time of writing. The startup was founded with the intention of first targeting the logistics and transportation industry, by giving companies the tools needed to calculate the carbon footprint of their deliveries, shipments and travels.
Pledge offers sophisticated analytics of a company’s CO2 emissions and suggests ways to cut down on these emissions over time. And part of these suggestions involves purchasing verified carbon credits, which is another service that Pledge provides.
Furthermore, the platform even allows customers to purchase a fraction of a carbon credit and gives users access to well-balanced portfolios featuring a range of projects, featuring different geographies and methodologies. For instance, in 2022, Pledge expanded the scope of its nature-based carbon removal solutions by partnering up with Grassroots Carbon to purchase soil carbon storage credits.
Patch is among the fastest growing carbon marketplaces out there. Having been founded in 2020, the platform quickly started gaining traction and in September 2022, it secured $55 million in a series B funding round, bringing its total financing up to $80 million. Today, the company boasts over 100 corporate clients and has sold 2,774 tons of carbon removals, as per the data available on CDR.fyi at the time of writing.
Patch’s platform supports carbon projects from all around the world and of many different types, including nature-based approaches, such as kelp farming and afforestation, along with technology-based solutions like direct air capture (DAC). In addition to offering companies a means to meaningfully mitigate their impact on the environment, Patch provides an Application Programming Interface (API) that allows them to calculate the emissions of various transactions and purchases.
Just recently, the startup joined the the First Movers Coalition (FMC) with the aim of connecting to even more carbon removal project developers and leverage its software to scale long-term climate action.
Ramping up the amount of carbon removals sold to 10,150 tons, GECA Environment specializes in biochar and pyrolysis. The Canadian consulting firm supports biochar producers, technology providers, and project developers. And it connects them with businesses small and large: from NPOs all the way to Fortune 500 companies.
GECA works with different organizations around the world like, for example, Puro.earth, which is also present in this list of marketplaces, to help quantify, verify and make sure all of its carbon credits are of the highest quality. The platform sells only biochar carbon credits and is making a big bet on this section of the market, based on how quickly it has expanded in such a short time since first emerging.
One of the main reasons for this, as GECA itself explains, is that currently biochar represents one of the most scalable carbon removal solutions that does not cost an arm and a leg, compared to technological alternatives like DAC.
Founded in 2018, Milkywire is a tech platform that introduces users to a novel approach to supporting climate projects. The company has launched its very own app that provides access to a wide range of carbon removal options to help individuals and businesses offset their emissions. So far, the app has enabled the purchase of 11,581 tons of carbon removals, as per CDR.fyl.
Milkywire positions itself as the platform that allows you to donate funds to different projects that will benefit the environment with the utmost transparency. The app users can support climate action and be certain that at least 80% of their funds will reach the project of choice. Another 10% also go towards supporting the project or impacter, as they are called by Milkywire, but more so by covering marketing and compliance expenses.
And then the remaining 10% cover transaction fees and the development of digital infrastructure. The Stockholm-based company is quickly moving up in the carbon removal space by forging partnerships with major players like Klarna and PANGAIA to help them reach net zero goals and continue making access to quality climate projects easier.
Although launched less than two years ago in the summer of 2021, the Supercritical carbon removal marketplace has outpaced most of the other platforms out there and comes in fourth in this list with a total of 15,314 tons of carbon removals sold, up until the time of writing. One of the things that distinguishes Supercritical from other marketplaces is that it is geared towards customers in the technology sector.
This is significant because, although it may not be as obvious, the tech industry is actually a heavier emitter of CO2 than even the aviation industry, for example. Hence, there is a particularly strong need to focus on decarbonizing this particular sector.
And another thing that makes Supercritical stand out is its emphasis on carbon removal, as opposed to other means of offsetting emissions. Examples of the types of projects supported by this marketplace include enhanced weathering, direct air capture (DAC) and bio-oil sequestration.
Not only does the Supercritical marketplace enable large investments in the CDR (carbon dioxide removal) space, but the platform also provides companies with an accurate assessment of their emissions and a straightforward strategy to reduce them.
Watershed is an enterprise climate platform offering a range of services to customers, who are looking to effectively reduce their emissions and reach climate objectives. The company has set out to help businesses tackle their Scope 3 CO2 emissions – the most difficult type of emissions. Addressing Scope 3 emissions poses a challenge due to the need to work closely together with different vendors and suppliers along the supply chain.
But as some 80% of the world’s emissions are in fact Scope 3, dealing with them is of the utmost importance. That is where Watershed comes in with its innovative Watershed Supply Chain tool that helps measure, understand and reduce emissions easily and quickly.
In addition to its sophisticated carbon accounting services, the tool provides access to high-quality carbon removal credits, offered by a whole list of different CDR solutions, ranging from DAC and biochar to reforestation and other nature-based options. This is likely what has allowed Watershed to sell an impressive 18,740 tons of carbon removals, according to the latest data from CDR.fyi.
The company is certainly among those spearheading the movement towards meaningful climate change mitigation, as it recently joined the World Economic Forum (WEF) as part of the Global Innovators Community along with other innovative start-ups and scale-ups.
Puro.earth is more than a marketplace for high-quality carbon removal credits, it is, in fact, an entire ecosystem for carbon removal suppliers and also an issuer of carbon credits. The Puro Standard is the first of its kind for engineered carbon removal solutions in the Voluntary Carbon Market. It consists of a number of complex, rigorous methodologies, designed to ensure high carbon credit integrity and strict principles for a carbon removal standard that is rooted in science.
The methodologies cover biochar, enhanced rock weathering, geologically stored carbon, woody biomass burial, and carbonated building elements. Each of these is aligned with the IPCC definition for carbon removal and is used in the formation of Puro’s carbon credit, which is called the CO2 Removal Certificate or CORC.
A CORC is the equivalent of one ton of CO2 that has been removed from the atmosphere using one of the above methodologies. At the time of writing, CDR.fyi shows that the platform has sold 59,114 tons of carbon removals, placing it in second place on this list.
Puro.earth also trains third-party independent verifiers to audit carbon removal project sites or facilities and uphold the rigorous verification process that ensures environmental safeguards are followed.
Puro.earth has clarified that the total amount of CORCs sold through its suppliers is 129,664, which includes CORCs that have not yet been retired.
Carbonfuture is among the youngest carbon removal marketplaces, yet it has shot straight up to the leading position in our list with a tremendous 80,631 tons of carbon removals contracted since its launch in 2020. The German digital MRV (monitoring, reporting, verification) platform and marketplace for high-quality carbon removal credits makes credibility and trustworthiness its primary focus.
The startup set out with the ambitious goal of setting the standard for the entire carbon removal industry by incentivizing quality carbon removal suppliers and connecting them with those, seeking to offset their residual emissions. Carbonfuture has formed partnerships with some of the world’s largest CDR buyers, such as Klarna, Microsoft, SwissRe and South Pole.
Like some of the other entries here, Carbonfuture also has its proprietary carbon tracking solution that allows customers to benefit from accurate measurements of their carbon footprint. The platform is built on the strict adherence to independent standards and audits that ensure the credibility of its carbon removals and confirm the climate impact they claim to have.
Similarly to Puro.earth, Carbonfuture also focuses on engineered carbon removal, such as biochar, enhanced weathering, DAC, bio-oil, and others.
Given the numbers presented in this list and the short time in which they have been reached, the carbon removal space is evidently growing in leaps and bounds. And as more companies and organizations recognize the need to support climate projects, while reducing their own emissions, the space is likely to continue growing at the same rapid rate for years to come. There are plenty of reports that say the same, with some projections of its value reaching multi-billion dollars before 2030.
But this rate might not be enough. With current projections for global warming moving the goal posts for carbon removal even further, even CDR.fyi team member Robert Höglund commented that the number of buyers is “very low”.
Regardless, we can’t feel anything but encouragement at the prospects of carbon removal. In the space of a couple of years we have seen the proliferation of marketplaces, buyers and sellers and CDR will undoubtedly contribute to the reduction of CO2 in the atmosphere.