In order to prevent the worst effects of global warming, various industries are working hard to reduce carbon emissions, but this is not enough. emissions that have been released into the atmosphere removal of carbon. This has given birth to a new industry sector, the carbon capture and storage (CCS) industry.
To limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, scientists estimate that 10% to 20% of the world's annual carbon dioxide emissions need to be captured or safely stored or used for other purposes.
Several startups are trying all sorts of new ways to capture carbon. Companies such as Climeworks in Switzerland and Carbon Engineering in Canada have created direct air capture devices that attempt to pull carbon dioxide out of the air using large fans. Charm Industrial in the United States uses agricultural waste such as straw and walnut shells to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and then uses a rapid heater to convert this cellulosic biomass into a stable carbon-rich liquid that is injected into a special well, hereinafter referred to as Solidification and Archive forever.
California startup Heirloom takes a different approach: using natural limestone to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
This method first absorbs the released carbon dioxide through the limestone and then extracts the carbon dioxide from the natural limestone by heating it into a powder and storing the extracted carbon dioxide underground. When heated, the remaining calcium oxide powder can be recycled.
Heirloom uses robotic monitoring and other advanced technologies to make the limestone absorb more carbon dioxide faster, reducing a process that would take years to just three days.
Company CEO Shashank Samala said that removing billions of tons of carbon dioxide from the air will require many companies and many different methods, and it will be a huge process.
Compared to other carbon capture and removal methods, the Heirloom method is relatively cheap and scalable, which has attracted many investors, including Microsoft.
Brandon Middau, director of the Microsoft Climate Innovation Foundation, said the ability to intensify Heirloom mineralization at low cost is a challenge for the industry as a whole.
Heirloom says it plans to deploy its first site next year to reduce its carbon footprint by 1 gigaton by 2035. It will also sell carbon credits to buyers including tech giant Microsoft, payment giant Stripe, e-commerce software developer Shopifyand the Klarna payment platform.
In addition to the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund, Heirloom's investors include Breakthrough Energy Ventures (Bill Gates' climate venture capital firm), Ahren Innovation Capital, Carbon Direct and Lowercarbon Capital. The company has raised $54.3 million so far.