Microsoft, Climeworks sign 10-year carbon removal deal


Microsoft has signed a 10-year carbon removal deal with Swiss direct air-capture company Climeworks to remove 10,000 tonnes of carbon emissions from air.

It’s a significant long-term agreement Microsoft has inked with a direct air capture (DAC) supplier. It’s also one of the biggest DAC deals so far via Climeworks’ DAC plant in Iceland.

Climeworks, through this deal, becomes Microsoft’s first long-term, tech-based carbon removal supplier. However, the company didn’t reveal how much Microsoft spent on the deal.

According to the statement released by Climeworks, Lucas Joppa, chief environmental officer at Microsoft, said that this muti-year agreement is an important step towards realizing the “net” in net zero. 

“Long-term commitments like this multi-year agreement are crucial for scaling the DAC industry because the guaranteed demand catalyzes financing of our infrastructure and consequently accelerates the development of the required ecosystem for scaling DAC,” said Christoph Gebald, co-CEO and co-founder of Climeworks.

The DAC plant that Climeworks owns is called Orca, which has the capacity to remove 4,000 tonnes of CO2 per year. It can suck air into its DAC system and separate CO2 from other gases through chemical reaction. Gases besides CO2 will be released back to the air and the captured CO2 will eventually turn into stone underground or upcycle into low carbon fuels or chemicals.

Microsoft has pledged to achieve carbon negative by 2030 and reach net zero emissions by 2050. The tech giant has 21 carbon removal projects so far, including the one with Climeworks, which was the only DAC solution chosen by the firm. It has another 106 ongoing projects under way.

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