In order to mitigate rising atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) levels, two leading companies have joined forces in an effort to unlock the storage potential of air-captured CO2 in the Middle East.
With large-scale removal of atmospheric CO2 being just as important as reducing its production, Swiss company Climeworks has created direct air capture technology which captures both unavoidable and historic CO2 emissions directly from air.
When combined with storage methods pioneered by Omani company, 44.01, this captured CO2 can undergo the natural process of mineralisation within peridotite rocks. This reaction allows precipitation and storage of carbonates within the rock.
By permanently removing and safely storing CO2 within these naturally occurring carbon sinks, the gas is unable to escape back into the atmosphere.
Due to its geology, Oman bears the potential to store trillions of tonnes of CO2. The country’s abundance of renewable energies also allows 44.01 to power its process with solar energy and biofuel produced in the region.
Speaking about the collaboration, Christoph Gebald, Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Climeworks, said, “We are excited to explore the potential to store CO2 from Climeworks’ direct air capture in Oman together with 44.01.”
“The geological conditions as well as the high availability of renewable energy make this a perfect location for testing prior to expanding our technology portfolio.”
Talal Hasan, Founder and CEO of 44.01, said, “We are delighted to be collaborating with Climeworks on such an important project. Climeworks is a pioneer in the field of direct air capture and brings in a lot of expertise.”
”The launch of this direct air capture plant is a major step forward for the region, which has some of the highest CO2 emissions per capita in the world.”
In order to adapt to their role in climate mitigation, storage solutions must be scalable to billions of tons of CO2 per year. Scientific estimates show that the global potential for geological storage of CO2 outweighs all greenhouse gases ever emitted since the Industrial Revolution.