Carbon Engineering Secures $68 Million to Scale Up Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Removal

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Carbon Engineering Secures $68 Million to Scale Up Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Removal

Canadian clean tech startup Carbon Engineering has closed a landmark $68 million financing round to commercialize and expand its Direct Air Capture (DAC) technology that removes carbon dioxide emissions directly from the air. The sizable backing represents the largest private investment yet targeting DAC innovations that filter out atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2).

The British Columbia-based company suggests its patented process can now capture CO2 for under $100 per tonne at an industrial scale. Funding will support building expanded capacity beyond existing pilot plants to supply both emissions offset and synthetic fuel markets. Investors span global energy corporations and high-profile venture funds betting that Carbon Engineering’s affordable approach makes negative emissions viable amid rising climate action costs.

Speaking on the capital injection, CEO Steve Oldham said the vote of financial confidence cements Direct Air Capture as a critical solution bridging energy demands with climate stability. He stated the technology is poised for mainstream deployment helping companies and governments meet net-zero commitments as the world transitions from fossil fuel reliance.

The $68 million will bankroll commercial facilities each able to extract up to one million tonnes of CO2 annually according to target capacities. Expansions of Carbon Engineering’s operational pilot plant are also slated to prove reliability at increasing scales. The company suggests customized DAC installations can curb individual emitters’ or municipalities’ climate footprints by generating certified negative emissions credits verifying permanent underground CO2 storage.

Additionally, when integrated with the firm’s processing stage called AIR TO FUELSTM, atmospheric carbon feeds production of synthetic fuels compatible with modern transport without further emissions at point of use. Investors now include major automotive and aviation players eager to future-proof with cleaner liquid fuel supplies produced via DAC inputs.

Backers hope Carbon Engineering’s affordably extracted atmospheric CO2 could replace some conventionally drilled carbon feedstocks where electrification proves challenging, like jets, maritime vessels and manufacturing. Lowering reliance on extractive industries aligns with corporate climate commitments and becomes increasingly feasible given emission offset potential from each tonne of carbon mineralized beyond fuels.

The crowded investor roster numbers mining giant BHP, oil multinationals Chevron and Occidental, ultra high-net individuals like Bill Gates, and specialized venture firms alongside original Canadian clean tech funds. This diverse coalition aims to propel Carbon Engineering’s differentiation as an end-to-end industrial DAC solution prime to scale up once plants break ground. They believe backing both the direct air captured carbon itself and conversion processes generating in-demand fuels and materials verges on a circular economy for carbon.

Competitors hunting negative emissions must contend with Carbon Engineering’s head start escaping niche markets towards mass viability. Since founded in 2009, the team has secured over $100 million total to backfield-tested process components and computational models predicting costs as more units activate. Officials call present systems ready for replication worldwide given fully operational end-to-end demonstrations. With validation complete and impact investors onboard, they are positioned to help fulfill society’s growing demand for technologies drawing down greenhouse gases already accumulating in the skies.

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