This testbed in Iceland sucks carbon dioxide out of the air

October 18, 2017 by  
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Swiss company Climeworks pushes the envelope on capture technology.

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This testbed in Iceland sucks carbon dioxide out of the air

Advocating an expanded approach to collective action for water

October 18, 2017 by  
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It’s time to include more industry voices in the dialogue.

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Advocating an expanded approach to collective action for water

Climate change is running a $535 trillion-dollar debt

August 8, 2017 by  
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The advent of technology means inaction is no longer an excuse for not bringing our carbon budget back in balance.

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Climate change is running a $535 trillion-dollar debt

Swiss company touts carbon capture breakthrough

June 12, 2017 by  
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Climeworks plans to use the carbon dioxide captured at a facility near Zurich as fertilizer for greenhouses.

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Swiss company touts carbon capture breakthrough

10 minutes with Tom Murray, EDF+Business

June 12, 2017 by  
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The NGO executive talks corporate partnerships and why sustainable business leaders need to get better at illustrating the story link between a thriving economy and a healthy environment.

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10 minutes with Tom Murray, EDF+Business

World’s first commercial carbon-sucking plant goes live in Zurich

May 31, 2017 by  
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Carbon capture is essential to the fight against climate change and keeping temperatures below a two-degree-Celsius increase, according to Swiss-based Climeworks . For a few years now they’ve been working on technology to suck carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air and sell it to agriculture or energy industries for reuse. And now they’ve finally switched on the final product – the world’s first Direct Air Capture (DAC) commercial plant on top of a waste recovery facility in Zurich, Switzerland . Atop a municipal-run waste incineration facility in Zurich, Climeworks installed their DAC plant, which is comprised of three stacked shipping containers with six carbon collectors. Fans suck ambient air into the collectors, and a filter takes in CO2. Waste heat will power the groundbreaking plant. Climeworks will send the captured CO2 to a greenhouse – every single year they’ll be able to supply 900 metric tons. They’ll be able to continuously supply the CO2 to the greenhouse via an underground pipeline. Related: The world’s first carbon capture plant can convert CO2 into usable energy In a statement, managing director and co-founder Christoph Gebald said, “Highly scalable negative emission technologies are crucial if we are to stay below the two degree target of the international community.” And the CO2 won’t go to waste. Greenhouses aren’t the only entities that can utilize CO2; it could carbonate drinks or become carbon-neutral hydrocarbon fuel. The automotive and food industries could benefit from the CO2 Climeworks captures. Their ultimate goal is to capture one percent of all carbon emissions in the world by 2025. To do that, co-founder and director Jan Wurzbacher estimates they’ll need to install 750,000 shipping containers filled with their C02 collectors. He says that is the same amount of shipping containers that pass through the harbor in Shanghai during a two week period, so it’s a target the global economy could handle. Climeworks says their modular plants could be deployed just about anywhere. + Climeworks Via Climeworks and Fast Company Images via screenshot and Climeworks Facebook

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Groundbreaking technology affordably captures CO2 from fossil fuel plants

February 22, 2017 by  
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What if fossil fuels could be burned without pouring emissions into the air? Many people consider that idea to be wishful thinking, but chemical engineer Rodney Allam doesn’t. He’s been working on carbon capture technology on and off since the 1970’s, and with the help of venture capital incubator 8 Rivers , recently put the finishing touches on the Allam Cycle , an electric-generation system that captures all the carbon dioxide (CO2) made from burning fossil fuels. Allam investigated bolt-on methods during his decades of searching for a way to capture CO2 from fossil fuel plants, but found those methods too expensive. He aimed to make carbon capture affordable, but gave up in the 1990’s. Then 8 Rivers came along in 2009 with a plan to make use of Recovery Act money from the federal government. When Allam returned to the issue, he was at last able to develop the Allam Cycle. Related: Breakthrough technology turns coal plant CO2 into baking powder The Allam Cycle doesn’t utilize steam to create electricity . Instead, CO2 under pressure and in a supercritical state spins the turbines powering the generators. Combustion adds CO2 to keep the process going, and any excess is sent into a pipeline. NetPower , 8 Rivers’ portfolio company constructing the first Allam Cycle plant, describes the technology as truly clean, saying plants that utilize the Allam Cycle are able to “inherently eliminate all air emissions.” That means no particulate matter, mercury, nitrogen oxides, or sulfur oxides either. Plus, Allam’s technology can generate electricity at the same six cents per kilowatt-hour as other gas-fired turbines. NetPower is working with Exelon and Toshiba on the first plant. According to Forbes, such a full-size plant costs around $300 million to construct and can generate 300 megawatts yearly. Once the plant is built, it will take a few months before NetPower can show the cycle is stable. Allam told Forbes they might know for sure in a year. The first plant will run on natural gas ; 8 Rivers says on their website they are also developing a coal -based system. Via Forbes Images via Wikimedia Commons and eutrophication&hypoxia on Flickr

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Groundbreaking technology affordably captures CO2 from fossil fuel plants

Breakthrough technology turns coal plant CO2 into baking powder

January 3, 2017 by  
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When it comes to mitigating the impact of modern civilization on our planet’s environment, many scientists and engineers have been focused on ways to clean up excess carbon dioxide, which contributes to climate change. India-based company Carbon Clean Solutions is making headway in that area, with its unique method for turning CO2 into harmless baking powder . The method can be employed by coal-burning industries to reduce CO2 emissions and turn the waste into usable byproducts that do no harm. Carbon Clean is putting its methods through the wringer at a coal-fired thermal power plant at the industrial port of Tuticorin in southern India. There, CO2 is captured from the boiler and used to make soda ash (sodium carbonate) which is the very same stuff housed in any baker’s pantry. Transforming the dangerous atmosphere-heating carbon emissions into harmless baking powder is no simple (or cheap) task, but Carbon Clean is pushing forward even so, and the firm is doing it without government subsidies. Related: Researchers accidentally turn CO2 into ethanol The firm says this process can lock up 66,000 tons of CO2 each year from the Tuticorin plant, which is the equivalent of removing 12,674 cars from the road for the same time period or burning 6,751,435 gallons of gasoline. While many firms are still leaning on carbon capture and storage (CCS), which typically involves attempting to sink carbon underground – a process which is very expensive and has no opportunity for future profit. Carbon Clean’s method is the first large-scale example of carbon capture and utilization (CCU), wherein CO2 is essentially recycled into baking powder that can be sold off to help pay for the capture process. CCU is also slightly cheaper than CCS, costing around $30 per metric ton of CO2 captured, another item in the “pro” column for Carbon Clean. While these efforts won’t be enough to turn coal into a sustainable industry, Carbon Clean’s technique could help fossil fuel industries greatly reduce their carbon footprints. Likewise, CCU methods of trapping CO2 could create new avenues of economic opportunity in places like India, where coal-based industry is widespread. Via The Guardian Images via NLC Tamil Nadu Power Ltd and  Shutterstock

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Breakthrough technology turns coal plant CO2 into baking powder

Cleverly designed bed makes this tiny home feel bigger than its 35-square-meter footprint

January 3, 2017 by  
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Thirty-five square meters (376 square feet) is a very small amount of space to call home, especially if you’re sharing with another person. But Studio Bazi founder and architect Alireza Nemati manages to make it work in style with his self-designed micro-apartment in Moscow. The tiny apartment, which he shares with his wife, makes the most of its small footprint with a few clever space-saving tricks and custom furnishings, including a smartly designed bedroom. Central to Nemati’s design was the need for an open-plan space that maximized natural light but still preserved privacy for the sleeping areas. The key to his successful design lay with his custom wooden sleeping box stacked above storage space located next to the entrance. This use of a level change effectively separates the sleeping quarters from the living areas without the need for a separate room and door, while providing much-needed storage space underneath. The box is clad in stained pine sheets to visually define the structure and to add warmth to the interior. Related: Bookshelf House fits hundreds of books into multifunctional furnishings “The wooden sleep box with storage system provides a level of privacy separating the sleeping quarters in a raised corner of the apartment, from the kitchen and living area on the other side,” writes the architect. “There is a good view of whole flat and to the windows from inside of the sleep box which makes it very cozy place.” The stairs that lead up to the bed hide three large sliding shelves for storing large household appliances. The custom-built furniture also includes a dresser, drawer, and wardrobe. The storage spaces atop the wardrobe connect to the sleep box and create an extra cubby for the architect and his wife to use. A small set of white curtains provides privacy for the sleeping box while a larger set of brown curtains next to the sleeping box cordon off the entrance, wardrobe area, and door to the bathroom from the rest of the open-plan living space. Large windows fill the tiny apartment with natural light and a door opens up to a small outdoor patio. The open-plan space includes a kitchen, dining area, and living area with moveable and transformable furniture that can adapt to Nemati and his wife’s different needs. + Studio Bazi Via ArchDaily Images via Studio Bazi

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Cleverly designed bed makes this tiny home feel bigger than its 35-square-meter footprint

Episode 38: NASCAR’s vegan hippie chick; carbon removal ramps up

July 13, 2016 by  
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This week on the GreenBiz 350 podcast: An interview with environmental advocate and racecar driver Leilani Münter, making sense of carbon capture and staying sane in sustainability.

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Episode 38: NASCAR’s vegan hippie chick; carbon removal ramps up

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