Carbon Removal and Sustainable Aviation Fuel in the News

The team at Tomorrow's Air is always busy tracking the latest trends and developments from the dynamic sectors of carbon dioxide removal and sustainable aviation fuel. Through our technical supply partners and through the conferences, panel discussions, newsletters and research reports we monitor, Tomorrow's Air keeps abreast of what's happening and offers a monthly digest in our Airrow Bulletin. Here are the highlights from our February, 2024 edition.

Tomorrow’s Air supplier Climeworks: Climeworks shared their perspective of the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos. Of course I loved reading their statement about the potential for collective efforts such as all of ours via Tomorrow’s Air:  “Incremental, small-scale initiatives have the potential to generate substantial real-world effects, emphasizing the necessity for early adoption to scale high-quality climate technologies.” For a thoughtful discussion of how carbon removal can align with corporate emissions reduction strategies, read Christoph Buettler’s blog. (LINK

World’s Largest Carbon Removal Plant: Graphyte, the one-year old Bill Gates-backed startup, is planning to start operations at its Arkansas carbon removal plant this month. The facility takes biomass matter like sawdust and farming waste and stops its decomposition by drying the waste out, shaping it into bricks, and burying the bricks underground for years and years. This process keeps the carbon held inside from ever reaching the atmosphere. Graphyte projections are to remove 15,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by the end of 2024 and continue scaling quickly from there. (LINK)

Carbon Removal Next Door to Google Data Center: 280 Earth, a direct air capture startup spun out of Google's moonshot lab X, recently raised $15 million from Catalyst4, a nonprofit launched by Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The company’s plants that remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere will be powered using waste heat from industrial facilities such as data centers. (Data centers and data transmission networks account for 1% of energy-related GHG emissions. Demand for artificial intelligence, along with machine learning, video streaming, cloud gaming and augmented and virtual reality applications are expected to continue growing with potentially significant implications for data center energy use in upcoming years.) The pilot facility will be located on three acres of land in The Dalles, Oregon, adjacent to a Google data center.

Inside a data center, photo by Brett Sayles

Microsoft supports carbon removal via grasslands: Microsoft will purchase carbon removal credits from Grassroots Carbon which delivers carbon removal through regeneratively managed grasslands. Grasslands play a crucial role in combating climate change by serving as effective carbon storage reservoirs. They surpass other ecosystems primarily due to the unique rooting characteristics of their vegetation. Adapted to frequent fire and grazing, these systems have evolved with deep root systems essential for their carbon storage. (LINK) See Tomorrow’s Air blog for an inspiring short film about grasslands

Grasslands, photo by Artur Roman

Sustainable Aviation Fuel: Amelia, a French regional airline, will obtain its sustainable aviation fuel from Neste, the same company that suppliers Tomorrow’s Air travel businesses and travelers with SAF. Amelia has been using the sustainable aviation fuel for all its flights departing from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol since 1 January, 2024. The European Union’s ReFuelEU Aviation regulation requires 2% SAF usage beginning 2025. (LINK)

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