Stripe, Alphabet, Meta, Shopify, and McKinsey launch new carbon removal initiative

Big names in technology and consulting just made a $925 million commitment to buy captured carbon between now and 2030. Stripe, Alphabet, Meta, Shopify and McKinsey — marks a major investment in carbon removal technologies.

Their new initiative, called Borderis believed to scale up deployment of the still-emerging technology while making it more affordable for other companies also looking to buy captured carbon as a way to offset some of the planet’s pollution.

There are already facilities that can filter that CO2 from the air, as well as attempts to store CO2 in rock formations or in the ocean once it is captured. But the existing capacity to do this is minuscule compared to what some climate experts believe is needed. Moreover, the technology is still unaffordable.

Frontier is trying to cut costs by drumming up more demand for the service. It will eventually act as a broker between buyers who are willing to pay to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and suppliers who can do it for them. It will have to lay much of the groundwork for this kind of market – from creating criteria to examine carbon removal projects to devising some sort of system to provide credit to companies that show how much CO2 they’ve paid to get out of the atmosphere. remove .

Such a carbon removal market will have to be careful to avoid some of the pitfalls with comparable carbon offsetting markets. There is a history of carbon compensation projects fail to actually capture CO2 in the long run, even when companies that invested in it claimed they were essentially erasing their carbon footprint.

Crucially, many experts who have called for more carbon removal to emphasize that it is primarily intended to compensate for the pollution that is most difficult to prevent. That “hard to reduceEmissions mostly come from heavy industries, such as cement and steel production, which cannot easily turn to renewable energy. Removing carbon isn’t meant to be a jail-break card for companies that need to take big steps to curb their pollution in the first place.

Frontier is wholly owned by Stripe, with the other companies providing initial financing. The new subsidiary builds on Stripe’s previous efforts to promote carbon removal technologies. Stripe initially pledged to spend $1 million a year in 2019 to remove CO2 from the air. The following year, the online payment platform began offering its customers an option to give some of the money they earn from each sale to carbon removal projects. The contributions from those customers will also feed into the Frontier initiative.


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