Climeworks and CarbFix2: The world’s first carbon removal solution through direct air capture

At Climeworks, we are searching for solutions to unlock a negative emissions future. After years of hard work and research, we have developed a patented technology which is now in action at the world’s first commercial Direct Air Capture (DAC) plant in Switzerland. Recently, we’ve been working on a different plant – and it’s another world first…

We are excited to announce that we are combining safe and permanent geological storage with our highly scalable carbon removal technology through direct air capture of CO2. The pilot plant is part of the CarbFix2 project which stores the air-captured CO2 safely and permanently in basalt, leading us closer to our efforts to achieve global warming targets.

Photo by Arni Saeberg

CarbFix2 has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 764760 and is led by Iceland’s multi-utility company Reykjavik Energy. The collaborative research project centres around one of the world’s largest geothermal power plants in Hellisheidi, Iceland, where CO2 is currently injected and mineralized at an industrial scale.

Basalt core containing carbonates – Photo by Sandra O Snaebjornsdottir

With our DAC module installed on site, a testing phase has now started, during which we will see how the technology is operating in the weather conditions of South West Iceland. Here’s how it works:

  • The Climeworks DAC module captures CO2 from ambient air
  • The CO2 binds to our patented filter
  • Once the filter is saturated with CO2, it is heated by low-grade waste heat from the geothermal plant
  • The CO2 is released and bound to water
  • The carbonated water is pumped more than 700 metres underground
  • Here, it reacts with the basaltic bedrock, forming solid minerals
  • A permanent, safe and irreversible storage solution is created

The CarbFix2 project imitates natural processes and speeds them up rapidly. The potential of scaling up our technology in combination with this effective CO2 storage is enormous: it unlocks possibilities in Iceland and numerous other regions in the world where there is a similar geological foundation of basalt.

This partnership is helping to realise our mission to capture 1% of global emissions by 2025.

Copyright Climeworks / Zev Starr-Tambor

For more information, please take a look at the press release below and keep up to date on our progress via our newsletter and social media.

Press release (English)
Press release (German)

Copyright Climeworks / Zev Starr-Tambor