Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan have pledged $44 million to fight climate change through carbon removal
In another philanthropic gesture, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) has decided to pour $44 million into a series of efforts to combat climate change. Founded by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, the organization announced that the funds will be directed towards researching technologies that will combat climate change, primarily through the method of removing carbon dioxide.
Technology has recently been at the heart of all efforts to reverse the impact of global warming on Earth. For those who don’t know, carbon removal is the process of removing and isolating carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Since it is the main greenhouse gas emitted by human activities, the massive emissions of carbon dioxide over the decades have already polluted our planet enough to bring it closer to the point of no return.
Ideally, no technology is needed to remove carbon dioxide from the Earth’s atmosphere. Nature takes care of it through its trees and its phytoplankton – the microscopic seaweed that traps CO2 from the air and releases it into the ocean. But since carbon emissions from human activities have reached unprecedented levels, people are now turning to technology to save our planet Earth from catastrophic catastrophe.
That’s where big tech comes in. As mentioned on the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative website, the organization will employ “innovative funding strategies” that will include grants, investments, and disposal purchases. carbon directly from companies. It will then play its cards on a range of carbon removal technologies.
One of these efforts, for example, will be directed towards the production of advanced capacities for the electrolysis of CO2. Twelve, a chemical company that captures and converts CO2 into products such as jet fuel and electric car parts, will lead this innovation. The research and development will require a strategic investment of $20 million from CZI.
An additional $21 million of the grant will go to the Institute for Carbon Management (ICM) at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). The organization will use it for three promising carbon removal solutions. One of these is to produce “direct electrochemical air capture” which will be much more energy efficient than current methods.
In addition, ICM will also seek to develop a new electrochemical process for the production of portlandite – a material used in construction – to make carbon negative concrete. The website mentions that this effort could reduce carbon emissions from cement production by 65%, which already accounts for 8% of global CO2 emissions. The third project named SeaChange will remove CO2 dissolved in seawater through “an energy efficient approach” which will produce green hydrogen in the process.
In addition to these projects, CZI has also awarded $10 million to Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Fellows, which will accelerate other such decarbonization technologies. It is easy to see that these funds will be of great help in the search for new and clean technologies, and we could finally see a balanced earth environment, thanks to big technologies.