By David Worford
Environment+Energy Leader , September 14, 2022
A carbon capture and storage project in Wyoming aims to permanently remove 5 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere a year by 2030.
The planned system is part of a partnership by CarbonCapture and Frontier Carbon Solutions, and the companies say it will be the first atmospheric carbon removal facility to use Class VI wells for permanent storage as well as the first large-scale direct air capture (DAC) project in the United States. The carbon capture project is expected to be operational by late 2023.
The partnership, named Project Bison, will use CarbonCapture’s DAC modules atop Frontier’s carbon dioxide transportation and storage infrastructure. The project will be developed over multiple phases through 2030, and the companies say it will help meet the increasing demand for carbon removal credits.
The Inflation Reduction Act, which was passed in August and aims to help the US achieve 40% emissions reductions by 2030, includes more than $369 billion toward energy projects and specifically outlines carbon capture and storage incentives. The bill increased a DAC tax credit to $180 per ton of captured carbon from $50 per ton.
CarbonCapture CEO Adrian Corless told Reuters the law accelerated the launch of the project by a few months. He says the project plans to offer the market’s lowest-priced DAC-based carbon removal credits.
According to the International Energy Agency, there are currently 19 DAC plants in operation. The IEA says in the 2050 net-zero scenario, DAC is scaled to capture more than 85 metric tons a year of carbon by 2030 and 980 metric tons annually by 2050.
Microsoft signed a 10-year DAC deal with Climeworks to remove carbon as part of its target to remove all its historic emissions by 2050. Climeworks is building a large-scale DAC facility in Iceland.
The carbon capture, storage, and utilization market is expected to be valued at $9.43 billion by 2030, according to Research and Markets. Earlier this year Stripe, Alphabet, Shopify, Meta, and McKinsey Sustainability launched a $925 million initiative to advance permanent carbon removal.
CarbonCapture’s DAC platform uses a modular open system to pull carbon out of the atmosphere. Class VI wells inject carbon dioxide into deep rock formations, permanently storing it, according to the EPA.
Wyoming was selected for the project’s site because it has a range of available renewable and zero-carbon energy sources. The companies say the state also has a favorable geological, regulatory, and operating environment for carbon storage.
“We plan to have our first DAC modules fielded by the end of next year and to continue installing capacity as quickly as modules come off our production line,” Corless says.