Carbon capture is here—it just isn’t evenly distributed

Read the full story at Ars Technica.

Global emissions have continued to burn through the carbon budget, meaning each year brings us closer to having put enough CO2 in the atmosphere that we’ll be committed to over 2°C of warming. That makes developing carbon-capture technology essential, both to bring atmospheric levels down after we overshoot and to offset emissions from any industries we struggle to decarbonize.

But so far, little progress has been made toward carbon capture beyond a limited number of demonstration projects. That situation is beginning to change, though, as some commercial ventures start to either find uses for the carbon dioxide or offer removal as a service for companies with internal emissions goals. And the Biden administration recently announced its intention to fund several large capture facilities.

But I recently visited a very different carbon-capture facility, one that’s small enough to occupy the equivalent of a handful of parking spaces in the basement of a New York City apartment tower. Thanks to a local law, it’s likely to be the first of many. CarbonQuest, the company that installed it, already has commitments from several more buildings, and New York City’s law is structured so that the inducement to install similar systems will grow over time.

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