Venture Capital: Carbon Removal Pioneer Climeworks Raises $650M

Climeworks launched Orca, the world’s largest direct air capture and storage plant, in Iceland in September 2021.

It’s also the largest financing ever in a carbon capture startup. Climeworks, the leading startup developing technology to remove carbon dioxide from the air, announced today its 600 million francs ($650 million) funding round led by co-led by Partners Group (acting on behalf of its clients) and GIC, with further participation from Baillie Gifford, Carbon Removal Partners, Global Founders Capital, John Doerr, M&G, Swiss Re, as well as other new and existing shareholders including long-term investor and anchor shareholder BigPoint Holding AG. (Climeworks)

Christoph Gebald and Jan Wurzbacher founded Climeworks in 2009 to pioneer direct air capture. Today the startup is the leading player in the field, and its Orca direct air capture plant (pictured above) is the world’s largest such facility.

The carbon scraped from air is stored underground by Climeworks or converted into environmentally friendly fuels or other usable products. The process is highly energy intensive but uses only renewable energy.

Global climate concerns

On Monday, the IPCC warned in its latest report: “If global temperature temporarily overshoots 1.5°C, carbon dioxide removal would be required to reduce the atmospheric concentration of CO2 to bring global temperature back down.”

Added Climeworks in their funding announcement: “In addition to drastic emissions reductions, carbon removal solutions need to be deployed at scale to remove historic and residual CO₂ emissions to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, and eventually net-negative emissions.”

Given these climatic concerns, it is no surprise that the latest investment round in the company includes some of the most reputed and largest institutional technology and infrastructure investors globally.

The statup will use the money to scale up its technology to multi-million-ton capacity and implementing large-scale facilities as carbon removal becomes a trillion-dollar market.

Related Story: The CICC Carbon Futures ETF Launches Today In Hong Kong

Images Credit: Climeworks website

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