As a disclaimer:
Carbon dioxide removal is not an alternative to decarbonizing our economy as quickly as practically possible. However, there are some sources of emissions that are extremely hard to avoid for ethical or financial reasons, and there are already decades worth of excess CO₂ in the atmosphere, so the scientific consensus is that carbon dioxide removal is necessary to repair the balance of our climate and society.
The Trillion Ton Cloud
Time passes, the trees burn... and a new era unwinds under an unfamiliar sky. To keep Earth's temperature rise below +2ºC, humanity has to discover how to liberate the atmosphere from over a TRILLION TONS of carbon dioxide! The challenge is tremendous, the stakes sky-high, and we will have to make full use of our plants and technology just to survive.
So here's the deal... while climate science is complex, the answer to this question is really simple: help mother nature by investing in a sustainable world where carbon removal technology thrives.
We're going to go ahead and assume that if you’re here, you know that climate change is caused by us humans emitting too many greenhouse gases, mostly CO₂, into the atmosphere. If not, feel free to learn more here.
You might also be aware that climate change poses a host of existential threats from sea level rise to extreme weather events to a multitude of health hazards for virtually all life on our planet.
Is it too late to save the planet?
No, but we need to act strategically.
We see three main approaches to solving climate change:
Most changes in the climate stem directly from excess carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere so decarbonizing every industry as quickly as practically possible is of the highest importance.
Climate change is already affecting the poorest and most vulnerable among us so efforts that are helping communities adapt are a matter of solidarity and longstanding justice.
By investing in a sustainable world and winding back time with carbon dioxide removal, we repaired our relationship with mother nature and balance was achieved.
We are focused on the third approach - reverse - specifically on the removal of one greenhouse gas, CO₂, because it presents the biggest problem long term.
Carbon dioxide removal also contains plenty of both accessible and desirable solutions, from reforestation and soil sequestration, to capturing CO₂ from the air with machines and storing it permanently underground, to making industrial wastes less hazardous by mineralizing them, to protecting coastal communities by sinking invasive seaweeds deep into the ocean.
Something for everyone ☺️
350ppm is the concentration of CO₂ in the atmosphere where climate change is no longer out of control.
The last time our atmosphere was below 350ppm was in the 1980s. It takes decades to feel the effects of extra CO₂ and the planet has warmed just over 2ºF because of this.
We're currently at 420ppm, locking in another +2ºF thus triggering the first four major climate tipping points.
Carbon dioxide removal is a time traveling pursuit, and forests, soils, rocks, and oceans are our carbon flux capacitors.
"Now, we need your help to get back to the year 1985."
What if we don't?
Most climate action is focused on decarbonization - things like replacing fossil fuels with solar and wind energy. These things absolutely need to happen, and fast, but we are too late in responding to the climate crisis to expect the problem will magically disappear after we reduce emissions.
Even if we had stopped all CO₂ and other greenhouse gas emissions yesterday, we already have too much extra CO₂ in the atmosphere right now, and this CO₂ would not be drawn down for thousands of years without human intervention.
We humans made this mess, and it’s up to us to actively clean it up. That is what investing in a sustainable world via carbon dioxide removal is all about – without it, we are just accepting to live with the mess that has already been made, despite the consequences to our health, our ecosystems, and our society.