Eight DAC companies to watch in 2022

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Panelists Susan Su of TOBA Capital and Na’im Merchant, author of the Carbon Curve, join host Radhika Moolgavkar of Nori for this business-focused episode of Carbon Removal Newsroom.

Na’im recently published a piece titled “8 Unique Direct Air Capture Companies to Watch in 2022” where he wrote, “2030 is a critical decade for DAC in which companies, researchers, and policymakers working on DAC to figure out how to do three things— 1. improve DAC’s performance, 2. bring down costs, and 3. responsibly deploy the technology.”

Three well-known ‘incumbents’ have been working on DAC since 2009, and they all had big developments in 2021: Climeworks, Carbon Engineering, and Global Thermostat. However, the scale of the problem will require many more companies to capture billions of tons of CO2 annually, globally.

There are many new entrants into the DAC space, but there is limited public information on many of them. Most of these startups are attempting novel technological approaches distinct from existing deployments.

Na’im, Susan, and Radhika discuss what sets this crop of DAC companies apart from those that came before, which ones they are excited about, and how they would be planning their approach to market if they were on the inside of one of these startups.

In our second segment, we dive into Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s inaugural Long-Term Carbon Offset Outlook 2022, released earlier this month. The report models several supply and demand scenarios for offset prices.

Main author Kyle Harrison says, “No matter the scenario, corporations and other entities looking to buy carbon offsets shouldn’t expect them to be a get-out-of-jail-free card for much longer.”

While the conversation begins as a breakdown of the BNEF report, it zooms out into a wider trading of philosophies about how the carbon offset market should be regulated. Na’im and Susan elucidate some of the most contentious issues surrounding carbon offsets.

We end the show with some good news— fewer oil derricks in Los Angeles and a lot more cultured meat in China.

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