Microsoft, Aker Carbon Capture, and CO280 Partner to Advance Permanent, Affordable Carbon Removal in US and Canada

April 19, 2024
The collaboration aims to scale the full value chain of carbon removal by capturing and permanently sequestering biogenic CO2 at pulp and paper mills

CO280, developer of Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) projects in the pulp and paper industry, and Aker Carbon Capture have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) agreement with Microsoft to explore opportunities for scaling the full physical and digital value chain of carbon removal in the US and Canada. 

The three companies have the expertise, technologies, and resources to create a scalable model to deploy large-scale projects and achieve global net zero targets. The collaboration aims to leverage the strengths and capabilities of each partner to enable the ecosystem for the voluntary carbon market by providing traceability of data and enabling high-integrity carbon credits.

The three companies will collaborate to address the technological, regulatory, and commercial challenges and opportunities for creating carbon removal. While each party will play a crucial commercial role, they intend to collaborate on a non-exclusive basis. 

Under the terms of the MoU agreement, the parties will:           

  • Develop biogenic carbon capture project(s), including projects currently in CO280's development pipeline
  • Apply CO280's expertise to jointly develop a standard and efficient screening process to evaluate the technical and economic feasibility of carbon capture on pulp and paper mills, with the subsequent deployment of Aker Carbon Capture's plants, including the modularized Just Catch series
  • Standardize the lifecycle assessment (LCA) and measurement, verification, and reporting (MRV) systems for capture projects in pulp and paper, with the ambition to leverage Microsoft's digital capabilities, cloud computing platforms, services, and solutions
  • Create a digital tool to compare CO280's planned projects against Microsoft Criteria for High-Quality Carbon Removal
  • Advocate for policies and demonstrate thought leadership to promote the pulp and paper carbon capture market, with the corresponding creation and use of high-integrity carbon removal credits

North America's pulp and paper industry represents a carbon removal opportunity of up to 130 million tons per year, owing to the average mill having an 80-90% biogenic CO2 emissions profile. By capturing and storing these emissions permanently, negative emissions are achieved as more CO2 is removed from the atmosphere than is being emitted by the process. 

Currently, CO280 has more than 10 million tons per year of permanent CDR under development. 

Microsoft is creating a market for CDRs by building a digital value chain to authoritatively track carbon attributes and generate credits as simply as possible.

Aker Carbon Capture is currently delivering its Just Catch modular solutions to seven carbon capture units: five Just Catch 100 units to Orsted, one Just Catch 100 unit to Twence, and a Big Catch delivery to Heidelberg Materials at Brevik. 

"Our collaboration with Aker Carbon Capture and CO280 builds on important large-scale initiatives across asset-intensive industries, including pulp and paper," says Darryl Willis, Corporate Vice President of Energy and Resources Industry at Microsoft. "By leveraging the power of technology to create a digital value chain for carbon tracking and reporting, we can equip the market for high-integrity carbon removal credits and further enable the industrial sector to decarbonize."

According to the International Energy Agency estimates, more than one gigaton of CO2 per year must be captured by 2030, increasing to more than six gigatons per year by 2050.