Vinyl Sustainability Council
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Image: rendering of what Carbon Engineering's large-scale DAC plants will look like | Occidental
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Vinyl Sustainability Council.
Energy company Occidental and its subsidiary, Oxy Low-Carbon Ventures, are on a path to achieve net-zero emissions in their own operations and those associated with their products before 2050. And they are helping others reduce theirs, too.
Imagine a world where all the carbon dioxide (CO2) that is emitted through
activities such as manufacturing, air
and hydrocarbon production could be captured — with the carbon put right back
underground where it came from.
This is the future that energy company
and its subsidiary, Oxy Low-Carbon
(OLCV), are demonstrating is feasible. Occidental is on a path to achieve
net-zero emissions in its own operations and those associated with its products
before 2050. And they are helping others reduce theirs, too. Launched in 2018 to
support Occidental’s carbon-management efforts, OLCV has rapidly grown from
investing in low-carbon technologies to working towards deploying several at
One of the company’s solutions is Direct Air Capture (DAC), a technology
that captures CO2 directly from the atmosphere to be permanently sequestered
deep underground. In 2020, Occidental formed 1PointFive, focused on
large-scale commercial development of Carbon Engineering’s DAC technology.
DAC technology captures and concentrates the CO2 in the atmosphere from 0.04
percent to over 95 percent. It uses a potassium hydroxide solution to capture
the CO2, converting the potassium carbonate to calcium carbonate, and then
decomposing the calcium carbonate to CO2. Once concentrated, the CO2 is
compressed and liquefied; and Occidental can then securely inject it deep
underground into suitable and certified geologic formations, where it becomes
trapped and eventually turns into rock.
“We need the most practical, economic solutions to meet our net-zero goals,” says Dr. Robert Zeller, OLCV’s VP of Technology. “Some facilities will implement point-source capture, some will change technologies, some will use emission-reduction credits — such as from reforestation — to get to net zero. Direct Air Capture provides a technology solution that can work in tandem with other efforts to enable even greater emissions reduction quickly, to achieve our net-zero goals.”
The opportunity of DAC to address rising greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is vast.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) and most recently the International Energy Agency (IEA) have
reinforced the importance of carbon dioxide utilization and storage
(CCUS) and DAC solutions in the global ‘race to
These technologies will be critical — both in terms of decarbonization efforts
and in removing the billions of tons of CO2 per year that climate science
requires to be slashed in just a few decades to keep global warming within
In their quest to commercialize carbon-capture
and utilize the captured CO2, OLCV is actively engaged in many different types
of projects in the CCUS space. A recent example: In April, OLCV announced that
it had teamed with bioengineering startup Cemvita Factory to construct and
operate a one-metric-ton-per-month bio-ethylene pilot
using a jointly developed technology that uses human-made carbon dioxide (CO2)
instead of hydrocarbon-sourced feedstocks.
Published Dec 17, 2021 7am EST / 4am PST / 12pm GMT / 1pm CET
This article, produced in cooperation with the Sustainable Brands editorial team, has been paid for by one of our sponsors.