Achievable and Audacious Metrics

Thank you for your ongoing support and input on our design of a carbon removal prize!

We are honing in on what we think will be a hugely impactful carbon removal prize that is both cognizant of the tradeoffs, strengths, and weaknesses between the various pathways, and that also allows for a variety of solutions to compete.

Now, we need your help better understanding the performance minimums to place on some of our metrics, in order to ensure the prize will push carbon solutions to the next level.

To help us understand what the minimum requirements are to achieve this, we ask that you pick your favorite “cradle-to-grave” pathway for carbon removal – starting with capture from ambient air or the ocean, and ending with either pure CO2, carbon negative permanent sequestration (i.e. mineralized rock) or carbon neutral non-permanent utilization (i.e. synthetic jet fuel).

**For example: **

“A managed grassland in Brazil, made up of native grasses, no tilling, in 2020.”, or,

“A DAC system powered by 75% solar power and 25% natural gas, located in Texas, in year 2020, co-located with a geologic storage facility at a depleted oil field.”

For your chosen pathway, we are interested in the following:

What would the size, cost, scale, energy consumption, and land use be for the following:

And what might an audacious minimum target be for:

  • Tons captured/capital expense
  • Energy use
  • Land use
  • Net sequestration (if applicable)

An “audacious minimum target” is a number we can challenge prize participants to surpass, on the assumption that solutions that perform below that minimum target may just not be worth pursuing.

We’re also interested in your thoughts concerning where we should be drawing our system boundaries for the purposes of identifying those minimum targets. This is important when we consider how to fairly compare two different CDR pathways that might compete.

We greatly appreciate you time and effort helping us with this exercise! Please reach out if you have any follow up questions/concerns, and we look forward to seeing your responses and any questions below.

Hi Guys,
This prize requires accurate measurement of sequestration amounts.
It is extremely difficult to accurately quantify small (kiloton) amounts of sequestration from air vs land vs ocean.

I would be happy to discuss challenges in ocean measurement via phone…

Hi @amalbhattarai thanks for weighing in! What are some recommendations you might have to handle this challenge?

tons capture/CAPEX? Isn’t the more relevant measure: total $/ton = (CAPEX + OPEX)/ton? And in the case of abiotic systems, isn’t energy cost the biggest cost factor? and won’t you need to standardize energy cost (per kWh or J) to compare entries? What interest rate and payment schedule is to be assumed for CAPEX? Also important to distriguish gross cost and net cost: (total $/ton) - (product revenue $/ton) = net cost (or profit) per ton CO2 removed. It will be interesting to see how you weight estimated net cost or profit/t vs potential global CDR capacity in the scoring.

“Net sequestration” - again there will need to be a standardize C footprint for respective energy sources (electricity, NG, etc.) used across entrants so that apples and apples are being compared re net C removal/storage

Land use criteria implies that the system is land based. Or are you giving a big advantage to marine-based systems? :wink:

Thank you @ghrau and @amalbhattarai for your contributions here! Is there anything else you might want to add?