Technology for a changing climate
Greenhouse gases such as CO2 trap heat, causing global temperatures to rise. In order to avoid the most disastrous climate predictions, we need to limit this warming to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This means not only cutting greenhouse gas emissions to net zero, but also removing billions of tons of CO2 from the atmosphere. Once removed, these gases will need to be stored in long-term, safe environments.
At the CarbMin Lab, we harness existing mining processes to trap and safely store CO2. The capacity of some mines’ waste rock to store CO2 through carbon mineralization may exceed an individual mine’s greenhouse gas emissions tenfold. Furthermore, the end product is an environmentally benign carbonate rock which produces other benefits such as tailings stabilization, dust reduction, and toxic metal encapsulation. Within the CarbMin research program, we investigate and accelerate natural carbon mineralization processes, develop technology to enhance CO2 uptake at mine sites, and quantify carbon mineralization potential both regionally and at an individual mine scale.