A biomass carbon removal facility. Photo credit: Jens Büttner / picture alliance via Getty Images
As compared with other CDR pathways, DAC has received significant focus from both the public and private sectors. However, research suggests that lower-tech pathways, like those prioritized by today’s FOA may have a larger role to play in achieving net-zero goals.
This latest FOA targets small biomass carbon removal and storage and enhanced mineralization, as well as methods of simultaneously testing and integrating multiple carbon removal pathways.
The department also mentioned an interest in ocean-based removal methods, but integrated marine CDR pilot projects were left out of this round of funding. The agency said it anticipates soliciting ocean-based removal applications under future amendments to the funding announcement.
DOE funding for non-DAC technologies is critical, said Amador, because many carbon removal companies struggle to raise capital for first-of-a-kind projects.
“This funding will unlock demonstrations across the county, and if they’re done right — with the highest standards for permanence, measurability, and community engagement — they’ll support innovation, drive down costs, and help bring carbon removal to scale,” she added.
To be considered for funding, all proposed pilots must be located in the United States and be designed to remove at least 1,000 tons of carbon dioxide annually. Companies must have successfully completed a total system validation.
Award recipients will be notified in August, DOE said, and funding will be dispersed in January 2025.