UAE: New technology to remove carbon dioxide from atmosphere, turn it into rock

Adnoc signs partnership to mineralise the greenhouse gas and make sure it does not escape back into the air


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Photo: Reuters file
Photo: Reuters file

Published: Tue 17 Jan 2023, 1:29 PM

Last updated: Tue 17 Jan 2023, 3:01 PM

Adnoc today announced a partnership with the Fujairah Natural Resources Corporation (FNRC), Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) and 44.01 to pilot technology that permanently mineralises carbon dioxide within rock formations found in the Emirate of Fujairah.

The announcement was made at the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW).

The project, due to commence in January 2023, will use 44.01's Earthshot prize-winning Carbon Capture and Mineralisation (CCM) technology to eliminate carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. It will be the first CCM project by an energy company in the Middle East.

Sophie Hildebrand, Chief Technology Officer at Adnoc, said, "Across Adnoc, we are committed to finding new ways to decarbonise our operations, while meeting our responsibility to supply vital energy to the world. As the first energy company in the region to run a carbon-negative project of this kind, this pilot marks the latest step in our $15 billion investment into projects that will reduce our carbon footprint and help us achieve our Net Zero by 2050 ambition."

Fujairah has been selected for this pilot for to its abundance of peridotite, a form of rock that naturally reacts with carbon dioxide to mineralise it.

Muhammad Saif Al Afkham, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Fujairah Natural Resources Corporation, said, "We are proud to support Adnoc and our other partners to catalyse this natural process with 44.01's technology. Success here could pave the way to help us make a significant contribution towards the UAE Net Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative."

In this pilot, carbon dioxide will be captured from the air, dissolved in seawater, and then injected into peridotite formations deep underground, where it will mineralise – ensuring that it cannot escape back into the atmosphere.

Talal Hasan, Founder and CEO of 44.01, stated, "Removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is vital if we are to halt and ultimately reverse climate change. Unlike carbon dioxide storage, mineralisation removes the gas permanently by turning it into rock, minimising the need for long-term monitoring and insurance. This pilot will enable us to test our technology at scale, on our way to offering a safe, cost-effective, natural solution for eliminating captured carbon dioxide internationally."

The project will be powered by solar energy supplied by Masdar. A successful pilot would open the possibility of mineralising billions of tons of captured carbon dioxide across the region.


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