Perspectives from the CEO
By John Pope, President and Chief Executive Officer, Carbon Geocyle
Twenty years ago, when we first started working on a different approach to sequestering carbon dioxide, few people understood or cared. I was fortunate that my uncle, Dr. Tom McGee, a geophysicist deeply interested in the earth’s natural processes, had explained to me in the 1990s how critical global warming would become in my lifetime. He was right.
In January 2020, we kicked off a series of trips to raise equity funds to support commercial deployment of Carbon GeoCapture’s new, low-cost carbon capture and sequestration approach. Those trips were interrupted by COVID-19 in February 2020, but we resumed them in late July 2021, traveling to New York, Philadelphia, Monaco, and the Renegade Burn in Nevada, talking with hundreds of people and meeting with nearly 100 potential financial and commercial partners.
What a difference a year makes. In fact, we seem to be in danger of moving directly from inaction driven by collective denial into inaction driven by collective despair. The scale of the challenge is not only immense, but almost certainly understated.
The last UN working group projection in 2014 suggested that we need to sequester between 5 and 12 giga (billion) tons of carbon dioxide every year until 2050, in addition to reducing new emissions dramatically. We are not reducing those emissions. And apolitical estimates are emerging from private parties suggesting that we now need to start sequestering between 20 to 40 gigatons of carbon dioxide per year, as soon as possible.
For context, the world emits about 40 gigatons of carbon dioxide per year. We sequestered about 0.04 gigatons last year. (Nearly all of the 0.04 gigatons of sequestered carbon dioxide, however, was used to produce more hydrocarbons.)
But people do care now.
Everyone we talk to – including Wall Street hedge fund managers, environmentalists, technical entrepreneurs, wealthy elite, dusty anarchists, and the working poor – is aware that climate change has become a crisis. The amount of private and public capital being mobilized to address this crisis is incredible. People are halting their careers and dedicating their lives and personal assets to these efforts. College students are questioning the wisdom of starting a 40-year career in the face of climate uncertainty. Frankly, people are looking for hope that a solution or solutions will emerge.
We believe that CGC’s approach represents the best possible solution to carbon sequestration known at this time. We will continue to advance it as quickly as possible while we hope for other solutions to emerge, too. The world needs massive collaboration. Come join us and help scale our unique approach. Get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org.