In celebration of Earth Day, April 22, 2022, XPRIZE, the leader in competitions, awards and achievements for the benefit of mankind, announced that 15 successful teams have been selected during the current XPRIZE carbon removal competition. Elon Musk, a well-known businessman with $ 100 million in funding.
It is the largest motivating award in history, and the XPRIZE decarbonization teams represent the largest group of innovators working to decorbonize.
The award is announced
In January 2021, Elon Musk, the developer of Tesla electric cars and SpaceX rockets, announced his intention to reward primarily working innovators in combating global warming, combating climate change, and restructuring the global carbon cycle.
The rules of the competition coincide with April 22, 2021 Earth Day. Organizers of the competition said that 2025 will last for 4 years until Earth Day.
“Even if we reduce CO2 production, it will still not be enough,” said Peter Demandis, founder and CEO of the nonprofit XPRIZE. “We need mechanisms to extract carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and oceans.” The award is therefore announced for finding ways to reduce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by extracting it directly from the air.
The award comes as the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warns of the dangers of global warming, including extreme temperatures, fires, storms and droughts.
At a time when greenhouse gas emissions are equivalent to 50 billion tons of carbon dioxide a year, many companies are working to solve the problem of removing $ 300 a metric ton of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
$ 1 million per team
According to XPRIZE, each of the 15 winning teams received $ 1 million in the initial ‘milestone round’, recognizing their efforts to date and supporting their current efforts to measure solutions.
Winners represent 9 countries: Australia, Canada, France, Iceland, Kenya, the Netherlands, the Philippines, the United Kingdom and the United States. Unlike previous prizes, each of the 15 teams will compete in 2025 and qualify for the grand prize, with a single jackpot winner receiving $ 50 million, while 3 competitors will receive $ 30 million in the following places.
According to the competition’s website, the conditions for the competition are very strict and the number of advanced teams has been reduced from 1,133 to 287, qualifying for the main stage prizes. Then 70 expert reviewers screened and sorted the proposals received for scientific verification and selected the top 60 teams.
Next, the judges scrutinized the action plans, performance data, life cycle analysis and cost estimates to select the final 15 teams for the million dollar prizes.
There is still a chance to register
According to Site Winners of the XPRIZE Main Round do not have to advance to the $ 80 million Final Prize or prioritize. Yet anyone can Participation in the competition Until December 1, 2023. He is likely to get a share of this money.
The final winning team or team must demonstrate that it can remove 1,100 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year, show the cost of removing 1.1 million tons per year, and find a way to remove billions of tons of carbon dioxide each year. .
Please note that work submitted for the Grand Prize, which will be announced on April 20, 2025, will not be independently verified by third parties, participants or XPRIZE.
In addition to the 15 winning teams, XPRIZE announced $ 5 million in prizes for college student teams last fall. Announced Earth Day winners are proposing various ways to eliminate carbon dioxide.
Examples of successful companies
Teams applying for the competition seek a mix of well-known solutions and new decorbonization methods such as environmental restoration, biofuels, agricultural solutions, and organic and mineral marine solutions. Any solution is eligible to participate in the competition. Really works.
“One year later, we already see the positive impact of the award, with hundreds of teams working on a wide range of promising solutions for decarbonization. Marcius Xtower, Senior Scientist and Vice President at Climate and Environment XPRIZE. What do we need? “
Ideas for reducing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere vary by successful teams, either by growing algae or by producing a type of synthetic lime. According to To report One of the winners of the competition, Planetary Technologies, a Canadian company, seeks to increase the ability of the ocean to absorb greenhouse gases by controlling the acidity of seawater using antioxidants. Acidity is formed from metal residues.
Another winner, 8 Rivers Capitol of Durham, North Carolina, is trying to trap atmospheric carbon dioxide in calcium carbonate crystals, just as dissolved gas helps in the mixing of sea tiles and limestone.
“The calcium cycle is how the Earth regulates carbon dioxide over millions of years. We accelerate that natural cycle,” said Adam Joff, the company’s spokesman.
California-based Global Algae has won a project to grow algae to help restore rainforests, which capture high levels of carbon dioxide. Mark Haslebeck, director of the company, says algae would be a very efficient and profitable alternative to growing livestock, soybean and palm oil crops on deforested rainforest land. “We produce more oil and protein while reforesting,” Hazelbeck adds.
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