Where does it work?
As a sign of ever-increasing interest in CO2 mineral storage, Carbfix has compiled a mapping tool that shows the feasibility of applying the Carbfix technology for industries and nations to assess as a part of their climate strategy. The global storage potential is greater than the emissions of the burning of all fossil fuels on Earth.
It is estimated that Europe could theoretically store at least 4,000 billion tons of CO2 in rocks while the United States could store at least 7,500 billion tons.
The map serves as a first indicator for the geological feasibility of the Carbfix technology - but does not consider other necessary factors such as water availability or permeability of the bedrock which can vary greatly between regions. The map must be interpreted with this in mind. Click here for a detailed description of inputs and how to interpret the atlas
What is so special about basalts?
Basaltic rocks are highly reactive and contain the metals needed for permanently immobilizing CO2 through the formation of carbonate minerals. They are often fractured and porous, providing storage space for the mineralized CO2.
It has been estimated that the active rift zone in Iceland could store over 400 Gt CO2. The theoretical storage capacity of the ocean ridges is significantly larger than the estimated 18,500 Gt CO2 stemming from the burning of all fossil fuel carbon on Earth. The question remains, how much of this theoretical storage capacity is feasible to use for mineral storage of CO2.
The pore space, chemical composition, and wide distribution of basalts makes it the perfect candidate to develop the Carbfix process. However, other reactive rocks such as andesites, peridotites, breccias and sedimentary formations containing calcium, magnesium and iron rich silicate minerals could also be feasible to do the job. Studies on that subject are undertaken in Carbfix2 and the related GECO project.
What if my region is water scarce?
The Carbfix process requires substantial amounts of water to carry the dissolved CO2 and to promote reactions underground. However, the water is sourced from the same reservoir in which the injection takes place and is therefore circulated and reused to a certain extent. But even dry regions that lack fresh water may still be good candidates. Carbfix has developed the scientific basis for using seawater for dissolving CO2 instead of freshwater, which would significantly expand the applicability of the technology. A field site demonstration of CO2 injection using seawater is scheduled in 2022.