Climeworks, a Swiss direct air capture (DAC) startup, has begun operations at Orca, the world’s largest direct air capture and storage plant, to permanently remove carbon dioxide from ambient air.
Iceland-based Orca will capture 4,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually and will increase the global DAC capacity by more than 40%. Out of the 16 installations Climeworks has deployed across Europe, Orca is the only facility that permanently removes carbon dioxide as opposed to recycling it.
The plant consists of eight large containers each fitted with high-tech filters and fans to extract carbon dioxide and store it underground permanently using Carbfix’s natural mineralization process—Climeworks’ carbon sequestration partner for the project.
Climeworks has also rumored to have started design work on a much larger facility, nearly 10 times the size of Orca, and intends to complete this project in the next few years.