HomeCarbon CreditsMicrosoft to Purchase 95,000 Biochar Carbon Removal Credits from The Next 150

Microsoft to Purchase 95,000 Biochar Carbon Removal Credits from The Next 150

The Next 150, a carbon removal company, has entered into a 6-year purchase agreement with Microsoft to provide 95,000 tons of high-quality Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) credits produced by its General Biochar Systems (GBS) business unit’s biochar plant in Guanajuato, Mexico. This agreement marks a significant milestone for the company, aiming to become a leading supplier in the emerging biochar industry.

Patrick Atanasije Pineda, Managing Partner at The Next 150, highlighted the importance of this deal, saying that:

“Securing multi-year commitments like the one with Microsoft allows The Next 150 to mobilize large-scale biochar projects across Latin America, attracting institutional finance for project-level lending supported by creditworthy offtakes.”

Unlocking Carbon Removal Potential

Biochar Carbon Removal, or BCR, relies on pyrolysis – a process that uses high heat in a controlled oxygen-deprived environment to convert biomass into biocharBiochar is a highly porous, stable, and durable form of carbon that can efficiently store CO2 for long periods.

The World Economic Forum hails biochar as the carbon removal’s jack of all trades. The biochar industry has vast potential, but its growth has been hindered by limited awareness and high production costs. 

Enter biochar carbon removal credits. They offer a solution to these challenges, making BCR projects more economically viable. By addressing awareness and funding gaps, these credits unlock the full potential of biochar.

BCR provides a wide range of economic, environmental, and social advantages. In areas hardest hit by climate change, BCR can promote climate justice by directing mitigation benefits to where they are most needed, a concept underscored by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2022 report.

The Next 150’s Biochar Journey

The Next 150 strongly believes in the power of biochar to help address climate change through BCR credits. 

Founded in late 2022, The Next 150 is a Swiss climate-forward venture developer and operator. Within less than a year, its first biochar production facility, General Biochar Systems in Mexico, started operations. 

GBS’ Guanajuato plant signifies the first step in their waste-valorization and climate-tech efforts in Mexico. Employing GBS’s sophisticated pyrolysis technique, biochar is produced by exposing biomass to elevated temperatures in a carefully controlled oxygen-deprived setting, leading to the mineralization of its carbon content.

By October 2023, the project began integrating its biochar into state-run quarry rehabilitation efforts to restore degraded landscapes and enhance biodiversity.

The company’s ongoing initiatives with local governments and civil society organizations aim to provide biochar to up to 23,000 local farmers as a sustainable soil amendment. Biochar offers additional benefits such as improved crop yields, reduced reliance on chemical fertilizers, and decreased plant stress during droughts. 

Over the next decade, the project would capture 150,000 tons of CO2 equivalent. If achieved, it would constitute the largest biochar initiative in Mexico.

The carbon removal company will deliver high-quality BCR credits by mid-2024 on the Puro.Earth registry. It has two more plants expected to be operational in Latin America by 2025.

GBS in numbers

Days ago, The Next 150 closed a similar deal with Shell Environmental Products for five years. Shell will buy 22,500 biochar carbon removal credits from the company. 

Microsoft’s Carbon Commitment 

This time with Microsoft, the tech giant agreed to purchase 95,000 BCR credits from GBS. Microsoft has been pouring millions of dollars into carbon removal solutions. Last month, the giant bought carbon removal credits from regeneratively managed grasslands. And in 2023, Microsoft partnered with direct air capture companies to remove carbon from the atmosphere. 

Under this current deal, Brian Marrs, Senior Director for Energy and Carbon Removal at Microsoft, commented: 

“Our 6-year purchase agreement and ongoing collaboration with The Next 150 is a step forward towards our ambition to realize our carbon-negative goal by 2030 through a diversified portfolio of carbon removal.”

Globally, the biochar market size is projected to expand to around $633 million by 2032 as shown below. 

biochar market size, 2023-2032

As the climate crisis intensifies, The Next 150’s Biochar Carbon Removal (BCR) emerges as a versatile solution for carbon removal. Beyond sequestering carbon, its advantages extend to agriculture, construction, ecosystem health, and community well-being. For businesses seeking effective strategies to combat the climate emergency and meet climate targets, BCR offers a scalable technology.

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