A wide-ranging interview on the challenges of decarbonization, which allowed us to explain concepts such as direct air capture, how it differs from carbon capture and storage, carbon credits and what comes next.

11 DEC 2023

“Five young Italians have made a bet: to create the Peninsula’s first plant for Direct Air Capture. Giuliano Antoniciello and Chiara D’Adamo illustrated the project at La Svolta.”

<b>Chiara D'Adamo</b>, ingegnere energetico, e <b>Giuliano Antoniciello</b>, Ceo di CarpeCarbon

“Three young people from Turin, a Sicilian relocated in Milan, and a girl from Isernia, the smallest province in Italy, have joined forces and founded CarpeCarbon, the start-up that will build the first all-Italian plant for the direct capture of CO2 from the air.”

That’s how La Svolta began talking about us. Our journey began with five co-founders and has grown to a team of 11, with plans to expand further in 2024. In this interview our CEO Giuliano Antoniciello, a physicist and astronomer overseeing technology development and pilot plant design, and our COO Chiara D’Adamo, an energy engineer managing operations, carbon markets, and international relations – are talking about CarpeCarbon, focusing on the following aspects.

Origins and Vision

Giuliano started developing the idea during his PhD at the University of Padua, deciding to leave academia to fully commit to CarpeCarbon. Building the right team was crucial and time-consuming, but it has been successful. Chiara joined after working at the International Energy Agency (IEA) in Paris, focusing on climate and energy modeling and realizing the necessity of CO2 removal in every climate scenario leading to net zero emissions by 2050.

Technology and Goals

Our DAC technology differs from traditional carbon capture and storage (CCS), which targets point-source emissions. Instead, DAC removes existing CO2 emitted in the past directly from the atmosphere, filtering the air we breathe. While the process used nowadays is energy-intensive due to the low concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, our system reduces energy consumption significantly, aiming to lower the cost from $1,100 to $100 per ton of CO2 removed.

Future Plans

We are currently designing a pilot plant to test and refine our technology. This plant will validate our approach, leading to larger commercial-scale plants capable of removing tens or hundreds of thousands of tons of CO2 annually.

Challenges and Ambitions

Navigating legal frameworks and scaling up production components are ongoing tasks. Our ultimate goal is to enable widespread deployment of our technology, decoupling CO2 removal from the energy transition and allowing for off-grid operations. We envision a future where atmospheric CO2 removal is a standard waste management service, contributing to global climate goals.

For more detailed insights, you can read the full article here.