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Speakers corner 02 October 2023

Carbon Capture in Switzerland: A look at DemoUpCARMA by Marco Mazzotti

In a recent webinar hosted by the European Energy Research Alliance’s Joint Programme on Carbon Capture and Storage, renowned researcher and professor Marco Mazzotti unfolded the narrative of carbon capture and storage (CCS) in Switzerland, highlighting the pivotal role of the DemoUpCARMA project. Here are the salient takeaways from his enlightening discourse:

Introducing DemoUpCARMA

DemoUpCARMA (Demonstration and Upscaling of CARbon dioxide MAnagement solutions for a net-zero Switzerland) stands as a beacon of innovative research and collaboration, led by ETH Zurich. Mazzotti, as the coordinator, and Viola Beccattini, as the manager, have been instrumental in steering this initiative, which garners substantial support from Swiss federal offices and industry contributors.

Pioneering Carbon Storage Solutions

Mazzotti detailed two groundbreaking pathways for CO2 storage explored by DemoUpCARMA:

A domestic breakthrough: Utilizing CO2 and ensuring its permanent storage in primary and recycled concrete in Switzerland via a novel technology.

An international approach: Facilitating CO2 transport for its permanent storage in geological reservoirs abroad, with Iceland being a prominent destination.

Progress and Projections

Commencing in October 2021, the majority of DemoUpCARMA's activities are on the verge of completion by September 2023. Yet, endeavors in Iceland will further extend into 2024, promising more advancements in the field.

The Robust Role of Industry Beyond governmental support, the DemoUpCARMA project underscores the burgeoning industry interest in CCS. With both financial contributions and active participation from the industry, it's evident that businesses see the value and potential in CCS solutions, marking a promising trend for widescale adoption.

A Greener Vision for Switzerland

With an eye on achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, Switzerland is breaking the mold. Mazzotti emphasized that CCS, particularly in sectors like cement and waste-to-energy, will be the linchpin in achieving this ambitious goal, given the country's minimal reliance on fossil fuel-powered energy.

The Power of Pilot Projects

Mazzotti ardently championed the indispensable role of pilot projects like DemoUpCARMA in the CCS domain. Such initiatives not only pioneer innovative solutions but also provide a platform to preemptively identify challenges, shaping the future of sustainable technology.

Bridging Science with Academia

Mazzotti's concluding thoughts centered on the harmonious union of scientists and academia. The confluence of fresh perspectives from young scholars and the profound expertise of seasoned professionals can catalyze transformative changes in projects like DemoUpCARMA.

The strides DemoUpCARMA has made, under the aegis of Marco Mazzotti and his team, are a testament to the potential of collaborative research and innovation in crafting a sustainable future. As the world confronts the escalating challenges of climate change, endeavors like DemoUpCARMA offer a beacon of hope and a roadmap to action.

This webinar is part of an ongoing series hosted by EERA CCS. The series is one of the many benefits of being a member of our joint programme, fostering a dynamic environment where researchers, academics, and industry professionals can discuss, challenge, and enhance their understanding of critical topics in the field. This consistent exchange of knowledge and ideas through such webinars contributes to EERA CCS's mission of accelerating the development and deployment of carbon capture, utilization, and storage technologies.