Carbon removal startup Spiritus is helping Taylor Swift reduce her carbon footprint.
Over the weekend, Swift flew straight to Las Vegas from the Tokyo finale of her Eras tour to catch her boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, win the Super Bowl against the San Francisco 49ers. Los Alamos, New Mexico-based Spiritas estimated that about 40 tons of carbon dioxide were emitted during the 12-hour, 5,500-mile journey. On Saturday, the company announced that it would use its proprietary technology to capture an equal amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to offset Swift's trip, in what could be a brilliant marketing stunt.
Considering current direct air capture carbon removal costs of about $600 to $1,000 per ton of CO2, Spiritus estimates the price tag for Swift's emissions is about $28,000. But CEO Charles Cadieux said it was all “worth it” given the huge buzz the move had generated not just for Spiritus, but for the wider carbon removal industry. Ta.
“This is one of those moments that brings global attention to Taylor's flight and emissions,” Cadieux said. “To your credit, people are somewhat skeptical about offsets. Just by moving that discussion to removal, we can get more public support for it, we can get more government support, we can get more government support. Companies will recognize the difference and realize that's where they stand.'' They should put money into it. ”
Spiritus removes carbon directly from the atmosphere using what it calls a “carbon orchard” and materials known as “adsorbents” that pull CO2 from the atmosphere. Once the CO2 is removed, it is sequestered underground. Cadieux said Spiritus has a “very clear path to getting below $100 a tonne” in terms of price for carbon removal, but the company is not there yet, meaning Swift's That means the company's efforts are likely to still be costly, he said. Spiritus has raised $11 million in funding from VC firms including Khosla Ventures, an investor in DoorDash and Affirm.
For other companies looking to take a page out of Spiritus' marketing book and piggyback on big names like Taylor Swift, Cadieux advised them to stick to their core values.
“It's a great opportunity to get your name out there and be involved in these events, but it's important to keep in touch with your core self, like why you're doing it and how that action aligns with what you're trying to do. “You need to get back to the values of being 'to the world and how other stakeholders view your actions as net positive,'” he said.
Swift has been dogged by criticism over carbon emissions related to her use of private jets. News that her lawyer sent a cease-and-desist letter to a college student who was tracking the activities of celebrities' private jets and estimating their emissions further fueled the uproar. Her spokesperson said: washington post She had already purchased twice the amount of carbon credits she needed to offset her travel expenses for Elas Tours.
Carbon credits are different from carbon removal in that they allow businesses and individuals to purchase credits equal to their own emissions to fund efforts to prevent or reduce emissions. However, the carbon credit industry has come under fire, particularly for a lack of oversight.