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Modern Alchemists Turn Airborne CO2 into Diamonds

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Climatewire, Jan. 5).

In January, De Beers, the company that pioneered the global explosion of the diamond business, bought a substantial advertisement in The New York Times suggesting it might “reset” the industry by adopting 12 new sustainability and ethics goals.

One of the goals is capturing more CO2 emissions.

De Beers has a new program called “CarbonVault,” which will use the plentiful supply of rocks in the mines it owns around Kimberley to store CO2. The company—still large, but no longer the monopoly it once was—has formed a new task force to figure out how to use “physical, chemical and biological methods to accelerate” the rock-forming process. It aims to have “an industrial impact.”

The project is now heading toward field testing, Alison Shaw, a senior geochemist leading the project for De Beers, explained in an advertisement.

Forests of trees that store carbon can burn in wildfires, and underground reservoirs used to dispose of trapped carbon might leak, she said. But “we know that carbonate minerals are stable over hundreds of thousands of years.”

Reprinted from E&E News with permission from POLITICO, LLC. Copyright 2021. E&E News provides essential news for energy and environment professionals.

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