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Carbon dioxide removal and the city

According to the U.N. IPCC (October 2018), carbon dioxide removal (CDR) on a massive scale will be necessary to limit global temperature change to 1.5°C this century. Growing attention to this has focused mainly on a handful of nature-based and industrial solutions that appear to be decidedly un-urban in their footprint, operation and logistical demands.

But cities have historically provided critical early habitats for innovations that ultimately attain transformational scale far beyond their borders. Indeed, today’s urban centers are leading some of the most creative, serious and impactful responses to the climate crisis.

What role might cities play in fostering early niche markets and proving grounds for promising CDR applications and companies? Furthermore, how might CDR help climate-forward cities like New York achieve their long-term emissions reductions goals? In this panel discussion, pioneering CDR entrepreneurs and thinkers from around the world will present a series of (near) future-focused CDR use cases for the urban environment.

Published April 21, 2021


Jia Li
Co-Founder and Chief Scientist, Carbon Infinity

Prof Jia Li, Technical Director of UK-China (Guangdong) CCUS Centre; Visiting Professor at the University of Sheffield. Prof Jia Li is currently working as Technical Director at the UK-China (Guangdong) CCUS Centre; she is also a visiting Professor at the University of Sheffield. At the same time, leading a team of experts on the ADB funded project of “Promoting CCS in China(Guangdong)” and involve in a sister project in Shanghai.

Chris Neidl
Policy Analyst, Carbon 180

Christopher Neidl is a clean energy policy advocate, educator and project advisor with thirteen years of experience facilitating on-grid and off-grid clean energy adoption in the United States, Asia and Africa. Chris is currently a senior research consultant for the non-profit organization Arc Finance. In this role, he is tasked with producing a series of reports for Indian public sector stakeholders concerning the potential role of the Indian microfinance sector in advancing the central government’s rural energy access objectives.

Josh Santos
CEO, Noya

Noya’s mission is to accelerate the world’s transition to a carbon negative existence, and it’s doing this by radically reducing the upfront capital costs and installation time required to perform direct air carbon capture. An MIT grad who previously worked for Tesla and Harley Davidson, Santos leads a team of eight expert engineers and PhDs building Noya’s tech. The company participated in Y Combinator’s winter 2021 class, and so far it has raised $4.5 million.

Doug Staker
VP, Business Development, Carbon Quest

Doug leads Demand Energy’s Business Development group and is responsible for establishing new markets and emerging business cases that leverage the power of energy storage – solving real world grid challenges and supporting expanding renewable energy integration across the grid. Doug co-founded Demand Energy and is an energy professional who has worked globally for 28 years.

Bob Wilson
VP of Commercialization, AirCapture


Jamie Rodgers
Senior Advocate, The OpenAir Collective