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Greenhouse Gases

Amazon backs low-carbon technology firms

by Michael McCoy
September 26, 2020 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 98, Issue 37


CarbonCure Technologies, a company with technology for sequestering carbon dioxide in concrete, is one of five firms receiving investment from the Climate Pledge Fund, a $2 billion investment fund set up in 2019 by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos to help the firm meet its goal of being net-carbon zero by 2040. In CarbonCure’s system, which it licenses to concrete makers, CO2 recovered from industrial processes is injected into wet cement, where it reacts with calcium ions to form calcium carbonate and strengthens concrete in the process, the firm says. Amazon says it is using CarbonCure concrete in may of its new buildings, including its second headquarters in Virginia. Other recipients of Amazon money are Pachama, which verifies forests’ ability to capture carbon; Redwood Materials, a developer of lithium-ion battery recycling technology; the electric-vehicle firm Rivian; and Turntide Technologies, which makes low-energy-consumption motors that don’t require rare-earth magnets. CarbonCure is also getting funding from Breakthrough Energy Ventures and other firms.


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