Coastal Carbon Capture is a way to harness the power of the oceans to accelerate the Earth's natural long-term carbon dioxide removal process and enhance coastal resilience.
Project Vesta is a Public Benefit Corporation, a mission-driven company dedicated to leaving a world in which all can thrive. We prioritize the needs of the planet and the communities in which we work over profit.
Part of the funding for our scientific research is from the Coastal Carbon Capture Impact Fund, a 501(c)(3) public charity.
Project Vesta’s approach dramatically accelerates the carbonate-silicate cycle, an ancient natural process.
We spread a natural mineral, olivine, in coastal areas. There, wave action speeds up the carbon dioxide capture process while de-acidifying the ocean.
Thirty years of scientific research has demonstrated that this works and has provided strong evidence that it is a highly affordable and scalable solution.
The process captures 20 times more carbon dioxide than the extraction and transportation of the olivine. If deployed on just 0.1%-0.25% of global shelf seas, we could remove 1 billion tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere.
Our mission is to further the science of enhanced weathering and galvanize global deployment. To that end, we are planning experiments to pilot olivine deployment.
All scientists in the field are welcome to contribute to the design of these experiments, and to analyze the resulting data.
Once we have finished the experiments and published the data, we will be able to deliver to the world a blueprint and integrated model for deploying olivine in coastal areas.
The Enhanced Weathering Integrated Assessment Model (EWIAM) will enable any government or private organization to measurably remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere at scale.
We involve local coastal communities in decision-making
At all potential deployment sites, we engage with the local community before we study the ocean. In consultation with experts - both academics and practitioners - we have developed a process for building relationships with people from the local community, listening to their perspectives, and involving them in decision-making.
At one of our prospective pilot sites in the Northern Caribbean, we employ local community experts to co-design and perform community engagement activities that seek to understand local perceptions and concerns of Coastal Carbon Capture. This includes conducting surveys, town hall events, and meetings with various groups within the community. While the project is overseen at the federal level by a committee with representation from several agencies, we have made it clear to the committee that we value the input of local stakeholders such as those who fish at the beach. Our participatory governance framework will ensure that all points of view are listened to, with particular emphasis on respecting the perspectives of those who will experience Coastal Carbon Capture most directly.
We seek to reduce injustice and inequity
Project Vesta wishes to have a positive impact in the communities in which we work. We avoid assuming that we know that means to the people in those communities; instead, we ask. We donate 1% of any carbon credit revenues we generate to benefit underserved coastal communities.
In addition to employing people in community engagement, Project Vesta employs other skilled workers to help manage the Vesta Research Station. Project Vesta funds local conservation nonprofits to undertake collaborative scientific research. In addition, Project Vesta is supporting local students in science by offering internships where they can learn state-of-the-art scientific techniques.
We seek to advance society’s understanding of perceptions of Ocean CDR and give a voice to the under-served
There is very little social science research examining perceptions of Ocean CDR, particularly of those in the Global South disproportionately vulnerable to climate risks. Since Project Vesta hopes to conduct Coastal Carbon Capture in a variety of countries, we aim to close that gap and ensure the perspectives of under-represented communities are included in the peer-reviewed literature.
Project Vesta is working in collaboration with scientific collaborators and local community engagement experts to conduct social science research at potential deployment sites, including in the Global South. We plan to publish comparative research examining how perceptions and concerns of Ocean CDR and Coastal Carbon Capture vary across countries.
Project Vesta was born out of a climate change think-tank called Climitigation. This group investigated as many carbon capture solutions as possible, searching for one that had received too little attention and investment.
Climitigation found that coastal enhanced weathering was a process with enormous potential for cheap, permanent carbon capture at massive scale. Further, they found that the technology was stuck in the lab, despite real-life beach pilots being the clear next step.
No one was bringing together the combination of multidisciplinary science, government support, funding, and sheer force of will that would help this technology ‘cross the chasm’ between theory and maturity. Project Vesta was founded to do exactly this.
We consider the entire life-cycle of the impacts of this nature-based solution. We aim to capture 20 times the CO2 we emit. We measure the ecological effects of our entire process from quarries to coastlines, and wherever possible seek to have a regenerative effect on the ecosystems and communities we touch.
We hold our research to the highest standards. All of our ongoing modeling and laboratory experiments will be published in peer-reviewed journals upon completion. Coastal Carbon Capture will be implemented in a natural environment, which necessitates the utmost care. Our ongoing research with different scientists across various institutions will serve as the necessary foundation prior to studies in the field.
Scale is paramount. We believe that to have a serious impact, solutions must be able to remove at least a billion tonnes of carbon dioxide every year. Our goal is to achieve at least that.
This immense challenge requires extensive collaboration. We work with the global scientific community to publish peer reviewed research. We partner with governments, NGOs, academic institutions, and the private sector to advance the field with the ultimate goal of safe global deployment.
We will accomplish our mission by using the power of natural wave energy in coastal areas. Today, we know that reducing carbon dioxide emissions alone will not be enough to solve the climate crisis: we need to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Fortunately, nature already has a way, billions of years old, to do this – by weathering volcanic minerals. When rain falls on volcanic rocks and washes them into the ocean, this causes a reaction which removes CO2 from the atmosphere and locks it up in limestone at the bottom of the ocean.
The team would like to thank R.D. Schuiling and Poppe De Boer, whose passion for olivine weathering and insightful research provided significant inspiration for the Project Vesta vision, and whose work in many ways continues to guide this promising field.
Within our for-profit Public Benefit Corporation (PBC) structure, Project Vesta is developing a commercial model for Coastal Carbon Capture through the sale of carbon removal credits and the expansion of our corporate, NGO, and policy partnerships. We’re an early-stage startup with an exceptional culture, dedicated to making a difference in addressing the climate crisis on a planetary scale. In order to accomplish our goals, you’ll work directly with the Director of Business Development, a Cofounder and member of the Executive Team, in two areas. First, you’ll help achieve our not-for-profit fundraising goals. Second, you’ll help us build and develop relationships with key external stakeholders such as corporate partners, NGOs, and government agencies. This role includes, but is not limited to, the following:
We are seeking a senior scientist with a background in coastal oceanography and extensive experience in field and laboratory experiments. This candidate will have a strong background in trace metal techniques in geochemistry and/or biogeochemistry along with strong analytical and writing skills.
We are seeking a senior lab manager with a background in the marine sciences, coastal engineering, or a related field and extensive experience in managing and maintaining marine laboratories including equipment and personnel.
We are seeking a project scientist with a background in marine biogeochemistry or a related field and extensive experience in field and laboratory experiments. This candidate will have a strong background in trace metal techniques in biogeochemistry along with strong analytical and writing skills.