What does carbon-negative mean?

We hear the term “carbon-negative” more and more often but many people out there still don’t know what it actually means. In this article, we debunk this matter and tell you all about it.

This can be useful as this term is becoming more and more popular and at this moment in time, it is very important to stay up-to-date with the latest trends in terms of sustainability so you can find more information about it here as helping the planet recover from the negative effects of climate change should be seen as a great priority for all of us.

What is carbon dioxide removal?

Carbon dioxide removal, also known as carbon removal, greenhouse gas removal or negative emissions, is a process that is, thankfully, becoming more and more popular with each passing day. Thanks to this process, carbon dioxide gas, also known as CO2, is deliberately removed from the atmosphere through human activities. After that, this substance is stored in geological, terrestrial, or ocean reservoirs or even in products.

This matter is being integrated into climate policies, as it is one of the practices that support climate change mitigation strategies. This practice is useful to try and reach net zero emissions which is a state where human emissions are balanced by carbon dioxide removals. 

How does it work?

Carbon, thanks to this practice, gets stored for decades and even centuries in plants, soils, oceans, rocks, saline aquifers, oil wells, and even cement. But how is this possible and how does it work? 

About 15 to 40% of the carbon dioxide that humanity emits remains in the atmosphere for thousands of years. By removing large parts of carbon dioxide, we could permanently reduce climate risk and even slow or reverse climate change as a whole.

So far, scientists and researchers have found many different ways to implement this practice, and some of these ways are already broadly used, while others are still in the research phase.

tiny tree
Photo by Matthew Smith on Unsplash

One of the most popular ways to remove carbon dioxide can be seen in biochar. Biochar is a type of charcoal that is produced by heating biomass in low-oxygen environments. This type of carbon can be either buried or plowed into soils and it locks carbon away for long periods of time (even for centuries) and enhances the quality of the soil at the same time.

This product is currently being produced in small quantities and larger amounts of this product are needed to implement the research and the knowledge we have on this matter so far.

How are industries reacting to this?

Climate change cannot be ignored any longer, and because of this, industries are finally embracing the practice of carbon removal in their production practices. Many companies across the globe have already pledged to become carbon neutral and some of them already are. If we are looking at UK businesses, for example, we can see that half of them are hoping to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030.

Even from an economic perspective, going carbon-negative makes a lot of sense, as the price of energy is increasing day by day and industries will need to face this sooner or later. Thanks to this practice, carbon-negative organizations simply sequester more carbon than they actually produce.

This practice is helpful not only to reduce energy use but also to incorporate more green appliances into production. These renewable energy sources will allow businesses to not only save money but also reduce their environmental impact. This matter is becoming more and more important for customers all around the world and many industries are figuring out that they can’t quite ignore their audience’s needs and wishes any longer.

Transparency regarding the company’s use of carbon-negative appliances and practices could actually work as a great marketing strategy to gain back the trust of people who are becoming more and more aware of the impact that carbon dioxide is having on our planet.

In Conclusion

In this article, we talked about “going carbon negative” and what this means. After providing a useful definition of this matter we dove into how it works and which practices are already becoming popular in the field of carbon reduction and elimination. We also talked about how industries are reacting to this and how this practice is becoming more and more popular with each passing day.

Thank you for reading this article and we hope you enjoyed it and that it helped you learn something new about sustainability. If you own a business and are looking to go more sustainable, check out this article.

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Brenda Coles
I'm an elementary school teacher who became a stay-at-home mother when my first child was born. I love to write about lifestyle, education, and news-related topics.