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Climate Adaptation

The Icelandic Startup Bill Gates Uses to Turn Carbon Dioxide Into Stone

Preventing emissions from smokestacks can be done for as little $25 a ton, while pulling them directly from the air can cost $600 a ton.

Reykjavik-based Carbfix develops technology that captures and dissolves CO2 in water, then injects it into the ground where it turns into stone in less than two years.

Reykjavik-based Carbfix develops technology that captures and dissolves CO2 in water, then injects it into the ground where it turns into stone in less than two years.

Photographer: Brennan Linsley/AP Photo

A startup in Iceland is tackling a key piece of the climate change puzzle by turning carbon dioxide into rocks, allowing the greenhouse gas to be stored forever instead of escaping into the atmosphere and trapping heat.

Reykjavik-based Carbfix captures and dissolves CO₂ in water, then injects it into the ground where it turns into stone in less than two years. “This is a technology that can be scaled—it’s cheap and economic and environmentally friendly,” Carbfix Chief Executive Officer Edda Sif Pind Aradottir said in an interview. “Basically we are just doing what nature has been doing for millions of years, so we are helping nature help itself.”