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July 10, 2024

New protocol for Subsurface Biomass Carbon Removal and Storage

Protocol enters public consultation

Stacy Kauk, P.Eng.
Head of Science

Isometric recently opened a public consultation on a protocol for durable carbon removal through Subsurface Biomass Carbon Removal and Storage.

The protocol details requirements and procedures for carbon removal via processing of biomass and storage in the subsurface for long term sequestration.

Storage of biomass in the subsurface falls within the broader category of Biomass Carbon Removal and Storage (BiCRS). This protocol applies to projects associated with sourcing and processing of carbon-rich biomass and subsequent placement in the subsurface for long term storage.

BiCRS technologies are promising and scalable pathways for advancing carbon removal. This protocol outlines a methodology for calculating durable subsurface storage of biomass for 1,000 years. This requires characterizing the minimum detection limit of testing, using this limit to conservatively estimate the durable carbon stored on that same time scale, as well as rigorous requirements for ensuring storage sites are protected and undisturbed.

This protocol applies to projects or processes that utilize agricultural or forestry residues as eligible feedstocks in accordance with the Biomass Feedstock Accounting Module.

Carbon removal supplier Graphyte has provided feedback during the development of this protocol. They utilize a technology called Carbon Casting which leverages readily available biomass, such as residues from timber and farming operations, that is then dried and compressed into dense carbon blocks protected by a barrier and stored in underground sites with state-of-the-art monitoring.

Graphyte Chief Technology Officer Hannah Murnen said this about the protocol:

"As a provider of a carbon dioxide removal solution that is permanent, affordable, and immediately scalable, Graphyte is actively partnering with companies seeking to achieve their net zero goals. The protocol released by Isometric today represents the high-quality scientific rigor that buyers, regulators, communities, and stakeholders can rely on to ensure transparency and confirm Graphyte’s durable and affordable carbon removal credits are delivered under the highest industry standard.”

All Isometric protocols are developed in line with the Isometric Standard, which is the world’s most rigorous set of rules for carbon removal. This protocol was created in collaboration between Isometric’s in-house Science Team and reviewers from Isometric’s independent Science Network of over 200 climate experts. Comments on this protocol are welcome from interested buyers, suppliers and scientists as it enters public consultation.

The release of this protocol follows that of Isometric’s Bio-oil Geological Storage, Biomass Geological Storage, Direct Air Capture, Enhanced Weathering, Ocean Alkalinity Enhancement, Biogenic Carbon Capture and Sequestration and Biochar Production and Storage protocols, bringing the total number of Isometric protocols to eight.