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Neustark and Zürcher Kantonalbank to remove thousands of tons of CO₂ together

  • Swiss carbon removal leader neustark set to permanently remove 4,200 tons of CO₂ from the atmosphere for Zürcher Kantonalbank (ZKB), one of the largest banks in Switzerland.
  • Carbon removal is an add-on to companies’ comprehensive measures to reduce scope 1 to 3 emissions, removing emissions that are hard-to-abate
  • ZKB’s carbon removal purchase sends a strong signal that local and regional companies are also embedding carbon removal as part of their climate strategy.
  • On the back of such partnerships, neustark is continuing to scale and internationalize at a rapid pace: 14 capture and storage plants are already operating in Germany and Switzerland, with a further 20 currently under construction.

This is a pivotal step in the rapidly growing carbon removal market: Zürcher Kantonalbank – the largest cantonal bank in Switzerland and one of the largest banks in Switzerland with total assets of CHF 200 billion and more than 6,000 employees – has purchased 4,200 tons of carbon dioxide removal (CDR) from Swiss climate tech neustark.

So far, mainly large multinational companies in the financial and tech industries have taken on a pioneering role as CDR purchasers, embedding carbon removal in their climate strategy. Swiss bank Zürcher Kantonalbank is now sending a strong signal to the market that also local and regional companies should and can remove CO₂ to achieve net zero.

"Of course, companies should first reduce their emissions to the max" says Lisa Braune, Head of Carbon Removal at neustark "but there will always be a portion that is difficult or impossible to avoid. And this is exactly where neustark comes into play with its negative emissions technology, permanently removing CO₂ from the air."

Reduce emissions as far as possible, and remove the rest

The collaboration with neustark will allow Zürcher Kantonalbank to permanently remove 700 tons of CO₂ per year from its operating emissions starting in 2025 – that is a total of 4,200 tons over the entire term of the contract.

Since 2009, the bank has already reduced its operational CO₂ emissions by around 70%. To date, all of the remaining emissions generated by operations have been offset. ZKB has now decided to neutralize all residual emissions – i.e. those that are hard-to-abate or completely unavoidable – via negative emission certificates.

"We are teaming up with neustark to have a large part of our residual emissions removed via their innovative and high-quality mineralization technology," says Marit Kruthoff, CSR Manager at Zürcher Kantonalbank. "By working with a regionally based start-up like neustark, we are also proud to contribute to the scaling of the local and global carbon removal industry to help us achieve net zero."

Neustark continues to scale – 14 sites already in operation

Neustark is a leading provider in the rapidly growing field of permanent carbon removal, having developed and rolled out a solution to store CO₂ from the air in recycled mineral waste such as demolition concrete.

Together with partners, neustark has already 14 capture and storage plants in operation, with a total annual removal capacity of around 5000 tons of CO₂. More than 20 further plants are currently under construction in Germany, Austria, France and Switzerland. Neustark is scaling up rapidly, on track towards its goal of permanently removing one million tons of CO₂ in 2030.

Next to ZKB, neustark's CDR clients include Microsoft, UBS and Verdane, amongst others. These companies work with neustark to complement their own comprehensive scope 1 to 3 reduction measures with carbon removal, tackling their ‘left-over’, hard-to-abate emissions.

The Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) – to which over 6,000 companies belong – stipulates that after a company has achieved its long-term target and cut emissions by >90%, it must use permanent carbon removal and storage to counterbalance the final <10% of residual emissions that cannot be eliminated.

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Elmar Vatter

Elmar Vatter

Project Lead Marketing & Communications

Sophie Dres

Sophie Dres

Chief Marketing Officer

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