UBS signs 10-year agreement with Climeworks, underlining the financial services industry’s central role in scaling carbon removal
24 January 2023
· Climeworks is excited to enter this long-term collaboration with UBS, the latest and largest financial services company to commit to Climeworks’ carbon removal solution.
· The agreement with UBS points to an increasing consensus in the financial services industry that supporting permanent carbon removal is an essential part of the industry’s net zero transition.
· For Climeworks’ continued capacity scale-up, the guaranteed demand materialized by an increasing number of long-term agreements is key to catalyze financing of infrastructure and accelerate growth.
In addition to drastic emissions reductions, carbon removal solutions need to be deployed at scale to reach global net-zero emissions by 2050, and afterwards net-negative emissions. In its most recent report, the IPCC estimates that by mid-century, 3-12 billion tons of CO2 will need to be removed from the air every year in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C.
UBS has signed a 10-year agreement with Climeworks, a leader in carbon dioxide removal through direct air capture. In addition to Climeworks, UBS is also partnering with neustark, thus counting on two innovative Swiss companies to help address its unavoidable carbon emissions.
Long-term commitments such as the one from UBS are key to scale the carbon removal industry because they provide planning security to both sides. As a demonstrable step on its scale-up roadmap to gigaton capacity, Climeworks recently announced the ground-breaking of its next direct air capture and storage facility, called Mammoth. Mammoth capitalizes on the dynamic, long-term market demand for high-quality, permanent CO2 removal which continued to grow over the past months.
Following earlier purchases from Stripe, Klarna, Square Inc., LGT and Verdane, UBS is the latest and largest financial services company to commit to Climeworks’ carbon removal solution. Through capital allocation, stakeholder involvement and client engagement, financial services companies can act as a catalyst for emissions reductions and removals. UBS is a founding member of the Net-Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA) and the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ).
“We are delighted to enter this long-term agreement with UBS. In the past months, the number of multi-year carbon removal agreements has increased rapidly. Such long-term commitments are central to our growth planning and enable us to scale up.”, says Christoph Gebald, co-founder and co-CEO of Climeworks.
“Switzerland has a long tradition of promoting innovation and we are delighted to be supporting these pioneering solutions from two Swiss companies, Sustainability continues to be at the top of our clients' agendas and, in order to be a credible partner, it is important that we demonstrate our continued commitment when it comes to the sustainability of our own business activities.", says Sabine Keller-Busse, President UBS Switzerland.
Suni Harford, UBS Group Executive Board lead for Sustainability and Impact and President Asset Management, says: "Innovative technologies play an increasingly important role in the transition to a low-carbon economy. By collaborating with neustark and Climeworks, UBS wants both to further reduce our own carbon footprint and, crucially, to support the development of scalable solutions that the world needs to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050."
Climeworks empowers people and companies to fight global warming by offering carbon dioxide removal as a service via direct air capture (DAC) technology. At Orca, Climeworks’ DAC facility in Iceland, the CO2 is permanently removed from the air by capturing and geologically storing it for thousands of years with Climeworks’ storage partner Carbfix. Climeworks’ DAC facilities run exclusively on clean energy, and our modular CO2 collectors can be stacked to build machines of any capacity.
Founded by engineers Christoph Gebald and Jan Wurzbacher in 2009, Climeworks is on a journey to climate impact at scale. To do so, we strive to inspire 1 billion people to act and remove CO2 from the air. Climeworks is spear-heading the DAC industry globally, with the world’s largest DAC facility and storage installation in operation and a team of 300 Climeworkers determined to contribute to a net-zero future. Our growing customer base includes over 160 companies, including multinationals such as Microsoft, BCG, UBS or Swiss Re, as well as more than 18,000 individual Climate Pioneers.
UBS convenes the global ecosystem for investing, where people and ideas are connected and opportunities brought to life, and provides financial advice and solutions to wealthy, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as to private clients in Switzerland. UBS offers investment solutions, products and impactful thought leadership, is the leading global wealth manager, provides large-scale and diversified asset management, focused investment banking capabilities, and personal and corporate banking services in Switzerland. The firm focuses on businesses that have a strong competitive position in their target markets, are capital efficient and have an attractive long-term structural growth or profitability outlook.
UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in more than 50 regions and locations, with about 30% of its employees working in the Americas, 30% in Switzerland, 19% in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 21% in Asia Pacific. UBS Group AG employs more than 72,000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
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