New York governor announces funding for carbontech innovation programme

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As federal and state governments chase decarbonisation goals, the use of carbon capture storage and utilisation technologies is increasing. However, there is a need to increase investments in technology research and development (R&D) with the carbontech solutions market still in its infancy stage.

Carbontech describes a family of technologies that can convert different forms of carbon into a diverse array of valued products and services in a climate-beneficial way. According to the New York State Decarbonization Pathways Analysis Summary of Draft Findings released in 2020 and commissioned by the New York State Climate Action Council, removing carbon from the atmosphere could account for up to 15% of the reductions needed under the Climate Act and carries an economic opportunity estimated at $1 trillion in the US and $6 trillion globally.

This week, New York state governor Andrew Cuomo has announced the availability of $9 million in funding to establish the Carbontech Entrepreneurial Fellowship Programme, designed to support scientists in technology R&D.

The programme will provide scientists with technical assistance in technology R&D and commercialisation with the aim to establish New York as a hub for carbon-to-value technology. The project is expected to accelerate the use of carbon-capture technologies and help New York move closer to its 2050 decarbonisation goal of reducing carbon emissions by 85%.

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The Carbontech Entrepreneurial Fellowship Programme will provide support services to researchers at universities or other institutions to commercialize the technologies they produce. The programme is the second component of the State’s $19 million Carbontech Development Initiative, which was announced earlier this year. Administered and funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the two programmes will work together to play a significant role in creating a sustainable carbon-to-value innovation ecosystem boosting research, technology transfer and commercialisation.

NYSERDA is now seeking proposals for an organisation to run the Carbontech Entrepreneurial Fellowship Programme.

Governor Cuomo said: “Revolutionising the development of products made from carbon capture will create the landscape to achieve deep decarbonisation in our fight against climate change.

“Attracting scientists with cutting-edge skills and knowledge to realise new products is essential to growing our green economy, and we are bringing their research out of the lab to pave the way for a more climate-resilient future to benefit all New Yorkers.”

Funding for this initiative is provided through the State’s 10-year, $5.3 billion Clean Energy Fund.