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Elon Musk to offer $100million prize for 'best' carbon capture tech

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk has offered up a $100million reward as a prize for the best carbon capture technology idea. 

Carbon capture technology is a field of research which seeks to remove carbon dioxide, a key greenhouse gas, from the atmosphere. 

It has been actively investigated for several years but very little progress has been made towards producing a viable method. 

The announcement from Mr Musk comes days after US President Joe Biden signed an executive order announcing the US would rejoin the Paris Agreement and make the ongoing climate crisis and fossil fuel usage a priority of his administration. 

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'Am donating $100M towards a prize for best carbon capture technology,' Musk wrote in a tweet, followed by a second tweet that promised 'Details next week.' Tesla officials did not immediately respond to a request for additional information

Efforts to curb climate change have in recent years shifted away from carbon capture technology towards cutting emissions, seeing progress stagnate. 

The Tesla and SpaceX boss and maverick is hoping a cash injection from his ample financial reserves will kickstart progress in the sector. 

Earlier this month he replaced Jeff Bezos as the world's richest person for four days, due to the surging share prices of his companies. His net worth reached $188.5 billion and is now around $176 billion. 

'Am donating $100M towards a prize for best carbon capture technology,' Musk wrote in a tweet, followed by a second tweet that promised 'Details next week.'

Tesla officials did not immediately respond to a request for additional information. 

Musk, who co-founded and sold Internet payments company PayPal now leads some of the most futuristic companies in the world.

Besides Tesla, he heads rocket company SpaceX and Neuralink, a startup that is developing ultra-high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect the human brain to computers.

He has previously outlined his roadmap for how the world will ditch fossil fuels and embrace renewable sources, including revolutionising battery technology, prioritising electric cars and developing solar and wind energy.   


Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) captures emissions produced from the use of fossil fuels in electricity generation and industrial processes.

It aims to prevent the carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere and is able to capture up to 90 per cent of the carbon dioxide (CO2) they emit.

The use of CCS with renewable biomass is one of the few carbon abatement technolo­gies that can be used in a 'carbon-negative' mode ­– actually taking carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.

The process consists of three parts - capturing the carbon dioxide; transporting the carbon dioxide; and securely storing the carbon dioxide emissions.

These can be stored underground in depleted oil and gas fields or deep saline aquifer formations.

Carbon capture technologies allow the separation of carbon dioxide from gases produced in electricity generation and industrial processes by one of three methods: pre-combustion capture; post-combustion capture; and oxyfuel com­bustion.

Carbon dioxide is then transported by pipeline or by ship for safe storage. Millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide are already transported annually for commercial purposes by road tanker, ship and pipelines. 

The carbon dioxide is then stored in carefully selected geological rock formation that are typically located several miles below the earth's surface.

Technology developed by Tesla, for example, has been adapted to give rise to new solar panels which can replace traditional roofs. 

The tiles look the same as a standard roof but instead generate electricity, and Tesla claims they last three times as long as normal solar panels. 

Musk is also prioritising ways to store energy once it has been made by clean sources, with a focus on batteries. 

In Australia, he built a lithium-ion battery which covers 10,000 square metres and siphons wind-generated electricity to the power grid for 24 hours a day. 

The 100MW battery farm has enough storage capacity to power 30,000 homes.  

Newly-sworn-in US President Joe Biden has pledged to accelerate the development of carbon capture technology as part of his sweeping plan to tackle climate change.

Earlier this month Musk (pictured) replaced Jeff Bezos as the world's richest person for four days due to surging the share prices of his companies. His net worth reached $188.5billion and is now around $176billion

On Thursday, he named Jennifer Wilcox, an expert in carbon removal technologies, as the principal deputy assistant secretary for fossil energy at the US Department of Energy. 

The new US President signed 15 executive orders on his first day in office which aimed at undoing some of the work done by the Trump administration. 

As well as repealing the so-called 'Muslim ban', preventing the US parting with the World Health Organization and mandating mask wearing, he also signed an order which will see the US rejoin the Paris Agreement. 

Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Accord, lamenting it wasn't fair that the U.S. was funding much of the program aimed at cutting global fossil fuel emissions while other countries, like China, contribute much more to these emissions.

Biden signed an executive order to rejoin the Paris climate accord, fulfilling a campaign pledge to get back into the global climate pact on Day One.

It will take 30 days for the U.S. to officially be back in.

Elon Musk reveals plans for talking Tesla that can use AI to speak to pedestrians through speakers 

We may not have flying cars, but we could soon have 'talking' ones.

Elon Musk teased an upcoming Tesla feature that combines external speakers and artificial intelligence, enabling vehicles to 'speak' to pedestrians.

And the eccentric billionaire said that as well as conversing with pedestrians, drivers could be able to emit a fart noise from the speakers as well. 

Musk shared a clip of the technology on his personal Twitter page, which highlights a Model 3 driving through the streets and speakers playing 'Well don't just stand there staring. Hop in'.

'Teslas will soon talk to people if you want,' he said in the tweet on Saturday. 'This is real.'

The speakers have been added to the electric vehicles under the Pedestrian Enhancement Safety Act of 2010.

This law requires electric vehicles to emit a noise when traveling at speeds lower than 19 miles per hour to compensate for the relative silence of their engines.

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