NEDO Selects Five New R&D Projects Under Moonshot Goal 4
—Start to Identify Technology to Artificially Increase Natural CO2 Absorption Capacity—
September 26, 2022
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO)
Translation of Japanese NEDO news release posted on Sep. 26, 2022
The New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) has selected five projects in order to identify new technologies to achieve Moonshot Goal 4 set by the Japanese Government: Realization of sustainable resource circulation to recover the global environment by 2050. As part of the five selected projects, NEDO will conduct research and development to determine the effectiveness and dissemination potential of technologies to efficiently capture and absorb carbon dioxide (CO2) by artificially increasing natural CO2 absorption capacity, i.e., artificially accelerating natural processes.
Until now, NEDO’s Moonshot Research and Development Program has focused on the development of direct air capture technology for CO2 capture from the atmosphere using an engineering process that makes it relatively easy to verify CO2 reduction costs and reduction potential.
NEDO will strengthen its efforts to solve the climate change problem (Cool Earth) by identifying technologies that artificially increase CO2 absorption capacity using biomass and carbonatization. NEDO will also add new natural processes that can be connected to negative emission technology and are expected to reduce CO2 emissions.
Fig. Visual representation of the artificial acceleration of natural processes to realize sustainable resource circulation
The Moonshot Research and Development Program*1 was established with the aim of creating disruptive innovations developed in Japan and advancing complex research and development based on bolder ideas going beyond the mere extension of existing technology. Nine Moonshot Goals*2 were decided by the Council for Science, Technology and Innovation (CSTI) and the Headquarters for Healthcare Policy.
In accordance with the nine goals of the Moonshot Research and Development Program, NEDO is implementing sophisticated research and development to accomplish Moonshot Goal 4: Realization of sustainable resource circulation to recover the global environment by 2050 and to realize the research and development concept formulated by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in 2020. NEDO made an additional public solicitation and selected five research and development projects and appointed project managers to oversee each of the projects (please refer to Document 1 below).
The CO2 capture and absorption technologies that artificially accelerate natural processes NEDO is promoting:
○ CO2 absorption through biomass: Technology to artificially accelerate CO2 absorption through plants capable of absorbing massive amounts of CO2 (e.g., trees and plants [innovative biomass] and seagrass meadows and seaweeds [e.g., Blue Carbon]).
○ CO2 absorption through carbonatization: Technology to artificially accelerate weathering of cracked and scattered rocks, such as basalt (Enhanced weathering).
- *1 Moonshot Research and Development Program
- For further program details, please refer to the following:
Moonshot Research and Development Program
- *2 Moonshot Goals
- Goals 1 to 6, 8, and 9 were decided by the CSTI. Goal 7 was decided by the Headquarters for Healthcare Policy.
- - Goal #1: Realization of a society in which human beings can be free from limitations of body, brain, space, and time by 2050.
- - Goal #2: Realization of ultra-early disease prediction and intervention by 2050.
- - Goal #3: Realization of AI robots that autonomously learn, adapt to their environment, evolve in intelligence and act alongside human beings, by 2050.
- - Goal #4: Realization of sustainable resource circulation to recover the global environment by 2050.
- - Goal #5: Creation of the industry that enables sustainable global food supply by exploiting unused biological resources by 2050.
- - Goal #6: Realization of a fault-tolerant universal quantum computer that will revolutionize economy, industry, and security by 2050.
- - Goal #7: Realization of sustainable care systems to overcome major diseases by 2040, for enjoying one’s life with relief and release from health concerns until 100 years old.
- - Goal #8: Realization of a society safe from the threat of extreme winds and rains by controlling and modifying the weather by 2050.
- - Goal #9: Realization of a mentally healthy and dynamic society by increasing peace of mind and vitality by 2050.
4．For more information, please contact:
NEDO Innovation Promotion Department, Moonshot Research and Development Program Office