Impact beyond CO2
Our carbon removal approach goes beyond vaulting carbon – it inherently improves local environmental and human health, and redresses historically unjust practices.
LOT of methane
In addition to removing carbon, our geologic sequestration avoids the methane emissions that would have occurred if the waste had decomposed above ground. While we don’t include the GHG avoidance in our carbon removal credits, it is a substantial co-benefit. On average, each ton of waste we sequester avoids 5.8 tons of CO2e (20 year GWP).
Environmental & Human Health
Organic wastes are not always clean, and how they are disposed of can be problematic. Vaulted’s approach prevents pathogenic, contaminated, organic wastes from flowing back out into the environment where today they pollute local water, air, and land. The 2018 Inspector General report found 61 hazardous pathogens in biosolids and stated land application had significant risk to human health.Studies have found that residents living near biosolid land application sites have experienced significant health concerns.
These environmental and human health harms are not uniformly distributed. Decades of research on environmental justice out of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources and Environment found that, in the US, waste sites, polluting facilities, and other unwanted land uses are disproportionately located in nonwhite and poor communities.
Globally, it’s estimated that ~80% of human waste is dumped in landfills or waterways without treatment, often near slums or poor communities. This global sanitation challenge is “endangering human health and ecosystems, contributing to water scarcity and constraining sustainable economic development.”
Vaulted’s work advances environmental justice by protecting clean air, water, and land for all.