How We Work

We focus on projects that remove, store, or prevent greenhouse gas emissions.

Containing 30 million MTCO₂e by 2030

We develop and support carbon containment strategies with large-scale implementation potential. Our goal is to support the containment of 500 million metric tons of CO₂ equivalent (MTCO₂e) by 2050, and 30 million MTCO₂e by 2030. To meet these goals, we engage with a diverse partner network, develop solutions with the whole system in mind, and consider project economics from the start.

Working with partners

We partner widely, both at Yale and beyond. Our solutions are informed and shaped from the outset by the practitioners, entrepreneurs, and companies that will help bring them to scale. We also support the ideas and solutions of others that meet our internal carbon goals.

Our Methods

Carbon Containment Methods

Our projects contain carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases through capture, storage, use, or destruction. This includes carbon dioxide removal, abated and avoided emissions, and other negative emissions technologies.

  • Containment

    Holding CO2 in a stable state (for example buried wood) and preventing new carbon emissions from entering the atmosphere through decay or combustion.


    Removing carbon from the air or water. Includes photosynthesis, Direct Air Carbon Capture (DACC) and aqueous carbon removal via enhanced weathering.


    Gathering emissions from a point source. Includes emissions from mines and landfills, as well as bioenergy and carbon capture.

    Storage Storage

    Safely and durably holding carbon. Includes underground injection of CO2 and wood carbon preservation.

  • Processing

    Eliminating emissions through safe, durable, and verifiable methods that use or destroy the gas.

    Use Use

    Using CO2 or CH4 as a product, fuel, or for another valuable end use. Includes bioenergy and mass timber.

    Destruction Destruction

    Destroying greenhouse gases by combustion, incineration, or oxidation. Includes using existing technologies such as flares and regenerative thermal oxidation.

  • Avoided Emissions

    Preventing emissions from entering the atmosphere through reductions and avoided emissions.

    Abatement Abatement

    Reducing emissions using new strategies or approaches to lessen emissions from an activity or process.

Novel or Neglected
Safe & Benign
Regulatorily Feasible

Project Vetting and Criteria

We screen our projects against a rigorous and comprehensive list of criteria. Among other considerations, these criteria help us evaluate the risks and advantages of any project, whether the project can reasonably be expected to scale up beyond an initial pilot, and whether the carbon removed or stored by the project can be verifiably measured.

Project Economics 

From the start, we evaluate our projects to ensure they are scalable and can be deployed at low-cost. New projects and technologies are designed with economics considered from the outset. Carbon market analysis and carbon pricing projections are important components of this appraisal. We also review neglected technologies where changing market conditions might now allow for deployment.

Project Life Cycle and Impact

When reviewing and designing solutions, we consider ecological, human, and industrial systems. This work uses a full life cycle perspective, applying techno-economic, environmental, and social impact assessments. We prioritize engagement with community members where our solutions will be sited. Understanding the priorities of these stakeholders is key to the equitable implementation of climate solutions.

Project Pipeline

Our pipeline includes projects and ideas still in the early stages of exploration, or for which the CC Lab is actively looking for collaborators. Pipeline projects are in various stages of screening against our criteria. 

When we identify key barriers, such as a need for improved measurement tools, we may engage project partners with specific expertise to address that gap. We also seek to identify novel ideas and technologies developed outside of the CC Lab and support the evolution of successful research from the laboratory into the field.

Our Lab develops pipeline projects through a number of pathways

Create New Solutions: Create novel ideas internally in response to a recognized need/gap.

Find Promising Solutions: Identify novel ideas and technologies at the theoretical phase or bench scale developed outside of the CC Lab.

Find Neglected Solutions: Find neglected ideas, solutions, or technologies.

Find Early-Stage Companies: Find early-stage companies in need of support.

Find Transferable Solutions: Find existing technologies that can be transferred/repurposed/reapplied with carbon containment in mind.

Find Teams and Individuals to Support CC Lab Ideas: Build a process to find individuals to help lead CC Lab ideas to scale.

CC Lab staffers exploring in the field. CC Lab, 2022.
CC Lab staffers exploring in the field. CC Lab, 2022.

Our pipeline process in action

We develop ideas from a variety of sources. Sometimes, a member of the team has a burst of inspiration, or we draw from the rich academic environment at Yale. We also work with trusted collaborators who bring their ideas to the CC Lab for support and exploration. We also welcome those with ideas relevant to our work to reach out. 

How We Engage

Engaging in Emerging Carbon Markets

Efficient and transparent carbon markets are critical for scaling and implementing greenhouse gas reduction, removal, and storage. Our team engages with these nascent markets in several ways, including participation in integrity initiatives and project methodology reviews.

We ensure our projects' removals or reductions can be rigorously measured, reported, and verified — essential characteristics for high-quality credit generation. Our team also monitors developments in the voluntary carbon markets including major buyers, key suppliers, and emerging marketplaces.

Connecting Innovators with Practitioners

Sometimes, the biggest breakthroughs come from having the right people around the table. Our team draws upon deep connections in the private sector, scientific, and investment communities to implement our projects. 

Successful collaboration models include supporting the evolution of experimental findings to field-scale pilot projects and matching early-stage startups with institutional capital and knowledge to expand and accelerate their efforts.

Meeting collaborators in the field. CC Lab, 2022.
Meeting collaborators in the field. CC Lab, 2022.

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