Carbon Removal

We’ve been following Andes progress for a while and have been so impressed with their focus on creating durable carbon removal in soils using naturally-occurring microorganisms.

Having delivered their first tonnes of removal during 2022, with a strong focus on verification and ambitious scaling plans, makes them natural partners for us.

We’re thrilled to include Andes in our Carbon Removal Portfolios.

Type: Soil Carbon, Microbial Carbon Mineralization 

Permanence of carbon removal: 10,000+ years

Additionality: High

Stage: Growth 

Location: USA

Who are Andes?

Andes' incredible team of 33, boasts 8 PhDs across disciplines including: genome engineering, systems biology, geochemistry, soil science and synthetic biology.

With science and technology, they harness what microorganisms have been doing for billions of years to help us tackle human-caused climate change, by adding them to agricultural fields during the growing season.

As the crops grow, the microorganisms accelerate the mineralization of soil carbon, which stabilizes it so it can't be easily released back into the atmosphere. When rained on, it then sinks deep into the soil, making way to add more for an annual carbon removal cycle.

Over the course of multiple studies and trials, they’ve amassed 55,000+ unique datapoints generated from field studies during the last three years of product development across 50,000+ acres in the US Midwest. Progress so far has been impressive and promising. 

Andes Soil Carbon Removal Logo

Our planet’s soils hold immense potential for carbon sequestration and microbial carbon mineralization can provide high permanence, co-benefits, and great economics for farmers.

Gonzalo Fuenzalida

CEO, Andes

Andes has partnered with EcoEngineers, a carbon consulting, auditing, and advisory firm specializing particularly in developing MRV - measurement, reporting and verification - approaches for CDR, to co-develop an ISO-standard methodology for the Microbial Carbon Mineralization CDR pathway.

This methodology was published publicly in July of 2023 and validated in September 2023 in accordance with ISO 14064. Andes works with Earthood, a VVB that was voted “best verification company of 2023” for the verification of their carbon credits.

They measure the impact - the carbon negativity - of their solution every year with a full Lifecycle Assessment (LCA). At last measurement it was 99% net carbon negativity, which is among the best across carbon removal available pathways.

Andes Soil Carbon - MRV Tracking

Andes' Story

The co-founders, Gonzalo and Tania, bring a combination of extensive entrepreneurial leadership experience and deep technical expertise.

Having met in Chile in 2016, Gonzalo and Tania both bring a deeply rooted motivation to fight climate change, in addition to their subject matter expertise. They both grew up in Chile, where they saw first hand how climate change has negatively impacted the production of food in their country, one of the most important activities to support local communities and the country's GDP.

Here’s a quick timeline of events on the Andes journey:   

Andes Soil Carbon - Our Story

How does Soil Microbial Carbon Removal work?

In the right conditions, mineralized CO2 stored in soil has the potential to safely sequester carbon for thousands of years. Andes process and solution has a net-negativity of 99%.

Plant Powered

Beneficial natural microorganisms are grown and then added to soil, along with agricultural seeds, such as corn and wheat. They grow with plant roots and accelerate the conversion of CO2 into minerals. 

Andes - Microbes grown to sequester carbon while crops grow
Andes - soil carbon removal that increases plant growth and soil health

Soil Enhancer

Andes microorganisms are naturally occurring in soils, benefit plant health and increase crop yields. When mineralized benefits include improved water drainage, higher nutrient content in the soil, decreased likelihood of plant disease as well as stabilizing soil organic matter.

Enhanced Weathering

With rainfall, these minerals move deep into the soil, making room for annual CO2 removal. Effectively locking the sequestered carbon out of the atmosphere for thousands of years. The the system sequesters CO2 at an average rate of 1 to 3 tonnes per acre per season.

Andes - when it rains, carbon is sequestered in the mineralized microbes for thousands of years
Andes - farmers spreading microbe on fields to sequester carbon out of the atmosphere

Engaging Local Communities

They provide their microbial technology free to farmers, which transforms fields into mega-factories of carbon capture while enhancing crop yields. Farmers increase their net income by up to 30% as well as additional soil and plant health co-benefits.

Scaling Plans

There's 400+ million acres across the Americas that could be used for microbial mineralization. Combined with plus an easy to adopt technology equals a potential gigatonne-scale carbon dioxide removals in years, not decades.

Andes' scaling ambition aims to reach a megatonne - a million tonnes - of annual carbon removal in the next 3 years, and be in the tens of millions of tonnes per year by 2030. It's the kind of rapid removal growth that we love to see, backed by their verified plan to make it happen.

To achieve Net Zero (& beyond) we need to grow global carbon removal capacity to somewhere between 5 to 10 gigatonnes per year by 2050. Soil carbon has the potential - from a carbon storage volume, additionality and scaling potential - to contribute a significant proportion of the total we need to develop and deploy. 

Climate Justice + Co-benefits

Zopeful's Carbon Removal Portfolios primarily look at solutions that are as-permanent-as-possible-for-the-$, combined with additionality and verifiability. As you may know from our climate courses, we're very conscious of climate justice issues as well. There can be no full transition to a zero emissions world that isn't just. We're including carbon removal partners in the portfolios that engage and include local communities in the countries they operate in.

Given Andes’ ability to address climate justice in the US by increasing farmer income and climate resilience, the team has made public engagement and environmental justice a top priority.

Farmers have observed soil and plant health co-benefits as the microbes help stabilise organic matter, prevent soil erosion (and reduces pathogen pressure), and enhance soil buffering capacity.

In Andes’ carbon program, farmers are partners, not customers. By participating in the program, farmers receive a cash payment that can increase their net income by up to 30%. They also stimulate local economies in the Midwest by contracting local soil sampling and microbial production companies to open up equal opportunity jobs as Andes field staff.

As Andes carbon program grows, the goal is to improve outcomes for farmers who have been most negatively impacted by climate change in the US and beyond.

Expansion into geographies outside of the US will allow Andes carbon program to further reach low-income farmers in South America and Africa and economically benefit marginalized agricultural communities.

In order for carbon removal to scale, we need companies, individuals, and governments to all step up and Zopeful is one of the pieces enabling this to happen. We are grateful for their partnership.

Andrew Denu

Commercial Lead, Andes

Andes Biochar Team


Slowing and reversing climate change not only requires us to drastically reduce emissions from current levels, we also need to take out hundreds of billions of tonnes we’ve already added to the atmosphere over the last 200 years.

If you’ve been on our courses you’ll know that soil has a lot of carbon sequestration potential. A key challenge to overcome with many types of soil carbon solution is that there is a significant risk of the carbon being re-released if it’s disturbed.

What sets Andes apart is that their solution uses plants to mineralize the CO2 in the soil which effectively locks it away for thousands of years out of the atmosphere, while also benefiting soil health. It’s an amazing combination of carbon capture through agricultural plant growth, mineralization and enhanced weathering.

The removal also happens comparatively quickly, compared with trees or other nature-based removals, during the 5 month growing season (compared to over multiple decades for trees).

We’re excited to see what a combination of soil carbon mineralization and the growing regenerative farming movement could create in terms of positive climate impact and utilizing soils' huge potential to sequester more carbon out of the atmosphere.

Read more about Soil Carbon Removal and why we include it in our Carbon Removal Portfolios 👇

Find out more about soil carbon removal solutions

I'm ready. How do I start?

Great to hear! We're delighted you're with us. We've set-up two options for you to get started removing your carbon emissions. Whether you're dipping your toe or draining your proverbial carbon ocean, there's an option here for you. Custom options available.

Monthly Carbon Removal

Ready to remove some or all of your carbon emissions? Amazing! You're in the right place. Subscribe to a monthly contribution to live your best climate life.

One-time Carbon Removal

Bought a new thing or some more stuff? Taken an unexpected flight? You can remove individual purchases with our one-time carbon removal option.

Company Carbon Removal

Looking to add durable CDR to your organization's sustainability or net zero program? Get in touch with us, we can help with custom volumes to suit your goals. 

Every tonne matters

Our ready-made, curated, portfolio of high quality carbon dioxide removal (CDR) solutions is live. It aims for the highest permanence-for-the-$-per-tonne that we can find.

We're excited to be working with an inspiring group of global CDR companies taking the fight to the Climate Crisis. They're doing amazing work that holds a tonne - pun intended - of promise.

Zopeful Carbon Removal Portfolio-1

©2024 Zopeful Climate Ltd. All rights reserved.
Made in 🇬🇧 🇺🇸 🇪🇺 🇦🇺 with ❤️ for the 🌍