This case study explores a coastal enhanced weathering project in the Dominican Republic, examining local responses and the social dynamics of carbon dioxide removal (CDR) in areas vulnerable to climate change. Conducted by Vesta and researchers from the Dominican Republic and the UK, the study uses surveys, interviews, and community activities to investigate climate vulnerability and justice, emphasising the role of collaborative governance in CDR projects.

Despite an increase in literature on public perceptions of carbon dioxide removal (CDR), there remains a paucity of evidence describing the social and developmental processes involved in the implementation of projects in-situ. This research illustrates a case study documenting a planned research project for coastal enhanced weathering—a form of ocean alkalinity enhancement—in a remote, rural area of the Northwestern Dominican Republic, a Small Island Developing State particularly at risk from climate change impacts. This paper is a collaboration between the company responsible for the project (Vesta) and researchers located in the Dominican Republic and the United Kingdom, We draw upon 2 years’ worth of surveys, interviews, focus groups, group information sessions, and reflexive documentation by the Dominican Republic researchers, to present a first-hand account of local community responses to the planned research project and to coastal enhanced weathering and climate change more broadly. We discuss themes of climate vulnerability, justice, and adaptive capacity through the lens of the collaborative governance and social diffusion principles that the project was designed with. We also reflect on a program of outreach and participatory activities which was established to support community development in the areas surrounding the field trial site, as informed by exploration of community needs drawn from the research.


Harry Hilser, Lia Hiraldo, Cheyenne Moreau, Andrea Draiby, Emily Cox, Grace Andrews, Lewis Winks and Nathan G. Walworth

Publication Details

Hilser, H., Hiraldo, L., Moreau, C., Draiby, A., Cox, E., Andrews, M.G., Winks, L., Walworth, N.G., 2024. Public engagement and collaboration for carbon dioxide removal: lessons from a project in the Dominican Republic. Front. Clim. 6, 1290999.