Our Plantd x D.R. Horton Collaboration Brings Carbon Negative Building Materials to Everyday Americans

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 min read
Josh Dorfman
 min read
August 15, 2023

Since founding Plantd in May 2021, we've been racing to develop a way to rapidly remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and turn it into something valuable and durable. We chose building materials because buildings last longer than anything else in our civilization. The best way to sequester past atmospheric CO2 we've concluded is to store it within the walls, floors, and roofs of the places we live, work, and play.

Homes become vast storage containers for past carbon emissions. The more homes built, the more carbon we draw down from the atmosphere. The thought "Suburb-as-a-Solution" springs to mind.

We've figured a lot out in two years. We have a tissue culture lab setup, a commercial farming operation in place, and a dedicated agriculture team establishing an entirely new supply chain for one of the fastest-growing, tall perennial grasses on earth - making it a carbon-capturing phenom.

We've built machines to produce full-sized structural panels for walls and roofs. They are the first such machines built in America in the 21st century. Our engineering and production teams are now building the industry's first clean, electrified production plant for engineered building materials. There's no smokestack on it, which makes it as emissions-free as an electric car.

Our building materials are 3rd party, lab certified to deliver twice the moisture resistance and nearly one-and-a-half times the strength of the standard materials builders install on job sites today. And while our building materials are novel, high-performance, and patent-pending, they install precisely the same way on a job site for ease of adoption.

We're excited about our progress, but it only matters if we have a customer. And, wow, do we have a customer!

When D.R. Horton, the largest homebuilder in the U.S., visited Plantd for the first time, we were still a team of four operating out of a small industrial prototype space on the industrial outskirts of Durham, NC. It helped to instill confidence that two on our team, Huade and Nathan, were from SpaceX and could demonstrate how we apply SpaceX principles to reimagine homebuilding materials from the ground up, replacing trees with grass.

D.R. Horton's order for 250,000 panels means that over 1,000 new homes will soon be built with carbon-negative building materials. D.R. Horton focuses on building top-quality, affordably priced homes that put homeownership within reach.

Our climate change solution is about to go as mainstream as mainstream gets and directly into the homes of everyday Americans.

These homes will look exactly the same on the outside, but we all know it's what's inside that counts.

Many have told us that the homebuilding industry is set in its ways and slow to change. We have seen the exact opposite with the team at D.R. Horton. They move fast, an ethos we share in common. We are thrilled to collaborate together to begin building a world that stands in balance with nature for everyone.

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