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United States Patent and Trademark Office: Expansion and Extension of the Climate Change Mitigation Pilot Program

June 13, 2023

By: Christine M. Wise and Alice O. Carroll

As of June 6, 2023, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) expanded the scope of the Climate Change Mitigation Pilot Program, initially implemented on June 3, 2022, to incentivize climate change innovation. The pilot program now covers a broader range of technologies designed to make progress toward achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. Net-zero greenhouse gas emissions refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gas that is produced and the amount that is removed from the atmosphere. Qualifying technologies include the removal of greenhouse gases already present in the atmosphere, reduction and/or prevention of additional greenhouse gas emissions, and/or monitoring, tracking, and verifying greenhouse gas reductions.

Patent applications filed under the Climate Change Mitigation Pilot program will receive an expedited first Office Action, which includes an Examiner’s position on patentability, and an opportunity for the applicant to respond to the Office Action. This expedited examination process is intended to lead to earlier grant of patents. To qualify for the pilot program, applicants must file a petition certifying that the claimed invention covers a product or process that mitigates climate change. Additionally, they must have a good faith belief that expediting the patent examination of the application will likely have a positive impact on the climate. The number of nonprovisional patent applications on which an inventor may be named under this pilot program has been expanded from four to twelve.

The pilot program was initially enacted to align with Executive Order 14008, dated January 27, 2021, which called for immediate reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions no later than 2050. The pilot program has been extended until June 7, 2027, or the date the USPTO accepts a total of 4,000 grantable petitions, whichever occurs first.

Further information can be found on the pilot program web page:

The Federal Register Notice No. 35841, vol. 88, No. 105, June 1, 2023, can be found here: