Carbon Capture and Storage Gains Momentum, Rapid Action on Carbon Emission to Achieve Net Zero Scenario

Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS): Saving Our Planet from CO2 Emissions

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CO2 is melting our planet, but we can save it – both, CO2 and our planet. How?

Well, that’s the job of ‘Carbon Capture and Storage’, a technology that can save at least 90% CO2, and is utilized for multiple purposes.

The Carbon capture and storage (CCS) market was already worth USD 1.7 billion in 2021 and is already anticipated to have a robust growth to reach USD 3.27 billion by 2030. CCS is currently the only technology that can assist in lowering emissions from significant industrial facilities. It might be a crucial piece of technology in the fight against climate change.

CCS has the potential to produce “negative emissions,” which would remove CO2 from the environment when used in conjunction with bioenergy technologies for the production of electricity. In order to achieve the Paris Agreement’s aim of keeping global temperature rise to under 2°C, many scientists and politicians contend that this is essential.

What is Carbon Capture and Storage? How Does Its Presence Bode Well for Global Climate Crisis?

In order to combat climate change, carbon dioxide (CO2) from factories, power plants, and other industrial operations is absorbed and stored instead of being released into the environment. In order to permanently keep the CO2 out of the atmosphere, it is then stored in the subsoil.

CCS can be thought of as a “bridge technology,” enabling the continued use of fossil fuels in industry and electricity generation until low-carbon substitutes can be put into place. To attain the zero CO2 emissions needed to meet the 1.5°C and 2°C climate objectives, CCS might also be necessary.

Carbon capture and storage can be achieved in three ways:

  1. Post Combustion
  2. Pre-Combustion
  3. Oxyfuel

CO2 is extracted from combustion exhaust for post-combustion carbon capture.

Industrial facilities use pre-combustion capture technologies that are currently commercially accessible, but pre-combustion capture for power plants is still in its infancy. With the aid of this technology, gasoline is gasified and the CO2 is removed. Although it might be less expensive than other solutions, pre-combustion collection can only be integrated into new construction; doing so would be prohibitively expensive.

Oxyfuel technology burns fossil fuels with nearly pure oxygen, producing CO2 and steam as a byproduct. This produces a stream of CO2 emissions that is more concentrated and hence easier (and less expensive) to capture.

The Global Stance of Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage

Nearly 45 Mt of CO2 is being captured globally through Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS) plants, but this number has to rise. With a total yearly capture capacity of over 45 Mt CO2, there are about 35 commercial plants using CCUS for industrial operations, fuel transformation, and power production. Although CCUS implementation has historically lagged behind predictions, momentum has increased significantly in recent years. Across the whole CCUS value chain, 300 projects are currently in various phases of development.

By 2030, project developers hope to have over 200 new capture facilities up and running, gathering more than 220 Mt of CO2 annually. However, by June 2022, only about 10 commercial capture projects still in development had received FID. CCUS deployment would still be far below what is necessary for the Net Zero Scenario even at this level.

CO2 Utility Across Various Industries Continues to Gain Momentum with Growing Use of CCS

Industrial emitters of CO2 may be able to make money from their use of gas. As part of the HySCALE100 project, up to 1 Mt of CO2 might be absorbed annually from industrial sources in Germany for the manufacture of methanol. In addition, CRI is building three CO2-to-methanol projects at petrochemical and ferrosilicon plants in China and Norway.

Around 80 Mt of CO2 is utilized annually for increased oil recovery, while 30 Mt of CO2 is used directly for food and beverage production as well as greenhouse yield-increasing. Around 20 commercial capture plants (> 100 000 Mt CO2 per year) are being planned with a focus on CO2 utilization, mostly in building aggregates, chemicals, and fuels.

In order to achieve carbon neutrality, an increasing number of commercial synthetic fuel initiatives intend to derive all or part of their CO2 from air or biogenic sources:

  • The Norsk-e fuel factory in Norway may be the first significant synthetic fuel manufacturing facility in the world. It will use electrolytic hydrogen with point-source and air-captured CO2 to create up to 25 million liters of sustainable aviation fuel by 2024 and up to 100 million liters by 2030.
  • Air-sourced synthetic fuel facilities are being developed in Canada, Chile, and the United States and could begin running as early as 2025, according to research being done by Lanzatech and HIF worldwide.
  • As part of the Green Fuels for Denmark project, it is being investigated in Denmark to obtain CO2 from a bio-fired power station for use in fuels. Portugal and Denmark are both investigating the use of CO2 at waste-to-energy facilities.

In order to further reduce the carbon footprint of concrete manufacturing, CO2 captured from cement plants can be carbonated into cementitious materials for building aggregates. With Heidelberg Cement, the mineral carbonation businesses Calix and Fortera are working on significant projects in the US, Germany, and Norway.

Innovation Fueling CCS Development Across Globe to Battle Climate Crisis and Accelerating Adoption

Reducing the energy required to convert CO2 to fuels and chemicals through advanced conversion pathways including CO2 electrolysis and plasmolysis, as well as solar-based thermochemical conversion, is one of the top innovation objectives. Long-term tests of CO2-cured concrete in structural applications are also required in the building materials industry to prove its dependable performance.

Opportunities for smaller-scale CO2 utilization can also help demonstrate new CO2 capture techniques like membranes and direct air capture. These early trials can help to improve and lower the price of CCS and CO2 usage technologies and promote their deployment in the future.

Large-scale transportation infrastructure, such as pipelines and, in some locations, terminals, ships, and trucks, would need to be deployed in order to accommodate the significant usage of hydrogen and CO2 for conversion into fuels and chemicals.

Individual CO2-emitting businesses, especially small ones, would benefit from a shared or multi-user transport network because it offers economies of scale and gives access to hydrogen and CO2 sources that are not always close to where the need is. Combining CO2 transit for use in goods with geological storage could have further advantages, particularly as part of future CO2 hubs and clusters in regions with emission-intensive businesses.

Final Stand on This

A net zero CO2 emissions economy might involve funding R&D and demonstration for future uses of CO2, such as in the production of aviation fuels and chemicals. This should go hand in hand with research and development and demonstrations for CO2 capture from biomass and the atmosphere and low-carbon hydrogen production.

The development and use of these technologies can be sped up by support for international R&D and demonstration projects and knowledge transfer networks. Governments could also directly subsidize the development of technologies that have promising futures in terms of competitiveness, scalability, and CO2 emission reductions.

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