Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Capturing CO2 emissions needed to meet climate targets

26.06.2014

Technologies that are discussed controversially today may be needed to keep the future risks and costs of climate change in check.

Combining the production of energy from fossil fuels and biomass with capturing and storing the CO2 they emit (CCS) can be key to achieving current climate policy objectives such as limiting the rise of the global mean temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius.

This is shown by the most comprehensive study to date on technology strategies to combat climate change, published in a special issue of the journal Climatic Change. It is based on the analysis of 18 computer models by an international team of scientists under the roof of the Stanford Energy Modelling Forum (EMF 27).

“Versatile technologies seem to be most important to keep costs in check,“ says lead author Elmar Kriegler from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. Both bioenergy and CCS can help reduce emissions from non-electric energy use that would be hard to decarbonize otherwise. Examples are the burning of coke in blast furnaces in the steel industry which can be equipped with CCS, and the combustion of petrol for transport which can be replaced by biofuels.

... more about:
»CCS »CO2 »Climatic »EMF »Energy »PIK »bioenergy »biomass »electricity »emissions »strategies

“If combined, energy from biomass and CCS can even result in withdrawing CO2 from the atmosphere and hence compensate remaining emissions across sectors and over time, because grasses and trees absorb CO2 before they are used to produce energy,” explains Kriegler.

In contrast, the availability of individual low carbon technologies in the electricity sector was shown to be less important. This is due to the fact that the electricity sector has a number of mitigation options, like nuclear, solar, and wind power, but also gas and coal power with CCS. So the lack of one of them can more easily be compensated by the others.

**Bioenergy and CCS are important to keep costs in check, but also have risks**

Many simulations in the study could not at all achieve emissions reductions in line with the 2 degrees target without the use of bioenergy combined with CCS. Among those that could, mitigation costs on average more than doubled in scenarios without CCS. “Concerns regarding bioenergy and CCS are highly relevant, but given the potential importance of these technologies, it becomes clear that their opportunities and risks urgently need to be investigated in greater detail,” Kriegler concludes.

Energy from biomass indeed risks competing with food production for land, and sequestering CO2 from power plants underground on an industrial scale is a yet unproven method.

**The technology strategies exist – but depend on climate policy**

A robust feature of the transformation that was identified in the study is an accelerated electrification of energy used by consumers, for instance by increasing the number of electric cars or of electric blast furnaces in the steel industry. Moreover, increasing energy efficiency has proven to be an important strategy to support climate policy, cutting mitigation costs in half. However, energy efficiency improvements alone, without strong policies to decarbonize energy production, would be insufficient to reach the 2 degrees target.

"Our study shows that there are technology strategies that can enable us to reach ambitious climate policy targets with some degree of confidence," says John Weyant, head of the Stanford Energy Modeling Forum. "But these strategies will only be possible if effective climate policies are implemented very very soon."

Article: Kriegler, E., Weyant, J.P., Blanford, G.J., Krey, V., Clarke, L., Edmonds, J., Fawcett, A., Luderer, G., Riahi, K., Richels, R., Rose, S.K., Tavoni, M., van Vuuren, D.P. (2014): The role of technology for achieving climate policy objectives: overview of the EMF 27 study on global technology and climate policy strategies. Climatic Change 123(3-4) [DOI: 10.1007/s10584-013-0953-7]

For further information please contact:
PIK press office
Phone: +49 331 288 25 07
E-Mail: press@pik-potsdam.de
Twitter: @PIK_Climate

Weitere Informationen:

http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10584-013-0953-7 - Weblink to the Article

Jonas Viering | PIK Potsdam
Further information:
http://www.pik-potsdam

Further reports about: CCS CO2 Climatic EMF Energy PIK bioenergy biomass electricity emissions strategies

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Listening in: Acoustic monitoring devices detect illegal hunting and logging
14.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.

nachricht How fires are changing the tundra’s face
12.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>