Negative Emissions Technologies: can they deliver?

A negative emission technology (NET) is a technological approach to removing greenhouse gases that have already been emitted into the atmosphere. That differs from “mitigation” which focuses on preventing emissions in the first place. Aside from concerns about how future availability of NETs might undermine current and near term mitigation efforts, there are further serious concerns: the technologies that are currently proposed are unproven at commercial scale and may never prove scaleable. They are extremely expensive and could worsen rather than improve our climate woes.

Biofuelwatch has produced a new briefing about Negative Emissions Technologies, with a focus on Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) and Direct Air Capture (DAC).

Aside from being unproven, if adopted BECCS could result in yet more forest destruction for bioenergy production. While Drax has a pilot BECCS project at its Yorkshire power station, it has so far failed to store any carbon. DAC is another expensive and unproven technology that aims to bind CO2 with a medium so it can then be separated, compressed and stored underground.

You can read the briefing here.