Nearly one-third of global energy and one-quarter of worldwide carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are attributable to industrial activities that are not in the power generation sector. If climate change is to be successfully tackled, these sectors will need to transform the way they use energy and significantly reduce their CO2 emissions. In sectors such as iron and steel, oil refining, cement and chemicals and petrochemicals, emission can be reduced through efficiency improvements and integration of low carbon energy sources. Crucially, however, carbon capture and storage (CCS) has been identified as the only large-scale mitigation option available that can deliver the additional CO2 emissions reductions that would be necessary to meet the climate goals in 2050.
This roadmap shows that CCS is a key cost-effective option for reducing CO2 emissions in large energy-intensive industries. In fact, much of the promising short-term potential for CCS globally lies not in the power sector but in industrial activities that currently vent highly pure streams of CO2. These activities include hydrogen production for fertilisers or fuel, bioethanol production and natural gas sweetening. Most studies on the potential application of CCS have focused on the power sector, however, even though all existing operational large-scale demonstrations of CCS are in industrial applications. In the longer-term, half of the global economic deployment for CCS by 2050 is shown to be in industrial applications. In certain sectors CCS is shown to be of particular relevance in developing countries, where it could be a highly cost-competitive emissions abatement option, even in the near term.