In 2021 the UK government published their Net-Zero by 2050 Strategy, outlining how the nation will achieve carbon neutrality. While the report’s main commitment centres on ‘ambitious decarbonisation measures across society’, they also make it clear that several sectors, primarily industry, agriculture, and aviation, will have difficulty reducing all of their emissions by 2050 and that carbon capture is essential to compensate for these residual emissions.
The net-zero strategy aims to capture 10 Mt of carbon dioxide per year by 2030, and the government will invest up to £1 billion in establishing four industrial clusters for Carbon Capture, Utilisation, and Storage (CCUS) throughout the country as part of its ‘Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution’. Investment in this clean technology has the potential to support up to 50,000 jobs and transform the UK’s industrial regions, giving the country a head start in capturing the CCUS market and making a global contribution to limiting climate change.
One essential aspect of CCUS is making sure carbon that is captured stays captured, and isn’t released back into the atmosphere a few years or decades later by activities such as peat cutting. The Net-zero strategy establishes ‘Monitoring, Reporting, and Verification (MRV) protocols to ensure carbon removal is measured and quantified, without anyone being too secretive about where their carbon ends up.
Government action is important for expanding cleantech markets, and bringing new climate change mitigation measures to a national or global level. Carbon capture’s place within the net-zero by 2050 strategy highlights the necessity of this technology to reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere quickly enough to minimise the impact of climate change.
To read the full Net Zero Strategy: Build Back Greener, or the 10 Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution you can download them here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/net-zero-strategy