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Sweeping carbon under the carpet

To me it smacks of desperation. Bolting the stable door after the horse has bolted.

£1 billion is being made available by the Government to support the development costs of early CCS projects, along with another £125 million to develop research, including funding a new UK CCS research centre. I wonder where the Government is going with this?

Do we have time to mess around developing this unproven technology? What are the energy input implications of the process of capturing, compressing and pumping carbon into the ground?

The CCS process is energy intensive and so more energy would be used as a result making things a lot worse!

In fact an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage concluded that up to 25 per cent more energy would be used to implement this process.

There have also been a number of scientific reports that have concluded that CCS is completely unviable and uneconomic, as well as saying that it would take another decade to actually implement on a significant scale anyway. Do we have another decade for yet another gamble to prevent severe climate change?

Surely £1bn spent on reducing energy use in the first place will be far more productive, as well as putting more money into R&D for smarter low carbon technologies and building controls and systems.

How about putting resources into smarter grid technologies or making dynamic demand a reality? How about more R&D in the Hydrogen economy?

We need a strategy to use less energy and the energy we do use, a lot more efficiently.

Carbon capture and storage is tantamount to sweeping carbon under the carpet and, worse, is putting the real issue aside and leaving it for future generations to sort out. It smacks of a policy of defeat and surrender to the powerful "carbon business as usual industry".

And a final big question - who is going to pay for this in the long run?
Posted by Mike Malina 05 April 2012 12:06:38 Categories: Malina mulls it over


By Charles Gray
05 April 2012 12:07:38
I agree with everything that Mike Malina says. I would add that there is another factor that concerns me if the carbon storage lobby have their way:

It is an accepted fact that sometime in the future (probably sooner than we would like) a climatic impact to dwarf the anticipated problems associated with so called man-made global warming will hit us.

I am referring to the next ice age when massive glaciers will once again cover much of the globe.

Our knowledge of greenhouse gases will make us rue the day that millions of tons of carbon have been locked away and unable to be utilised to combat the new cold climate.

I would not be surprised if upwards of 5000 ppm of atmospheric carbon dioxide would then be necessary to save mankind - just think about it!
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