The panel session commenced with Juho Lipponen looking at what we do and don’t have for CCS.
We have technology and knowledge, but are lacking strong enough climate policy.
We have demonstration projects, we don’t have political attention and recognition.
We have pilot projects, we don’t have enough national visions and strategies.
We have funding available for first demonstration projects, we don’t have incentives.
We have a small number of governments active in CCS, we don’t have widespread acceptance.
We have research and development, we have a lack of messages on benefits and synergies.
We have a growing body of laws and regulation.
Following this, Jae Edmonds addressed the conference, describing the aims we need to target as developing lower costs and deeper emissions mitigation. Research has shown that costs of CO2 mitigation are cut in half when CCS is available as an option. Delaying action increases costs greatly, and in such a world, the difference CCS makes to long term costs is greatly increased.
Prof. Kikkawa then looked at how humans can overcome climate change… Today he is looking at the opportunity for entrepreneurial activity to develop mitigation technologies. There will have to be a trade off between affluence and global salvation, energy conservation must be the trade off. Japan has two unique approaches, for residential commercial and transportation the Top Runner Program targeted energy usage improvements, for industry the sector by sector approach is used.
Mr Tachibana addressed the delegates, looking at the prospects for CCS over the next five years. CRIEPI is doing what it can, but is not in a position to take ownership of any specific element of the whole deployment package. CCS needs a large scale industry similar to the oil and gas industry; if we are serious about deployment we need to be ready in all elements… Are we there yet?
Panel members then entered an open discussion, with points noting the complexities involved with, surrounding and permeating every facet of CCS. The issues and barriers are at a scale that other technology options such as wind and solar do not encounter. The challenge is therefore unique, and the solution will have to be equally complex.
CCS will often struggle in the Asian region, as coal will usually if not always be associated with CCS and many Asian nations do not like to rely on coal as a fuel source. Japan will have a slightly different situation as there is more of a desire to move away from nuclear, so there will be a necessary reliance on coal, and therefore in order to meet the goals that the country has committed to CCS will have to be deployed.
Juho commented that there is a tendency to wait for climate accord, but such a delay would be damaging and we need to continue on parallel fronts so that we are ready technologically when political discussions reach their conclusions, and we can then progress without such hurdles.
Marchetti created the energy substitute model, and noted that as one fuel declines, it is replaced with another, and it is therefore suggested that if we had tried to deploy shale gas developments earlier, the current energy mix we would be looking at would potentially be very different.
Comments suggested gas may provide the solution to move away from coal, but Juho suggested that all the IEA scenarios suggest we will need CCS with gas as well as CCS with coal. It was countered that optimum technologies, or at least technologies that are thought of as optimum may change over time, and if that does happen then we may need to reassess. However we cannot second guess the future opinions, and I think we need to work to deploy in the situation we currently envisage.
The panel then addressed how we involve developing countries into an agreement to mitigate GHG emissions, and suggestions included that engagement would not be an issue necessarily, as often developing countries are keen to develop new technologies, and embrace new options.. It was then suggested that we should first work out how to gather developed countries into a united agreement, then try to expand it to include the developing countries.
Agreements have their own issues of course, Japan as a nation assumed that hitting the targets set on a national basis would be sufficient. But as many countries have not hit there own targets, this is no longer seen as enough. China is determined to do something to combat climate change, but they will do this on their own basis.. No country should aim to dictate to a developing country what it should do, rather these countries should be involved in the discussions in the first place.
Closing comments were given; we should learn from the nuclear industry, and the enthusiasm shown within our area is encouraging, but we must manage risk so that one issue can destroy the entire industry. Delegates were also encouraged not to believe in silver bullets, they generally won’t live up to their promise, and we need to learn to rely on a range of options. This conference has seen a lot of different options presented, and this is evidence of the potential we have at our fingertips to ensure that this range of options is ready as and when the economy and policy facilitates deployment; we must be ready!
In final closing, John Gale commented on the motto for the conference, CCS: Ready to move forward, and commented that in fact, the message appeard to be that CCS is moving forward, perhaps not as swiftly as we would like, but progress is being maintained.
A few more blogs will follow over the next few weeks… There are more messages to come, and I hope to post views from a few sponsors, students and other individuals. If you have any comments you’d like me to include drop me an email at Toby.firstname.lastname@example.org
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