OPINION by Jeremy Ward
Now that global weather events and changing atmospheric conditions directly affect the way we live, the need to address climate change is becoming clear to everyone and the race for real solutions is heating up.
Governments, businesses and individuals have recognised the need for sustainable practices and impactful technology to minimise our effect on the climate.
Encouragingly, we are now making strides with new technologies that have the potential to mitigate climate change.
Not only do these upcoming solutions have the ability to reduce carbon emissions, they bring with them the potential to revolutionise industries and unlock economic opportunities for businesses and individuals alike.
Carbon capture has emerged as one of the key solutions that could make a big impact due to its wide applications, promising real results in our transition to a low-carbon economy.
The process aims to prevent carbon from entering the atmosphere, thereby curbing the environmental impact of industries such as concrete or steel manufacturing.
Its impact is not only the fact that the technology works, but also as it applies across large heavy-polluting industries – it has wide application for some of the biggest contributors to the crisis.
With large-scale operations already under way off Norway’s west coast, carbon capture has proven its viability by companies like Aker Solutions, a Norwegian company that enables low-carbon oil and gas production and develops renewable solutions to meet future energy needs.
By implementing state-of-the-art carbon capture systems next to industries such as steel, cement, and power generation, Aker is enabling these industries to significantly reduce their carbon footprint.
With advanced engineering and innovative modular solutions, Aker Solutions is scaling up carbon capture infrastructure.
At some of Aker Solutions’ carbon capture sites it is possible to scrub the carbon using special materials and solutions from the industrial emissions, and then compress it and transport it using repurposed existing oil and gas pipeline infrastructure followed by injection of the carbon dioxide (CO2) into suitable geological formations, including depleted oil and gas wells.
These wells are then sealed to prevent CO2 from escaping and serve as secure underground storage sites, essentially returning carbon to its source.
Carbon capture and storage can help power plants and industrial facilities capture more than 90 per cent of their CO2 emissions.
The advancement and implementation of this technology will make a meaningful contribution to reducing global greenhouse gas emissions, and with currently about 40 megatons of CO2 stored each year, it’s already making a difference.
However, carbon capture is only one tool to reduce CO2 emissions, transitioning to renewable energy and using fewer fossil fuels through conservation and efficiency are key to meeting greenhouse gas reduction targets.
The current climate crisis demands real-world and industrial-scale solutions to combat emissions. Advancements in climate change mitigation, carbon capture being one, are revolutionising industries and unlocking economic opportunities for a brighter, sustainable future.
The convergence of these solutions signals a transformative shift towards sustainable practices and presents tremendous opportunities for innovation, job creation, and economic growth. This means we can reduce our impact on the climate, whilst making a positive mark on global economies.
Jeremy Ward is a director of global equity research at Jarden
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