Drivers

A driver for investment in carbon dioxide utilisation will be the ability to maintain security in the supply of fuels and commodity chemicals that have traditionally relied on petrochemical feedstocks. Petrochemical prices are indexed to crude oil prices and fluctuation can lead to supply and price instabilities. By utilising CO2  it is possible to retain carbon within a cycle. It may be that the carbon is trapped in a permanent form, such as through accelerated mineralisation, to produce construction materials and polymer formation, or stored within an energy vector, such as a synthetic liquid fuel. However, with conversion to fuels, capture of CO2  from the air would ultimately be necessary to maintain the cycle. Within the wide spectrum of possible products there are valuable intermediates including synthesis gas and small molecule organics that can be targeted. 

A non-exhaustive list of reasons for interest in CO2 utilisation*

 

  Societal or policy objective

Reason

Climate

Environment

Energy security Feedstock diversification

Competitiveness

Innovation

To create profitable business based on the demand for CO2 end-products

YES

 

   

YES

YES

To help reduce fossil (fuel) dependency

YES

YES

YES YES

 

YES

To improve the carbon footprint of the industry 

YES

YES

   

YES

YES

To make use of the specific attributes of CO2, to foster product innovation

 

 

   

YES

YES

To reduce the cost and environmental impact by using CO2 in process innovation

 

YES

   

YES

YES

To help the industry transition to a more circular economy

 

YES

  YES

 

YES

To use the excess-supply of renewable (or conventional) energy production; doing so it will support the development of renewable energy

 

YES

  YES

 

YES

 

* Table is adapted from IEA, 2014, CCS 2014: What lies in store for CCS? (link provided at documents)

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement No 319995

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