Caching the Carbon
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Caching the Carbon

The Politics and Policy of Carbon Capture and Storage

Edited by James Meadowcroft and Oluf Langhelle

Over the past decade carbon capture and storage (CCS) has increasingly come to the fore as a possible option to manage carbon dioxide emissions that are currently contributing to human induced climate change. This book is concerned with the politics of CCS. The authors examine the way CCS has been brought into the political realm, the different interpretations of the significance of this emerging technology, and the policy challenges government and international institutions face with respect to its development, deployment and regulation. The book includes case studies of engagement with CCS in a number of developed countries as well as more thematically focused analysis.
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Chapter 1: The Politics and Policy of Carbon Capture and Storage

James Meadowcroft and Oluf Langhelle

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1. The politics and policy of carbon capture and storage James Meadowcroft and Oluf Langhelle Over the past decade carbon capture and storage (CCS) has increasingly come to the fore as a possible option to manage carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions that are contributing to human-induced climate change. This volume is concerned with the policy and politics of CSS in the advanced industrialized countries. It is focused on the way CCS has been brought into the political realm, with different interpretations of the significance of this emerging technology, and with the policy challenges faced by governments and international institutions with respect to its development, deployment and regulation. The book will consider the place that CCS is assigned in greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation strategies and future energy trajectories, and the controversies that CCS has generated in the policy and political domains. In conceptual terms CCS is straightforward. The idea is to avoid the harm caused by the release of CO2 from the combustion of fossil fuels (and certain other industrial processes) by trapping the emissions at source, and ensuring that they are locked away into the distant future. In practice, of course, things are more complicated. CCS requires the large-scale integration of technologies for the capture, transport and long-term storage of carbon dioxide. It entails significant costs, both in terms of capital investment and ongoing energy and resource inputs. Yet the precise level of these costs remains uncertain. Moreover, CCS is not without risks for the environment and human health. And a...

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