The Role of CCS in Industry Clusters in Delivering Value to the Political Economy

Government departments responsible for energy and climate policy around the world, partly informed by low carbon energy system projections, have demonstrated support for development of carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS). However, as evidenced by the 2015 withdrawal of financial support for the UK CCS Commercialisation Competition, it has proven challenging to convince national treasuries of the merits of public support. For those budget holders, CCS may essentially be seen as a complex, expensive pollution control system that requires extensive up-front investment and adds to production costs. Our work at the Strathclyde Centre for Energy Policy (CEP) aims to move consideration of and narrative development around CCUS into the public policy domain that encompasses not only energy and climate, but also economic and social policies. An initial stage of our work culminated in 2018 through a series of policy briefing and research activities that had important impacts at Scottish, UK and European. This was through our evidence to the UK CCUS Cost Challenge Taskforce (see p.24 and recommendation #9 focussing on the need to assess value of CCUS to the wider UK economy) and our contribution to the 2019 Zero Emissions Platform report on ‘The Role of CCUS in a Below Two Degrees Scenario’. The former fed through to consideration of CCUS infrastructure in an industrial cluster context in the UK Government’s 2018 CCUS ‘Action Plan’.

Authors: Turner, Karen, Race, Julia  , Katris, Antonios and Alabi, Oluwafisayo