Carbon Capture and Storage
One of the most important technologies for addressing climate change is CO2 capture & sequestration (CCS).
Without CCS, global climate targets may not be obtainable, with the International Panel on Climate Change’s 5th Assessment report stating “many models could not limit likely warming to below 2°C if bioenergy, CCS and their combination (BECCS) are limited.”
CCS is a technology value chain which captures CO2 before it is emitted to the atmosphere and sequesters it safely – whether through incorporation into new useful products, or stored underground in expended oil and gas fields or aquifers.
While there are a number of large scale CCS projects in the world, one of the main reasons that CCS has not been widely adopted yet is due to the complexity and prohibitive costs of operating the additional equipment currently required to capture the CO2. This is a particular issue for the cement and lime industries which operate in a highly competitive sector; but the sectors urgently need viable CCS solutions. Around 60 percent of the total CO2 emissions associated with the production of cement and lime are released directly, and unavoidably, from the chemical reaction in the process – not from the combustion of fossil fuels.
LEILAC aims to tackle this problem, by demonstrating a technology that could replace an existing part of the cement and lime making process, and capture the pure process CO2 emissions without significant energy or capital penalty. It can also work in conjunction with other capture and emissions reduction approaches such as oxy-fuel, maximising the options available.
LEILAC will contribute to providing the community with a technology that can address the dual challenges of enabling European industry to sustainably thrive while significantly lowering CO2 emissions.
Carbon Capture and Utilisation consists of a range of technologies that use or convert captured CO2 to make valuable fuels, feed, chemicals, building materials or other products. Some technologies require a purified (concentrated) CO2 stream, whereas others can utilise the CO2-rich exhaust gas. The market of these products however is not large enough to cover all man-made CO2 emissions. Therefore, the cement and lime sectors consider CCS inevitable to reach the EU targets. (See the FAQ for more information).
The CCS technology is in principle ready to be applied, but it is currently not economically feasible for cement and lime while public support is weak in several countries.
Therefore it is clear that both CCS and CCU need to be developed in parallel as a whole range of solutions will have to be implemented by 2050.