The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has released its analysis of the carbon capture industry that deems it too expensive and with limited potential to mitigate the climate crisis.
As discovered by climate journalist Amy Westervelt, the recent IPCC report on carbon capture and storage technologies differs from the significantly more optimistic language of its summary.
In one of the latest episodes of her podcast ‘Drilled’, Westervelt reveals the massive discrepancies between the negotiated text in the Summary for Policymakers and the more thorough, full 2,913-page analysis.
Unlike the more detailed report, the Summary for Policymakers was noticeably more positive about the future of carbon dioxide removal (CDR), Westervelt said and went on to point out that most media coverage was based almost entirely on the summary and not the whole analysis.
Upon deeper investigation, however, the journalist discovered that the IPCC, in contrast, is quite critical of both CCS and CDR.
In fact, what the full report emphasizes on are the extraordinarily high costs of these technologies and, therefore, the limited potential they have to actually have a meaningful impact on climate change.
Other experts also weighed in on the report, such as Carroll Muffett, president and CEO of the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL), adding that it lacked an equally detailed analysis of other means of reducing emissions, such as renewables, that, according to Muffett, are much more cost-effective and even beneficial to the economy.
The bottom line of the ‘unpacking’ of the report by organizations such as CIEL, however, is that the IPCC is actually not speaking in favor of expensive carbon capture and carbon removal technologies.
What these organizations are saying is that there is a trend to cherry pick information from these reports and oversimplify it to essentially deliver untrue narratives that CCS and CDR can effectively solve the climate crisis.