US Climate envoy John Kerry recently challenged the biggest oil and gas producers to prove their claims that carbon capture technology does indeed have the potential to fight climate change.
The oil and gas industry has been heavily involved in the acceleration of deployment of carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities all around the world in an effort to curb planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, particularly carbon dioxide.
However, skeptics still question the feasibility and effectiveness of the nascent technology.
One of them is John Kerry, who in an interview with The Associated Press said he had ‘serious questions’ regarding carbon capture’s ability to live up to the loud claims made by fossil fuel companies that wish to continue pumping oil and natural gas as before.
Kerry believes the best solution to the climate crisis would be a quick transition to renewable energy, although those vested in fossil fuel production should still have the chance to prove their technological solution.
The climate envoy’s main argument against carbon capture is that it is not yet available at scale and there are no guarantees that it ever will be, particularly because Kerry questions the ability to make the novel technology price-competitive.
Organizations like the International Energy Agency (IEA), along with certain governments and climate scientists do advocate for the use of carbon capture together with the gradual phaseout of fossil fuels.
David Schlissel of the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis research group commented on the issue: “Actual experience has been that commercial-scale carbon capture projects have fallen far, far short of the claims. I just think it’s foolish to think that we can keep pumping the stuff, CO2, methane, into the atmosphere, and that at some point we’ll be able to capture it.”