The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released their latest report on global climate change, its causes, and potential impacts. Created, in part, by the United Nations Environment Programme, the IPCC’s objective is to provide local, regional, and federal governments around the world with scientific information about climate change that can inform policy.

The 2023 report states: “Currently global rates of [carbon capture and storage] CCS deployment are far below those in modelled pathways limiting global warming to 1.5°C to 2°C. Enabling conditions such as policy instruments, greater public support and technological innovation could reduce these barriers.”

Bear in mind that last year, the IPCC report made it clear that carbon capture was a critical decarbonization strategy in most of the mitigation strategies identified to keeping global temperatures manageable.

They also noted that the production and use of materials like cement, steel, plastics, and other materials are on the rise globally. And, as we know, carbon capture is one of the few technological solutions available today to address the carbon intensity of these industrial processes.

So, what’s the takeaway?

If we’re serious about addressing climate change, then we need to get serious about carbon capture. And quickly.

That means more private sector investment in carbon capture projects and technology, and policy frameworks from our policymakers that incentivize that market growth.

It also means that carbon capture infrastructure projects, particularly carbon pipelines, are going to be vital to ensuring we are leveraging carbon capture safely, efficiently, and economically.

How does this information get used?

The good news is that this report will feed directly into the upcoming COP28, the United Nations climate conference that facilities international government coordination on environmental commitments and policy.

The next COP summit will take place in the United Arab Emirates at the end of this year, and if you’re interested in learning more about how carbon capture – and the United States’ carbon capture investments – fit into the global landscape, check out the latest episode of CAP’s podcast HERE.  

What does this mean for me?

If you’re concerned about the environment and U.S. environmental policy, then this report’s conclusions are meaningful. Carbon capture is a proven, safe, and effective means of addressing climate concerns that – uniquely – has a long legacy of bipartisan support. Increasing investment and progressing policies that make it more accessible and affordable to use is a net positive for our environment.

And if you’re more concerned about the U.S. economy, jobs, and energy prices, then understanding the role of carbon capture in our nation’s clean energy transition is critical. A mature domestic carbon capture industry stands to:

  • Create hundreds of thousands of reliable, well-paying clean energy jobs, many of which will be protected by labor unions
  • Generate tens of billions of dollars’ worth of additional tax revenue that will support state and local infrastructure and community investments like roads, schools, and hospitals
  • Support American manufacturing by driving demand for new products and materials

Simply put, investing in carbon capture is an investment in the future of the American economy.

To learn more, check out CAP’s resource library HERE.