CO2 Storage in the Struggle against Climate ChangeReport as inadecuate

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1 IFPEN - IFP Energies nouvelles 2 BRGM - Bureau de Recherches Géologiques et Minières

Abstract : Over the last fifteen years the storage of carbon dioxide CO2 in deep geological formations has been considered with increasing attention as one of the major solutions to contribute to the struggle against anthropogenic climate change and ocean acidification. Predicting the part it could play during the 21st century is still a matter of discussion, and should remain so as it depends on many parameters which are poorly known. A stabilization target of concentration of greenhouse gases at 535-590 ppmv eq-CO2 in the atmosphere i.e., 440-485 ppmv CO2, a value which represents approximately two times its pre-industrial concentration, should be compatible with a 2.8 to 3.2°C best estimate warmer climate on average IPCC Gp.III, 2007. Compared to the trend that can be extrapolated from the world economy, a stabilization target at ca. 500 ppmv CO2 would represent a mitigation effort of 600 to 700 GtCO2 to be achieved by 2050-2060 Pacala and Socolow, 2004. If it were assumed that the contribution of geological storage reached 10% of this amount, that would represent the challenge of injecting 60 to 70 GtCO2 in appropriate sub-surface sites over 30 to 35 years, i.e., 2600 operations comparable in size to the demonstration project undertaken in 1996 at Sleipner – or 260 operations ten times larger ca. 250 MtCO2 already achieved by 2050. Some roadmaps are more intensive: for instance IEA 2009 discusses an objective of 19% for the CCS contribution to emissions reduction. Such figures show how high the stakes are for this technology


Author: Etienne Brosse - Hubert Fabriol - Marc Fleury - Sandrine Grataloup - Jean-Marc Lombard -



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