NITI Aayog on Decarbonizing Industrial Emissions

NITI Aayog recently released an assessment report titled “Carbon Capture, Utilisation, and Storage Policy Framework and its Deployment Mechanism in India”. It explores the importance of Carbon Capture, Utilisation, and Storage (CCUS) in promoting the sustainable development of India. It outlines the broad-level policy interventions required by various sectors for the practical application of CCUS.

What is CCUS?

The Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage (CCUS) is a broad term that refers to technologies that play diverse roles in meeting global energy and climate targets. It involves capturing the carbon dioxide from large point sources like power generation or industrial facilities that use fossil fuels or biomass fuel. The carbon dioxide can also be captured directly from the atmosphere. The captured CO2 is compressed and transported to be used on site in a range of applications or injected into deep geological formations to permanently trap the carbon dioxide. Such technologies are the foundation for “negative emissions” or removal of carbon.

What are the key highlights of the report?

  • The CCUS can play a major role in the decarbonisation of highly polluting sectors like steel, cement, oil, gas, petrochemicals, chemicals and fertilizers.
  • It will help India achieve its net zero target by 2070 by enabling the production of clean value-added products despite utilizing coal. It will promote self-reliance and reduce import dependence.
  • The CCUS can provide diverse opportunities to convert captured carbon into different value-added products like green urea, food and beverage form application, building materials (concrete and aggregates), chemicals (methanol and ethanol), polymers (like bioplastics) and enhanced oil recovery.
  • Conversion of carbon into usable chemicals and products can boost economic growth and help achieve several SDGs by 2030.
  • The CCUS will assist in the shift from blue hydrogen to green hydrogen by boosting the demand, technological growth and infrastructure development for production, storage and transportation of hydrogen.
  • Given their huge economic potential, CCUS projects are expected to increase job opportunities. They have the capacity to capture 750 million tonnes of carbon by 2050. This is expected to generate job opportunities of some 8 to 10 million on full-time equivalent (FTE) basis in a phased manner.

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