Europe decides to push forward with carbon capture

Carbon capture is here and the EU is trying hard to push it forward. In an article published by economy newspaper Cinco Días, it's explained that the big problem is overcoming the high costs associated with the process. It's estimated that reducing 80 to 90 percent of the CO2 emissions from a power plant increases the price of energy 35 to 85 percent. Experts mentioned by the newspaper state that a reasonable target for 2020 is making carbon capture affordable at 20 to 30 EUR per ton.

According to this article, the message is clear. Without carbon capturing, the EU can't meet its ambitious emissions targets: cutting CO2 emissions in half by 2050. There are about a dozen of projects which might show positive progress using technologies such as precombustion, oxicombustion and postcombustion, but these results won't be ready at least until 2015.

Nevertheless the European Commission has decided to take a step forward in this direction and is planning legislation in early 2008 to back up these technologies legally, technically and financially. However, don't expect this to be mandatory legislation, which is something environmental groups would like it to be. The bill will ban these technologies from being used outside the boundaries of the EU and under 3,000 meters (9,000 ft) from the surface of the sea. Carbon capture won't be considered either for carbon trading schemes.

In a few words: expect CO2 capturing to arrive soon in Europe, but only at power plants and/or big industries. This CO2 will be somehow extracted from the combustion processes and will be transported like natural gas and stored in old gas or oil wells, salty aquifers or coal mines.

[Source: Cinco Días via Econoticias (link is in Spanish)]

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