CO2 Capture & Storage

Decarbonization Avenue : CO2 Capture & Storage

While efforts are on to reduce the amount of GHG emissions in every sector, these may not be enough.

In order for the world to significantly reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere within a short period, it might be almost necessary that we should also capture CO2 emissions - capture CO2 from concentrated emission sources such as power plants, as well as from the atmosphere.

CO2 capture efforts are not new, but they have not been able to scale beyond a few pilots until now. Compared to the amount of CO2 that needs to be sequestered, the amounts being captured currently (2021) are almost insignificant, with fewer than 50 carbon capture plants of scale running worldwide at point emission sources such as power plants. The numbers for operating direct air capture plants are even smaller.

This sector is however expected to gain significant momentum during the 2020-2030 period. 

One of the key challenges for CO2 capture efforts is the cost of carbon capture. While direct air capture is currently very expensive (could be as high as $500 per ton of CO2 captured), even CO2 capture at power plants could cost as high as $50 per ton of CO2 captured, making all these projects dependent almost entirely on government mandates and incentives.

Currently, most of the carbon capture efforts are taking place in the developed countries owing to the high cost of these projects.

For the 2020-2030 period, key innovations in this domain will be around carbon capture at power plants, direct air capture, microbe-based CO2 capture, innovations in liquid & solid CO2 capture materials/chemicals, and CO2 capture through biomass

Decarbonization potential

Estimates by IPCC suggest that anywhere between 100-1000 billion tons of CO2 needs to be captured and sequestered between now and 2100 for the world to reach the 1.5 degree C target set for global warming.

The current levels of CO2 capture worldwide are insignificant compared to the above targets - only about 40 million tons of CO2 capture & storage annual capacity was available worldwide as of 2020, and all of these may not have been operational. This large gap, while pointing to the challenge of targets vs. reality, shows at the same time the potential that the carbon capture sector has over the next few decades.

Industries impacted

  • Agriculture & farming
  • Chemicals & petrochemicals
  • Mining & metals
  • Oil & gas
  • Power
  • Waste management

Latest News on CO2 Capture & Storage

Themes & Topics

  • Capture from power plants

    • CO2 capture & storage from coal plants

      • Post combustion CO2 capture at coal power plants

      • Pre combustion CO2 capture at coal power plants

      • Oxy-fuel combustion

    • CO2 capture & storage from natural gas plants

    • Capture of process CO2 emissions from large industries

      • Fertilizer

      • Steel

    • Capture from other point sources such as breweries

  • Direct air capture

  • Chemical / solvent capture

  • Emerging technologies for CO2 capture

    • Metal organic frameworks

    • New materials

    • Nanotech

  • Emerging business models

    • Carbon capture as a service

  • Economics

    • Carbon pricing












  • CO2 transportation & storage

    • CO2 transport

      • Pipeline transport

      • Truck or rail transport

    • CO2 storage

      • Geological storage

        • Suitable regions & geographies

      • Ocean storage

      • Storage in saline aquifers

  • Education & capacity building

  • Collaboration

  • Policies & mandates

    • International & national targets

  • Case studies

  • Financing

  • Trends across geographies

    • North America

    • South America

    • Europe

    • Asia

    • Middle East & Africa

    • Oceania














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