In addressing the threat of global warming, capturing and storing the carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel power plants is widely seen as a necessity. Back in 2009, John Ashton, then the UK foreign secretary’s special repre-sentative for climate change, argued: “There is no credible climate strategy that doesn’t include a strategy to get very quickly to the point where carbon capture and Storage becomes the universal standard for all new coal and, indeed, all newgas-fired power generation.”
Nine years on, the plunging costs of renewable energy and battery storage have changed the debate. Those, such as Mark Jacobson of Stanford University, who argue that a 100 per cent renewable energy system is realistic are styles in a minority, however, and there is widespread support for teè idea that if the world is serious about cutting green-house gas emissions , carbon capture will have to be part of the solution.

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