The Committee on Climate Change has called for an urgent delivery plan for carbon capture and storage (CCS). Without CCS, gas cannot be used for power generation in twenty years time if the UK is to hit its 2050 emissions reduction goals, according to the Committee.
The Committee’s shale gas report warns that emissions from UK fracking risk blowing the carbon budgets without close control and regulation. It also states that UK shale must be used to displace imports rather than be used as an additional fuel source.
“Should CCS not be deployed, meeting the 2050 emissions reduction target will require elimination of almost all fossil fuel use in power generation, transport and buildings”, the report states. “This implies a reduction in gas consumption by 2050 of around 80% on today’s levels. It also implies that gas would cease to be used for electricity generation by the mid-2030s”.
That view appears to be at odds with most scenarios outlined earlier this week by National Grid, under which gas remains a significant part of the power generation mix for the foreseeable future and provides the primary source of heat for 70% of homes in 2030. Its report says that gas will still be a primary heating fuel until the 2040s.
However, Grid also states that the most cost-effective route to 2050 decarbonisation would include 20GW of CCS by 2050.
See the CCC report here.