- Category: Asia
10 Aug 2012
- Published on Friday, 10 August 2012 10:47
- Hits (1759)
China, a major carbon emitter, is facing great pressure globally to curb its immense contribution to global warming. In response, the country has been making an effort to make up for its environmental impacts.
Just recently, it buried more than 40,000 tons of carbon emissions in the past 15 months in North China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region through its carbon capture and storage project, according to Climate Action, a multimedia platform working with the United Nations Environment Programme.
“The underground saline aquifers in Ordos Basin in Inner Mongolia has the capacity to store about 10 billion tons of carbon dioxide, and this kind of basin is quite common in China, which means the demonstration project will greatly contribute to reducing China's carbon emissions,” Zhang Dongxiao, dean of the Clean Energy Research Institute of Peking University, told Chinese news agency Xinhua.
Aside from renewable energy sources, C.C.S. is seen as one of the feasible technologies that many countries could employ to cut their greenhouse gas emissions and prevent rising temperatures from reaching critical levels, said environmental think thank World Resource Institute.
W.R.I. added that many experts and policy makers deem that C.C.S. is a crucial option in the range of solutions available to mitigate climate change, since it has the potential to achieve significant reductions in carbon emissions from fossil fuels. “C.C.S., if safely deployed, could help provide a bridge to a more sustainable energy future.”
The think tank moreover stressed that China and the United States, which both are the largest-emitting countries in the world, are “in a unique position to act together to advance C.C.S. deployment worldwide.”
China is touted as the first nation to grasp the whole process of capturing carbon and sealing it in saline aquifers, geological formations composed of water-permeable rocks that are saturated with saltwater called brine. The International Energy Agency said “super-critical” carbon dioxide or pressurized carbon dioxide could be injected into saline aquifers where it may either dissolve in the brine, react with the dissolved minerals or the surrounding rock, or be trapped.
The C.C.S. project is one of the 10 mitigation technologies under the Chinese government’s 12th Five Year Plan, which is designed to tackle climate change.
Currently, experiments and research are underway that will allow China to hit the target of sealing 300,000 tons of carbon by June 2014.
To date, there are two ongoing carbon capture projects in the country – GreenGen, a collaboration representing China’s largest electric utilities and coal companies; and PCC Demo Project, the country’s first Post Combustion Capture demonstration project.
Meanwhile, it is also engaged in several international C.C.S. schemes and programmes, such as the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum, FutureGen, the Near Zero Emissions Coal, the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate, GeoCapacity and the Cooperation Action with C.C.S. China-Europe.
“Carbon capture and storage, as an option in the portfolio of mitigation actions to combat climate change, is expected to have far-reaching implications for China,” according to a report by Gassnova SF, a Norwegian state enterprise for carbon capture and storage. (Catherine Dominguez)