Insights and Commentaries

Insights and Commentaries

US and China lead international collaboration on CCS

15th May 2015

Topic(s): Capacity development, Carbon capture, law and regulation, Policy, use and storage (CCUS)

In this Insight the Global CCS Institute's General Manager for Asia-Pacific, Clare Penrose, reports from the second carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) workshop for the US-China Climate Change Workshop Group held on 20 April 2015 in Beijing. The Insight outlines the meeting's discussion about the latest progress and outcomes since the 12 November 2014 US-China Joint Announcement on Climate Change.

Global CCS Institute CEO Brad Page addresses the The 2nd CCUS Workshop of the US-China Climate Change Working Group in Beijing

Last year's US-China Joint Announcement on Climate Change by Presidents Obama and Xi illustrates the world's two largest economies and biggest emitters are committed to working together on climate change. As President Obama said on the day of the announcement:

"This is a major milestone in the US-China relationship, and it shows what’s possible when we work together on an urgent global challenge. In addition, by making this announcement today, together, we hope to encourage all major economies to be ambitious -all countries, developing and developed - to work across some of the old divides so we can conclude a strong global climate agreement next year."

Both countries set out post 2020 goals for action on climate change. The US intends to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 26%-28% below its 2005 level in 2025 while China intends to peak its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions around 2030 and to make best efforts to peak earlier. Both sides will continue to work to increase their ambition over time.

The announcement also recognised the important role of carbon capture and storage (CCS) and the US and China committed to joint action to advance major carbon capture and storage demonstrations and research. They haven’t wasted any time. On 20 April 2015, the Global CCS Institute's CEO, Brad Page and I attended the second CCS workshop of the US-China Climate Change Work Group in Beijing.

The meeting was chaired by Mr Sun Zhen, Deputy Director General of China’s Climate Change Department and Dr Julio Freidman, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Department of Energy. Presentations were made on four CCS demonstration projects that involve partnerships between Chinese and US organisations:

  • China Huaneng Group Clean Energy Research Institute & Summit Power
  • Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum & University of West Virginia
  • Sinopec Shengli Oilfield & University of Kentucky
  • Shanxi International Energy Group & Air Products

These partnerships are enabling the best knowledge and expertise from each country to come together and accelerate progress on CCS.

Other presentations from researchers and project developers served to highlight the depth and breadth of activity occurring in China and the US in CCS. It’s no wonder these countries lead the world in the number of large scale CCS projects operating and under development (Please refer to the Global CCS Institute’s 2014 Status of CCS report for full details).

Brad addressed the meeting and highlighted the importance of this workshop and other meetings like it that will take place this year in the lead up to the COP21 meeting in Paris.

Brad stressed that as we head towards COP21 it will be necessary for all of us involved in CCS to make sure we promote the necessity for CCS to as wide an audience as possible. We must especially ensure those that negotiate agreements and determine national policies have the facts, analysis and conclusions that make the explicit inclusion of CCS in energy and climate policies an easier task. A copy of Brad’s speech can be found on the Institute’s website.

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