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Argument: Climate change is best solved by energy efficiency, not CCS

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A new paper published in the prestigious American Chemical Society journal, Environmental Science and Technology, has put the cat among the pigeons over carbon capture and storage (CCS). It argues that the colossal amount of money that CCS would entail globally would be better spent on “virtual CCS,” meaning per se that instead of actual CCS, the emission of carbon be avoided in the first place by a wholesale implementation of non-fossil energy sources, specifically wind and nuclear power.

As a statistic to prove the point, it is estimated that one wedge (billion tons) of carbon in the form of CO2 sequestered by CCS would cost $5.1 trillion over 50 years, while the same amount of money used to build wind-turbines would save 1.91 “wedges” worth of CO2 over the lifetime of the windmills.

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