New studies from the US provide an answer to one of the thorniest questions facing climate policymakers: carbon removal will not replace stringent reductions in greenhouse gas emissions enough, they say, to avert the threat of global warming. In a world making (so far) only halting progress to cut the pollutants that heat the planet through reducing emissions there is support for a different approach, using carbon removal and other forms of geo-engineering rather than emission cuts to remove the pollution already in the atmosphere, the oceans and the biosphere. If we can be certain the gains will exceed the risks, then geoengineering might even let us avoid any need to cut fossil fuel emissions at all, its enthusiasts say. Could it really be the future? Among all the uncertainties, few have stuck their necks out decisively either for or against carbon removal as the answer to warming – until now. But reports by a group of US analysts have changed that. Carbon removal, they say, cannot on its own provide the answer, nor is it likely to do so. It may have a part to play in tackling the climate crisis, but there is no evidence that it will ever be able to replace emission reductions.
Climate News Network 10th Sept 2018 read more »