Full Title: A Bad Biomass Bet: Why the Leading Approach to Biomass Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage Isn't Carbon Negative
Author(s): Sami Yassa, Nathanael Greene
Publisher(s): Natural Resource Defense Council
Publication Date: October 12, 2021
Full Text: Download Resource
With every passing year, the dangers of climate change become more apparent. To help avert the worst impacts of climate change, there is growing interest in not just curtailing new emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases, but also finding ways to remove significant quantities of these gases already in the atmosphere. One such technology, which is increasingly popular in the United Kingdom, is Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS), which involves burning plant matter—most notably, trees and other wood from forests—as fuel to create electricity and capturing the resulting emissions from the power plant smokestack.
The biomass industry claims that bioenergy on its own is carbon neutral, and that BECCS is carbon negative. However, the math associated with the leading approach to BECCS doesn’t add up.