Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies
Chapter 13: Political and Socio-economic Challenges of Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies
Published:22 Aug 2022
While large-scale deployment of greenhouse gas removal (GGR) technologies is widely regarded as a prerequisite for meeting ambitious climate targets, upscaling efforts are obstructed by several socio-economic and political challenges. To a large extent, these issues are specific to each GGR approach, with the more mature options such as afforestation/reforestation (AR) and soil carbon sequestration (SCS) facing challenges relating to local socio-economic effects, resource scarcities and accounting issues and the more nascent options such as direct air capture (DAC), enhanced weathering (EW) and ocean fertilisation (OF) also impeded by technological problems and concerns over sustainability. Stakeholder engagement is not uniform across the different GGR options and perspectives vary widely across national governments, private interests, NGOs and publics. While land-based options are an obvious focus for agriculture, energy, utilities, transport and aviation have tended to concentrate on CCS-based options for reducing sectoral emissions as well as land-based options for delivering offsets. Ultimately, the ability to upscale GGR depends on the emergence of an effective governance system that can coordinate the interests of the diverse stakeholders involved, which rests on the ability to reach an agreement on a number of important sociocultural and political questions that are raised by the regulation of GGR.