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Reframing the Value Case for Carbon Capture and Storage

Turner, Karen and Alabi, Oluwafisayo and Low, Ragne and Race, Julia (2019) Reframing the Value Case for Carbon Capture and Storage. [Report]

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    Abstract

    In meeting long term climate ambitions at regional and national levels, there is a need to retain and ultimately grow high value jobs and production activity across the economy. This is reflected in the ‘Just Transition’ element of the 2015 Paris Agreement and will always be a preferable outcome to job offshoring/GDP loss and not meeting targets in the short and long term (UNFCCC, 2015, p4). The inevitable consideration of how best to value alternative approaches to deliver against these ambitions requires a broadening of focus from project cost metrics to a political economy and ultimately wider societal perspective. A key conclusion of the current study is that the most useful and easily communicated way of measuring a broader economic impact of Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) investments and associated government support is in terms of the expenditures required to sustain existing and/or create new jobs and/or other outcomes valued by society. Such a focus is likely to be particularly important in the UK context of the 2019 HM Treasury Spending Review, where all investment projects are likely to be judged on the basis of contributing to prosperity going forward and value delivered per pound spent. This is an important context for the CCUS Delivery and Investment Frameworks planned for 2019 in the UK Government’s CCUS Action Plan Economic multiplier methods enable a transparent and rigorous initial assessment of how many direct, indirect and induced supply chain jobs may be sustained and/or created where a solution like CCUS is introduced to allow industries to decarbonise and continue to grow in key regional locations.