Climate change is one of the most pressing global challenges of our times. It is a serious threat to human health, prosperity, and security. It is also one of the most important drivers of energy consumption and resource extraction. If left uncontrolled, climate change will wreak havoc on our economy, health, and way of life, creating large-scale social and economic disruption and distress.
Most countries have joined the Paris Agreement, and set a goal to reduce global temperatures to just 1.5⁰C above pre-industrial revolution levels. This calls for strict regulatory controls over emissions of greenhouse gases. 'Net Zero', as this goal is being hailed, has a target date of 2050, and countries are pushing for better reforms in their power sector and energy infrastructure to achieve this.
So, what is the concept of 'Net Zero'? And how are countries working towards the goal of 'Net Zero'? What is Gas Lab's role in taking companies to the 'Net Zero' status? Here are the answers to a few common questions -
What Does 'Net Zero' Mean?
In layman's terms, Net Zero means that we offset the release of greenhouse gases by taking actions to absorb comparable amounts from the atmosphere. For example, if a car releases 4 tons of CO2, we absorb 4 tons of CO2 from the atmosphere. Net zero requires organizations to work towards carbon removal and achieve carbon neutrality.
The primary way to achieve 'Net Zero Company' status is through the reduction of the use of fossil fuels. This can be achieved through the implementation of energy efficiency measures such as insulation, lighting, and building automation systems. It can also be achieved through the implementation of forest cover conservation programmes and the use of carbon capture technologies like DACS (Direct Air Carbon Storage).
Gas Lab can help your organization set up Carbon Capture plants that come integrated with CCS and DACS, allowing for efficient carbon capture from your operations. This is a key initiative towards your goal of becoming a Net Zero Company.
'Net Zero' should be the ultimate goal of organizations looking to reduce their carbon footprint. It is the way forward to reduce the release of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, and bring organizations closer to their carbon neutral goal. Net Zero companies have already started investing in renewable energy without compromising their financial goals, and you can too, with the help of advanced carbon capture solutions from Gas Lab.
What Are The Key Adoptions Required To Achieve Net Zero?
Regulations, technology and awareness are the three main drivers of this change. Governments have to enact policies that help organizations become a Net Zero Company. These policies should align with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, which in turn inspire the adoption of energy-efficient technologies and practices, ultimately reducing the release of greenhouse gases.
The first step in the process of achieving a Net Zero Energy future is to phase out the use of coal in the electricity generation sector. This can be achieved by using clean energy, such as solar and wind power. Cement and steel plants can be decarbonized by using alternative fuels such as biomass and bio-CNG. The transportation sector can be decarbonized by promoting public transportation, which reduces the emission of greenhouse gases, and increasing the use of electric vehicles.
India's 2.88 Gt of CO2 emissions are insignificant in comparison to China's 10.6 Gt and the US's 5 Gt. As a developing economy, we also owe it to our industries to supply the energy they need. But in order to keep its promise to the Net Zero goal, India has promised to transform its energy industry.
India’s dependence on fossil fuels will be greatly reduced. 522 GW of electricity generation is set to be met through non-fossil energy like solar, wind, hydel and nuclear. Government has plans to increase solar and wind energy installations to 280 GW and 140 GW respectively.
India already gets 9.2% of its electricity from renewable sources. With an increase in renewable energy capacity to 102 GW by 2021, generation has increased to around 12%. We simply need to increase this to meet the 50% target for electricity generation by 2030.
Recommendations For Pursuing Net Zero
• Phasing out coal plants in favour of clean energy
• Decarbonize buildings by upgrading to energy efficient systems
• Increase carbon removal measures in cement, steel & plastic industries
• Increasing our use of electric vehicles and public transportation
• Making the aviation and shipping industries more environmentally friendly
• Reduction of deforestation and the increase of forest cover
• Better agricultural practices for better soil conservation
• Making healthier dietary decisions, such as cutting back on meat intake and adopting a vegetarian diet.
How To Achieve Carbon Neutrality?
In addition to cutting emissions, it's critical to step up efforts to remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Important reforms in the cement and steel industries, the two most carbon-intensive economic sectors, can help achieve this. These sectors historically accounted for the majority of greenhouse gas emissions. However, businesses are getting closer to achieving Net Zero status thanks to technologies like carbon capture and storage (CCS) and direct air carbon storage (DACS).
Investments in carbon removal techniques are vital to achieve the goal of keeping climate change within acceptable limits. Most Net Zero pathways to achieve 1.5⁰C rely on carbon removal to a great extent. This includes reducing emissions, which is the most common option, but also includes technologies that sequester or remove carbon from the atmosphere, such as bio-energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and direct air carbon storage (DACS). Both of these technologies have been demonstrated to be scalable at large scales, but require further investment and policy support to be implemented at a larger scale.
Key players like Gas Lab are driving transformations in industries, helping them achieve carbon neutrality, and becoming a truly Net Zero company.
Are We On Track To Achieving Net Zero By 2050?
Unfortunately, no great headway has been made in reducing emissions and achieving Net Zero. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in its latest report, urges participant countries to keep working towards Net Zero emissions by 2050. Though progress has been prolonged, cleaner energy alternatives and efficient carbon removal techniques are giving the much needed push to the sector. The transportation, buildings, agriculture, and aviation sectors are all making important strides in achieving Net Zero status.
This will help mitigate the risk of the 1.5⁰C threshold being breached. It's critical to keep up the momentum and keep the pressure on governments to provide the right policy support to achieve Net Zero.
The climate crisis is a global emergency. Our planet is heating up at an unprecedented rate. We have a chance to achieve Zero Net Emissions by 2050. The faster we get to Zero Net Emissions, the less we'll have to mitigate the impacts of climate change. This requires a collaborative approach from governments, businesses, and citizens to keep up the momentum.
But it's also important to invest in research to develop technologies that can help further reduce emissions and accelerate the pace of achieving Net Zero. We can't ignore the climate crisis any longer.
Gas Lab offers dynamic carbon capture solutions to organizations looking to become a Net Zero company and be a part of the climate change revolution. Contact us today to learn how we can help you in your Net Zero goals.