In the previous two parts of this series (1, 2), we discussed why CCS is likely to do very well in a future climate constrained world and how CCS might behave in a policy environment of rapid reactive decarbonization through a high and rising CO2 price. In this third installment, we will take a look at the primary reason why we need CCS in the first place: coal.
Coal is quite possibly the most hated commodity on earth. It is dirty in almost every sense of the word, can have severe local impacts if handled irresponsibly and is also the most CO2 intensive fuel we have. For these reasons, people have been out in force against coal for decades, especially as climate change became more mainstream and studies such as the Epstein et al. work assigned enormous externalized costs to coal energy.