CICE releases B.C.’s first carbon management blueprint
March 31, 2023
By B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy
Study reveals the potential impact and readiness of British Columbia's carbon management solutions to achieve 2050 net-zero objectives.
The B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy (CICE) has released the B.C. Carbon Management Blueprint, a first-of-its-kind study to help shape British Columbia’s emerging carbon management sector. The study confirms that alongside carbon removal efforts, B.C. must scale up carbon emission avoidance strategies to meet 2050 net-zero targets and remain in line with a 1.5 C future. This includes investment in market accelerants, policies, and the growth of innovative, made-in-B.C. solutions.
Produced in partnership with Deloitte Canada, the B.C. Carbon Management Blueprint provides an understanding of existing carbon management approaches, the value chain, and the market participants that drive the supply and demand of these solutions. The study serves as a foundational document for B.C. innovators, industry leaders, academia, policy makers, and Indigenous rights holders seeking to:
- Gain insight into both short-term and long-term opportunities for carbon management innovation and the carbon offset market in B.C.
- Identify unmet needs and technology gaps in high-emitting industries, including oil and gas, cement, mining, steel, and heavy-duty transportation.
- Implement competitive clean energy policies and market accelerants that attract new investment and retain world-leading companies in B.C.
Carbon management refers to a suite of nature-based, hybrid, and engineered solutions that either avoid the emission of CO2 into the atmosphere or remove emitted CO2 from the atmosphere. The captured carbon is subsequently stored in geological basis, biomass, or ocean reservoirs, converted into a mineral form, or utilized in various products, such as synthetic fuels.
Key findings of the B.C. Carbon Management Blueprint include:
- B.C. has about 18 million tonnes per year of carbon management capacity, including both avoidance and removal solutions, representing about 25 per cent of the 64.6 million tonnes of fossil-based emissions released in the province in 2020 (not including biogenic emissions).
- Nature-based solutions, with the right measuring, monitoring, and verification methods, are ready to be deployed at scale in B.C. offering the greatest near-term opportunity for carbon management.
- Engineered solutions such as industrial point source capture and storage, DAC, and BECCS/BioDAC are vital for decarbonizing heavy emitting industries, but large-scale local deployment is unlikely without further research into carbon storage potential and advancement of transportation infrastructure, electricity production, regulatory policies, and protocols to integrate projects with the B.C. offset market.
- Hybrid solutions combining nature and technology elements such as ocean-based solutions, biochar, and mineralization are the least mature in terms of commercial readiness, but the longer-term potential in B.C. is promising as technologies, markets, and policies develop.
- Synthetic fuels hold high potential for carbon utilization to be deployed in B.C. – spurred on by the pulp and paper sector’s significant biogenic emissions, B.C.’s low-carbon fuel standard and Clean Fuels Regulation, and anticipated demand from the transportation, aviation, and marine shipping industries.
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