Negative Emissions Technologies (NETS): Feasibility Study

This study estimates the maximum Negative Emissions Technologies (NETs) potential achievable in Scotland, 2030 - 2050.

Negative Emissions Technologies (NETs) Feasibility Study – Context Document

The Climate Change Plan Update 2020 (CCPu) committed to a detailed feasibility study to: ascertain opportunities for developing NETs in Scotland ready for the early 2030s; identify specific sites and applications of NETs; and develop work to support policy on Direct Air Capture and its role within our future energy system. Ricardo were commissioned to deliver the study which builds on existing research findings, such as the Review of International Delivery of NETs.

Purpose of this document

This document provides an overview of the study. It sets out what we mean by Negative Emissions Technologies, the role of NETs in the Climate Change Plan update (2020), the approach taken in the feasibility study and next steps.

What are Negative Emissions and Negative Emissions Technologies?

Negative emissions occur when CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and sequestered. This can be achieved through nature or technology-based approaches.  Negative Emissions Technologies (NETs) refer to the suite of technological approaches to removing CO2 from the atmosphere, to deliver negative emissions. NETs considered in the study include various applications of Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS)[i], Direct Air Capture (DAC)[ii], and Biochar[iii].

The Feasibility Study

The study considered the feasible pace and scale of NETs deployment in Scotland. To do so, the authors examined existing sites in Scotland which emit biogenic carbon[iv] and could deliver negative emissions if paired with CCS infrastructure, as well as biochar production. the study then explored the potential for new sites, including Direct Air Capture. To determine the feasible deployment of these technologies, the study modelled three pathways for NETs deployment, all of which assumed that the Scottish Cluster would be active and able to permanently store CO2 by 2030. The pathways differed in the level of government action, such as policy supports, market design, or funding to support NETs.

Next steps

The study will inform policy development for NETs in Scotland, as part of our next Climate Change Plan.



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