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Geo-engineering policy statement 11/01

Reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), while maintaining momentum on economic growth, is a major challenge for industrialised and industrialising nations alike. In recent years, governments across the world have become increasingly aware of the technical, social and economic difficulties in meeting the emissions targets required to avoid dangerous climate change, and struggled to develop effective mitigation policies to address the issue. Policymakers have largely ignored the potential contribution that can be made from the implementation of methods that can directly extract GHGs, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), from the atmosphere.

This policy statement examines the role that such an approach, known as air capture, could play in tackling the challenge of global warming and makes recommendations for climate change policy developments in this area.

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers recommends:
1 Support more detailed work to establish the cost of air capture technology and to demonstrate its feasibility.
2 Develop policy frameworks that enable the adoption of negative emissions and carbon recycling approaches to mitigation.
3 Provide international leadership in mitigation policy and communicate the important contribution that air capture can make.

Download the full policy statement

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