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China looks to biological energy

By Zhang Zhouxiang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2022-08-12 11:45


Biological energy has an essential role to play in China's efforts of realizing carbon peak before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060, said Wei Yiming, a senior professor and vice president of Beijing Institute of Technology.

In order to realize the "dual-carbon goals", China needs to not only lower the carbon emissions of existing industries in the coming future, but also capture the carbon dioxide back with the commonly called Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage(CCUS) technologies. Wei quoted data from the Center for Energy & Environmental Policy Research of his university by estimating that a total of 23.9 billion to 33.5 billion tons of carbon dioxide need to be captured back from the air from 2030 to 2060.

It was at an online forum on Bio-Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) towards carbon neutrality that Wei mentioned this. Held by the Chinese Society for Environmental Sciences on Friday, the forum has organized top carbon-reduction experts from the nation to discuss how to more effectively capture carbon so China can accelerate their carbon neutrality process.

In order for the energy department to drastically reduce the levels of carbon, biological energy is the most effective choice, Wei stressed.

Wei listed the three most possible ways for biological energy sources to help play a role:

To provide zero-carbon fuels for the industrial sectors that rely heavily on energy, such as the aviation industry;

To provide clean, zero-carbon raw materials for the chemical industry;

To capture carbon dioxide from the air, because to get biological fuels people must plant more trees and other vegetation, which will capture much more carbon dioxide and help to equalize what is produced through fuels.

Wei was echoed by Bi Haibin, vice president of the National Academy of Innovation Strategy, he stressed the key role technology plays in realizing China's carbon neutrality goal. "To realize the goals, we must not only cut the percentage of fossil fuels, but also fix the already emitted carbon dioxide; Bio-energy sources will help in both aspects," Bi said.

Liu Hongzhi, vice secretary of the CSES, hosted the forum and called for deeper studies in the BECCS technologies in her opening remarks, saying that it is a field with enormous opportunities for young researchers.

Liu also announced the launch of their move called "Claim 100 million trees", encouraging the public to support the path towards carbon neutrality by claiming trees and supporting the planting agencies to plant trees.

"Our goal is to realize the carbon peak and carbon neutrality goals abiding with the schedule, and we hope more people in this society could render their efforts," Liu said.

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