Most scenarios for ambitious decarbonization rely on photosynthesis-based technologies for a substantial fraction net GHG emissions reductions. These technologies potentially contribute emissions reductions through providing low-emissions energy, coupling with CCS to produce energy with negative emissions, increasing the carbon content of the biosphere, or decreasing emissions from land-use change. While all these options will be attractive at some scale, setting realistic targets is challenging, largely because the constraints and trade-offs for these technologies are so different than for other components of a decarbonization strategy. In general, limits imposed by land and water requirements, challenges with governance and implementation, and sensitivity to climate change argue for the expectation that these technologies will provide a meaningful, but not dominant, fraction of the decarbonization solutions portfolio throughout the 21st century.
Speaker: Chris Field, Stanford Univ.
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