19.06.2019 | ZEF: Lecture Series | Carbon Capture and Storage – A responsible bridge to a low-carbon future?

Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is considered by many research groups working on climate change mitigation as a necessary element of a (more) sustainable energy future. For instance, WBGU in its 2011 “Great Transformation” report concludes, “CCS is a necessary mitigation measure for countries that continue to use fossil energies, if anthropogenic global warming of more than 2°C is to be avoided.” More recently, the “1.5 degrees Special Report” of the IPCC comes to the conclusion that “In the majority of low-stabilization scenarios, the share of low-carbon electricity supply (comprising RE, nuclear and CCS) increases from the current share of approximately 30 % to more than 80 % by 2050, and fossil fuel power generation without CCS is phased out almost entirely by 2100.” In addition, even assumed all power generation could be done with renewable energies, CCS might be a crucial technology to avoid GHG emissions in industrial processes, reaching 7% of all GHG emissions in the case of Germany.

However, in Germany, one of the globally leading energy and engineering R&D hubs, large-scale CCS research was discontinued in 2014, following a complicated legislative process, very much driven by worries about possible dangers related to the technology.

On a panel in May 2019, we want to discuss the opportunities and risks of CCS as a climate mitigation technology. The focus will be on the “ethics of responsibility”. Would it be responsible to bet on a technology that may imply a residual risks (e.g. of leakages) in the near or more remote future? Is it, on the other hand, responsible to discontinue the development of a technology that many climate researcher consider important to contain global warming?


  • Robin Batterham, University of Melbourne
  • Evelyn Nyandoro, Manager for the South African Centre for Carbon Capture and Storage (SACCCS), South Africa
  • Oliver Krischer, MdB Bündnis 90 – Die Grünen (tbc)

Date: Wednesday, June 19, 2019. 4:00pm – 6:00pm

Venue: DIE, Lecture hall, Tulpenfeld 6, 53113 Bonn


The profile of the institutional research landscape in Bonn is characterized by broad expertise in development policy and development research. Particularly noteworthy examples include the United Nations University with its Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) as a global scientific institution, as well as theGerman Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) and the Bonn International Center for Conversion (BICC). These institutions engage in interdisciplinary non-university research with different dimensions of sustainability and global change from the perspective of development research or peace and conflict research, and organize their research in high-performance global networks.

Finally, in addition to the discipline-oriented sustainability research with the Center for Development Research (ZEF), the University of Bonn also has an interdisciplinary research institution that conducts international research on development issues and key sustainability topics. The overall picture is completed by the Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg, University of Applied Sciences (H-BRS), which, with its International Center for Sustainable Development, is researching innovative and interdisciplinary solutions for sustainable development. In particular, as a university for applied sciences, the H-BRS focuses on the transfer of science into a sustainable economy. The political relevance of the Bonn Institutes becomes clear from the fact that DIE, BICC and ZEF have been listed among the most influential global think tanks for years – more than at any other location in North Rhine-Westphalia.

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Source: Events Center for Development Research (ZEF), May 2019