As Carbon Clean grows, I spend more and more time speaking to stakeholders who share our vision to speed up the pace of industrial decarbonisation and, importantly, have the influence to make it happen. Which is why being on the ground at COP every year matters so much. This year, we hosted an event, Industrial Decarbonisation in Action, convening people from across the private sector, government and other stakeholder organisations. If the first Global Stocktake held during COP28 provided consensus on what needs to be done to accelerate progress, then on-the-ground conversations created the opportunity to discuss the ‘how’.
COP28 had a different format this year, and rightly so. For the first time, it brought together politicians and business leaders on the official event programme to discuss and work through the biggest climate change challenges. The conference remains the most important and effective global opportunity to convene stakeholders across industry, government, philanthropy and the third sector, and I feel it made a positive difference – reflected in the outcome – to have all players at the table.
This year was also the first time carbon capture was mentioned in the final COP agreement. Importantly, it clearly underscores the unique role carbon capture plays in decarbonising hard-to-abate sectors, like steel, cement and shipping. These industries are critical to human progress. They are the industries that power the global economy, and are relied on by a growing population, so I see carbon capture as an enabler of sustainable progress.
But let’s also be clear that getting to where we need to be on scaling carbon capture – and other clean tech solutions – means turning pledges into real-world outcomes. This will increasingly happen organically, as investors ask companies for updates on their decarbonisation strategies during analyst calls and voters hold governments to account for their decarbonisation targets.
All this creates a platform for clean tech businesses like ours. As we scale, there are a few key things we’ll look for as a business when making long-term investment decisions.
Firstly, we are naturally keeping a close eye on countries where policy and regulation are aligned, supportive and stable. Business needs to have confidence that the regulatory environment is predictable and stable throughout the project lifecycle, from inception to delivery. The US and Canada have set the gold standard for creating an investment environment for scaling clean technology – we’ve experienced first hand the benefits of the US’s Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) since it passed in August 2022. Meanwhile, the UK Government’s CCUS Vision announced this week sets out a clear commitment to develop a commercial CCUS sector by 2035.
We’ll continue to prioritise demonstrations in markets that foster a strong environment to commercialise and deliver our technology.
Second, we’re going to prioritise scaling commercial projects. Our award-winning, breakthrough modular technology CycloneCC is currently being deployed in the UAE. Again, our focus here will be on investing in environments where there is strong public-private sector collaboration – in countries where projects will be scaled at speed and where it will matter.
So, when I look forward to 2024, my goals for our business are quite clear:
- To be a partner of choice for companies in hard-to-abate sectors wanting to adopt carbon capture technology as part of their decarbonisation mix.
- To work with governments wanting to create high-skilled jobs, be a global leader in clean technology, and decarbonise their economy.
- To be the first port of call for investors wanting to capitalise on the market opportunity available to first movers in carbon capture.
- To be a magnet for skilled professionals who want to drive progress in mitigating the impact of climate change.
As we round off the year and look forward to 2024, we at Carbon Clean are excited for what’s to come. COP28 has given us all a call to action, and we’re committed to continuing to do our part to deliver.