The key difference between carbon capture and storage and carbon sequestration is that carbon capture and storage involve capturing, transporting, and storing carbon dioxide, while carbon sequestration only involves storing carbon dioxide for a longer period of time.
Carbon is a chemical element and is the basic building block of biomolecules. It exists as solids, liquids, and gaseous forms on Earth. Carbon dioxide is a gaseous form of carbon. When carbon combines with oxygen molecules, it forms carbon dioxide gas. Carbon dioxide is known as a greenhouse gas, as it traps heat and contributes to climatic changes. Carbon dioxide production is a result of both nature and human activities. Naturally, carbon dioxide is produced by decomposing organic matter, forest fires, etc. Man-made carbon dioxide is produced by burning coal, oils, and natural gas to produce energy. Therefore, scientists developed various processes to capture and store carbon dioxide to prevent the warming of the Earth’s atmosphere.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Carbon Capture and Storage
3. What is Carbon Sequestration
4. Similarities – Carbon Capture and Storage and Carbon Sequestration
5. Carbon Capture and Storage vs Carbon Sequestration in Tabular Form
6. Summary of Differences
What is Carbon Capture and Storage?
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is the process that captures emitted carbon dioxide, transports it to the storage site, and deposits it in such a way that it does not enter the atmosphere. It involves capturing, transporting, and depositing emitted greenhouse gases from fuel power stations and industries. Usually, carbon dioxide is captured from large point sources like power plants and stored underground. The main objective of CCS is to prevent the release of carbon dioxide from large and heavy industries in order to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The carbon dioxide storage is said to be either in deep geological formation or in mineral carbonate forms.
The most effective way to capture carbon dioxide is through point sources. These point sources are industries that emit high carbon dioxide levels, synthetic fuel plants, biomass energy facilities, and fossil fuel-based hydrogen production plants. Several techniques are present to capture emitting carbon dioxide. This falls into three categories: post-combustion carbon capture, pre-combustion carbon capture, and oxy-fuel combustion systems. Post-combustion carbon capture is when carbon dioxide is separated from the exhaust in a combustion process. Pre-combustion carbon capture gasifies the fuel and separates the carbon dioxide. Oxy-fuel combustion carbon capture allows the fuel to burn in a pure oxygen environment resulting in a more concentrated stream of carbon dioxide emission. Once the carbon dioxide is captured, it is compressed into a fluid. It is then transported through pipelines, ships, or other vehicles to a suitable storage site. Finally, the carbon dioxide is injected into a deep geological formation or underground. It is stored for the long-term, preventing the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Such storage sites include former oil and gas reservoirs, coal beds, and deep saline formations.
What is Carbon Sequestration?
Carbon sequestration is the process of long-term capturing and storing of carbon dioxide in order to prevent it from entering the atmosphere. This allows the stabilization of carbon in solid and dissolved forms to avoid the increase in temperature atmosphere. Carbon sequestrations can be biological and geological.
Carbon Sequestration Methods
Biological carbon sequestration is the process of storing carbon dioxide in vegetations such as grasslands and forests, soils, and oceans. Geological carbon sequestration is the storage of carbon dioxide in underground geologic formations. Usually, carbon dioxide is captured from steel or cement industrial sources or energy-related sources such as power plants. This captured carbon dioxide is then injected into porous rocks for long-term storage. Carbon sequestration also affects other greenhouse gases such as methane and nitrous oxide. These gases are also captured and stored during agricultural activities such as grazing and crop growing. Nitrous oxide is usually released via fertilizers, and methane is released by livestock. Carbon sequestration also increases the quality of soil, air, water, and wildlife habitat.
What are the Similarities Between Carbon Capture and Storage and Carbon Sequestration?
- These involve capturing and storing carbon dioxide.
- Both have the same objective – to prevent carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.
What is the Difference Between Carbon Capture and Storage and Carbon Sequestration?
Carbon capture and storage involve capturing, transporting, and depositing emitted carbon dioxide, while carbon sequestration involves capturing and storing carbon dioxide. This is the key difference between carbon capture and storage and carbon sequestration.
The following infographic summarizes the difference between carbon capture and storage and carbon sequestration in tabular form.
Summary – Carbon Capture vs Storage and Carbon Sequestration
Carbon is a chemical element, and carbon dioxide is a gaseous form of carbon. Carbon dioxide increases the temperature in the atmosphere. Carbon capture and storage or CCS is the process that captures emitted carbon dioxide, transports it to the storage site, and deposits it in a way it does not enter the atmosphere. It prevents the release of carbon dioxide from large and heavy industries in order to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere. Carbon sequestration is the process of long-term capturing and storing of carbon dioxide in order to prevent it from entering the atmosphere. This allows the stabilization of carbon in solid and dissolved forms to avoid the atmosphere increasing the temperature. Both have the same principle, to prevent carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere. Thus, this summarizes the difference between carbon capture and storage and carbon sequestration.
1. “What is carbon sequestration and how does it work?” Clear Center.
2.”Carbon capture and storage 101.” Resources for the Future
1. “20210413 Carbon capture and storage – CCS – proposed vs implemented” By RCraig09 – Own work (CC BY-SA 4.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Carbon sequestration-2009-10-07” By LeJean Hardin and Jamie Paynederivative work: Jarl Arntzen (talk) – (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia