An adaptive policy-based framework for China’s Carbon Capture and Storage development
China’s political leadership has taken an increasingly public and proactive stance on climate change since 2014. This stance includes making a commitment that Chinese carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions will peak around 2030 and enacting measures through the 13th Five-Year Plan to support energy efficiency, clean energy technology, and carbon management. Chinese policymakers consider carbon capture and storage (CCS) a critical bridging technology to help accelerate the decarbonization of its economy. This paper reviews and analyzes Chinese CCS support policies from the perspective of an adaptive policymaking framework, recognizing uncertainty as an inherent element of the policymaking process and drawing general lessons for responding to changing circumstances. Notably, the political support for CCS in China remains fragmented with uncoordinated government leadership, undecided industry players, and even with opposing voices from some leading scientists. There is scope for expanding the framework to provide more granularity, in particular relating to the development of a CCS infrastructure and the development of storage-focused CO2-EOR. Overall, given the role CCS can play to decarbonize China’s power and other industrial sectors, a commitment to CCS from top policymakers and major stakeholders is needed.