There are sprawling fields in Saudi Arabia, the UAW, and Qatar filled with dozens of shipping container-sized boxes that can pull carbon from the atmosphere to help combat climate change. The captured CO2, compressed into a liquid, is stored thousands of feet underground permanently. Carbon capture, use, and storage (CCUS) can also turn it into solid minerals or useful products.
According to the Arab Monetary Fund, three carbon storage facilities in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar yearly capture 10% of the world’s CO2.
The facilities absorbed almost 40 million tons in 2020, according to Abdulrahman Al Hamidy, the organization’s director general and chairman.
At a conference on accelerating the shift to a circular economy to support sustainable development, which is currently taking place in Abu Dhabi, Al Hamidy pointed out that the circular carbon economy strategy can reduce greenhouse emissions, enhance resource efficiency, and support sustainable economic development in Arab nations.
With so many obstacles to energy security, Al Hamidy continued, the circular carbon economy presents a chance to cut carbon emissions and spur economic growth.
ADNOC has begun work on the world’s first venture of capturing carbon dioxide in an underground saline reservoir.
By 2030, Qatar targets seven million tonnes per year and the UAE five million tonnes; Saudi Arabia aims to reach 44 million tonnes by 2035.
By the middle of the century, the world may need to pull 10 billion tons of CO2 from the atmosphere yearly. Forests can only partially help, especially as climate change makes it harder for them to absorb carbon.
Al Hamidy added that the Arab region possesses the knowledge and resources necessary to transition to a circular economy.
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