Carbon capture utilization and storage in review: Sociotechnical implications for a carbon reliant world

Hope McLaughlin, Anna A. Littlefield, Maia Menefee, Austin Kinzer, Tobias Hull, Benjamin K. Sovacool, Morgan D. Bazilian, Jinsoo Kim, Steven Griffiths

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


The decarbonization of industry and industrial systems is a pressing challenge given the relative lack of low-carbon options available for “hard to decarbonize” sectors such as steelmaking, cement manufacturing, and chemical production. Carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) represents a promising and crosscutting solution to this formidable problem. This review takes a systematic and sociotechnical perspective to examine how CCUS can support industrial decarbonization and relevant associated technical, economic, and social factors. This includes a focus on the energy and climate impacts of carbon emitting activities, the role, and options for CCUS in global responses to climate change, technical aspects of capture, transport, storage, and utilization, as well as policy implications and areas requiring further research. In doing so, the Review examines hundreds of published studies on the topic over the previous twenty years to offer a state-of-the-art investigation on technical options for capture (including direct air capture), transportation (including pipelines, ships, and rail), storage (including biotic and abiotic), and utilization (including enhanced oil recovery and biochar). The Review also investigates the evidence base within the literature on enablers and barriers to CCUS, policy mechanisms, and international frameworks as well as themes such as geopolitics, trade, and future research gaps. We conclude with insights about future CCUS pathways and sociotechnical systems dynamics.

Original languageBritish English
Article number113215
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
StatePublished - May 2023


  • Carbon capture and storage
  • Carbon capture utilization and storage
  • Clean coal
  • Climate policy
  • Industrial decarbonization


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