Industrial decarbonisation is rising on the agenda. In 2019, the campaign ‘Business Ambition for 1.5°C: Our Only Future’ was set up, calling for businesses to set science-based emissions reduction targets. The goal is to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and limit global temperature increase to within 1.5°C. By November 2020, 323 companies had pledged a net-zero carbon commitment.
Whilst renewable electricity has become widely available at competitive prices in many countries and continues to develop rapidly, options to decarbonise industrial heat are currently less technologically and commercially mature and widespread. All industrial sectors will need to decarbonise their heat use to meet net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Governments are also increasingly focusing policy attention on industrial heat decarbonisation, including providing support to help some industries transition e.g. the UK’s £10 million Green Distilleries Fund.
E4tech can help identify and assess technologies for industrial heat decarbonisation, their resource requirements and suitability for varying industrial processes. Recently, a global food and drink manufacturer engaged E4tech to assist them in their mission to become net-zero, with a focus on decarbonising industrial heat. As a result, we identified and assessed low carbon heat options – including solid biomass combustion, pyrolysis oil, biogas from anaerobic digestion, green hydrogen and solar thermal - which could be implemented in factories in 15 countries globally.
The approach involved assessments of renewable resources and technologies, pathway maturity and viability, and policy contexts. For example, biomass resources such as agricultural residues, forestry residues, energy crops, Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) and manure were assessed, and heat maps generated to indicate promising regions within a country.
A multi-criteria assessment was used to assess the attractiveness of the low carbon heat options, using resource, technology, economic and policy criteria. This approach allowed a country-level comparative assessment of the low carbon industrial heat options considering multiple factors.
E4tech generated a series of decarbonisation roadmaps to 2030, with an outlook to 2050, outlining the preferred low carbon heat options by country and the time-scales for deploying them.
For more information about E4tech’s work in industrial decarbonisation contact Ausilio Bauen or Richard Platt on firstname.lastname@example.org.