Petrochemical Decarbonization

Petrochemical manufacturing is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions from the industrial sector. It will rise in significance as demand for its products grows, and climate solutions are implemented in other emissions sectors.

Relatively little attention has been paid to petrochemical decarbonization. The challenge is very complex, and the options available today are limited. Yet, the world cannot wait any longer to tackle it. The tremendous scale and long lifetimes of industrial facilities mean that solutions need to begin to be deployed in this sector soon if national and global climate goals are to be achieved.

Building on 2021’s Clean and Competitive Report, Professor David M. Hart of the Schar School worked with colleagues to analyze pathways toward such solutions. Two reports summarize the work of the project, which was supported by a grant from Breakthrough Energy:

Whitfield, R.; Brown, F.; and Hart, D.M., Pathways to Decarbonize the PVC Value Chain in 2050, George Mason University Center for Science and Energy Policy, 2022.

Henry C. Kelly, New Technology Options to Decarbonize Petrochemical Production, George Mason University Center for Energy Science and Policy, 2023.