Seminar - Carbon accounting in the biomass sector in net zero targets
25oct5:30 pm6:30 pmSeminar - Carbon accounting in the biomass sector in net zero targets10th Seminar Series of the Imperial Life Cycle Network, with Dr Michael Goldsworthy from Drax
(Tuesday) 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm(GMT+01:00) View in my time
Abstract: There has long been an appreciation that there exists a fundamental difference between the fossil and biogenic carbon cycles.
There has long been an appreciation that there exists a fundamental difference between the fossil and biogenic carbon cycles. For that reason, carbon accounting frameworks have historically kept the two cycles very separate with Greenhouse Gas targets focused almost entirely on reducing fossil emissions. However, the growing need for countries, corporates and indeed the world to deliver ‘net zero’ brings a new focus to the importance of the biogenic carbon cycle, which will play a key role in neutralising unavoidable, residual emissions. However, the temporary nature of removals in the biogenic cycle provide accounting challenges, particularly regarding the fungibility of biogenic removals and fossil emissions. Michael will discuss the challenges we face in conducting climate-relevant LCAs for forestry-derived products and the difficulties in determining the potential contribution of biogenic removals in mitigating fossil emissions in the delivery of ‘net zero’.
Michael is Head of Climate Change and Carbon Strategy at Drax, responsible for developing and coordinating the Group’s decarbonisation strategy. He has 10 years of experience developing carbon accounting approaches, methodologies and standards within the bioenergy and land sectors. As an LCA expert, he has previously developed numerous greenhouse gas calculators for the bioenergy and biofuel industries, including most recently, Drax’s ‘Biomass Carbon Calculator’.
Prior to joining Drax, Michael worked for 6 years at bioeconomy consultancy NNFCC, providing advice to industry and government on sustainability issues concerning the liquid, solid and gaseous bioenergy sectors. He has a BSc Hons and PhD in biological sciences from the University of Exeter.