Skip to content

Assessing the Potential of Decarbonization Options for Industrial Sectors


Industry emits around a quarter of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This paper presents the first comprehensive review to identify the main decarbonization options for this sector and their abatement potentials. First, we identify the important GHG emitting processes and establish a global average baseline for their current emissions intensity and energy use. We then quantify the energy and emissions reduction potential of the most significant abatement options, as well as their technology readiness level (TRL). We find that energy-intensive industries have a range of decarbonization technologies available with medium to high TRLs, and mature options also exist for decarbonizing low-temperature heat across a wide range of industrial sectors. However, electrification and novel process change options to reduce emissions from high-temperature and sector-specific processes have much lower TRLs in comparison. We conclude by highlighting important barriers to the deployment of industrial decarbonization options and identifying future research, development, and demonstration needs.

Funding source: We gratefully acknowledge the support of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), for funding this study through the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC, grant ref.: EP/S029575/1) and EPSRC Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS, grant ref.: EP/R035288/1).
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: United Kingdom

Article metrics loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error