Headline: Why Terminology Matters for Successful Rollout of Carbon Dioxide Utilization Technologies

To realize their full sustainability potential, carbon dioxide utilization technologies (carbon capture and utilization/CCU) presently require policy support. Consequently, they require acceptance among a variety of stakeholders in industry, policy making, and in the public sphere alike. While CO2 utilization is already a topic of discourse among these stakeholders, there is a lack of common terminology to describe such technologies. On the contrary: The present article shows that terminology in the field of CO2 utilization technologies is currently used inconsistently, and that different designations such as CCU, CCUS, or CDR convey different meanings and contexts. These ambiguities may cause communication problems with regard to policy making, funding proposals, and especially in public discourse. In order to initiate and accompany a goal-oriented and knowledge-based debate on CO2 utilization technologies in the future, actors in the field are asked to question their own choices of terminology and to assess its accuracy. Acronyms and technical abbreviations are the chief cause of potential misunderstandings, and so should be avoided whenever possible or else include a brief explanation. Consistent and precise use of terminology will facilitate transparent dialogue concerning CO2 utilization in the future.

Publication Year
Publication Type
Academic Articles

Olfe-Kräutlein, B., Armstrong, K., Mutchek, M., Cremonese, L., & Sick, V. (2022). Why Terminology Matters for Successful Rollout of Carbon Dioxide Utilization Technologies. Frontiers in climate, 4: 830660. doi:10.3389/fclim.2022.830660.

Projects involved
CO2nsistent: Making TEA and LCA for CCU Comprehensible for Policymakers