What is the Paris Climate Change Agreement?
The Paris Climate Change Agreement, also known as the Paris Accord, is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to oversee mitigation of greenhouse gases, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. The agreement was signed by 194 states and the European Union and has been ratified by 176 states and the European Union as of May 2018. Each country is responsible for determining and enacting its own strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Developing countries will receive financial aid to cover the cost of switching to renewable energy and adapting to climate change. The main goal of the Paris Climate Change Agreement limit global warming by limiting the global temperature rise below 2°C in this century.
Trinidad and Tobago Carbon Emissions
Trinidad & Tobago has the highest carbon emissions per capita in the region, and second overall in the world. In 2016, the Trinidad and Tobago carbon dioxide emissions per capita was 25.72 metric tonnes, almost five times that of Barbados (5.41 metric tonnes per capita). The petrochemical industry is responsible for more than half of the carbon dioxide emissions in Trinidad and Tobago, while power generation and transport account for 23% and 6% of emissions respectively.
In 2016, the Trinidad and Tobago carbon dioxide emissions per capita was 25.72 metric tonnes.
The Ministry of Planning and Development has pledged to reduce cumulative carbon emissions by 15% in the power generation, transportation and industrialised sectors by the year 2030. While this step may help in global warming mitigation, there is so much more that can be done if the option of carbon capture and storage (CCS) and CO2EOR is considered. According to Dr. Adel Al Taweel and Dr. Donnie Boodlal from the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT), CO2EOR has the greatest potential for reducing emissions (approximately 7 Mt carbon dioxide per year).
If implemented on a larger scale, the CERM Project can significantly impact this country’s Nationally Determined Contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with the Paris Climate Change Agreement.
The CERM Project is a collaboration between academic institutions, The University of the West Indies (UWI) and The University of Trinidad & Tobago (UTT), and Government Energy Institutions - the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries (MEEI), PETROTRIN and the National Gas Company (NGC) toward sustainable development of known oil reserves using Carbon Dioxide Enhanced Oil Recovery.