ArticlePDF Available

Public perception of carbon capture and storage (CCS): A review



Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is regarded as an important bridging technology to a sustainable energy production. Whether it will be deployed on a large scale depends on both technological advances and social processes. Public perception of CCS can be crucial, and research interest in this topic has been growing. This review analyzes the public perception research thus far (42 articles were identified). Laypeople's concerns and spontaneous reactions to the technology have been thoroughly analyzed, and the results form a good basis for risk communication about CCS. What deserves more research is the role of the context (particularly the social context) in which CCS would be deployed. More case studies are also needed to gain a clearer picture of what matters for CCS acceptance at the project level, as opposed to societal acceptability of CCS.
Public perception of carbon capture and storage (CCS): A review
Selma L'Orange Seigo
, Simone Dohle
, Michael Siegrist
ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions (IED), Consumer Behavior, Universitätstrasse 22, CHN H75.3, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland
Department of Psychology, University of Cologne, Richard-Strauss-Straße 2, 50931 Cologne, Germany
article info
Article history:
Received 29 August 2013
Received in revised form
16 May 2014
Accepted 6 July 2014
Available online 26 July 2014
Carbon capture
Public perception
Risk communication
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is regarded as an important bridging technology to a sustainable
energy production. Whether it will be deployed on a large scale depends on both technological advances
and social processes. Public perception of CCS can be crucial, and research interest in this topic has been
growing. This review analyzes the public perception research thus far (42 articles were identied).
Laypeople's concerns and spontaneous reactions to the technology have been thoroughly analyzed, and
the results form a good basis for risk communication about CCS. What deserves more research is the role
of the context (particularly the social context) in which CCS would be deployed. More case studies are
also needed to gain a clearer picture of what matters for CCS acceptance at the project level, as opposed
to societal acceptability of CCS.
&2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 849
2. Acceptance of new energy technologies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 849
2.1. Acceptance and acceptability . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.2. Knowledge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.3. Experience with the technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.4. Trust . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.5. Fairness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.6. Affect . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.7. Perceived costs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.8. Perceived risks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.9. Perceived benets............................... .............................................................. 850
2.10. Outcome efcacy/perceived behavioral control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
2.11. Problem perception . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
3. Selection of studies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 850
4. Overview of the studies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 851
5. Key results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 851
5.1. Attitude and acceptance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 851
5.2. Experience . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 852
5.3. Knowledge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 852
5.4. Trust . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 853
5.5. Fairness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 853
5.6. Affect . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 853
5.7. Perceived costs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 853
5.8. Perceived risks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 853
5.9. Perceived benets............................... .............................................................. 854
Contents lists available at ScienceDirect
journal homepage:
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
1364-0321/&2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Corresponding author. Tel.: þ41 44 632 5892; fax: þ41 44 632 1029.
Corresponding author at: ETH Zurich, Institute for Environmental Decisions (IED), Consumer Behavior, Universitätstrasse 22, CHN H75.3, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland.
E-mail address: (S. L'Orange Seigo).
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863
5.10. Outcome efcacy................................................................ .............................. 854
5.11. Problem perception . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 854
5.12. Other variables. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 855
5.12.1. Energy context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 855
5.12.2. Values. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 855
6. Summary and outlook . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 855
7. Practical implications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 857
Acknowledgements. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 857
Appendix A. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 858
References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 863
1. Introduction
Tackling climate change is a prominent and pressing problem
today. Carbon dioxide (CO
) emissions from the burning of fossil
fuels are one of the major contributors to global warming, and
they need to be reduced drastically to keep within the goal of a
maximum of 2 1C warming. The energy sector remains one of the
main sources of CO
emissions, and fossil fuels, particularly coal,
are dominant in electricity production [1]. A technology that can
help mitigate these emissions is carbon capture and storage (CCS).
is captured at large point sources, typically coal-red power
plants, transported to suitable storage locations and then injected
into the deep subsurface. The goal is to permanently sequester
the CO
in certain geological formations. This approach is not
truly sustainable, because it relies on fossil fuels for energy
production (although CCS with biomass is also possible), but
it can avoid signicant amounts of CO
emissions. According
to the International Energy Agency's BLUE Map scenario, CCS
could account for up to 19% of the global emission reductions by
2050 [2]. It could thus play a crucial role in smoothing the
transition to truly sustainable energy production from renewable
Whether CCS will actually be deployed on that large scale
depends on the one hand on technological advances and on the
other on social processes, such as energy policies and public
perception. At least in democratic countries, the public generally
has a say in whether large-scale technologies are adopted; if not at
the more strategic national level, they can protest the implemen-
tation of specic projects. Therefore, it is important to understand
how the public perceives such technologies, so that stakeholders
can make decisions that are aligned with the public's views and
avoid conicts. Public perception of CCS has been a research topic
for roughly a decade. Particularly in the last couple of years, there
has been an increase in publications. We think it is useful to take a
step back now and get a comprehensive picture of what we know
so far. The aim of this review is to give an overview of empirical
ndings regarding public perception of CCS, identify areas where
much research has been conducted and identify areas that are still
under-researched. Ultimately, the goal is to inform better policy
decisions with insights from public perception research.
First, we will present a framework of energy technology
acceptance. The variables in this framework will be used to
structure the results of our review. This is followed by a descrip-
tion of how the articles discussed in this review were found and
selected. Section 4 gives a general overview of the publications
that were included. Section 5 presents some key results for each
element of the technology acceptance framework. We then give a
brief summary of the results and point to possible avenues for
future research. The paper concludes with practical implications
for CCS implementation.
2. Acceptance of new energy technologies
New energy technologies often face skepticism or downright
opposition by the public. Also in the case of renewable and
sustainable energy technologies, acceptance is not guaranteed
and depends on many factors [3]. Despite growing awareness
and an increasing number of studies of public acceptance of
different technologies, there is still no general psychological model
to explain technology acceptance. Most studies focus only on
selected factors and are therefore very hard to compare. Recently,
Huijts et al. [4] tried to ll this gap by building a framework that
pulls together different psychological theories and concepts that
have been applied in acceptance research of sustainable energy
technologies. It includes elements from the theory of planned
behavior [5] (attitude, perceived behavioral control, social norms),
from norm activation theory [6] and from theories of affect. These
in turn are inuenced by other variables, such as trust, fairness,
perceived risks and benets, or knowledge. An overview of the
concepts can be found in Table 1. The exact causal relationships
between those concepts have not yet been tested empirically. The
framework constitutes a good starting point, however, to identify
factors that are relevant for the acceptance of new energy
technologies. We have therefore chosen to structure our review
Table 1
Concepts of the energy technology acceptance framework [4] as used in this article.
Concept Denition
Acceptance/attitude Both expressed acceptance (I would accept CCS) and revealed acceptance (whether people engage in activities for or against CCS)
Knowledge Awareness of CCS, self-assessed knowledge and objectively assessed knowledge
Experience Direct experience with CCS, but also with related technologies (e.g., fossil fuel extraction, underground gas storage)
Trust Trust in stakeholders. In the case of CCS typically project developers, government, NGOs
Fairness Two types: Procedural fairness (fairness of decision processes) and distributive fairness (distribution of costs, risks, benets)
Affect Feelings towards CCS, with positive and negative affect being two distinct dimensions
Perceived costs Financial costs for individuals and society, and psychological costs (e.g., effort)
Perceived risks Potential risks to the health and safety of both humans and nature
Perceived benets All potential benets attributed to CCS: for oneself, society and the environment
Outcome efcacy Belief that one's own behavior affects the implementation of CCS
Problem perception Awareness of climate change and consequences if no new technologies are implemented
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 849
article along those variables. All the variables discussed by Huijts
et al. [4] apply to the case of CCS, with one exception: We exclude
norms (both personal and social) from our discussion, because we
do not think that this concept can be usefully applied in the CCS
context. The technology is so young and so little known that no
norms have been established yet regarding CCS. At the same time,
we identied two additional concepts that seem relevant in the
specic case of CCS, but that are not included in the framework;
these will be discussed in Section 5.12. In the following, we give a
brief overview of the different elements of the energy technology
acceptance framework and their operationalization.
2.1. Acceptance and acceptability
Sometimes, a distinction is made between acceptance and
acceptability. From a linguistic point of view, acceptance refers to
the act of accepting, whereas acceptability is a property of the item
to be accepted. Huijts et al. [4] draw a slightly different distinction:
they dene acceptance as behavior toward an energy technology,
and acceptability as an attitude (i.e., an evaluative judgment)
toward a new technology or toward possible behaviors regarding
the technology. We nd that in the case of CCS, it is unclear what
behavior should be used as an indicator of acceptance (the act of
not protesting, protesting as sign of non-acceptance, voting
behavior, etc.). We nd it more useful to use only the term
acceptance, but in certain cases distinguish between expressed
acceptance and revealed acceptance; we borrow this terminology
from risk acceptance literature, which distinguishes between
expressed preference and revealed preference regarding risks [7].
Expressed acceptance is the agreement with statements such as
I would accept a CCS project in my community,and revealed
acceptance is the act of (non)engaging in activities to promote or
prevent CCS. Using this broader denition of acceptance is more
consistent with the terminology used in CCS public perception
research. Most studies investigated what Huijts et al. [4] would call
attitude, but the authors themselves call it acceptance.
2.2. Knowledge
Knowledge about a technology and how it functions undoubt-
edly inuences how a person evaluates the technology in question.
Knowledge can be operationalized differently: it can range from
mere awareness that the technology exists to subjective knowl-
edge (i.e., self-assessed knowledge) to objective knowledge
(usually measured with true/false-type questions developed by
experts). In this review, we will subsume all of the above under
the concept knowledge.
2.3. Experience with the technology
Concrete experiences with a technology inuence how people
perceive it. In the case of CCS, only few people have direct
experience with the technology. However, there are related
technologies that are more common and that might also shape
the perception of CCS, such as fossil fuel extraction or under-
ground gas storage. We believe that they are relevant because they
also use the deep subsurface and are related to energy production.
2.4. Trust
Trust in relevant stakeholders has been found to be a reliable
predictor of the acceptance of new technologies. Because knowl-
edge is low, people use their trust in promoters or opponents of
technology as a heuristic for its acceptability. This relationship is
often mediated through perceived risks and benets [8,9].
2.5. Fairness
How fairly people perceive the way a technology is implemen-
ted can greatly affect their acceptance. A distinction can be made
between procedural fairness, which relates to the decision pro-
cesses, and distributive fairness, which refers to the distribution of
costs, risks and benets [4,10].
2.6. Affect
Feelings toward a technology, or affect, are also relevant for
attitude formation [11]. Positive and negative affect can be concep-
tualized as two distinct factors, rather than two ends of one
continuum [12].
2.7. Perceived costs
Costs refer to nancial costs for the individual and society, but
also psychological costs, such as effort.
2.8. Perceived risks
Perceived risks can be safety risks for humans and nature, but
also nancial risks according to Hujits et al. [4]. Because the
conceptual difference between perceived costs and perceived
nancial risks is not very clear, we decided to use the term
perceived risks for health and safety risks, and refer to perceived
nancial risks as perceived costs.
2.9. Perceived benets
Perceived benets encompass all potential benets the public
sees in a technology. This includes personal and societal benets,
but also benets for the environment.
2.10. Outcome efcacy/perceived behavioral control
There are two different types of outcome efcacy according to
Huijts et al. [4]: the belief that the new technology will actually
reduce energy problems, and the belief that ones own behavior will
impact the implementation of the technology. In the case of CCS, the
rst kind is almost indistinguishable from benet perception. There-
fore, we use the term outcome efcacy only for the second type
perceived inuence on technology implementation. This in turn is
very similar to perceived behavioral control, which constitutes a
separate factor in the framework by Huijts et al. [13],butisnot
discussed separately in this review.
2.11. Problem perception
Problem perception is the awareness of problems related to
the current energy system when no new energy technology is
implemented and used[4]. This includes climate change, which is
very relevant in the case of CCS.
3. Selection of studies
A literature search was conducted on Web of Science in December
2012.WesearchedforCCS(searchtermsCCS,”“carbon capture,
storage) in combination with each of the following terms:
acceptance,”“acceptability,”“perception,”“attitude,”“public opinion.
Conference proceedings were excluded from the search. The following
criteria were applied to select an article: (a) it dealt with public
perception rather than stakeholder perception, and (b) it reported
empirical ndings and was not purely theory-based, or a commentary.
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863850
The search was supplemented by snowballing to identify additional
studies. Through this, we identied 45 papers. After reviewing them in
greater detail, we decided to exclude two media analyses, because
they did not directly assess public opinion. It is reasonable to argue
that media coverage is a useful proxy for public perception, but this
was not the focus of our review. One more publication was excluded
because it was about public perception of oceanic carbon sequestra-
tion as opposed to geological sequestration. Oceanic disposal is no
longer considered a viable option for CCS, and it might be perceived
differently from geological sequestration [14], which was the (primary)
focus of the remaining studies. A total of 42 empirical research articles
was therefore included, which will be discussed in the following
4. Overview of the studies
The earliest article included was published in 2002 [15],which
shows how young the eld of public perception research of CCS is.
There has been an increase in studies over the last years, and 24
articles were published between 2010 and 2012. Where studies on
public perception of CCS were conducted does not necessarily map to
where CCS activities actually take place, as can be seen in Table 2 .
Table 2 compares the CO
emissions of countries with the number of
CCS projects and the number of public perception studies conducted
there. The list includes only countries with at least one public
perception study. Two continents are completely absent: South
America and Africa. South America currently has no CCS activities,
and Africa has only the In Salah storage project.
In terms of methodology, the studies in this review covered
quite a wide range. A third (n¼14) were qualitative. They used
interviews, focus groups and workshops. The remaining studies
(n¼28) can be classied as quantitative. They differed in their data
collection (paperpencil surveys, online surveys, interviews, labora-
tory experiments) and data analysis (frequencies, conjoint analysis,
regression, structural equation modeling, analysis of variance). They
were heterogeneous in their research questions and the variables
measured. A detailed overview of the studies, where they were
conducted, their research methods and key ndings can be found in
Tables A1 and A2 in Appendix A.
5. Key results
In the following, we give an overview of the most important
ndings that can be derived from the studies. The results are
structured along the variables of the technology acceptance frame-
work discussed in Section 2 [4].Tables 3 and 4 summarize which
study included which concept(s).
5.1. Attitude and acceptance
Most studies measured expressed acceptance. There are not many
CCS projects yet where revealed acceptance could be measured, and
many studies were conducted in places where CCS has not been
implemented yet, but where there is interest in gauging public opinion
beforehand. Therefore, it is difcult to interpret and compare levels of
reported acceptance. Because CCS is little known, participants had to
be given information about the technology, and their opinion is likely
to be highly sensitive to the content of that information and to the
research context. In our discussion of the results, we will therefore
focus on studies that investigated which variables inuence attitude,
rather than reporting absolute levels of attitude. Studies that do
measureabsoluteacceptancetypicallynd means that are close to
neither positively nor negatively. The technology is rarely categorically
rejected, because people see the need for reducing CO
emissions into
the atmosphere. At the same time, they object to the fact that it is an
end-of-pipesolution, which does not reduce the production of CO
from fossil fuels, and they want to see it embedded in a comprehen-
sive energy strategy that addresses the problem of climate change
from multiple angles. Overall, it could be said that CCS is reluctantly
Many studies conrmed the typical nding that risk and benet
perceptions are two of the main predictors of the acceptance of a
technology [1620].Duanetal.[21] measured perceived benets but
notperceivedrisks,anditwasthemostinuential predictor in their
regression. Trust in stakeholders is another inuential variable that can
have direct effects on acceptance, or through perceived risks and
benets [1720]. Studies that included none of these variables had low
explained variance, although they found some signicant other factors.
De Best-Waldhober et al. [22], for example, concluded that their
participants based their evaluations to some extent on the aspects and
Table 2
Countries where CCS studies were conducted, their CO
emissions and number of
CCS projects.
Country Emissions
CCS projects
China 7711 11 1
US 5415 23 7
Japan 1168 0 3
Germany 770 0 3
UK 493 6 4
Canada 488 8 2
Australia 380 4 5
France 361 1 1
Poland 316 1 1
Spain 267 1 4
Netherlands 191 2 14
Belgium 115 0 1
Sweden 52 0 1
Switzerland 41 0 7
Note: The number of studies does not add up to the number of articles considered
in this review, because some articles report on studies conducted in multiple
emissions (in million tons) in 2010 (IEA, Paris, 2012).
Large scale integrated projects (The Global CCS Institute, 2013, 2013).
Table 3
Overview of concepts investigated in qualitative studies.
Study Ex. Kn. Tr. PF DF PA NA PC PR PB OE PP Ac.
Anderson et al. [24] ✓✓ ✓
Ashworth et al. [25] ✓✓
Ashworth et al. [46] ✓✓
Fleishman et al. [31] ✓✓
L'Orange Seigo
et al. [47]
Gough et al. [15] ✓✓
Oltra et al. [41] ✓✓ ✓ ✓
Oltra et al. [26] ✓✓ ✓ ✓
Palmgren et al. [14] ✓✓ ✓
Shackley et al. [48] ✓✓ ✓✓
Upham and
Roberts [27]
✓✓ ✓ ✓
Wallquist et al. [51] ✓✓
Wong-Parodi and
Ray [28]
✓✓✓ ✓
et al. [29]
Ex.¼Experience, Kn. ¼Knowledge, Tr.¼Trust, PF ¼Procedural fairness, DF ¼Distri-
butive fairness, PA¼Positive affect, NA¼Negative affect, PC ¼Perceived costs,
PR¼perceived risks, PB ¼Perceived benets, OE ¼Outcome efcacy, PP¼Problem
perception, Ac.¼Acceptance.
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 851
consequences of the technologies explained, but that there are clearly
other, more inuential factors. Sharp et al. [23] found that media
reports and the extent to which CCS is used in other countries
signicantly inuenced support for CCS. It is also possible to inuence
attitude toward CCS by giving specic information (see Section 5.3 on
Only three case studies measured revealed acceptance as
opposed to expressed acceptance. Anderson et al. [24] emphasized
the importance of participation, which should live up to certain
standards. For project managers, it is important to know a
community's social characteristics and to be sure that they might
not be mistaking for acceptance what is actually passive resigna-
tion. Ashworth et al. [25] formulated ve success factors for
projects that go in a similar direction. The social context of a site
should be considered, and the project should be exible enough to
adjust to it; communication experts should be an integral part of
the project from the beginning, and important stakeholders need
to be aligned. Oltra et al. [26] saw three issues as most important
for acceptance: trust in the developer, the quality of public
engagement activities, and the public's and stakeholders' percep-
tions of the need for the facility.
5.2. Experience
Only ve articles discussed the role of experience for accep-
tance of CCS [24,2629]. It is interesting that they were all
qualitative studies, and three were case studies. Anderson et al.
[24] discussed farmers' acceptance of the Otway project in
Australia. They cited experience with the gas industry as a key
factor for initial acceptance. The farmers were familiar with
pipelines and gas wells, and appreciated the extra income they
received from compensation payments. Later on in the project,
however, there were negative experiences with the CCS activities,
which caused ongoing interruption to farm management activities.
As a consequence, old concerns about the gas industry emerged
again, and acceptance dropped. Oltra et al. [26] also found a
relationship between previous experience with the fossil fuel
industry and acceptance of CCS projects in their analysis of ve
European cases. The two projects that did not face strong opposi-
tion were located in communities with prior experience.
Wong-Parodi and Ray [28] looked at two communities in
California that might have been host sites for a CSS project. Both
had previous experience with industrial harm and how it was
handled. One community had been able to stop the construction of
a chemical plant near a river, which strengthened their sense of
empowerment; they felt that they would also be able to exercise
their voice in the case of a CCS project, if anything went wrong.
The other community, however, had an unresolved water contam-
ination issue; they felt that if anything went wrong with the
proposed CCS facility, their complaints would go unheard. This
feeling of helplessness would likely have prevented them from
actively protesting against the CCS project; it is important to note,
however, that this would not have been due to real acceptance.
Upham and Roberts [27] conducted focus groups, and their
participants used their experience with natural gas storage and
transport as a proxy for assessing the safety of the transport and
storage aspects of CCS.
5.3. Knowledge
Numerous studies assessed whether the general public had
heard of CCS and knew what it is used for. Awareness is generally
quite low, and only a small minority had heard of the technology.
De Best-Waldober et al. [22,30] and Fleishman et al. [31] assessed
how thoroughly informed participants evaluate CCS. The research-
ers gave participants rather extensive background information on
climate change, energy production technologies and how CCS
functions. This avoided the problem that people might report only
pseudo-opinions because they are unfamiliar with CCS. Informed
participants were neither overly enthusiastic about CCS nor
entirely opposed to it. De Best-Waldhober et al. found that aspects
and consequences of the technology itself left much of the
variance in people's evaluations unexplained. There must be
other factors that inuence judgments about CCS. This nding
was replicated in a more recent study by de Best-Waldhober
et al. [32], which found only a weak relationship between knowl-
edge of CO
and CCS, and attitude toward CCS.
L'Orange Seigo et al. [33], Moutenet et al. [34], Oltra et al. [35]
and Tokushige et al. [19] gave their respondents information about
specic aspects of CCS and measured how that inuenced attitude.
L'Orange Seigo et al. [33] found that information about monitoring
measures undertaken at CO
storage sites had an alarming rather
than a reassuring effect, at least in men. Moutenet et al. [34]
observed lower support for CCS, after participants were presented
with the unfavorable views certain nongovernmental organiza-
tions (NGOs) hold of CCS. This relationship was likely mediated
through trust, although this was not measured in the study. Oltra
et al. [35] found a positive effect for information about the natural
character of CO
, although other manipulations in the study were
unsuccessful at inuencing attitudes. Similarly, Tokushige et al.
[19] measured increased acceptance after their participants had
read about natural analogues of CO
storage. Information about
eld demonstrations, however, barely inuenced acceptance.
Table 4
Overview of concepts investigated in quantitative studies.
Study Ex. Kn. Tr. PF DF PA NA PC PR PB OE PP Ac.
Carley et al. [52] ✓✓
de Best-Waldhober
et al. [30]
de Best-Waldhober
et al. [32]
de Best-Waldhober
et al. [22]
Duan [21] ✓✓
Ha-Duong et al. [53] ✓✓
Huijts et al. [13] ✓✓ ✓ ✓
Kraeusel and Möst
L'Orange Seigo et al.
Midden and Huijts
✓✓✓ ✓
Miller et al. [39] ✓✓ ✓
Miller et al. [38] ✓✓ ✓
Moutenet et al. [34] ✓✓
Oltra et al. [35] ✓✓
Palmgren et al. [14] ✓✓ ✓✓
Reiner et al. [54] ✓✓
Sharp et al. [23] ✓✓
ter Mors et al. [40]
Terwel et al. [18] ✓✓
Terwel et al. [42]
Terwel et al. [43] ✓✓
Terwel and Daamen
Terwel et al. [44] ✓✓ ✓ ✓✓
Tokushige et al. [49] ✓✓
Tokushige et al. [19] ✓✓ ✓ ✓
Wallquist et al. [56]
Wallquist et al. [50] ✓✓
Wallquist et al. [20] ✓✓
Wallquist et al. [36] ✓✓
Ex.¼Experience, Kn. ¼Knowledge, Tr.¼Trust, PF ¼Procedural fairness, DF¼Distri-
butive fairness, PA¼Positive affect, NA¼Negative affect, PC ¼Perceived costs,
PR¼perceived risks, PB ¼Perceived benets, OE ¼Outcome efcacy, PP¼Problem
perception, Ac.¼Acceptance.
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863852
Only two studies [32,36] assessed objective knowledge of CCS.
Knowledge was generally low, and typical misconceptions wide-
spread. Such misconceptions are that the CO
is stored as a gas in
large cavernous spaces, and that the applied pressure might lead
to explosions. Wallquist et al. [36] found an effect of knowledge on
risk and benet perceptions, but the inuence was rather limited.
5.4. Trust
Trust is recognized as a key variable for technology acceptance,
and 18 of the studies we reviewed included it in some way in their
analysis [13,15,1720,2527,29,3744]. The most trusted stake-
holders are researchers and NGOs. Two case studies by Ashworth
et al. [25] and Oltra et al. [26] found accordingly that the projects
that could be successfully implemented and faced the least
opposition were research projects. Those run by energy compa-
nies, however, often faced strong opposition or were even can-
celled. Industry is one of the least trusted stakeholders.
Government organizations tend to fare better but are often not
trusted to manage CCS operations safely.
Quantitative studies have found that the effect of trust on
acceptance is not direct, but is mediated through perceived risks
and perceived benets [1719] . Wallquist et al. [20] found an effect
on perceived benets, but not risks. And Midden et al. [37] further
observed that the relationship between trust and perceived risks
operated through affect.
The question is, of course, how trust comes about in the rst
place. Huijts et al. [13] found that trust in a stakeholder was
inuenced by the perceived similarity with that stakeholder,
which is in accordance with the wider literature on trust [45,9].
Using experiments, Terwel et al. [43] examined the effects that
group voice in decision making has on trust. Authorities were
judged as more trustworthy if they granted different interest
groups a voice in the decision-making process about CCS imple-
mentation, which in turn led to higher acceptance of the nal
decision. Knowledge had a moderating effect: Informed people
cared more about group voice, whereas uninformed people were
indifferent. Another study by Terwel et al. [42] investigated the
relationship between corporate communications and trust. It was
not just message content that was predictive of trust, but whether
the message was in line with the assumed motives of the
organization standing behind the communication. Industrial orga-
nizations, for example, were thought to act more out of self-
serving motives than public interest. When they highlighted
environmental benets of CCS, trust was low, due to perceived
dishonesty. Trust could be preserved, however, when an honest
argument (nancial interest) was coupled with a more public-
serving message (CCS is good for the environment).
Ter Mors et al. [40] looked at when information from stake-
holders is seen as trustworthy and reliable. Information coming
from dissimilar but collaborating stakeholders was seen as more
balanced and therefore trustworthy than information coming from
one stakeholder alone. Trusted stakeholders were not negatively
affected by collaborating with a less trusted stakeholder.
5.5. Fairness
The role of fairness (both distributive and procedural) has not
been studied much in the context of CCS. Some studies touch the
topic indirectly, and only two publications by Terwel et al. [43,44]
address the role of fairness explicitly. The rst is the same study that
was discussed in the subsection on trust. Procedures that are
perceived as fair lead to more trust and ultimately to higher
acceptance. The second one is an analysis of the Barendrecht case
(a project in the Netherlands that was cancelled, at least partially due
to public resistance); local residents there found the decision-making
procedure unfair and thought that Shell (the project developer) had
undue inuence, whereas local residents lacked decision power. Oltra
et al. [26] also analyzed the Barendrecht case and observed that
opposition was partially driven by local stakeholders questioning the
need to select their community and not others as a storage site,
particularly because they had already absorbed many infrastructure
projects in previous years. This is clearly a concern with distributive
Wong-Parodi and Ray [28] stressed the importance of the
empowerment of a community. This partly stems from the
community's ability to exercise voice and have recourse to
compensation or damage mitigation[28], which are aspects of
procedural fairness. Anderson et al. [24] take a more normative
stance: public participation should be an integral part of any CCS
project, and a good participation process needs to ensure that the
local population has appropriate resources, also in terms of social
capital, to voice their needs and have their concerns addressed.
5.6. Affect
Affect is another variable that has received very little research
attention. Midden and Huijts [37] included affect in their study
and conrmed the nding that negative and positive affects are
two separate dimensions, rather than two ends of a continuum.
Both positive and negative affects were inuenced by trust in their
sample, and in turn inuenced perceived benets and risks. Huijts
et al. [13] reported frequencies regarding affect; ratings of negative
affect were higher in their sample than ratings of positive affect. In
a study by L'Orange Seigo et al. [33], information on CO
ing measures induced higher levels of negative affect compared to
a control group who did not receive the same information.
Wong-Parodi et al. [29] argued that pro-or anti-CCS messages
are most persuasive if they trigger an emotional reaction. The
authors called such messages emotionally self-referent(ESR).
Participants in the study identied their own ESR triggers and
used them to create messages in favor of or against CCS in their
community. These messages were based on different arguments
than those created by experts, and they were seen as more
persuasive, although the participants believed the expert mes-
sages in terms of factual content.
5.7. Perceived costs
It is not always easy to distinguish perceived costs from perceived
risks. Particularly in the case of CCS, cost estimates are associated with
large uncertainties and might also be framed as nancial risks. A few
studies explicitly mention costs, however, in particular monetary costs.
A number of participants in qualitative studies brought this issue up.
seen as a, if not the, major disadvantage by participants from the
United Kingdom (UK), Germany and Poland. They thought that
increased costs for electricity production should be shouldered by
power companies rather than the consumer. Similar concerns were
found by Gough et al. [15] and Palmgren et al. [14].Inthecasestudies
discussed by Oltra et al. [26], a potential increase in electricity prices
was one of the concerns raised in Bełchatów a project faced with
some opposition.
Kraeusel and Möst [16] conducted a conjoint study and
included a monthly price premium as one of the factors. Partici-
pants were willing to pay a premium for an increased share of
renewable energy in the electricity mix, but not for CCS.
5.8. Perceived risks
The majority of studies (n¼26) investigate risk in some way
[1321,23,24,2629,33,3537,46,50,51]. Qualitative studies can
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 853
give insights into which kind of risks people are concerned about.
By far the most frequently voiced concern is that the CO
leak back into the atmosphere. This would at the same time
undermine the single largest benet of CCS. Concerns also exist
about how such a leak might happen. Some people believe there
might be sudden blowouts or explosions (both at the surface level,
for example at injection wells, and underground). Another com-
mon concern is that ground movements might compromise the
storage integrity. Multiple studies cite earthquakesas a potential
risk, but it is not always clear whether it is meant that earthquakes
would cause faults in the caprock and thus lead to leakage, or
whether the pressure of the injected CO
might lead to earth-
quakes. CO
is also seen as a pollutant or a toxic substance, and
people therefore feel uncomfortable disposing of it underground.
They fear negative effects on ecosystems, although they cannot
specify what these effects would be.
The second big set of potential risks voiced by laypeople
revolves around the unsustainable nature of CCS: it does not
tackle the root of the problem producing CO
by burning fossil
fuels and is perceived as an end-of-pipe solution or sweeping the
issue under the rug. There are also concerns that the development
of CCS might reduce investments in renewable energy technolo-
gies. We call this set of concerns sustainability concerns.
A concern that was mentioned only in case studies was the
potential impact on property values or tourism. This indicates that
different risks can become focal once a specic project site has
been selected.
When these concerns are measured quantitatively, it seems
that sustainability concerns, fears of leakage and fear of over-
pressurization are most inuential for risk perception as a whole
[36]. Various studies looked at whether information about differ-
ent aspects of CCS technology or CO
can inuence risk percep-
tions [35,33,49,50], with mixed results. It seems possible to
inuence risk perception, but the effect is rather small, and
different kinds of information have different effects.
Consistent with the risk perception literature in other domains,
trust in stakeholders was found to be inversely related to risk
perceptions [1719] . Similarly, Midden and Huijts [37] found an
impact of both negative and positive affect; negative affect
increases risk perception, whereas positive affect decreases risk
Also in agreement with the literature on risk perception and
technology acceptance, a number of studies found that risk
perceptions of CCS were a signicant negative predictor of
acceptance [1621,37,44,49]. Wallquist et al. [20] found a particu-
larly strong relationship between perceived risks and acceptance.
They measured the latter as protest potential, in order to be closer
to actual behavior.
5.9. Perceived benets
Almost half the articles included benet perception as their
dependent or independent variable [13,1621,26,28,29,33,36,37,
41,4650]. Interestingly, not all studies that tried to identify
perceived risks also asked about perceived benets, although
perceived benets are very important for acceptance, often even
more relevant than perceived risks. This has also been found in the
case of CCS [1620,37,49].
The obvious benet of CCS is its contribution to reducing CO
emissions and thus mitigating climate change. Sometimes this is
framed as CCS allowing the continued use of fossil fuels, while still
reducing CO
emissions. It thus enables a smoother transition to
sustainable energy production. It could be argued that this is the
only reason for and thus the only benet of CCS. At a societal level,
this might be true. But at the local level, there can be additional
benets, which were brought up by respondents in case studies or
potential host communities [46,26,28,29]. They focused on eco-
nomic benets, which might come through job creation, tourism
or future investment in the community. Ashworth et al. [25] also
pointed to the importance of identifying local benets in order to
make a concrete CCS project successful.
At the broader, societal level, benet perceptions seem to be
positively inuenced by trust [37,1720] and positive affect [37].
L'Orange Seigo et al. [33] and Wallquist et al. [50] looked at how
information can impact benet perceptions. As in the case of risk
perceptions, the effect depends on the exact type of information.
Wallquist et al. [36] found that the most inuential factor on
benet perception was sustainability concerns higher concerns
were associated with lower benet perception. This factor was
more important than actual factual knowledge about how CO
storage works.
5.10. Outcome efcacy
Outcome efcacy, or the belief that personal actions can
actually inuence the implementation of CCS technology, was
explicitly addressed in only two studies. Anderson et al. [24]
showed how a lack of social capital led to a sort of passive
acceptance by farmers, which was less driven by favorable views
of the CCS project than by insufcient social resources to make
themselves heard. Social capital was dened as connections and
networks between individuals, and the corresponding trust.
Wong-Parodi et al. [28] looked at how a community's social
economic standing and local history can affect their sense of
empowerment. They compared a low-income, mostly Hispanic,
community with a wealthier, mostly Caucasian, community in
California. They found that the poorer community felt fairly
powerless and did not believe that they would have much say in
the siting process or that they would receive compensation if
anything went wrong. Here also, the authors pointed out how this
passive resignation should not be confused with acceptance.
Outcome efcacy is also related to perceived fairness. As Terwel
et al. [44] showed, local residents in Barendrecht thought they did
not have enough inuence over the proposed CCS project, which
led to low perceived fairness.
5.11. Problem perception
Problem perception was included in many studies we reviewed
[1416,19,21,23,27,32,34,36,38,39,41,44,48,5154]. This is not sur-
prising, given that mitigating climate change is the primary benet
of CCS. It would be hard to argue in favor of CCS, if the basic tenet
that climate change is real and needs mitigating is not accepted.
There seems to be general agreement among the public that
climate change is happening and that action is necessary to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions. The highest number of climate change
deniers was reported by Reiner et al. [54] for the United States
(US), where 7% of respondents indicated that global warming was
not a problem. In the UK and Sweden, the same statement was
endorsed by 3% and 2%, respectively.
Few studies looked at how awareness of climate change
actually affects perception of CCS. Kreausel and Möst [16] found
that people with higher climate change concern also had higher
risk perceptions (which in turn would be expected to lead to lower
acceptance). Contrary to that, Wallquist et al. [36] found a negative
inuence of climate change awareness on risk perception, and a
positive inuence on benet perceptions. Similarly, Oltra et al. [41]
reported that groups that accepted CCS thought that climate
change was an urgent problem. Tokushige et al. [19] also looked
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863854
at the inuence of problem perception on risk and benet
perceptions. They operationalized the concept slightly differently
from other studies, however, and emphasized the aspect of human
interference with nature and going against nature's laws. They
found a positive inuence on risk and benet perceptions.
5.12. Other variables
A couple of concepts emerged as important variables for
people's evaluation of CCS, but are not covered in the technology
acceptance framework [4]. We will discuss them in the following.
5.12.1. Energy context
The current energy mix of a country where CCS is to be
deployed and the available alternatives both seem to be very
important to people. Within the technology acceptance frame-
work, it could be argued that this acts through benet perception,
or it could be framed as a specic kind of risk. But because these
concerns seem so prevalent in the case of CCS and have such large
importance, we feel they deserve their own discussion. Several
qualitative studies bring up this issue, which is closely related to
the sustainability concerns mentioned above (see Section 5.8).
Gough et al.'s [15] participants were concerned about investing in
a technology that would be rendered obsolete by other low-carbon
technologies. This could simply be framed as nancial risks, but it
also points to the fact that people do not evaluate CCS in isolation,
but consider the availability of other technologies that might yield
equal benets. The same was found by Palmgren et al. [14], who
stated that many respondents indicated a desire to consider
carbon capture and sequestration in the context of a broader set
of options for carbon management.Similarly, Shackley et al. [48]
argued that results from their focus groups strongly support[s]
the need to embed CCS within a portfolio of decarbonization
options and to promote CCS as a bridging strategyto other lower
zero-carbon energy sources.Oltra et al. [41] found that rejection
of CCS among participants was partially based on a preference for
other renewable technologies.
Fleishman et al. [31] studied perceptions of CCS when it was
embedded in realistic energy portfolios, rather than looking at the
technology in isolation. Their results showed a more favorable
evaluation of CCS than other studies. A study that tried to quantify
the effects of framing CCS as a bridging technology was conducted
by Wallquist et al. [50]. They gave participants in a within-subject
experiment different types of information and measured the effect
on risk and benet perceptions. After participants read a para-
graph on how CCS is only part of a solution and should be
embedded in a range of other low-carbon technologies, their
benet perceptions increased and risk perceptions decreased.
5.12.2. Values
One particular set of values has emerged as an important
predictor in some studies; it revolves around interference with
nature. Gough et al. [15] highlighted two implicit cognitive models
that participants seemed to hold regarding CCS, one of which is
the belief that there is a web of interconnected ecosystems that
can easily be disturbed, and interference in one place will cause
disastrous chain reactions. Tokushige et al. [19] and Wallquist et al.
[20] included interference with nature in structural equation
models to predict acceptance. One called it perception of inter-
ference with the environment for implementation of the geologi-
cal storage of CO
and the other tampering with the subsurface,
which is more specically about the subsurface rather than nature
in general. Tokushige et al. [19] found a signicant impact on risk
perception and a direct path to public acceptance. In Wallquist
et al. [20], tampering with the subsurface was the single best
predictor of perceived benets and perceived risks. The nding
that perceived interference with nature affects risk perceptions is
in line with risk perception research in other energy-related
domains [55].
Wallquist et al. [56] also conducted a conjoint study that looked
at the relative impact of each of the three CCS elements (capture/
source, transport and storage) on overall acceptance of CCS.
The factor CO2 source had two levels: CO
from a gas-red power
plant and CO
from a biogas-red power plant. When the source of
the CO
was biogas, there was no Not In My Backyard (NIMBY)
effect, and participants did not seem to mind living near a storage
site. This might seem irrational, because the CO
is the same,
regardless of its origin. It is possible, however, that biogas is
perceived as more natural, and therefore, CO
coming from it is
regarded as less harmful than CO
from fossil fuels. This effect
might have been particularly pronounced, because the study was
conducted in German, and the prexbio-has the meaning of
These results point to a potentially important role of the value
interference with nature regarding public perception of CCS.
Further studies could try to clarify what the public perceives as
(non)interference with nature, and what its exact role in accep-
tance of CCS is.
6. Summary and outlook
Over the last decade, a diverse body of articles has been
published on public perception of CCS. As we have shown, the
technology acceptance framework by Huijts et al. [4] is a useful
tool for structuring the various results. Table 5 summarizes the
most important ndings for each variable in the framework, and
the two additional variables we propose for the CCS case.
Aspects that have been well researched are the public's
intuitive reaction to CCS, their mental models of the technology
and the subsurface, and their awareness of climate change. These
variables would be subsumed under knowledge in the technology
acceptance framework. Although people generally know that
climate change is happening, they are unsure what exactly is
causing it or what possible mitigation options are. Many seem to
underestimate the extent of emission reduction that is necessary,
while overestimating how much can currently be achieved
through the use of renewables. There are some small differences
between countries, but overall, the mental models the general
public holds of CCS and how it works are very similar.
What we know about these mental models is enough to draft
risk communication that should be understandable and useful.
Such communications are necessary to make sure the public has
access to adequate information and can participate in democratic
processes around the deployment of CCS. One should not expect,
however, that risk communication can produce acceptance, or that
information is the most inuential variable for acceptance. Knowl-
edge has been shown to have an impact on public attitude, but
other variables are more important.
The best predictor of acceptance of CCS is benet perceptions.
This is typical for acceptance of new technologies [8,57]. In the
case of CCS, benet is intrinsically linked to the continued use of
fossil fuels for electricity production. At least at the societal level, it
is difcult to identify additional benets to reducing CO
sions. This could be the reason people feel a strong need to view
CCS in context. They want to know about other alternatives, and
are concerned about the unsustainable nature of the technology.
CCS is seen as an end-of-pipe solution that might even displace
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 855
investment in renewable energy technologies. Such sustainability
concerns are among the most important risks people see regarding
CCS. Other relevant risks are leakage or overpressurization of the
storage formation.
These last concerns are real and quite prevalent. At the same
time, they do not seem to scare people to the extreme. When
perceived risks are assessed quantitatively, the mean scores are
typically just above the midpoint of the scale, and almost nobody
uses the scale extremes. This is consistent with the nding by
Tokushige et al. [49] that CCS loads not overly high on the dread
factor within the psychometric paradigm [7]. At the societal level,
perceived risks should not be a major barrier to CCS implementa-
tion. At the local level, however, the picture might look different.
People who actively protest CCS sites can be motivated by
perceived risks, and local protest can cause a project to be
cancelled [25,26,44]. At the same time, absence of protest does
not necessarily mean that the local population is happy with the
proposed CCS project. They might simply feel that their voice
would not be heard anyway. More case studies would be useful to
further rene our knowledge of what the key factors are for the
success or failure of a project, and how these factors might differ
from those that are crucial for acceptance at the societal level.
To date, many studies have focused on how properties of CCS
itself affect acceptance. Newer research, however, points to the
importance of context for the acceptance of CCS. At the local
project level, the social context of the community plays a large
role. We know it is important to take the history and social
structure of a community into account have there been activities
of the fossil fuel industry in the past and does it form an integral
part of the economy, how empowered do the residents feel, etc.
Such questions are important, but it is not overly well understood
in which ways exactly they contribute to local acceptance of a
project, and how knowledge about the local context can be used to
foster support or opposition to a project.
Fairness is another variable that is not specically related to
CCS but plays an important role in acceptance. Some studies
point to the importance of perceived fairness regarding CCS
(see Section 5.5). They emphasize the role of procedural fairness.
There is room for more research, however, to better understand
when a procedure is perceived as fair, and whether fairness is
more important at the local level or equally important for societal
acceptance. Research about other energy technologies indicates
that the latter might be the case (e.g., [58]). Almost entirely
neglected so far has been distributive fairness. Because CO
Table 5
Main ndings for each concept.
Concept Main ndings
Most important predictors are perceived risks, perceived benets and trust
Aspects and consequences of technology itself play a role, but the inuence is limited
Social context of project site is inuential
Case studies point to the importance of prior experience with the fossil fuel or other industries for acceptance
Little research, worth exploring more
The public's mental models and misconceptions about CCS are understood well enough to produce meaningful information materials
Pre-existing knowledge and information about CCS inuence acceptance, but the impact is limited
Important predictor of acceptance
Most trusted are researchers and NGOs, least trusted are industry stakeholders
Trust can be enhanced through fair procedures, honest communications and collaboration of multiple stakeholders
Case studies point to the importance of both procedural and distributive fairness
Little research, worth exploring more
Positive and negative affect are two different dimensions
Affectively loaded messages are more persuasive; their content might be different from expert messages
Perceived costs
Costs are seen as a major disadvantage of CCS
Perceived risks
Potential risks that the public sees are quite well understood
Most important perceived risks are leakage and sustainability concerns
Perceived risks are one of the best predictors of acceptance
Perceived benets
Single best predictor for acceptance
Perceived benets are inuenced by trust
Important for concrete projects to identify local benets
Outcome efcacy
Low perceived outcome efcacy prevents protest, even if acceptance is low
Problem perception
General agreement that climate change is real, only small portion of deniers
Tends to have positive effect on benet perception, negative effect on risk perception
Energy context
People want to discuss CCS within broader context of alternatives
Evaluation in context tends to be more positive than in isolation
Interference with nature
Seems to be important predictor for risk perception, benet perception and acceptance
More research needed to clarify role
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863856
sites are locally conned but might not necessarily store local
emissions, it is very plausible that this type of fairness inuences
acceptance, too.
Another set of variables that seems promising but has received
very little research attention are values, in particular what we call
interference with nature the belief that humans should not
interfere with natural processes. Large perceived interference is
associated with more negative attitudes. This concept was highly
predictive of acceptance in studies by Wallquist et al. [20] and
Tokushige et al. [19]. More research is needed to gain a clearer
picture of what people perceive as interference with nature, and
whether it is possible to change that perception, for example by
pointing to natural analogues of underground gas storage. Perhaps
CCS projects could be designed in a way that perception of
interference is minimized. The exact role of these values for public
perception could also be claried.
Finally, increasing attention should be paid to dynamic pro-
cesses that shape public perception. Understanding individual
perceptions is of course important. Public perception of a technol-
ogy, however, is not just the sum of individual perceptions, but the
result of a dynamic process in which individuals and organizations
interact. Particularly new technologies associated with certain
risks and uncertainties can be subject to a social amplication of
risk process [59,60]. The social amplication of risk framework
(SARF) posits that risks are perceived and portrayed through risk
signals; they can be images, signs or symbols. These signals are
communicated among people, and each person or institution
involved in this communication process will apply their own
lters, heuristics and interpretations as they pass on the informa-
tion. Thus, the perception of risks can be amplied or attenuated,
as the information passes through the various amplication
stations.This can lead to so-called ripple effects that affect groups
that were not originally involved with the risk event in question
[60]. Kasperson et al. [59] gave the example of the Three Mile
Island nuclear accident, which led to changes in management
practices for nuclear power plants around the globe. If the CCS
industry were confronted with a similar event that has a large
signaling effect, such as a large-scale leak or a blowout at an
injection well, this might tip public opinion of CCS and change
which variables are the most predictive of acceptance.
7. Practical implications
In the previous section, we pointed out some research gaps that
should be addressed. However, the existing body of research on
public perception of CCS can also answer some important ques-
tions and allows certain conclusions for practitioners wanting to
implement CCS.
Because CCS is such a new technology and very little known,
one concern is often with informing the public. As mentioned in
Section 6, we now have a fairly clear picture of what people's
intuitive image of CCS is and which aspects are most important to
correct. The majority of people accept climate change as real and
relevant, which can be built on in communications. There seems to
be considerable confusion, however, about the role of CO
, where
it comes from and which effects it can have, not just on the climate
but also on human health. This should be explained in an
introduction to CCS. Concerning the technology itself, widespread
misconceptions revolve around geological storage mechanisms
and the behavior of the CO2 in the reservoir. Communication
materials should point out these misconceptions and then
correct them.
It is certainly necessary to provide adequate and neutral
information for the general public, and we would argue there is
an ethical obligation to do so. But project developers should not
overestimate the effect that such information materials have on
acceptance. Even if people are motivated and able to process them
carefully, the effect of knowledge on acceptance has been shown
to be moderate at best. What is more inuential is the context in
which CCS is deployed: What other options for climate change
mitigation are being pursued, who promotes CCS and why, how
will costs and benets generated by the technology be
distributed, etc.
Most countries have no public participation processes for their
national energy strategies or national laws governing the deploy-
ment of CCS. At the local level, however, when it comes to the
implementation of specic CCS projects, the local population often
has a say. If no formal engagement procedure is applied, they can
at least organize local protests.
Case studies point to the importance of experience for accep-
tance of local CCS projects. The historical and social context of a
potential host community should be carefully analyzed. If the local
population has prior (positive) experience with the fossil fuel
industry, they are more likely to be positively disposed to a CCS
project. But even experiences that are not directly related to CCS
may turn out to be relevant. If there have been other industrial
activities in the past that had negative impacts on the community,
this will shape people's reaction to a proposed CCS facility.
The latter point is related to aspects of fairness and trust. If
people feel they have already been taken advantage of in the past
and had to bear the negative consequences of industrial facilities,
they will most likely not be willing to accept a CCS project. In a
community that is neutral, perceived fairness can be enhanced by
involving the local population as early as possible, giving them
decision power wherever possible, and communicating openly and
honestly. A problem that arises here is that project developers are
typically energy companies. They are the least trusted stakeholder,
and even honest communication might not achieve its goal.
Therefore, it makes sense for project developers to seek coopera-
tion with a more trusted stakeholder, such as a local citizen group
or an NGO.
Local cooperation partners might also be able to help with the
analysis of the local context and to identify local benets for the
community. This is an important issue. In studies about both
societal acceptance and local acceptance, perceived benets are
crucial for acceptance. Their role is usually larger than that of
perceived risks. The latter should not be disregarded, however.
Perceived risks do have a signicant impact on acceptance. They
can to some extent be inuenced by information, but they are also
inuenced by trust in stakeholders. What is important to bear in
mind in the case of CCS is that one of the largest risks people see is
the displacement of other efforts to mitigate climate change. This
concern cannot be argued away with scienticndings. A pre-
requisite for acceptance of CCS in our view is that it is embedded
in a solid energy strategy that people nd acceptable.
To conclude, we would argue it is quite well understood which
information is necessary to help people form their own opinion of
CCS and make an informed decision. Project developers should pay
attention to the local context of a proposed project site and focus
on building an equal and trusted relationship with the local
We would like to thank swisselectric research for funding this
study. The funding source was not involved in the study design or
preparation of this article.
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 857
Appendix A
See Tables A1 and A2.
Table A1
Overview of the qualitative studies.
Study Country Method Key ndings
Anderson et al. [24]:Exploring CCS community
acceptance and public participation from a
human and social capital perspective
AU Qualitative: interviews
Farmers had a closed social network and therefore
closed information loop; proponent message thus
Farmers' acceptance declined during the project, but
they remained passive and did not coordinate with their
Farmers would have been in need of capacity-building
for human and social capital for a fairer and more
transparent participation process
Sample: from affected communities
Ashworth et al. [25]:What's in store: lessons
from implementing CCS
Qualitative: interviews about case studies
Critical success factors for projects: alignment of
government and development team; communication
expert; consideration of social context and ability to
adapt to changing social context
Components of effective stakeholder communication:
timing (early); knowing the community; identifying
local benets; use of appropriate information channels
Sample: stakeholders from each case
Ashworth et al. [46]:Public acceptance of
carbon dioxide capture and storage in a
proposed demonstration area
AU Qualitative: workshops
Facilitated workshops are a useful engagement tool;
perceived positively by participants
Main concerns: safety, leakage, groundwater
Perceived benets: employment and business
opportunities, apart from climate change mitigation
(which should not happen at the expense of
Sample: snowball sample from potentially
affected communities
Fleishman et al. [31]:Informed public
preferences for electricity portfolios with CCS
and other low-carbon technologies
US Qualitative: workshops with homework
Participants favored energy efciency over other low-
carbon alternatives
Technologies with CCS preferred over their counterparts
without CCS
Preferences were stable, rankings did not change after
group discussions
Sample: from Greater Pittsburgh
Metropolitan area, recruited through
community organizations
Gough et al. [15]:Burying carbon under the sea:
an initial exploration of public opinions
GB Qualitative: focus groups
Problem perception: global warming seen as problem
Perceived risks/costs: high costs for an unsustainable
solution, diversion of investment for renewable energy,
infrastructure costs, leakage (in particular sudden and
large), effects of seismic activity
Doubts that any institution can monitor stored CO
Sample: convenience sample
L'Orange Seigo et al. [47]:The effect of gures in
CCS communication
CH Qualitative: interviews
Incorporation of mental models into illustrations of CCS
does not aid comprehension
Suboptimal illustrations do not interfere with
Strong misconceptions cannot be corrected implicitly, by
giving correct information; they need to be addressed
Sample: convenience sample
Oltra et al. [41]:Lay perceptions of carbon
capture and storage technology
ES Qualitative: focus groups
Dominant reaction in groups: rejection
Rejection driven by: perceived risks, preference for
renewable energy technologies, perception that CCS
does not contribute to solving climate change and
energy problems
Perceived benets very limited. If benet from climate
change mitigation seen as very high, then reluctant
Sample: quota sample from general
Oltra et al. [26]:Public responses to CO
sites: lessons from ve European cases
Qualitative: interviews, document analysis
No single factor can guarantee success or failure
Higher likelihood of positive community reaction if
project: is at research scale; is managed by research
organization; engagement strategy is proactive; trusted
experts are involved; local benets are seen; project is
located in area with low population density with
Sample: stakeholders (including public)
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863858
Table A1 (continued )
Study Country Method Key ndings
positive relationship with fossil fuel industry
Palmgren et al. [14]:Initial public perceptions of
deep geological and oceanic disposal of carbon
dioxide(Study 1)
US Qualitative: interviews
Problem perception: most agree that global warming is
Perceived risks/costs: costs, efcacy, unforeseen
negative consequences
Desire to consider CCS in broader set of options
Sample: convenience sample
Shackley et al. [48]:The public perception of
carbon dioxide capture and storage in the UK:
results from focus groups and a survey
GB Qualitative (focus groups) and quantitative
Lukewarmsupport; conditional on implementation of
other options
Benets: can mitigate climate change, buys time to
develop other solutions
Perceived risks/costs: Technical xthat reduces
incentives for other activities, blowouts
Sample: from York and Manchester, skilled
working class to middle class (focus groups);
people at Liverpool airport (interviews)
Upham and Roberts [27]:Public perceptions of
CCS: emergent themes in pan-European focus
groups and implications for communications
Qualitative: focus groups
Knowledge/problem perception: people are concerned
about climate change, low knowledge of CCS
More familiar energy technologies are taken as
reference points inuenced by local context
Risk perception: 3 groups of risks: physical risks
(especially leakage, supposed ammability of CO
seismicity), nancial risks (cost seen as major
disadvantage), governance risks
Trust: many trust neither government nor industry;
scientists regarded as reliable information source
Perceptions across countries are very similar
Sample: Representative of national
Wallquist et al. [51]:Lay concepts on CCS
deployment in Switzerland based on
qualitative interviews
CH Qualitative: interviews
Knowledge/problem perception: knowledge about CCS
very low; agreement that climate change is a problem
Benets: mitigate climate change
Perceived risks/costs: leakage (both slow and sudden
blowouts); induced seismicity; diffuse harm to
ecosystems; unsustainable technology; crowding out of
renewable energy; rebound effect
perceived as unhealthy and smelly
Sample: convenience sample
Wong-Parodi and Ray [28]:Community
perceptions of carbon sequestration: insights
from California
US Qualitative: focus groups and interviews
Primarily negative attitudes towards hosting CCS site
Perceived risks/costs: catastrophic leak; induced
seismicity; technical risks might change nature of the
town (e.g. property values)
Poorer community felt resigned and powerless
Sense of empowerment inuenced by past experiences
with industry-caused environmental damage
Sample: from potentially affected
communities, one high status and one low
Wong-Parodi et al. [29]:Inuencing attitudes
toward CCS. A social marketing approach
US Qualitative: interviews
Emotionally self-referent (ESR) triggers are the same for
pro and anti CCS messages (but different spin)
ESR triggers are the same across different subgroups, but
their relative important changes
Citizens feel ESR messages should be coupled with
expert messages
Sample: Snowballing, started with carefully
identied key informantsin 4 Wyoming
Table A2
Overview of the quantitative studies.
Study Country Method Key ndings
Carley et al. [52]:Early public impressions of terrestrial
carbon capture and storage in a coal-intensive state
US Quantitative: phone and mail survey
Knowledge: 80% have not heard of CCS
More positive view of CCS if respondent: believes
human activities contribute to climate change,
supports expanded use of low-carbon electricity
sources, holds egalitarian worldview
More negative view of CCS if respondent: is a political
Sample: random digit dialing with
Analysis: regression (probit)
de Best-Waldhober et al. [30]:Informed and uninformed
public opinions on CO
capture and storage
technologies in the Netherlands
NL Quantitative: electronic survey,
Information-Choice Questionnaire
Knowledge: Most have very basic understanding of
greenhouse gas effect (objective measures), but very
low awareness of CCS technologies (subjective
Half the respondents who had never heard of CCS gave
evaluation anyway (pseudo-opinions); these opinions
Samples: 2 representative samples
Analysis: regression
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 859
Table A2 (continued )
Study Country Method Key ndings
were unstable
Informed respondents were somewhat positive
towards CCS
Aspects and consequences of technology could explain
35% of variance in evaluations of informed
de Best Waldhober et al. [32]:Public concepts of CCS:
understanding the Dutch general public and its
reection in the media
NL Quantitative: electronic survey
(informed by previous interviews)
Many people unsure about characteristics, effects and
sources of CO
Confusion about current energy production and its
relation with climate change
Effect of knowledge about CO
and CCS on attitude
is small
Sample: similar to the Dutch
Analysis: frequencies and ANOVA
de Best-Waldhober et al. [22]:Informed public opinion
in the Netherlands: evaluation of CO
capture and
storage technologies in comparison with other CO
mitigation options
NL Quantitative: electronic survey,
Information-Choice Questionnaire
Informed participants evaluate CCS options not very
favorably (below acceptablein Dutch school grading
Despite this, large-scale implementation would be
passively accepted by most people; does at least not
spur protests
Consequences of each electricity portfolio are relevant,
but also leave much variance unexplained other
factors must inuence peoples judgments
Sample: representative
Analysis: frequencies and regression
Duan [21]:The public perspective of carbon capture and
storage for CO
emission reductions in China
CN Quantitative: interviews
Knowledge/problem perception: 24% had heard about
CCS, high awareness of climate change
Predictors of attitude: Sociodemographics not
signicant, CCS-related attitudes most important,
benet perception best predictor (66% explained
Sample: residents and visitors of
Xiamen city
Analysis: frequencies and regression
Ha-Duong et al. [53]:A survey on the public perception
of CCS in France
FR Quantitative: interviews
Knowledge: High awareness of climate change
mitigation options
CCS not seen as overly effective, compared with other
Majority agrees with statement that CCS discourages
development of renewable energy technologies
Women are less accepting, but not more opposed
(many don't knowanswers)
Sample: quota-based
Analysis: frequencies
Huijts et al. [13]:Social acceptance of carbon dioxide
NL Sample: from potentially affected
communities (sampling method not
Knowledge: 76% know nothing or very little about CCS
Risks rated higher than benets; safety concerns
Trust: Highest in environmental NGOs, lower in
government, lowest in industry
Trust predicted by perceived competence and
perceived intentions; respective inuence of each
predictor depends on actor
Analysis: frequencies and regression
Kraeusel and Möst [16]:Carbon Capture and Storage on
its way to large-scale deployment: Social acceptance
and willingness to pay in Germany
DE Quantitative: conjoint study (þsurvey)
Knowledge: High awareness, only 28% reported no/
little prior knowledge
Risk and benet perceptions can explain 77% of
variance in acceptance, benet perception more
Factors conjoint study: Share of CCS power; share of
green electricity; monthly price premium. Most
important is increased share of green electricity
Respondents who are more concerned about climate
change perceive higher CCS-related risks
Sample: university students
Analysis: regression and conjoint
L'Orange Seigo et al. [33]:Communication of CCS
monitoring activities may not have a reassuring effect
on the public
CH Quantitative: online experiment
Information about CCS monitoring can be alarming
Mens risk perception is heightened to the level of
women, their acceptance is lowered
Sample: internet panel
Midden and Huijts [37]:The role of trust in the affective
evaluation of novel risks: the case of CO
NL Quantitative: survey
2 factors found for affect: positive and negative
Attitude towards nearby storage inuenced only by
affect, attitude towards storage in general more
inuenced by perceived benets
No effect of perceived risk on attitude
Trust inuenced perceived benets but not risks; effect
of trust on attitude via affect
Sample: random sample from
potentially affected communities
Analysis: structural equation
Miller et al. [38]:Public understanding of carbon
sequestration in Australia: socio-demographic
predictors of knowledge, engagement and trust
AU Quantitative: online survey
Women more likely to think that reducing greenhouse
gas emissions is important, but less likely to have
followed public debate
Sample: commercial online panel
Analysis: frequencies
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863860
Table A2 (continued )
Study Country Method Key ndings
Men more accepting of CCS
Miller et al. [39]:Initial public perceptions of carbon
geosequestration: Implications for engagement and
environmental risk communication strategies
AU Quantitative: online survey
Majority nds reduction of greenhouse gas emissions
important; few, however, follow debate
Knowledge: Majority (82%) have not heard of CCS
Trust: Commonwealth Scientic and Industrial
Research Organisation (CSIRO) trusted most, national
government trusted least
Sample: commercial online panel
Analysis: frequencies
Moutenet et al. [34]:Public awareness and opinion on
CCS in the province of Québec, Canada
CA Quantitative: online survey
Knowledge/problem perception: Climate change seen
as important issue; CO
identied as greenhouse gas;
green technologies well known, but CCS awareness at
Only 8% fundamentally opposed
Opinion very sensitive to new information; after NGO
views were presented, support declined substantially
Sample: commercial online panel,
Analysis: frequencies
Oltra et al. [35]:The inuence of information on
individuals' reactions to CCS technologies: results from
experimental online survey research
ES Quantitative: online experiment
Participants who read information on the natural
character of CO
have more positive initial reactionSample: internet panel
Palmgren et al.[14]:Initial public perceptions of deep
geological and oceanic disposal of carbon dioxide
(Study 2)
US Quantitative: survey
CCS is least favored mitigation option; respondents
want efcacy of storage better demonstrated
Possibility for continued use of fossil fuels not seen as
compelling argument
Higher pro-environmental values associated with
lower acceptance of CCS
Sample: convenience sample
Analysis: frequencies
Reiner et al. [54]:American Exceptionalism? Similarities
and differences in national attitudes toward energy
policy and global warming
Quantitative: survey
Knowledge/problem perception: Climate change
recognized as problem; CCS mostly unknown
Similar preferences across countries for how national
energy agencies should allocate funding
Information on cost & environmental impact of
renewable energy technologies decreased support for
Samples: online panels and random
Analysis: frequencies
Sharp et al. [23]:Anticipating public attitudes toward
underground CO
CA Quantitative: online survey, conjoint
Knowledge/problem perception: Agreement that
climate change is a problem; low awareness of CCS
Respondents slightly supportive; inuenced by extent
to which CCS is used in other countries and media
Those opposed seem to be concerned about risks,
rather than being fundamentally opposed
Sample: random digit dialing with
Analysis: conjoint analysis, regression
ter Mors et al. [40]:Effective communication about
complex environmental issues: perceived quality of
information about CCS depends on stakeholder
NL Quantitative: experiments
Information from different/dissimilar stakeholders
expected to be more balanced than info from one
single stakeholder
If a credible and a less credible stakeholder
communicate together, their respective reputations are
not affected
Samples: university students
Terwel and Daamen [17]:Initial public reactions to
carbon capture and storage (CCS): differentiating
general and local views
NL Quantitative: quasi-experiment
Initial reactions to local CCS plans not necessarily
dominated by NIMBY sentiments
Onsite residents put greater emphasis on risks to local
Trust in government indirectly affects attitude towards
CCS, no effect of concern about climate change
Sample: general public convenience
Terwel et al. [44]:It's not only about safety: Beliefs and
attitudes of 811 local residents regarding a CCS project
in Barendrecht
NL Quantitative: phone survey
Most residents were indeed opposed to the CCS
project, and the issue was important for them
Predictors of attitude: Perceived safety of CO
trust in decision makers, anticipated fall in property
value, inuence of Barendrecht residents, perceived
fairness of decision-making process, inuence of Shell
Sample: residents of Barendrecht
Analysis: frequencies and regression
Terwel et al. [18]:Competence-based and integrity-
based trust as predictors of acceptance of carbon
dioxide capture and storage (CCS)
NL Quantitative: experiments
Stakeholder positions about CCS inuence risk and
benet perceptions differently, depending on type of
trust (integrity-based or competence-based)
Stakeholder position adopted when competence-based
trust is high
Opposite position than that of stakeholder adopted
when integrity-based trust is low
Samples: university students
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 861
Table A2 (continued )
Study Country Method Key ndings
Terwel et al. [42]:How organizational motives and
communications affect public trust in organizations:
the case of CCS
NL Quantitative: experiments
Motives ascribed to a stakeholder mediate trust in that
When stakeholder argues in favor of CCS, congruence
between communication and inferred motives is
predictive of trust, not message content alone
Samples: university students
Terwel et al. [43]:Voice in political decision-making: the
effect of group voice on perceived trustworthiness of
decision makers and subsequent acceptance of
NL Quantitative: experiments
Procedural information is used to judge
trustworthiness of decision-makers; higher acceptance
of outcome if decision-maker is trusted.
The mere presence of group voice affects reactions to
authorities and their decisions, even when people are
not involved themselves.
Equal treatment of different groups more important
than giving specic groups a voice
Samples: university students
Tokushige et al. [49]:Public acceptance and risk-benet
perception of CO
geological storage for global
warming mitigation in Japan
JP Quantitative: survey
92% of variance in attitude could be explained with
risk and benet perceptions
Benet perception and acceptance increased after
information provision, risk perception decreased
In comparison to nuclear power, CCS loads much lower
on the dread factor and much higher on the unknown
factor within the psychometric paradigm; additional
information reduces dread dimension, but not
unknown dimension
Sample: university students
Analysis: factor analysis
Tokushige et al. [49]:Public perceptions on the
acceptance of geological storage of CO
information inuencing the acceptance
JP Quantitative: survey
83% explained variance in acceptance with risk
perception, benet perception, trust, perception of
human interference with regard to global warming
and with regard to CCS
Largest inuence: benet perception
Main concerns of people with high risk perception:
leakage and earthquakes
Information on natural analogues decreased risk
perception, increased acceptance; information on eld
demonstrations had little inuence
Sample: university students
Analysis: path analysis
Wallquist et al. [56]:Public acceptance of CCS system
elements: a conjoint measurement
CH Quantitative: conjoint study
All 3 factors (plant, storage, pipeline) had main effect
on acceptance
Pipeline most important, then plant, then storage
Participants could be clustered into 3 groups, each
focusing on one aspect (plant/storage/pipeline)
NIMBY effect disappeared, if CO
source was a biogas
power plant
Sample: online panel of research
Wallquist et al. [50]:Adapting communication to the
public's intuitive understanding of CCS
CH Quantitative: experiments
Follow-up mail survey: more detailed information led
to lower risk perception, higher benet perception,
lower sustainability concerns
Lab study: Information on reservoir pressure increased
risk perception and decreased benet perception;
information on the liquid form of CO
in the reservoir
and the role of CCS as a bridging technology decreased
risk perception and increased benet perception
Samples: respondents from a previous
survey (mail survey experiment) and
university students (lab experiment)
Wallquist et al. [20]:The role of convictions and trust for
public protest potential in the case of carbon dioxide
capture and storage (CCS)
CH Quantitative: survey
Inuence of risk perception on acceptance (protest
potential) larger than in other studies
Tampering with the subsurfacebest predictor for risk
and benet perception
Value conict between cutting emissionsand
tampering with the subsurface: both positively
correlated, but opposite effects on benet perception
Trust not signicant for risk perception perhaps
because stakeholder positions are still unknown
Sample: random phone book sample
Analysis: structural equation
Wallquist et al. [36]:Impact of knowledge and
misconceptions on benet and risk perception of CCS
CH Quantitative: survey
Knowledge: 36% had heard of CCS, some
misconceptions widespread
Risk perception: Strongest predictors are sustainability
concerns, concerns about leakage and about reservoir
Benet perception: Sustainability concerns strongest
Sample: random phone book sample
Analysis: regression
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863862
[1] International Energy Agency. Tracking clean energy progress 2013. Paris,
France; 2013.
[2] International Energy Agency. Energy technology perspectives. Paris, France;
[3] Wüstenhagen R, Wolsink M, Bürer MJ. Social acceptance of renewable energy
innovation: an introduction to the concept. Energy Policy 2007;35:268391.
[4] Huijts NMA, Molin EJE, Steg L. Psychological factors inuencing sustainable
energy technology acceptance: a review-based comprehensive framework.
Renew Sustain Energy Rev 2012;16:52531.
[5] Ajzen I. The theory of planned behavior. Organ Behav Hum Decis Process
[6] Schwartz SH. Normative inuences on altruism. Advances in experimental
social psychology. New York: Academic Press; 1977; 22179.
[7] Fischhoff B, Slovic P, Lichtenstein S, Read S, Combs B. How safe is safe enough?
A psychometric study of attitudes towards technological risks and benets
Policy Sci 1978;9:12752.
[8] Siegrist M. The inuence of trust and perceptions of risks and benets on the
acceptance of gene technology. Risk Anal 2000;20:195204.
[9] Siegrist M, Cvetkovich G, Roth C. Salient value similarity, social trust, and risk/
benet perception. Risk Anal 2000;20:35362.
[10] Gross C. Community perspectives of wind energy in Australia: the application
of a justice and community fairness framework to increase social acceptance.
Energy Policy 2007;35:272736.
[11] Slovic P, Finucane ML, Peters E, MacGregor DG. The affect heuristic. Eur J Oper
Res 2007;177:133352.
[12] Cropanzano R, Weiss HM, Hale JMS, Reb J. The structure of affect: Reconsider-
ing the relationship between negative and positive affectivity. J Manag
[13] Huijts NMA, Midden CJH, Meijnders AL. Social acceptance of carbon dioxide
storage. Energy Policy 2007;35:27809.
[14] Palmgren CR, Morgan GM, Bruine de Bruin W, Keith DW. Initial public
perceptions of deep geological and oceanic disposal of carbon dioxide. Environ
Sci Technol 2004;38:644150.
[15] Gough C, Taylor I, Shackley S. Burying carbon under the sea: an initial
exploration of public opinions. Energy Environ 2002;13:883900.
[16] Kraeusel J, Möst D. Carbon capture and storage on its way to large-scale
deployment: social acceptance and willingness to pay in Germany. Energy
Policy 2012;49:64251.
[17] Terwel BW, Daamen DDL. Initial public reactions to carbon capture and
storage (CCS): differentiating general and local views. Clim Policy
[18] Terwel BW, Harinck F, Ellemers N, Daamen DDL. Competence-based and
integrity-based trust as predictors of acceptance of carbon dioxide capture and
storage (CCS). Risk Anal 2009;29:112940.
[19] Tokushige K, Akimoto K, Tomoda T. Public perceptions on the acceptance of
geological storage of carbon dioxide and information inuencing the accep-
tance. Int J Greenh Gas Control 2007;1:10112.
[20] Wallquist L, Visschers VHM, Dohle S, Siegrist M. The role of convictions and
trust for public protest potential in the case of CCS. Hum Ecol Risk Assess
[21] Duan H. The public perspective of carbon capture and storage for CO
reductions in china. Energy Policy 2010;38:52819.
[22] de Best-Waldhober M, Daamen D, Ramirez AR, Faaij A, Hendriks C, de Visser E.
Informed public opinion in the Netherlands: evaluation of CO
capture and
storage technologies in comparison with other CO
mitigation options. Int J
Greenh Gas Control 2012;10:16980.
[23] Sharp JD, Jaccard MK, Keith DW. Anticipating public attitudes toward under-
ground CO
storage. Int J Greenh Gas Control 2009;3:64151.
[24] Anderson C, Schirmer J, Abjorensen N. Exploring CCS community acceptance
and public participation from a human and social capital perspective. Mitig
Adapt Strat Glob Change 2012;17:687706.
[25] Ashworth P, Bradbury J, Wade S, Feenstra CFJY, Greenberg S, Hund G, et al.
What's in store: lessons from implementing CCS. Int J Greenh Gas Control
[26] Oltra C, Upham P, Riesch H, Boso A, Brunsting S, Dütschke E, et al. Public
responses to CO
storage sites: lessons from ve European cases. Energy
Environ 2012;23:22748.
[27] Upham P, Roberts T. Public perceptions of CCS: emergent themes in pan-
European focus groups and implications for communications. Int J Greenh Gas
Control 2011;5:135967.
[28] Wong-Parodi G, Ray I. Community perceptions of carbon sequestration:
insights from California. Environ Res Lett 2009;4(3).
[29] Wong-Parodi G, Dowlatabadi H, McDaniels T, Isha X. Inuencing attitudes
toward carbon capture and sequestration: a social marketing approach.
Environ Sci Technol 2011;45:674351.
[30] de Best-Waldhober M, Daamen D, Faaij A. Informed and uninformed public
opinions on CO
capture and storage technologies in the Netherlands. Int J
Greenh Gas Control 2009;3:32232.
[31] Fleishman LA, De Bruin WB, Morgan MG. Informed public preferences for
electricity portfolios with CCS and other low-carbon technologies. Risk Anal
[32] de Best-Waldhober M, Brunsting S, Paukovic M. Public concepts of CCS:
understanding of the Dutch general public and its reection in the media. Int J
Greenh Gas Control 2012;11:S13947.
[33] L'Orange Seigo S, Wallquist L, Dohle S, Siegrist M. Communication of CCS
monitoring activities may not have a reassuring effect on the public. Int J
Greenh Gas Control 2011;5:16749.
[34] Moutenet J-P, Bédard K, Malo M. Public awareness and opinion on CCS in the
province of Québec, Canada. Greenh Gases Sci Technol 2012;2:12635.
[35] Oltra C, Sala R, Boso A. The inuence of information on individuals reaction to
CCS technologies. Results from an experimental online survey research.
Greenh Gases Sci Technol 2012;2:20915.
[36] Wallquist L, Visschers VHM, Siegrist M. Impact of knowledge and misconcep-
tions on benet and risk perception of ccs. Environ Sci Technol
[37] Midden CJH, Huijts NMA. The role of trust in the affective evaluation of novel
risks: the case of CO
storage. Risk Anal 2009;29:74351.
[38] Miller E, Bell L, Buys L. Public understanding of carbon sequestration in
Australia: socio-demographic predictors of knowledge, engagement and trust.
Aust J Emerg Technol Soc 2007;5:1533.
[39] Miller E, Summerville J, Buys L, Bell L. Initial public perceptions of carbon
geosequestration: implications for engagement and environmental risk com-
munication strategies. Int J Glob Env. Issues 2008:14764.
[40] ter Mors E, Weenig MWH, Ellemers N, Daamen DDL. Effective communication
about complex environmental issues: perceived quality of information about
carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS) depends on stakeholder collabora-
tion. J Environ Psychol 2010;30:34757 .
[41] Oltra C, Sala R, Sola R, Masso MD, Rowe G. Lay perceptions of carbon capture
and storage technology. Int J Greenh Gas Control 2010;4:698706.
[42] Terwel BW, Harinck F, Ellemers N, Daamen DDL. How organizational motives
and communications affect public trust in organizations: the case of carbon
dioxide capture and storage. J Environ Psychol 2009;29:2909.
[43] Terwel BW, Harinck F, Ellemers N, Daamen DDL. Voice in political decision-
making: the effect of group voice on perceived trustworthiness of decision
makers and subsequent acceptance of decisions. J Exp Psychol-Appl
[44] Terwel BW, ter Mors E, Daamen DDL. It's not only about safety: beliefs and
attitudes of 811 local residents regarding a ccs project in Barendrecht. Int J
Greenh Gas Control 2012;9:4151.
[45] Earle TC, Cvetkovich GT. Social trust: toward a cosmopolitan society. West-
port: Praeger; 1995.
[46] Ashworth P, Pisarski A, Thambimuthu K. Public acceptance of carbon dioxide
capture and storage in a proposed demonstration area. Proc Inst Mech Eng
Part A J Power Energy 2009;223:299304.
[47] L'Orange Seigo S, Dohle S, Siegrist M. The effect of gures in CCS communica-
tion. Int J Greenh Gas Control 2013;16:8390.
[48] Shackley S, McLachlan C, Gough C. The public perception of carbon dioxide
capture and storage in the UK: results from focus groups and a survey. Clim
Policy 2005;4:37798.
[49] Tokushige K, Akimoto K, Tomoda T. Public acceptance and risk-benet
perception of CO
geological storage for global warming mitigation in Japan.
Mitig Adapt Strat Glob Change 2007;12:123751.
[50] Wallquist L, Visschers VHM, Dohle S, Siegrist M. Adapting communication to
the public's intuitive understanding of CCS. Greenh Gases Sci Technol
[51] Wallquist L, Visschers VHM, Siegrist M. Lay concepts on CCS deployment in
Switzerland based on qualitative interviews. Int J Greenh Gas Control
[52] Carley SR, Krause RM, Warren DC, Rupp JA, Graham JD. Early public
impressions of terrestrial carbon capture and storage in a coal-intensive state.
Environ Sci Technol 2012;46:708693.
[53] Ha-Duong M, Nadai A, Campos AS. A survey on the public perception of CCS in
France. Int J Greenh Gas Control 2009;3:63340.
[54] Reiner DM, Curry TE, De Figueiredo MA, Herzog HJ, Ansolabehere SD, Itaoka K,
et al. American exceptionalism? Similarities and differences in national
attitudes toward energy policy and global warming Environ Sci Technol
[55] Sjöberg L. Perceived risk and tampering with nature. J Risk Res
[56] Wallquist L, L'Orange Seigo S, Visschers VHM, Siegrist M. Public acceptance of
CCS system elements: a conjoint measurement. Int J Greenh Gas Control
[57] Visschers VHM, Keller C, Siegrist M. Climate change benets and energy
supply benets as determinants of acceptance of nuclear power stations:
investigating an explanatory model. Energy Policy 2011;39:36219.
[58] Visschers VHM, Siegrist M. Fair play in energy policy decisions: procedural
fairness, outcome fairness and acceptance of the decision to rebuild nuclear
power plants. Energy Policy 2012;46:292300.
[59] Kasperson RE, Renn O, Slovic P, Brown HS, Emel J, Goble R, et al. The social
amplication of risk: a conceptual framework. Risk Anal 1988;8:17787.
[60] Kasperson JX, Kasperson RE, Pidgeon N, Slovic P. The social amplication of
risk: assessing fteen years of research and theory. The social amplication of
risk. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press; 2003; 1346.
S. L'Orange Seigo et al. / Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 38 (2014) 848863 863
... Additionally, Offermann-van Heek et al. (2018) uncovered a correlation between trust in the credibility of different information sources, and the perception of plastic CCU products. Finally, for the acceptance of CCS as a related technology the trust in relevant stakeholders has been found to be essential (e.g., L'Orange Seigo et al., 2014;Terwel et al., 2009;Williams et al., 2021). Laypeople trusted industry and government least and science and research institutions most (L'Orange Seigo et al., 2014;Williams et al., 2021). ...
... Finally, for the acceptance of CCS as a related technology the trust in relevant stakeholders has been found to be essential (e.g., L'Orange Seigo et al., 2014;Terwel et al., 2009;Williams et al., 2021). Laypeople trusted industry and government least and science and research institutions most (L'Orange Seigo et al., 2014;Williams et al., 2021). In the case of CCU the trust in the source of the communication influenced both the trust in CCU labels as source of information, as well as the intention to buy CCU products . ...
... Our results confirm that acceptance increases when there is more trust in the relevant actors (e.g., Huijts et al., 2012;Slovic, 1993). This relationship, although indirectly through risk perception, has also been found for CCS (L'Orange Seigo et al., 2014). For CCU, no directly comparable results exist yet. ...
Full-text available
Climate change is a constant global challenge. An approach to help mitigate climate change is carbon capture and utilization (CCU), in which captured CO2 is reused as raw material for consumer products. Because innovations like CCU are unfamiliar to the general public, their communication is critical for a successful rollout. To date, sustainability innovation research has largely neglected the empirical study of communication. The present study contributes to studying the information and communication needs of laypeople based on perceptions and acceptance patterns for CCU by focusing on acceptance profiles for CCU-based insulation boards. In an empirical two-step approach, a qualitative interview prestudy was followed by a quantitative questionnaire measurement (N = 643). Using k-means clustering, the respondents were divided into three acceptance groups: rejecters (15%), tentative accepters (51%), and strong accepters (34%). Analysis showed that regarding their demographics and personality traits, tentative accepters and rejecters were similar. All segments trusted science and health experts best, and only the rejecters distrusted some specific actors. Information on the product’s risks and functional properties was most important for all acceptance groups. Based on the study’s insights, both general and targeted managerial communication and policy guidelines were formulated.
... Tcvetkov et al. (2019) and Whitmarsh et al. (2019) reported that public awareness with respect to CCS technology is very poor, hence, this might impact its full implementation [ 204 , 205 ]. Knowledge of a new technology and its operation could influence the acceptance [205][206][207]. However, innovative technologies are usually faced with distrust by members of the general public and therefore, acceptance is often not guaranteed [ 206,207 ]. ...
... Knowledge of a new technology and its operation could influence the acceptance [205][206][207]. However, innovative technologies are usually faced with distrust by members of the general public and therefore, acceptance is often not guaranteed [ 206,207 ]. Thus, it is important to increase the level of awareness of the public via the following recommendations: (i) presentation of novel technologies to preschool children using comics, pictures etc.; (ii) presentation of lectures to primary school pupils, high school students and students at institutions of higher learnings (IHLs) on environmental matters and means of mitigating them; (iii) organizing conferences on the novel technology on combating climate change and bringing experts together to discuss mitigating measures and (iv) incorporating modules on environmental issues and mitigative measures in all the course contents of all programs at various IHLs [ 207 ]. ...
Full-text available
The contribution of greenhouse gas and anthropogenic CO2 to climate change is an undeniably issue that needs urgent attention from the environmental point of view. Global warming, a consequence of continued CO2 emissions will gradually result in ecosystem disruption and drought. With the increasing problem of greenhouse gas (GHG) and the established environmentally unfriendly consequences associated with it, carbon capture and storage (CCS) was proposed as a measure to successfully reduce carbon footprints and a process of choice in proffering solutions to this challenge. To meet the Paris agreement's target of maintaining the global temperature rise below 2 °C necessitates the capture and removal of up to 20 Gt CO2 per annum by the end of the century. However, going by the current global CO2 capture and storage capacity of 0.0385 Gt CO2/annum (including the current direct air capture (DAC) capacity of 9,000 tons CO2/annum), it will take close to 21,000 years to achieve this set goal. Hence, the need to adopt sustainable low-temperature sorbent technology with efficient adsorption capabilities that will meet up with the bourgeoning operating cost and energy demand for DAC technology. In this review, sustainable and emerging adsorbent materials and technologies employed in carbon capture and storage were highlighted. Also, economic, and environmental benefits and public perception of carbon capture technology were enumerated.
... The considerable quantities of hydrogen required for the decarbonization of the thermo-electric generation sector make the use of "blue hydrogen" inevitable, through the steam reforming process coupled with CO 2 capture techniques. Given the characteristics of current CCS techniques [16,17], it seems sensible to think of a centralized production system (higher volumes and lower capture costs). ...
Full-text available
The article reviews gas turbine combustion technologies focusing on their current ability to operate with hydrogen enriched natural gas up to 100% H2 . The aim is to provide a picture of the most promising fuel-flexible and clean combustion technologies, the object of current research and development. The use of hydrogen in the gas turbine power generation sector is initially motivated, highlighting both its decarbonisation and electric grid stability objectives; moreover, the state-of-the-art of hydrogen-blend gas turbines and their 2024 and 2030 targets are reported in terms of some key performance indicators. Then, the changes in combustion characteristics due to the hydrogen enrichment of natural gas blends are briefly described, from their enhanced reactivity to their pollutant emissions. Finally, gas turbine combustion strategies, both already commercially available (mostly based on aerodynamic flame stabilisation, self-ignition, and staging) or still under development (like the micro-mixing and the exhaust gas recirculation concepts), are described.
... Carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) is a process of capturing CO 2 from industrial sources, treating and transporting to a suitable storage location (Seigo et al., 2014). CCUS is expected to play an important role in meeting the global warming targets set at COP21. ...
Calcium carbide residue (CCR) is a waste obtained from the production of acetylene gas by the hydration reaction of calcium carbide. This residue is generated in large quantities annually and requires appropriate disposal. The main composition of the residue is calcium hydroxide (Ca(OH)2). Ca(OH)2 can react with CO2 gas and form CaCO3 particles. This process is well known but not very attractive since Ca(OH)2 is obtained from limestone using an energy-intensive thermal conversion process. This paper examined the synthesis of CaCO3 from CCR solutions by capturing CO2 with the aid of triethanolamine (TEA) solutions at doses of 0, 5, 10 and 20% w/w. The precipitated CaCO3 was characterized, and the application of CaCO3 as a filler in epoxy resin was tested. The results showed that the precipitated CaCO3 was mainly calcite, with a 76.6% yield. Cubic calcite was primarily obtained in TEA solutions, whereas small and agglomerated spherical vaterite and cubic calcite particles were formed in non-TEA solutions. The CaCO3-filled epoxy composites showed higher compressive strength than the neat resin. However, the transparency of specimen plates was reduced. These results can serve as guidelines for the application of CCR slurry filtrate obtained from the sedimentation ponds of acetylene plants and help to reduce the amount of wastewater that needs to be treated. CO2 gas from industrial flue gas combined with TEA solution could be applied to precipitate CaCO3 for carbon-neutral manufacturing.
... BECCS combines two technologies -carbon capture and storage (CCS) and bioenergy -and they each face public support challenges. The safety of CO 2 transport and storage is consistently raised as a public concern [21,22], frequently compared to radioactive waste disposal [23], and people living close to CO 2 storage sites perceive risks more acutely [24,25]. In their study of public perception of CCS across five countries, Whitmarsh et al [26] found nationality to be the leading determinant of support, followed by proximity to the project, with the greatest public backing in the UK, where CO 2 storage options exist offshore. ...
Full-text available
Bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) features in global scale assessments of climate mitigation, but with limited exploration of how and where the technology could be deployed. BECCS is unlikely to perform a major role in national strategies whilst key aspects of deployment and public concerns are unaddressed, as happened with fracking. Since public understanding of the technology is limited, there is a crucial role for the news media in facilitating greater public discussion and understanding of BECCS. Here, a news media analysis of both national and regional newspapers explores the 'storylines' which frame the public debate on BECCS in the UK, and the coalitions of actors involved in presenting them. Several storylines present a positive framing of BECCS as Necessary and an Opportunity, particularly in regional newspapers of Yorkshire and the Humber where Drax's biomass power station is located. The Anchor for transition storyline describes the regional socioeconomic opportunity of Drax's proposed BECCS project. However, this pro-BECCS coalition is undermined by other storylines that frame BECCS as Dangerous and Overhyped. To achieve discursive dominance, facilitating social acceptance and legitimacy for the technology, the positive framing of BECCS will require disarming storylines labelling BECCS as Worse than coal, No silver bullet, an Environmental disaster, and a Distraction. Our results suggest storyline resonance varies according to context, with notable differences between the public discourse at national and regional level; the Anchor for transition storyline resonates in an industrial community facing the socioeconomic challenges of decarbonisation.
Full-text available
Steel is a major and widely used construction material, including; sheets, coils, tubes, bars, rods, wires, wheels, and axles, which are used in infrastructure, transportation, industrial machinery, and consumer products. In addition, the large predicted growth in demand for steel when coupled with legislative requirements, and community drivers, to reduce CO2 emissions indicate that the steel industry faces the requirement to significantly further reduce emissions in the near future. Achieving net zero emissions for Australia’s communities and industries, including the steel industry, and including both domestic and export energy systems, is an immense challenge and a once-in-a-generation, globally significant, and nation-building opportunity. In this report I explain the critical role of carbon capture and storage for the steel industry, in the context for a nation to reach net zero emissions by 2050 at latest.
Heating contributes significant carbon emissions, especially in countries that rely heavily on natural gas as in the UK. Switching to low‐carbon heating is imperative for reaching international climate change targets. Understanding public perceptions and acceptance of low‐carbon heating systems is a crucial part of the successful rollout of alternatives. This review examines public perceptions of different low‐carbon heating technologies, namely heat pumps, hydrogen boilers, hybrid heating systems, and district heating, as well as social factors such as heat experiences. The review focuses on the UK as a case study, which is characterized by high reliance on natural gas for heating with little progress to decarbonize this sector to date. The next years will be critical regarding decision‐making on what low‐carbon heating technologies to pursue. The review shows there is generally low awareness amongst the general public of the need to decarbonize heating and of the low‐carbon heating alternatives. A number of factors have been identified as playing a crucial role in influencing public perceptions of all low‐carbon heating systems, such as installation and running cost, thermal comfort, disruption, level of control, and environmental benefits. However, the acceptance of a new heating system is not simply the sum of several factors, as people's priorities vary across different contexts and technologies. Further public engagement on low‐carbon heating and support (e.g., financial) is necessary for increasing uptake. Future research could explore comparisons between the different low‐carbon heating technologies, key enabling factors, trade‐offs, and concrete policy support. This article is categorized under: Climate and Environment > Net Zero Planning and Decarbonization Policy and Economics > Energy Transitions Human and Social Dimensions > Social Acceptance
Full-text available
Research dealing with various aspects of* the theory of planned behavior (Ajzen, 1985, 1987) is reviewed, and some unresolved issues are discussed. In broad terms, the theory is found to be well supported by empirical evidence. Intentions to perform behaviors of different kinds can be predicted with high accuracy from attitudes toward the behavior, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control; and these intentions, together with perceptions of behavioral control, account for considerable variance in actual behavior. Attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control are shown to be related to appropriate sets of salient behavioral, normative, and control beliefs about the behavior, but the exact nature of these relations is still uncertain. Expectancy— value formulations are found to be only partly successful in dealing with these relations. Optimal rescaling of expectancy and value measures is offered as a means of dealing with measurement limitations. Finally, inclusion of past behavior in the prediction equation is shown to provide a means of testing the theory*s sufficiency, another issue that remains unresolved. The limited available evidence concerning this question shows that the theory is predicting behavior quite well in comparison to the ceiling imposed by behavioral reliability.
The article presents the framework of social amplification of risk which integrates the technical assessment and the social experience of risk. Risk perception research has revealed that contextual factors shape individual risk estimations and evaluations. Identification of these factors, such as voluntariness, personal ability to influence risks, familiarity with the hazard, and catastrophic potential, provides useful information about the elements that individuals consider in constructing their interpretation of risks. In addition, analyses of people's heuristics in making inferences have shed some light on how risk information is generalized and evaluated intuitively. These psychological studies fail to explain, however, why individuals attend to certain characteristics of risks and ignore others. Furthermore, in focusing only on the individual as an information processor, these studies exclude from the analysis the social and cultural variance of risk interpretations. The social amplification framework postulates that the social and economic impacts of an adverse event are determined not only by the direct physical consequences of the event, but by the interaction of psychological, cultural, social, and institutional processes that amplify or attenuate public experience of risk and result in secondary impacts.
Carbon dioxide capture and storage (CCS) has been identified as a key technology for mitigating carbon emissions. However, CCS is still very much at a developmental stage and the full-scale projects required to test the technology have proven difficult to implement, with lack of societal acceptance considered a key contributing factor to this delay. This paper reports on a study that explored practices for effective communication, engagement strategies and activities in the context of five detailed CCS project case studies. The cases studied included Barendrecht, The Netherlands; Carson, USA; FutureGen, USA; ZeroGen, Australia; and the CO2CRC Otway project, Australia. Comparative analysis of these cases identified a series of factors including: the extent to which key government and project team members are aligned; deployment of communications experts as part of the project team from the outset; consideration of the social context; the degree of flexibility in the project; and competition involving community self-selection. The research team designated these “critical success factors” that, when present, seemed to enhance the effectiveness of best practices in engagement and contribute to successful project deployment in some cases. The paper proposes that project developers need to consider ways to maximise these critical factors as part of their project planning and implementation process. It also discusses best practices in stakeholder communication and engagement activities applicable to CCS projects.
Illustrations are an essential part of most CCS communication materials. This article looks at the role of illustrations in communication and education in general, and in CCS communication in particular. First, literature on multimedia learning is reviewed and general guidelines for designing graphical displays deduced. This is followed by a discussion of relevant mental models and their possible implementation in pictorial form. The authors then report on an interview study in which illustrations with various implementations of CCS mental models are compared. No major differences were found regarding understanding of CCS between the different illustrations. Graphical displays alone are not powerful enough to implicitly correct typical misconceptions about CCS. Such misconceptions should be stated explicitly, along with their correction.
The effective engagement of the public in carbon capture and storage (CCS) has become important in recent years. The most basic level of engagement is to inform the public about the characteristics of the technology. It is often assumed that providing more information will increase individuals' acceptance of the technology. However, social research on the effect of information on individuals' attitudes toward CCS has questioned this assumption. This paper reports the results of an experimental online survey aimed at analyzing how additional information on CCS affects individuals' reactions to CCS. Our findings suggest that information can influence individuals' reactions to CCS; specifically, those messages that link CCS to natural processes result in a slightly more positive reaction to CCS among individuals. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd