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Governing a Mirage? False Promises of Negative Emissions Technologies

Daniel Compagnon


By deconstructing the discourse on the inevitability of negative emissions technologies to meet the 2°C target contained in the Paris agreement, showing in particular how this technological promise is framed as a ‘technofix’, this paper challenges the literature actively promoting NETs. Not only is the promise refuted by the numerous problems generated by NETs implementation, but the risk of undermining ongoing mitigation efforts cannot be significantly reduced by governance designing. Alternative pathways for effective mitigation which rely on significant societal change are both possible and meaningful.

Daniel Compagnon is Professor of Political Science at Sciences Po Bordeaux, University of Bordeaux. For correspondence: <>. The author acknowledges the support of INOGOV, COST Action IS1309, which fully funded the workshop where this paper was originally presented and discussed.


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