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Decarbonization

Decarbonization can deliver up to $26 trillion in economic gains by 2030. BCG helps organizations deploy forward-thinking decarbonization solutions that achieve sustainability and boost long-term growth.

Companies are facing intense pressure to remove carbon from their operations, manufacturing, product designs, and supply chains. Government policies, such as the US Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 and the European Green Deal, offer meaningful incentives for large-scale decarbonization, conferring significant advantages for companies that act now—with potential for significant green growth.


BCG’s Approach to Decarbonization

Leading companies are proving that net zero decarbonization is a business opportunity that can bring sustainable competitive advantage. They aren’t just creating more value; they’re changing the game in their industries by showing the way to a profitable, decarbonized future.

At BCG, we take a highly sector- and company-specific approach to decarbonization, since each organization’s operating environment, assets, and regulatory constraints are unique. We help companies deploy decarbonization methods to reduce the carbon intensity of their operations and activities across the full value chain, and we help identify new business opportunities that can deliver sizable revenue streams.

We focus on a variety of high-impact decarbonization solutions, all of which represent both decarbonization levers and growth opportunities. They include:

    • Bioenergy. By utilizing organic materials and waste, bioenergy provides sustainable solutions to decarbonize operations. Bioenergy and biofuels can be integrated into existing infrastructure, enabling a smooth energy transition along the entire value chain—including feedstock growth and collection, biofuels and biogas refining, and marketing.
    • Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage (CCUS). The world can scale the deployment of CCUS to levels needed to reach net zero emissions by 2050 without breaking the bank. But it will require stakeholders across the value chain to collaborate on technology development, commercial partnerships, and capital-project execution.  
    • Carbon Removals. Carbon dioxide removal technologies are essential to delivering the “net” in net zero. These technologies will provide a balance to anthropogenic emissions that are hard to abate. Multiple stakeholders need to work together and use early-stage technologies to scale and support market development.
    • Energy Storage. Batteries and other forms of energy storage are crucial to the small- and large-scale deployment of renewable energy and decarbonization efforts worldwide. Energy storage offers substantial business opportunities for a wide range of market players—not just auto and utilities—and delivers a clear first-mover advantage.
    • Green Building Materials and Construction. Massive opportunities exist to reduce the carbon footprint in the way we build our buildings and infrastructure. However, prioritizing low-carbon materials—such as cement, concrete, steel, and ceramics—and decarbonizing the supply chain and the way we build requires strong cross-industry collaboration and forward-thinking investments. 
    • Green Building Technology and Renewable Heat. The built environment is responsible for approximately a third of global carbon emissions each year—and the majority of these emissions are released during the operation and maintenance phase of a building. Decarbonization solutions for buildings already exist, making net zero buildings an achievable goal; however, stakeholders must accelerate adoption and deployment. 
    • Hydrogen and E-fuels. By 2050, an estimated 380 million tons per year of decarbonized hydrogen and other low-carbon fuels will be required to limit global warming. To meet future demand, companies must overcome hurdles related to cost, infrastructure, supply chains, and feedstocks.  
    • Renewables and Low-carbon Solutions. The global energy landscape is undergoing a profound transformation. Developing and operating renewable energies at scale is key to realizing the decarbonization of societies. We support the shaping of renewable business opportunities with deep commercial, technical, and regulatory expertise to help companies identify the right strategies, investments, and operating models for low-carbon and renewable energy. 
    • Scope 2 Emissions. Organizations must reduce their Scope 2 emissions—indirect emissions, typically from the use of electricity—by procuring clean electricity in cost-effective ways. We help clients develop net zero strategies that substitute electrification for traditional fossil-fuel energy systems. 

    We also help clients deploy forward-thinking decarbonization methods in sustainable operations—which reduce emissions across the product life cycle, increase sustainability in procurement and supply chain, enhance operational efficiency, and help transition to the circular economy—as well as nature-based solutions.

    Our Clients’ Success in Decarbonization

    Our Insights on Decarbonization Solutions

    Building the Hydrogen Economy

    Hydrogen will be a key player in the transition to renewable energy sources. ENOWA’s Roland Kaeppner and BCG’s Maurice Berns describe the use cases and opportunities to develop hydrogen across industries.

    The Energy Transition in South Africa

    Learn how companies like Sasol can embark on innovative projects that drive change, including renewable energy and new financial strategies, to help the country reach it’s net-zero goals.

    Enabling the Future of the Energy Sector

    CEO of ACWA Power, Marco Arcelli, and BCG’s  Pattabi Seshadri explore the opportunities and challenges that come with renewable project development and discuss the role ACWA Power is playing in the future of the energy sector.

    Hydrogen Is the Answer

    Parker Meeks, CEO of Hyzon, explains why hydrogen is essential to decarbonization and what it will take to scale the needed infrastructure.

    Getting to 100% Renewable Energy

    Leaders must find a way to build renewable energy for the future while keeping the lights on today. A new mindset and new approaches are required to meet this challenge.


    Meet Our Decarbonization Consulting Leadership Team

    BCG’s decarbonization consulting team has deep expertise in accelerating the path to net zero decarbonization, deep decarbonization, industrial decarbonization, hydrogen, carbon capture, and biofuels. Here are some of our experts in decarbonization.

    The Sustainable Advantage: Insights on Creating Competitive Advantage Through Sustainability