Recent advancements in sustainable upcycling of solid waste into porous carbons for carbon dioxide capture

Xiangzhou Yuan, Junyao Wang, Shuai Deng, Manu Suvarna, Xiaonan Wang, Wei Zhang, Sara Triana Hamilton, Ammar Alahmed, Aqil Jamal, Ah Hyung Alissa Park, Xiaotao Bi, Yong Sik Ok

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Carbon capture technologies have been extensively investigated as indispensable tools for reducing CO2 emissions. In particular, CO2 capture using solid waste-derived porous carbons (SWDPCs) has attracted significant research attention as one of the most promising and sustainable approaches to simultaneously mitigate climate change and address solid waste management challenges. Considerable research has recently been conducted on the thermal and chemical treatments of solid waste for upcycling into porous carbons (PCs) for effective and selective CO2 capture. In this review, we discuss the synergistic benefits of employing SWDPCs for CO2 capture and introduce innovative approaches for converting solid waste into PCs with the desired physical and chemical properties. The performance of SWDPCs for CO2 capture is comprehensively discussed in terms of the synthesis route, CO2 capture capacity, process cyclability, and sample optimization guided by machine learning. Furthermore, the mechanisms of CO2 capture on PCs are discussed based on pore structures and incorporated surface functional groups. The life-cycle environmental impact of the PCs synthesized from solid waste and their practical applications for CO2 capture are also evaluated. The overall environmental benefits of the proposed SWDPC-based CO2 capture approach are analyzed in relation to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Furthermore, the remaining challenges in upcycling solid waste into high-performance CO2 adsorbents are discussed, and potential solutions are proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112413
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jul

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd


  • Carbon neutral
  • Circular economy
  • Life-cycle assessment
  • Low carbon technology
  • Machine learning
  • Sustainable development goal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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