The quest for producing cost-effective and efficient adsorbents for CO 2 capture has received enormous attention in recent times. Biomass-derived porous carbons are considered to be the most preferred adsorbent materials for CO 2 capture owing to their excellent textural properties, tunable porosity and low cost. Different type of activation processes including solid-state activation possess generate appropriate morphology and other physico-chemical properties in these materials which enable them to act as effective adsorbents for CO 2 capture. In this review, the key scientific results from published literature have been consolidated and critical commentary has been provided to give a broad insight into the production of biochar and activated porous carbons and their application in CO 2 capture. A thorough review of the mechanism of pyrolysis for cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin has been presented in detail. The ability of different activating agents to produce activated porous carbons has been discussed. A summary of the application of biochar and activated porous carbons for CO 2 capture has been included. The review concludes with an overview of future outlook and potential research direction that could be undertaken for advancing the utilization of biomass-derived porous carbon materials for applications including CO 2 capture and energy storage.