Twelve corporations have been awarded a complete of 20 licenses to develop carbon dioxide (CO2) storage offshore, in Britain’s first licensing spherical for such initiatives, the North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) mentioned on Thursday.
Britain goals to make use of carbon seize and storage (CCS) expertise, which entails filtering planet-warming carbon from industrial smokestacks earlier than it hits the ambiance and storing it underground, to carry 20 million to 30 million tonnes of CO2 by 2030.
Injection into the primary storage websites, consisting of a mixture of depleted oil and fuel fields and porous rock formations, might begin inside six years, the NSTA mentioned, however first operators must acquire leases and approvals.
The brand new licenses complement a handful of different deliberate CCS initiatives that have been a part of a authorities pilot scheme and for which negotiations on industrial particulars are ongoing.
CCS expertise has struggled for years to attain industrial viability, however momentum is constructing as america’ Inflation Discount Act has elevated stress on European governments to assist vitality transition applied sciences.
Among the 13 areas initially provided have been cut up to succeed in 20, an NSTA spokesperson mentioned.
Nineteen corporations utilized for licenses.
Enquest was awarded 4 licenses, an organization spokesperson mentioned.
Neptune Power, which by 2030 plans to retailer extra carbon than it emits straight and not directly, was awarded three licenses, a spokesperson for the agency mentioned.
Spirit Power, whose largest shareholder is Centrica, was awarded one license, it mentioned. Perenco was additionally awarded licenses, an organization spokesperson mentioned.
The names of different profitable bidders can’t be introduced till they formally settle for the award, an NSTA spokesperson added. Eni and Equinor have mentioned they utilized, however didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark. Shell declined to remark.
Whereas CCS can assist carbon-heavy industries reduce their emissions, it has but to be deployed on a big scale wherever on this planet.
Britain’s greenhouse fuel emissions stood at round 417 million tonnes of CO2 equal in 2022.
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