On the shores of an island off the coast of the Norwegian North Sea, engineers are building a graveyard for unwanted greenhouse gases.
The future station is to pump tons of liquefied carbon dioxide taken from the top of factory stacks across Europe into the cavities deep under the sea floor.
The project in the western municipality of Oegaarden aims to prevent gas from entering the atmosphere and contributing to global warming.
It is “the world’s first open-access mode of transportation and storage infrastructure, allowing any emitter to capture their own carbon monoxide2 emissions to deliver that carbon dioxide2 “For handling, safe transportation, and then permanent storage,” project manager Safir Ofira told AFP.
As the planet struggles to meet its needs climate goalsSome climate experts see this technology, called carbon capture and storage, or CCS, as a way to partially reduce emissions from industries based on fossil fuels.
Norway is the largest producer of hydrocarbons in Western Europe, but it also boasts the best CO22 Storage prospects on the continent, especially in the depleted North Sea oil fields.
The government funded 80 percent of the infrastructure, and put 1.7 billion euros ($1.7 billion) on the table as part of a broader government plan to develop technology.
The cement plant and waste-to-energy plant in the Oslo region are set to emit carbon dioxide2 to the site.
But the original feature of the project is the commercial aspect: inviting foreign companies to send their own CO22 Contamination should be buried out of harm’s way.
Using CO2 capture and storage to reduce carbon pollution is not a new idea, but despite generous support, the technology never took off, mainly because it is so expensive.
One of the world’s largest carbon capture facilities, at the Petra Nova coal-fired plant in Texas, was shut down in 2020 because it wasn’t economical.
There are only a few dozen CCS projects operational worldwide, according to the industry-run CCS Global Institute.
But the failure to limit greenhouse gas emissions In line with the goals of the Paris Agreement, the massive influx of government subsidies has breathed new life into technology.
Energy giants Equinor, TotalEnergies and Shell have forged a partnership – dubbed Northern Lights – that will be the world’s first cross-border CO company.2 Transportation and warehousing service at launch scheduled for 2024.
The pipeline will inject liquefied carbon dioxide2 In geological pockets at a depth of 2,600 meters below the bottom of the oceanThe idea is that it will stay there forever.
On Monday, the Northern Lights partners announced their first cross-border trade agreement.
From 2025, 800,000 tons of CO2 will be guaranteed2 It is captured every year at a plant in the Netherlands owned by the Norwegian fertilizer company Yara, then shipped to Oygarden and stored there.
On Tuesday, two energy companies – Norwegian oil and gas giant Equinor and Germany’s Wintershall Dea – announced a project to take Carbon Dioxide Captured in Germany to the Norwegian naval storage site.
If confirmed, the partnership between Equinor and Wintershall Dea could include the construction of a 900 km (560 mi) pipeline connecting the CO22 An assembly facility in northern Germany with storage sites in Norway by 2032.
A similar project is already underway with Belgium.
Not an “appropriate solution”
In its first phase, the Aurora Borealis scheme will be able to process 1.5 million tons of carbon dioxide2 per year, and then between five and six million tons.
But that’s just a tiny fraction of annual carbon emissions across Europe.
The European Union released 3.7 billion tons of greenhouse gases in 2020, according to the European Environment Agency.
Many climate experts warn carbon Picking up is not a silver bullet for the climate crisis.
Critics warn that carbon dioxide capture and storage could prolong fossil fuel extraction as the world attempts to shift toward clean, renewable energy.
Halvard Ravand of Norway’s Greenpeace said the campaign group had always opposed the practice.
“In the beginning it was very easy to oppose all kinds of CCS (carbon capture and storage) and now due to the lack of climate action, the debate is certainly more difficult.”
“This money should instead be spent on developing (a) a suitable solution that we know (works) and can reduce electricity bills for ordinary people, such as home insulation or solar panels.”
© 2022 AFP
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