Cross-border, European CO2 transport and storage infrastructure: A real enabler for European decarbonisation

On 23 March 2021, the Zero Emissions Platform, Bellona Europa and Clean Air Task Force co-organised a webinar ‘Cross-border, European CO2 transport and storage infrastructure: A real enabler for European decarbonisation’. The focus of the webinar follows the revised Trans-European Networks for Energy (TEN-E) Regulation, presented by the European Commission in December 2020. At present, the revised regulation does not take into account CO2 storage and CO2 transport modalities other than pipeline. However, the large-scale deployment of cross-border, European CO2 transport and storage infrastructure is key for the EU to reach its 2050 target and is crucial to connect CO2 emitters to permanent geological storage of captured CO2. CO2 infrastructure can enable clean, competitive energy and industrial sectors, early large-scale clean hydrogen, and deliver significant volumes of carbon emission reductions and removals.

Webinar programme

Dr Graeme Sweeney, Chairman of ZEP opened the event by reiterating the importance of European CO2 transport and storage infrastructure – crucial to enable an industrial transition, which is just for society and can help keep European industries and regions competitive.

During his keynote speech, MEP Seán Kelly (EPP, IE) highlighted that “we need to broaden the cross border criteria in the TEN-E Regulation so that any project which is necessary for at least one of the energy infrastructure priority corridors and thematic areas should be eligible for PCI status. Without this, we could be in a situation where we exclude projects that contribute substantially to EU energy and climate targets.”

Lina Strandvåg Nagell, Sustainable Finance and Economy Manager at Bellona Europa, took a closer look at what the importance of TEN-E is, as well as the benefits available through Projects of Common Interest (PCI) status.

The setting the scene for the webinar and highlight on TEN-E was followed by short presentations from four panellists, which brought different perspectives on CO2 transport and storage infrastructure.

Rob van der Meer, Director EU Public Affairs at HeidelbergCement, discussed the different pathways for CO2 from sources such as cement plants to CCUS hubs, emphasising that time is of the essence for development of CO2 infrastructure.

Kim Bye Bruun, Communications and Government Relations Director at Northern Lights JV DA, brought the perspective of a company developing the world’s first open-source CO2 transport and storage infrastructure, and explains CO2 transport and storage at scale and how this can enable industrial decarbonisation.

Jacob Hartvig Simonsen, ARC CEO and spokesman of C4 (Carbon Capture Cluster Copenhagen), presented the plan for CO2 capture at the ARC Waste-to-Energy plant in Copenhagen, which has the potential to capture and store 500,000 tonnes of CO2 annually.

Stijn Santen, Senior Business Advisor CCS at EBN, outlined CO2 storage opportunities in The Netherlands and highlighted that while CO2 storage sites are unevenly distributed in Europe, a European cross-border CO2 transport and storage infrastructure will allow any CO2 emitter to have access to secure geological storage and decarbonise the industrial activity.

A panel discussion followed, moderated by Sonja van Renssen, Energy Monitor. Crucial topics that were addressed included:

  • Cross-border CO2 transport and storage infrastructure will enable CO2 emitters across Europe to connect to safe, geological storage, enabling a cost-efficient transition to a climate-neutral economy.
  • A revised TEN-E Regulation proposal needs to include both CO2 storage and all CO2 transport modalities – not only pipeline but also ship, truck, train, and barge.
  • There is a need to develop CO2 infrastructure now as it will also kick-start a clean hydrogen economy.

Lee Beck, CCUS Policy Innovation Director at Clean Air Task Force, summarised the crucial points and stressed that a revised TEN-E regulation that includes both CO2 storage and all modalities of CO2 transport – ship, barge, truck, and train, as well as pipeline – would ensure more certainty for investors

View the presentation slides from the webinar here.

Watch the recording below: