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Carbon capture faces high cost hurdles

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By illuminem briefings 🌎

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Financial Times or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Norway's Northern Lights project, a joint venture by Shell, Equinor, and TotalEnergies, aims to be the world's first system for cross-border transportation and storage of carbon dioxide emissions
• The project has drawn significant attention, with 6,000 visitors since 2021, and plans to launch next year.

🔭 The context: This carbon capture and storage (CCS) initiative involves capturing carbon from industrial emissions and storing it in depleted oil wells or aquifers
• While oil and gas companies are prominent in CCS technology development, the approach is criticized for potentially justifying continued fossil fuel use
• Investment in CCS reached $3bn in 2022, but current policies are deemed insufficient for meeting net-zero emissions goals.

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: CCS is viewed as essential for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, especially in heavy industries like cement and steel. However, the technology faces challenges in scale and cost-effectiveness
• The International Energy Agency (IEA) emphasizes the need for a billion tonnes of CO₂ capture by 2030 to achieve net-zero emissions

⏭️ What's next: CCS will be a key topic at the COP28 summit. Despite technological and investment challenges, companies are advancing CCS projects, with some, like Eni, focusing on using unused oil and gas reservoirs for storage
• Experts suggest that while CCS is important, reducing emissions through renewables and energy efficiency should be prioritized.

💬 One quote: "We should be trying to get rid of the CO₂ emissions without applying CCS and, once we’ve got to the stage where we can’t really substitute, then we’ve got to apply it." - Paul Fennell, Imperial College London

📈 One stat: Total investment in CCS projects reached a record $3 billion in 2022, but to meet net-zero goals, 1 billion tonnes of CO₂ need to be captured annually by 2030.

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