Norway approves historical billion-kroner eco investment in CO2 management

OldedalenLate April in Oldedalen. Photo: Laura B / Unsplash
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The Norwegian government plans to initially carry out the capture and storage of CO2 at Norcem’s cement factory in Brevik. Still, it also has plans to support the capture of CO2 at Fortum’s facilities.

“This is the largest climate project in the Norwegian industry. With this, we cut emissions, not development,” Minister of Petroleum and Energy Tina Bru (H) noted.

She presented the plan on Monday, together with Prime Minister Erna Solberg (H), Minister of Climate and Environment Sveinung Rotevatn (V), and Minister of Children and Family Affairs Kjell Ingolf Ropstad (KrF).

“The government first proposes to carry out the capture of CO2 at Norcem’s cement factory in Brevik,” the government wrote in a press release.

“Northern Lights”

The government also plans to support the capture of CO2 at Fortum Oslo Varme’s waste management facility in Oslo.

However, the project must first obtain sufficient self-financed funding, EU funding, or funding from other sources, the government warned.

“For the project to be a climate success (story) for the future, other countries must also use the technology. That is one of the reasons why we demand that others also contribute financially,” Solberg noted.

The plan, which the government has chosen to call “Langskip,” also includes support for the transport and storage “Northern Lights” project, a collaboration between Equinor, Shell, and Total.

The “Northern Lights” project will transport liquid CO2 by ship from the capture facilities to a reception terminal in Øygarden in Western Norway.

From there, CO2 will be pumped through pipes to a warehouse under the seabed.

Expensive price tag

Including Norcem, Fortum Oslo Varme, and Northern Lights, total investments are estimated at NOK 17.1 billion.

Operating costs for ten years of operations are estimated at NOK 8 billion.

A total cost estimate is thus NOK 25.1 billion if Fortum is also developed.

The project will receive state support in line with the negotiated agreements.

The state’s part of these costs is estimated at NOK 16.8 billion.

“Even though we did not receive the full funding now, it is positive that the government is also willing to contribute to our project with a concrete and significant amount – NOK 3 billion,” Fortum Oslo Varme’s CCS director Jannicke Gerner Bjerkås told news bureau NTB.

“This means that we get a real opportunity to realize the project, and we will seize that opportunity. We will now continue to work to obtain the remaining funding, primarily via the EU,” Bjerkås added.

The Paris Agreement

Norway has committed itself to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50 to 55% by 2030.

“For the world to achieve the Paris Agreement’s goals, we must capture and store CO2 on a large scale,” Rotevatn noted.

“Not all emissions can be cut by using renewable energy. In several industrial processes, such as cement production, CO2 capture and storage is the only technology that can cut emissions,” he said.

Moon landing

The investment decision came after a full 13 years of a political tug-of-war, failed plans, studies, and postponements.

It began in 2007 when the then Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg (AP) launched what he called “our moon landing” in his New Year’s speech, a full-scale facility for capturing and storing CO2 at Mongstad.

However, that project crash-landed in 2013.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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