Carbon capture development on the Balkans marked a major milestone this month. One of the 17 recipients from the EU Innovation Fund’s $1.85 billion (EUR 1.8 billion) grant, announced last week is ANRAV project – the first full-chain carbon capture and storage project in the Balkans.
The carbon capture project will receive $194 million (EUR 190 million) in funding from the Innovation Fund for the development of a large scale CO2 sequestration onshore and offshore pipeline system. It will link carbon dioxide capture facilities at the Devnya cement plant in northeastern Bulgaria with offshore permanent storage in the depleted Black Sea gas field of Galata.
The Devnya Cement facilities will have a capturing capacity of 800,000 tons of CO2 per year, and are expected to commence operations in 2028. Devnya Cement is HeidelbergCement’s Bulgarian subsidiary and the project will be carried out by oil and gas company Petroceltic from Ireland.
The carbon capture infrastructure is also planned to serve other facilities in the Varna region, and according to the European Commission, is set to become a carbon capture cluster for Bulgaria and neighboring regions in Romania and Greece.
“HeidelbergCement is rapidly progressing on a number of large-scale carbon capture initiatives globally, covering a range of promising options for both utilization and storage. ANRAV project now has the potential to pave the way for CCUS in Eastern Europe as well,” said Chairman of the Managing Board, Dominik von Achten.
This year’s disbursement round of the Innovation Fund has increased by 60% compared to last year which is a major boost for decarbonization projects and companies in Europe.
The selected winners this year cover hard-to-abate industries like cement, chemicals and fuel refineries from nine EU countries and will aim to help the EU’s region reduce its overall emissions by 2030.