Fluxys, a natural gas transmission system operator based in Belgium, and international energy company Equinor have agreed to work on a large-scale infrastructure project that will export captured carbon to storage locations in the North Sea, from Belgium to Norway. The investment decision on the project is expected by 2025.
Carbon capture, transport and storage (CCS) is a technique aimed at significantly reducing CO2 emissions. The major joint project of Equinor and Fluxys will provide North-West Europe with a large-scale decarbonization solution. The two companies plan to launch a 620-mile CO2 export trunkline that will be operated by Equinor and that will transfer carbon dioxide to be stored safely and permanently under the sea in Norway. The pipeline will connect in the coastline Belgium village of Zeebrugge to an onshore carbon transmission site constructed and operated by Fluxys.
“With our partners, we can deliver an end-to-end CCS value chain,” said Grete Tveit, Equinor’s senior vice president for Low Carbon Solutions. “Equinor believes that CCS is vital to succeed with the energy transition and to reach net-zero by 2050.”
The pipeline will provide CO2 emitters in Belgium and the region with safe and reliable access to Norwegian carbon stores. Liquid carbon from neighboring sites could also be connected to Zeebrugge, as well as to the port of Dunkirk and other connections in countries in North-West Europe.
Equinor and Fluxys plan to have the project ready for commissioning before 2030. With a transport capacity of 20 to 40 million tonnes of CO2 annually, the pipeline has the potential to meet the CCS needs of many European companies in the industry. Fluxys and Equinor will be reaching out to major emitters to present the solution.
“We are delighted to launch the CO2 infrastructure project with Equinor,” said Fluxys’ CEO Pascal De Buck. “Together we offer strong and complementary know-how and expertise for providing a wide range of emitters in North-West Europe with a reliable and efficient carbon transmission and storage solution essential for achieving climate change objectives and ensuring the long-term viability of the economy.”
At the Reuters NEXT conference at the end of last year, Equinor’s Vice President for Global CCS Solutions Torbjørg Fossum said CCS services could break even within the next decade.
According to research by Rystad Energy, cumulative global carbon capture and storage spending is expected to reach $53 billion by 2025.