Norway: Equinor, Shell and Total partner on massive CO₂ capture initiative


Equinor, Shell and Total have filed a proposal with Norway’s Ministry of Petroleum and Energy to invest in a carbon capture, storage and transportation project, Northern Lights.

The three parties plan to work with Norwegian authorities to conduct engineering studies and project planning, drill a confirmation well and develop necessary agreements as part of the project’s study phase.

A joint venture company will be established after the study phase and up to NOK 6.9 billion ($675 million) will be invested in the company.

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Phase 1 of the project includes capacity to transport, inject and store up to 1.5 million tonnes of CO2 per year. Once the CO2 is captured onshore by industrial CO2-emitters, Northern lights will be responsible for transport by ships, injection and permanent storage some 2,500 metres below the seabed.

The CO2 receiving terminal will be located at the premises of Naturgassparken industrial area in the municipality of Øygarden in Western Norway and will be remotely operated from Equinor.

Phase 1 is expected to be operational in 2024.

Anders Opedal, the executive vice president for technology, projects and drilling at Equinor, said: “The Northern Lights project could become the first step to develop a value chain for Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), which is vital to reach the global climate goals of the Paris Agreement. Development of CCS projects will also represent new activities and industrial opportunities for Norwegian and European industries.

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“This unique project opens for decarbonisation of industries with limited opportunities for CO2-reductions. It can be the first CO2 storage for Norwegian and European industries and can support goals to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050.”

“CCS is a crucial technology to help society and economies thrive through the energy transition. Shell is active in all parts of the CCS value chain and Northern Lights further strengthens our global CCS portfolio. We appreciate the leadership shown by the Norwegian Government to accelerate the development of CCS value chains and believe that the Northern Lights CO2 transport and storage solution has the potential to unlock investment in capture projects across Europe,” says Syrie Crouch, vice president for CCUS in Shell.