Storegga and Mitsui sign MoU on carbon capture plan
Plans to develop Europe’s first large-scale carbon capture facility in north east Scotland has moved closer following a deal between two key backers.
Storegga, the UK decarbonisation developer, and Mitsui & Co the Japanese trading and investment company, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to roll-out the project.
It has the potential to extract one million tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere annually and once developed it will provide a model for deploying carbon reversal technology elsewhere in the UK and internationally to materially support global net zero targets.
The facility will be a vital component of both meeting the UK and Scotland’s legally binding net zero targets by 2045 and 2050 respectively, and will also have the ability to serve international customers. Early customers of the facility will include Virgin Atlantic.
The captured CO2 will be transported to the Acorn Carbon Capture & Storage project for permanent geological storage in depleted North Sea oil and gas reservoirs and saline aquifers. The Acorn project is currently in the detailed engineering and design phase of development and is planned to be operational in the mid 2020’s.
Earlier this month Mitsui took a 15.4% share in Storegga Geotechnologies.
Nick Cooper, chief executive Officer at Storegga, said: “The UK’s decarbonisation knowledge and technology are highly attractive to the world’s leading international infrastructure developers.
“Investor appetite is strong but the path to decarbonisation is complex and will require the best minds from around the world, working together. The support of the UK government is vital.
“Offshore wind has been a great success for the UK as a result of its supportive regulatory framework; the UK has the opportunity to repeat this early mover success with Direct Air Capture.
“The international energy crisis has highlighted our need for enhanced self-reliance. Taking a leading position on direct air capture gives us the opportunity to develop our own decarbonisation industry, creating jobs along the supply chain and sharing these skills and knowledge with the world.
“Mitsui’s commitment says a lot about the quality of endeavour of the UK decarbonisation industry, and we look forward to working with the UK Government on a favourable regulatory regime that sets us up for future success.”
As part of the agreement, Mitsui will share their own technical knowledge and explore opportunities to partner businesses around the world. In addition to joint studies to commercialise DAC technology, Storegga and Mitsui will consider and assess the possibility for Mitsui to coinvest in and offtake credits from the DAC project further strengthening the strategic partnership between the two companies.
Storegga’s first DAC facility will be built in the North East of Scotland, close to the Acorn CO2 Transport and Storage system. In its initial phase, the business will sell carbon credits to large organisations to offset their carbon emissions. This will need to be supported by a regulated carbon credit mechanism.
The UK government is currently in consultation on the appropriate business models to support direct air capture in the UK.