BP And Equinor Awarded Carbon Capture Licenses

BP And Equinor Awarded Carbon Capture Licenses
The North Sea Transition Authority has awarded two carbon storage licenses to BP and Equinor with an appraisal term of eight years.

The North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) has awarded two carbon storage licenses to BP and Equinor with an appraisal term of eight years.

The agreed work programs require the licensees to show progress in achieving milestones such as performing seismic surveys of the four proposed storage sites and drilling wells to acquire data before applying for a storage permit.   

The four separate storage sites are located around 43 miles off the coast of Humberside. Combined with the existing license granted for the Endurance carbon store, they could eventually contribute to the storage of up to 23 Mtpa of CO2 beneath the seabed. The government’s target for Carbon Capture, Usage, and Storage is to reach 20-30 Mtpa by 2030, and over 50 Mtpa by 2035.   

NSTA is now stewarding six CS licenses on the UKCS, having awarded five licenses since 2018 and agreed on a transfer of a sixth.   

Current project estimates indicate that the earliest injection from a CS project could come as soon as 2025 given the progress already seen in the HyNet, Northern Endurance Partnership’s East Coast Cluster, and V Net Zero Humber Cluster projects.    

“The NSTA is pleased to award these licenses which have the potential to make a significant contribution towards the government’s net zero targets,” Scott Robertson, NSTA Director of Operations, said.

“Carbon storage and low carbon gas production, alongside growth in hydrogen and renewable energy, are all key elements of the energy transition and a crucial part in tackling the climate emergency, but we know that time is short and real action must be taken rapidly, so we will work closely with bp and Equinor to ensure that milestones on this project are met, as we do with other projects across the North Sea,” added Robertson.

“Carbon capture provides a key opportunity for the future of the North Sea, as well as UK industries. We are determined to make the UK a world leader in this developing market and these licenses represent an important contribution to making that a reality,” Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Hands stated. 

“The North Sea Transition Authority’s decision to grant bp and Equinor carbon storage licenses is great news for the Humber, Teesside, and the East Coast Cluster, which represents almost 50 percent of the UK’s industrial cluster CO2 emissions,” Andy Lane, Northern Endurance Partnership Managing Director, claimed. ”This is another important milestone for the East Coast Cluster which will capture and safely store CO2 emissions from a wide range of industrial and power projects, protect and create thousands of jobs and help establish the Teesside and Humber regions as a globally-competitive climate-friendly hub for industry and innovation.”

“We're delighted these licenses were awarded to Equinor and bp by the North Sea Transition Authority. This is a major milestone for the East Coast Cluster project which will make a tangible impact on the UK's climate change ambitions,” Grete Tveit, Senior Vice President for Low Carbon Solutions, Equinor, said. “Delivered with our partners in the Humber, Teesside, and the Northern Endurance Partnership, the East Coast Cluster will not only establish the UK as a leader in the energy transition but will also secure and create tens of thousands of jobs and bring investment to local communities.”   

To contact the author, email bojan.lepic@rigzone.com

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