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Carbon Capture Key to Decarbonization By Offshore Energy and Maritime Sectors

Tuesday, 18 May 2021 -

Today's offshore energy and maritime news highlight how the maritime companies are working to minimize carbon emissions with sights set to net-zero by 2050 globally. Oslo-based Energy analyst, Rystad, has today focused on how offshore contractors are using carbon capture and storage (CCS) to reduce carbon emissions.

Firstly, maritime carbon capture and storage (CCS) involves the capture of waste carbon dioxide (CO2), transporting it to offshore storage sites, and depositing it in a way that it doesn’t re-enter the atmosphere.

The deposition of carbon deep underground as a means of decarbonization is a relatively new concept, but companies that deal in subsea, offshore wind, shipbuilding, and oil & gas sector have had tremendous pressure to use projects that minimize carbon emissions. And through carbon capture and storage, CO2 (the biggest contributor to global warming) is captured from industrial processes to prevent it from re-entering the atmosphere.

Rystad has further added that since governments and industries across the globe introduced CCS in offshore installations to reduce carbon emissions in 2011, the clean energy sector continues to experience a boom, with multinational agencies expected to use as much as $35 billion in capital spending on CCS projects in Europe alone between now 2021 and 2035. Moreover, a significant slice of this investment is expected to go to offshore contractors directly involved in decarbonization efforts.

Existing CCS Projects

In his report, Rystad said that several offshore companies such as Subsea 7, Technip FMC, Shell, Total, and Saipem are involved in the capture and storage of carbon dioxide in Norway’s heavy industry. And since transportation of CO2 in its form is hazardous, it is compressed into liquid form and shipped from West Norway to the North Sea for storage.

The analyst further identified similar CCS projects around Europe, with the majority of those in the UK, Denmark, and the Netherlands, and further projects underway in Italy. The biggest huddle faced so far, however, has been the installation of transport facilities, pipelines, construction, and storage facilities. But Rystad said the next couple of years, probably a timeline of five years, would see the completion and operation of these projects.

Call to Action

The main challenge with the already existing CCS projects has been the huge investment required for the maintenance of shipping infrastructure such as truck lines. But the analyst has called on the World’s most industrialized states to step up their funding efforts so as to speed up the realization of the net-zero carbon emissions globally by 2050.

Health and Safety Concerns

While mitigation of fossil fuel use is in line with the global climate conservation accord, lawmakers in scores of Europe (especially in the UK, Italy, and Norway) have had to amend safely laws that govern offshore energy industries. These laws are however particular to the installation that's dedicated to CCS. In the UK, for instance, the Offshore Installation safety case regulation requires that contractors submit structured and systematic approaches that can manage major hazards.

(Edited by: The Decision Maker team)


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