A ground-breaking new project that will prevent millions of tonnes of climate-warming carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere and permanently lock it up in undersea rock formations off the Scottish coast could be up and running within the next five years. The announcement comes as a special new charter is signed at Holyrood today. The agreement – between the newly formed North East Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage Alliance (Neccus) and the Scottish Government – outlines a joint commitment to decarbonise some of the country’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases. It also lays the foundations for establishing a new “carbon dioxide takeaway” industry that will capitalise on Scotland’s unique geology, world-leading offshore expertise and established oil and gas infrastructure. The Acorn carbon capture and storage scheme, based at St Fergus gas terminal near Peterhead, will be the first project taken forward under Neccus and could be operational by 2024. In its early stages it will have the capacity to deal with around half of all carbon dioxide emissions from industry in Scotland – around five million tonnes a year – with potential to accommodate up to 40 million tonnes when at full scale. Existing gas pipelines will be repurposed to transport carbon dioxide from industrial centres such as Grangemouth to Peterhead to be disposed off, while the town’s deep-water port will allow shipments to be brought in by sea. A plant will also be set up at the site to turn natural gas into cleaner hydrogen, which can be used to heat homes and businesses and power lorries, buses and trains while emitting only water as a byproduct.
Scotsman 27th Nov 2019 read more »