Carbon capture network links world’s researchers for first time

Eight of the world’s largest test centres for carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology are forming the first ever international CCS network, it was announced today. The test centres are […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Eight of the world’s largest test centres for carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology are forming the first ever international CCS network, it was announced today.

The test centres are joining forces to try and catapult the technology so it can be brought to commercial markets.

CCS traps the carbon from power stations’ greenhouse gas emissions and is seen by some as a way to go on using fossil fuels without damaging the environment.

But researchers say the technology is being held back because new developments aren’t being shared. This could change with the new network, claims the head of a Norwegian test centre.

Norway has taken a strong lead in CCS technology, being home to the world’s largest facility for testing CO2 capture. The Mongstad Technology Centre (TCM, pictured) has two CCS plants capable of taking 80,000 tons of CO2 from the nearby refinery.

Tore Amundsen, TCM’s Chairman and chief executive of the Norwegian state CCS company Gassnova said: “Every day in test centres around the world, we see advancements in CCS technology with new experiences, lessons and solutions being developed. However, this knowledge is often not shared because there has been no appropriate forum for doing so. This network will change that for the benefit of everyone.”

The UK’s DOOSAN Power is another of the founding members of the Test Centre Network, along with two Alabama-based groups – the National Carbon Capture Center and Southern Company’s 25 megawatt CCS demonstration facility. Japan’s J-Power, Italian energy firm ENEL’s Engineering and Research group and German energy group E.ON are also members, with Canada’s SaskPower the latest to swell the CCS ranks.

The founders say the Network is open to more large CCS test centres and is publicly inviting them to join.