Norway‘s €2.1 billion (£1.9bn) carbon capture and storage (CCS) project has received the green light from the state aid regulator, the European Free Trade Association Surveillance Authority (ESA).
ESA ensures that Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway respect their obligations under the European Economic Area Agreement.
The authority notes it is the largest single-state aid award ever approved.
The project will allow the development of carbon capture facilities at a cement factory and a waste-to-energy plant.
The captured carbon dioxide is then to be transported and stored deep below the seabed in the North Sea – this part of the project is to be carried out by a joint venture between Shell, Total and Equinor, known as Northern Lights.
— ESA (@eftasurv) July 17, 2020
Bente Angell-Hansen, President of ESA, said: “This CCS project is a groundbreaking step towards tackling climate change, an issue that affects all of us.
“Protecting the environment is at the heart of the European agenda, and ESA is pleased to work with Norway and the European Commission to find ways to support this important goal.”
The Norwegian Government is expected to cover around 80% of the project’s estimated budget.