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New report from ZERO: Policy instruments for large-scale CCS

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CCS has been met with some major setbacks lately, but it is not because of the lack of available technology. We know how to do it, but the problem seems to be on the policy-making side of CCS. ZERO published a report about policy instruments for large-scale CCS on the second day of ZERO13 in Oslo, which offers a thorough analysis of the policy-making instruments and suggestions on how to best implement CCS in Europe.

CCS session at ZERO13

In order to secure large-scale deployment of CCS, ZERO considers a mix of instruments indispensable: at the core, an instrument giving sufficient incentive to make business cases for CCS viable and trigger investments in deployment and innovation. For industry to embark on large-scale investments, a long-term predictable framework is needed. The best policy instruments for up-scaling of CCS deployment to emerge from this analysis are a CCS certificate system combined with an appropriate Emission Performance Standards (EPS). The certificate system finances the cost for CCS deployment through a cost-sharing model, while the EPS sets a very clear regulation, stopping investments in high-emission conventional solutions.

Gøril Andreassen, head of oil, gas and industry department in ZERO, says that the basis for certificate system is that those who take carbon up, have to put it back.

- The advantages are that politicians decide the volumes for CCS, and they are mandatory for companies. It places the obligation on the companies who add the cost of CCS on the price of energy. It gives the oil companies an incentive to implement a CCS value chain, and they will find the most cost efficient way to implement CCS. A proper design for this system is crucial, and ZERO presents a possible solution in this new report, she concludes.

Øyvind Vessia, Policy Officer for Renewable Energy and CCS in the European Commission, commented at the CCS session at ZERO13 that in the absence of a strong carbon price, additional instruments are needed and that the ZERO report on CCS policy instruments is very welcome.

Recommendations summary

  • A mandatory certificate system.

  • Obligate suppliers of fossil fuels to do CCS as a share of their supply.

  • Certificates given for production of clean products with CCS.

  • Flexibility for suppliers to do CCS themselves or to cooperate and trade CCS certificates from other projects.

  • Cooperation between countries, both developed and emerging countries.

  • Regulation for EPS for new and existing power plants and industry, in combination with the certificate system.

  • Government taking the post-storage, long-term liability for CO2, de-risking storage cost for all CCS projects. In the short term a special government involvement and funding focus is important to establish sufficient early stage storage capacity.

Link to the report:

Link to presentation at ZERO13:

Article in Teknisk Ukeblad (in Norwegian):


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