The Energy Secretary has set out plans to make the UK a global market for Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage.

The CCUS vision is expected to boost the economy by £5billion a year by 2050, setting out how the UK transitions from early projects backed by government support, to becoming competitive in the market area by 2035.

It means that UK companies will compete to build carbon capture facilities and sell their services to the world.

Energy Security Secretary Claire Coutinho said:  "Thanks to the UK’s geology, skills and infrastructure, we are in a unique position to lead the way on carbon capture technologies.  

"That is why we’re making one of the biggest funding commitments in Europe on carbon capture that will cut emissions from our atmosphere, while unlocking investment, creating tens of thousands of jobs and growing the UK economy."

UK to take advantage of unique geography

The new vision is the latest step in delivering the £20billion investment in CCUS development, which aims to support 50,000 jobs by 2030, storing 20-30 million tonnes of CO2 per year by 2030.

The UK holds a significant advantage in CCUS technology thanks to its unique geology, skills and infrastructure with enough space under the North Sea for up to 78 billion tonnes of CO2.

Energy Efficiency and Green Finance Minister Lord Callanan said:    "We need pragmatic answers to the carbon challenge, and with our infrastructure, skills and geology, the UK is in pole position to take advantage of game-changing carbon capture and storage technology.      

"Today we’re publishing a blueprint to deliver a world-leading UK carbon capture industry, so that we have a competitive market in this exciting new technology by the middle of the next decade.    

"Backed by an unprecedented £20 billion investment, this is also a pivotal milestone in our journey to net zero that will drive economic growth, unlock investment and create tens of thousands of jobs in our industrial heartlands."

How will the UK create a competitive CCUS market?

The vision includes numerous measures to achieve the government's 2035 goal, including:

  • Moving to a competitive allocation process for carbon capture projects from 2027 to speed up the building of the UK’s CCUS sector  
  • Creating the conditions for projects that cannot transport CO2 by pipeline to enter the market from 2025 onwards, using other forms of transport such as ship, road and rail
  • Establishing a working group led by industry to identify and adopt solutions to reduce the cost of capturing CO2   

Ruth Herbert, CEO, Carbon Capture and Storage Association said: "We welcome the CCUS Vision published today, setting out a long-term strategy for the UK’s CCUS industry to be able to store over 50Mt a year by 2035 to support the decarbonisation of domestic industries and take advantage of export opportunities.

"It is great to see CO2 transport by ship, road and rail will be enabled from 2025 onwards, which will also support longer-term cross-border CO2 transport solutions."

Hedvig Ljungerud, NSTA Director of Strategy, said: "The energy transition and the path to net zero cannot succeed without carbon storage. As the regulator, we welcome today’s announcement and look forward to supporting this growing industry as it benefits the UK’s economy and the fight against climate change."

More like this…

View all