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Important milestone for CO₂ projects achieved

Numerous countries have agreed on allowing export of CO₂ for the purpose of geological storage offshore under the "London Protocol". The decision is an international breakthrough for capture, transport and storage of CO₂ (CCS) across borders and could possibly lead to a faster development of CCS as a climate technology.

On October 11th the parties to the London Protocol agreed on allowing temporary use of the changes to the protocol from 2009 which allow export of CO₂ for the purpose of storage offshore. The decision is an international breakthrough for capture, transport and transport of CO₂ across borders and could possibly lead to a faster development of CCS as a climate technology.

The proposal was submitted by the Netherlands and Norway in August and the United Kingdom endorsed it in October. The proposal got broad support during the meeting of the parties. Many parties pointed to the need for CCS to achieve the climate goals of the Paris Agreement. Sectors and industries that have few other options today to achieve big emission cuts were emphasized.

— This is a milestone in the work on full scale CCS in Norway. CCS cannot be imposed. We need to create this piece by piece, which this government has done. The possibility for CO₂ transport across borders is decisive for getting the Norwegian CO₂ storage site in the North Sea in place. Without global customers the tax payers would have to take the whole bill; a barrier that could stop the project. Being able to extend the full scale CCS project in accordance with international law gives the companies a completely different basis for the ambition on an infrastructure for transport and storage of CO₂ in the North Sea. This is an important condition for future financing models for CCS, says Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Kjell-Børge Freiberg.

— The  Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been clear on defining CCS as an important part of the solution to reach the climate goals in the Paris Agreement. The new agreement between the parties shows support for CCS as one of several necessary climate tools on the road to a low emission society in 2050. It is important to have an international framework that  contributes to the development of climate technology, says Minister of Climate and Environment, Ola Elvestuen.

Background:

The London Protocol is a global agreement which regulates dumping waste at sea. The amendment from 2009 that allows export of CO₂ for permanent storage purposes offshore will formally be implemented when 2/3 of the parties of the protocol have ratified it nationally. To date the protocol have 53 parties. Norway will continue to encourage the parties to the protocol to ratify the amendment so it can enter into force as soon as possible.

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