Tale i anledning Climit-summit

Statssekretær Kåre Fostervolds tale i anledning Climit-summit i Oslo 25.februar 2015.

Check against delivery

Thank you for inviting me to this event!

I hope the beautiful surroundings here in the outskirts of Oslo will foster good discussions about what is certainly an important topic.   This is the first time I am attending the CLIMIT summit. I am glad to see so many people are present here today.

Research and development in CCS is high on the agenda! I have been told that this is an all-time-high participation at the CLIMIT summit.

Most of us read about CCS achievements and research results in different reports and newsletters. Reading is good. It is important to be updated about the latest events.

But here at the CLIMIT summit, we have the chance to meet and talk to the people behind the reports.

At the Summit, those working in the laboratories or in the field can meet and share experiences and ideas. It is also an opportunity for us working with the framework for CCS research - both to learn and understand more.

The need for CCS, is well documented. The latest report from the IPCC is clear on the importance of CCS.

In every scenario oil and gas will continue to play an important part of the energy mix for the foreseeable future.   At the same time we need to strengthen the international commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

That is exactly where CCS technologies form a vital part of the solution. We need to establish demonstration projects that are viable and will develop technology and reduce costs. Reaching the two degree scenario will be much more expensive without a broad implementation of CCS.

The strategy/full scale

In our state budget proposal for 2015, we presented the Government’s strategy for carbon capture and storage.   I will spend a few minutes telling you about the strategy, including how CLIMIT plays an important part of this strategy.

As you all know, The Norwegian petroleum sector, has led the way in carbon capture and storage, with world leading facilities at the Sleipner and Snøhvit gas fields.

We aim for Norway to continue to be at the forefront in developing and promoting this technology.

The policies and measures presented in the strategy, include a wide range of activities, including research, development and demonstration - as well as efforts to promote this technology internationally.

But why did we feel the need to present a strategy?

In the Government’s political platform, CCS is singled out as an important climate mitigation technology.

The planning of Mongstad full scale, was discontinued in the fall of 2013, just before we took office.

The new Government needed to assess what options we had in order to support the deployment of large scale CCS projects in the coming years.

When shaping the strategy, we chose to apply a broad perspective. During the process, we had meetings with a variety of stakeholders, and we were assisted by Gassnova.

The policies and measures presented in the strategy can be ordered along three different paths:

One: Supporting the realization of full scale demonstration facilities

Two: Research, development and demonstration

And Three: Efforts to demonstrate CCS internationally

The work is based on our experience with CCS. I mentioned the two offshore fields Sleiper and Snøhvit. In addition, we have the world class test facility at Mongstad. (TCM)

These fields still represent the only full scale CCS projects in Europe that are up and running.

Full scale project in Norway

The Government’s political platform states the ambition of realizing at least one full scale CCS demonstration project by 2020.

This is of course a very challenging ambition.

A very clear recommendation from the CCS-expertise is that a full scale demo is necessary if we are to move up the learning curve, and down the cost curve.

Therefore, we continue to assess if a full scale project in Norway can be realized. Gassnova and Gassco will present their pre-feasibility studies in May.

We will first focus on realization of one initial demonstration facility.

We will approach existing and planned storage sites, rather than to start planning for a separate large storage site. But in the long term perspective, we must not be afraid to think big!

We will also investigate transport of CO2 by ship, which may be a cheaper alternative than by pipeline for a first project.


There is a slight problem. Or – actually – this is normally a good thing: We have few large sources of CO2 emissions in Norway.

Our power system is based mostly on hydropower, and our largest emissions points – the Mongstad refinery and the Kårstø gas processing plant, have already been thoroughly analysed with regard to CCS.

That leaves us with our industry production – aluminium, cement and fertilizers. Handling CO2-emissions from industry production seems more relevant at the moment, given an effort within our borders.

How to attract and incentivise the industry towards CCS, is a key question that we will investigate over the coming months.

In response to a request from the European Commission the Government has replied that Norway is willing to contribute to the funding of a European large-scale CCS project. We will participate in a collaboration project, involving at least two other European countries.

We are also seeking to ensure that Norwegian grants to support economic development in the EU – the EEA funds - can be spent on CCS projects in the EU. This is subject to ongoing negotiations.

R &D and TCM

Technological development, and cost reduction, are both key to ensure large scale deployment of CCS technology.

We need policies and instruments to support demonstration of CCS technologies. Our main instrument in this regard is the Technology Center Mongstad. TCM is, as we have made clear in our strategy, a cornerstone of the Government’s efforts on CCS.

We are very pleased that TCM appears to be of international interest, and we are satisfied that Shell Cansolv are finding it useful to test their technology at TCM before they are moving on to Peterhead.   I want to commend the TCM and its partners, for what has been achieved. The test facility network, and cooperation with our partners in the US, represents an opportunity for knowledge sharing. This is absolutely essential, in order to lower costs and to spread the technology.


TCM is an arena for testing technology that is almost ready to be deployed industrially.

But the Government also keep a sustained effort on the earlier phases of research and development. This is vital if we are to find the most efficient technologies and solutions.

This means that we will continue to invest in the CLIMIT Programme and other R&D support schemes, as well as in international R&D collaboration.

CLIMIT has over many years been supporting the development of internationally leading Norwegian research institutions. The research centres BIGCCS and SUCCESS has also been part of this development. Through co-financing of R&D and demonstration projects, CLIMIT will continue to strengthen skills and experience in these institutions.

CLIMIT is an important catalyst for CCS research. Many projects that get support from CLIMIT would not be realised without the support. Governmental funding trigger quality research that benefits the society.

Good cooperation between CLIMIT and TCM is important. In that way, we can create synergy effects and make the most of our efforts in research, development and demonstration.

The activity level in CLIMIT is high, and competition for funding from the program is strong. We see that parts of the industry are more hesitant than before, but several industrial actors are still willing to dedicate resources to CCS R&D through CLIMIT.

The involvement of industry partners in projects is essential. Not only for funding, but for the quality and relevance of the R&D, for creating business opportunities, and eventually creating a market for CCS technology.

I don’t want to point out any particular CLIMIT projects as technology winners, but I do want to point out a couple of projects because of their industrial involvement and promising results.

The CLIMIT-project at Norcem, Brevik – in my own hometown – is a good example. The Heidelberg-owned cement plant has been testing several different technologies for CO2 capture, some of which was also tested at TCM.   Reinertsen in Trondheim is also doing a big and exciting project together with SINTEF. Palladium membranes separating hydrogen and CO2 are to be used in a module, which may be a big step towards commercialization of this pre-combustion technology.

CLIMIT has supported this development all the way from laboratory to pilot.

For CCS to reduce CO2-emissions substantially we need to get more technology out of the laboratories and into pilots and demonstration. Hence, a part of our strategy is looking into the capacity for CLIMIT to support larger projects.

I would like to commend the effort that the CLIMIT board, Gassnova and the Research Council of Norway are putting down in CLIMIT. We need to concentrate on the areas where most attention is needed, where the technology gap is largest, and where CLIMIT can make the best impact.

International perspective

Before summarizing, I want to elaborate on the international perspective of the Governments CCS strategy. All elements in our CCS efforts have an international perspective.

To realise its full potential as an essential mitigation option, it is important that many countries deploy CCS technologies.

We have to support technology development outside Norway. Support and participation from Norway may help facilitate foreign projects. Norwegian support for CCS projects internationally, will be done in collaboration with other countries and through existing programmes and institutions.

Norway is today engaged in CCS-projects in for example China and South Africa.

We know that many important countries give CCS a lot of attention. Both in China and in the European Union CCS is high on the agenda.

The assessments made in the context of the EU’s Roadmap for the transition to a competitive low carbon economy in 2050 and the Energy Roadmap 2050 see CCS as an important technology contributing to decarbonisation scenarios in the EU.

The EU framework programmes for research and innovation – the Horizon 2020 - is a very important arena to be part of. Norway has a leading role in two important initiatives that hopefully will end up being funded by Horizon 2020.

ECCSEL is a European collaboration aiming to share infrastructure for CCS research. We all know that this kind of infrastructure can be expensive; it makes good sense to share what we have between countries.

Another initiative is the ERA-NET Cofund CCS, we hope that this will trigger quality research on CCS across borders.

Two other CCS champions are the United States and Canada, where CO2 for enhanced oil recovery is a strong economic driver for CCS, and several projects are up and running or on their way.

There are a lot of interesting projects and technologies being developed, or already up and running, in the United States.

The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and the US Department of Energy are working together, within the frames of a Memorandum of Understanding, to find and trigger cooperation opportunities within CCS.

I am pleased to see that the US department of energy has found their way to the CLIMIT seminar this year.

  Participation in international cooperation on CCS R&D is given high priority and is an important supplement to national research efforts.

We are looking closer into the capacity for CLIMIT to support international cooperation to a greater extent.


Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to summarize.

Norway has contributed a lot to the global CCS community – and we will continue to do so in the future.  

I believe that our comprehensive strategy shows, that we pursue several paths in order to make sure this technology one day serves its rightful role.

I might represent a liberal party with a strong emphasis on the individual effort.

But when it comes to CCS – we are all in it together. We need a collective effort to make this technology work on the big scale!

Thank you for your attention!

Til toppen