Porthos a step closer: four companies prepare CO2 capture

Project organisation Porthos has signed an agreement with four companies to work in parallel over the coming nine months on preparations for the capture, transport and storage of CO2. These companies are ExxonMobil, Shell, Air Liquide and Air Products. The capture is to take place at these refineries and hydrogen producers in Rotterdam. Transport to and storage beneath the North Sea is being prepared by Porthos, a project organisation from EBN, Gasunie and the Port of Rotterdam Authority.

CCS (Carbon Capture and Storage) is an important element in achieving the Dutch Climate Agreement objectives. CCS is also needed for the production of climate-neutral blue hydrogen, which will enable the hydrogen economy to get off the ground quickly.

Project organisation Porthos has now started with the FEED phase. Several millions of euros will be spent on technical preparations in this phase. That is why it is desirable that Porthos has a form of commitment from the business sector that they will actually use the CO2 infrastructure. This commitment has now been given by the four companies. This shows that there is more than sufficient interest from companies to supply CO2. The commitment from the business sector is, however, not binding: the companies can still withdraw, and other companies can join. At the same time, Porthos has committed itself to continuing preparations for the transport and storage of CO2 beneath the North Sea.

According to the timeframe, by September 2020 an SDE++ tender, the national programme for CO2 reduction, will start. SDE++ subsidy is required in order to bridge the difference in costs for ETS and the total costs for capture, transport and storage of CO2. In this way the companies can remain competitive while contributing to achieving the Dutch Climate Agreement objectives. Whether this subsidy will be awarded and how the financial outline will look for all involved parties is expected to be known by early 2021. Companies will then have to take the final decision to capture CO2 and deliver it to Porthos. It will be possible to store the first CO2 beneath the North Sea by end 2023.