Businesses including Alstom, BOC, Drax, E.ON, Linde, National Grid and Progressive Energy are calling on the European Commission to delay a decision on carbon capture and storage (CCS) funding.
The Commission is expected to make a decision before the end of the year on up to €1.5 billion of funding for two or three CCS demonstration projects under the NER300 programme.
But rumours have been circulating that a number of the shortlisted projects are in jeopardy because their supporting governments have been unable to provide the necessary guarantees about the level of national funding that they would receive.
According to a statement from 17 organisations issued by the Carbon Capture Storage Association, only one CCS project may be selected for funding in the first round of the programme because of the uncertainty.
The signatories say that while they “fully understand the need for co-funding” and “clear commitments” from member states, these commitments are not entered into lightly and require close dialogue and partnership.
“We therefore urge the Commission to defer its selection of first tranche CCS projects for just a few months to allow this dialogue and negotiation to take place,” adds the statement.
The only alternative for projects not able to secure the necessary commitments in time would be to re-apply for the second tranche of funding, which says the statement would cause a “critical delay”.
If the EC ploughs ahead and funds only one project under the current funding round this would further delay any “meaningful” demonstration of CCS in Europe’s power sector, allowing it to fall behind internationally.
Just a small delay to the process could allow two more CCS projects onto the list and restore the “visionary ambition” of the NER programme, say the industry representatives.
For further information:
Uncertainty over EU funding for UK carbon capture projects (13-Nov)
2Co Energy drops Don Valley CCS project after failing to secure support (1-Nov)
Four shortlisted for UK government’s £1 billion CCS competition (31-Oct)
EC shortlists low-carbon projects for €1.5 billion investment (13-Jul)
Article source: http://www.energyefficiencynews.com/i/5549/