What is CCUS?

Carbon Capture, Usage and Storage, or CCUS, is essential technology to help the UK in its fight against climate change. It prevents carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere by capturing it, compressing it and transporting it for safe, permanent storage at carefully selected sites, such as depleted oil and gas reservoirs. As the technology matures, options for the re-use of the COwill be available.

CCUS can capture up to 90% of the CO2 emissions produced from industrial processes which use natural gas, such as fertiliser production. CCS will protect industrial jobs in the North West by helping the largest COemitters in the region reduce their carbon emissions.

CCUS for HyNet North West: A low cost, practical option

HyNet North West offers a low cost, practical and timely option for the UK’s first CCUS deployment through the re-use the Liverpool Bay oil and gas fields and related infrastructure.

It is a deliverable route to meet the UK Government’s ambition to deploy CCUS at scale in the UK during the 2030s as set out in the Clean Growth Strategy 2017. This position is supported by the UK Committee on Climate Change.

The site, owned by ENI, has an estimated CO2 storage capacity of 130 million tonnes, and gas extraction is likely to cease within the required project timeframe. Re-use of the site is a desirable, low cost option for CCUS for several reasons:-

  • it would avoid or postpone substantial decommissioning costs for the fields to be paid by government and industry;
  • it is closer to the shore compared to other potential CCS locations, which reduces costs;
  • early technical collaboration can maximise the value from re-use of infrastructure (e.g. pipeline and rigs).

Greater CO2 storage (up to 1 billion tonnes) is readily available in the wider area at the Morecambe Bay gas fields, which provide a long-term option for significant extension of the infrastructure by 2030. This resource could be used by other industry, power generators and in the production of low carbon transport fuels.

Key fact

A partnership has formed under HyNet North West Phase 1 to scope and design the CCUS North West option in more detail.

HyNet North West Project Partners

HyNet North West is being delivered by a consortium of partners, each of which will lead a different part of the project.
Progressive Energy is leading the development of the low carbon hydrogen production plant and the CO2 pipeline and Cadent is leading development of the hydrogen pipeline.