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Telling the Norwegian CCS Story, Part I: The Path for Sustainable and Emission Free Waste Management

I attended this morning the presentation given by Jannicke Bjerkas, organised by GCCSI. She highlighted the last update on the Special Report on the global warming of 1.5°C (IPCC) and the "rush" we are at the moment to reach the global emissions goals. The time to think on the best sectors to cut down CO2 emissions is gone and we have to do everything possible now in every sector. 2.2 billions/year of waste are produced and doubling towards 2025. Reusing and recycling is a good strategy to reduce waste production, perhaps some waste is not possible to be treated. The best management strategy for that kind of waste is incineration with energy recovery (WtE). WtE with CO2 capture has a potential of treating 400,000 ton CO2/year, expecting to increase in the coming years, and including 50% of Bio-CCS.


The city of Oslo is implementing a very ambitious plan for CO2 emissions reduction, aiming to cut down those by 50% in 2022. Oslo has been selected the Europe's Environmental Capital in 2019 and, together with Fortum, is owing the WtE facilities where a carbon capture system will be implemented. This facility shows the biggest district heating capacity, with 1.7 TWh/year and with electricity production of 150GWh/year. The CO2 capture system will use an amine-based solution. Compared to the Dutch WtE project, the carbon capture plant will run for the entire year and the project is on the FEED phase (to be delivered in August 2019). The financial decision will take place in 2020-2021 and the building phase will take 2-3 years.


The team is facing few challenges: Firstly, as they are still pioneers, that plant is more expensive that the ones in the future. However, it is proven that the technology works. The storage section is safe, and Equinor and other companies have worked for more than 20 years with this technology; Secondly, the storage facility has to be built, which future plants will not have to deal with; And thirdly, the business model is difficult to be balanced from an economic perspective, perhaps the environmental value must be included in the equation.


The team is working and cooperating with TCM to optimize the carbon capture system, based on new solvents and emerging technologies. As we have seen in our previous review 2014-TR04 [1] and the IEAGHG technical study ongoing "Further assessment of emerging technologies and their potential to reduce costs", emerging technologies will be key for the next generation of CO2 capture plants in the power and industrial sector.


WtE plants is a sector with a great potential for the implementation of carbon capture systems. We will start soon a technical study titled "Waste to energy & CCS", where the main objective is to understand the CCS/CCU opportunities in WtE plans. We will show updates of our technical study during the next year. In the meantime, we will examine this topic during a Panel Discussion in GHGT-14 to update on all aspects of the Norwegian integrated CCS project.


[1] IEAGHG, "Assessment of emerging CO2 capture technologies and their potential to reduce costs" 2014/TR4, December 2014

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