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IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme

67 TDcroppedIt was the 37th meeting of the London Convention and the 10th meeting of the London Protocol this week, the global treaties that protect the marine environment. The detailed work on CCS was completed in 2012 (see IEAGHG 2013-IP26 and 2014-IP19), but outstanding is the ratification of the 2009 CO2 export amendment which is a barrier to transboundary projects offshore, and there is an ongoing request for information and experiences with offshore CCS which IEAGHG responds to.

In terms of ratification of the CO2 export amendment, UK and Norway had previously ratified, and the Netherlands announced at this meeting that they have now also ratified. There were no reports of progress by other countries, although last year Korea, Canada and Australia and Sweden announced they were working on ratification. So it appears there is very poor progress given that two thirds of the 45 Parties to the London Protocol need to ratify the export amendment for it to come into force.

On marine geoengineering, the geoengineering amendment from 2013 (see2013-IP27) is also slow in being ratified so far (none so far), but UK, Norway and Sweden announced they were now working on it. Interestingly, there was some feedback that this amendment was actually deterring further research on ocean fertilisation.

In the margins I learnt that OSPAR, the treaty for the North East Atlantic, is recommencing some work on CCS.

In conclusion, poor progress on enabling transboundary CCS, and this will act as a barrier to wider deployment of CCS in the future. However there is continuing interest in offshore CCS, and in the updates from IEAGHG and IEA. More information will be provided shortly in an IEAGHG Information Paper.