20 December 2021

Rotterdam companies and Porthos sign contracts for transport and storage of CO2

Air Liquide, Air Products, ExxonMobil and Shell signed the final contracts with Porthos for the transport and storage of CO2. From 2024, the companies are going to capture a combined 2.5 Mton CO2 annually from their installations in Rotterdam. Porthos, a joint venture of EBN, Gasunie and the Port of Rotterdam Authority, will transport the CO2 to a depleted gas field 20 km off the coast, where it will be stored at a depth of 3 to 4 km under the North Sea seabed.

The conclusion of the final contracts is a milestone in the realisation of the Porthos carbon capture and storage (CCS) project. Pending government permit approvals, a final investment decision for the project is expected in the Spring of 2022. Construction of the Porthos system (onshore and offshore pipelines, a compressor station, and modification of the offshore platform) is expected to take about two years. During this period, the companies will construct their capture installations, and the first CO2 can then be stored in 2024.

CCS is a way to prevent large amounts of CO2 to get into the atmosphere in the short term at relatively low costs. It is thereby an important measure to help achieve climate goals, especially where the industry has limited alternatives to make significant impacts in the short term. Once operational, the Porthos project will reduce the CO2 emissions of the industry in Rotterdam with approximately 10 percent.

Over the past 20 years, in countries such as Norway, Canada and the United States expertise has been gained to develop a CCS project like Porthos. What makes this project unique is that it can connect multiple companies into one network. Due to the importance of the Porthos project in achieving climate objectives, the European Union made available €102 million subsidy for the project at the beginning of this year.