Antwerp to receive EU funding for carbon capture project

Antwerp has said it will receive EU funding for carbon project

The Port of Antwerp has announced that the EU has approved a subsidy of approximately €9 million ($10.6 million) for its study into a liquid CO2 export terminal and a cross border pipeline, as part of its Antwerp@C project to capture and utilise carbon.

In a statement, the Port said the project includes Air Liquide, BASF, Borealis, ExxonMobil, INEOS, Fluxys and Total. The project’s aim is to cut emissions and find ways to capture, store and utilise CO2, as a way of keeping it out of the atmosphere.

Carbon Capture & Storage (CCS) and eventually also Carbon Capture & Utilisation (CCU) – i.e. reusing CO2 as a raw material for the chemical industry – are seen as important routes in the transition to a carbon-neutral port, according to the Port.

This innovative cross-border CCUS project would be among the first and world’s largest multimodal open access CO2 export infrastructure.

The investment was made through the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), and will be made specifically to pursue studies and demonstrate the viability of the project to the EU, the Belgian Federal Government and the Flemish Government.

“With this financial support, Antwerp@C reaches a new milestone and can engage one step further,” the Port said. “The consortium is strengthened in its ambition to reduce the CO2 emissions within the port (18.65 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions in 2017) potentially by half between now and 2030.

“This CEF award is a positive step to support CCS as a CO2 abatement technology for the industry in the Port of Antwerp.

“In addition to this first step, a number of expression of interest applications are currently being prepared by the consortium partners for submission under the European Innovation Fund that will be a key enabler to support the development of the entire CCS value chain from capture to storage.

Antwerp@C is pursuing two pathways for cross-border CO2 transport infrastructure, one for transport via an onshore pipeline to Rotterdam and one for transport by ship to North-West Europe.

Port of Antwerp is home to the largest integrated energy and chemicals cluster in Europe. This makes it the ideal location to set up new, cross-border collaboration projects for innovative CO2 reduction.

To this end, Air Liquide, BASF, Borealis, ExxonMobil, INEOS, Fluxys, Port of Antwerp and Total joined forces at the end of 2019 under the name of Antwerp@C, to investigate the technical and economic feasibility of building CO2 infrastructure to support future CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation & Storage) applications.

Jacques Vandermeiren, CEO Port of Antwerp said: “The time is now to make the transition towards a carbon neutral economy. Europe leads the way on a global stage.

“With Antwerp@C, the port of Antwerp has the key to realize an innovative cross-border CCUS-project, a first of a kind in its concept and scale.

“We are proud to receive the necessary financial support for the study phase, as this project will contribute to the Flemish, Belgian and European climate goals and to the increased EU 2030 targets for emission reduction to at least 55%.”

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