Dutch open-access liquid CO2 terminal in Rotterdam port gains ground

Dutch companies Gasunie and Vopak have welcomed new partners in the CO2next, a planned liquid CO2 terminal at the Maasvlakte in the port of Rotterdam to be connected to the Aramis carbon capture and storage (CCS) project and used for shipping liquid CO2, as the project progresses to a new phase.

CO2next. Courtesy of Vopak

The CO2next project envisions building an open-access liquid CO2 terminal at the Maasvlakte in Rotterdam with jetties foreseen in the Yangtze Canal. The terminal will be able to receive and deliver liquid CO2 via vessels and will be connected to depleted gas fields in the North Sea via the Aramis trunkline for storage. It can also be leveraged as a part of other CCS chains and a potential future carbon utilization industry, the partners said.

The proposed CO2next terminal is seen as critical in the context of the Dutch climate agreement and the European Green Deal. Is is also expected to contribute to the infrastructure and facilitate CO2 reduction for the industry in Northwest Europe and a CO2-neutral port in Rotterdam by 2050.

According to the project developers, potential customers for the CO2next terminal have been approached in 2022, which to date has led to several customers who are keen to leverage the open access terminal for their decarbonization needs.

The terminal has a launch capacity of approximately 5.4 million tonnes per annum (mtpa), and a potential to grow its capacity to approximately 15 mtpa, depending on market demand and the development of the Aramis project and other CCS chains. 

In what was described as a major milestone, the CO2next project has now entered the front-end engineering design (FEED) phase and awarded the FEED contract to engineering and technology group Sener.

During this phase, the realization schedule and the cost of the proposed terminal will be further defined, the relevant permits must be received and customers will be contracted in preparation for the final investment decision (FID) currently planned for 2025. 

Following the FID and subject to permits being granted by relevant authorities, the CO2next terminal is scheduled to commence commercial operations in 2028.

Additionally, energy majors Shell and TotalEnergies have joined the development of the CO2next project, which to date was led by Gasunie and Vopak.

Fulco van Geuns, Project Director of CO2next: “We are pleased to see the CO2next project firming up. Carbon Capture and Storage is recognised as required to enable the decarbonisation of the hard to abate industries and we see a clear role for such a liquid CO2 terminal in the European CO2 infrastructure. The same infrastructure may also be required to enable a Carbon Utilisation industry in future. We welcome Shell and TotalEnergies to the partnership and are looking forward to jointly deliver this project.”