Photo: Illustration; Source: Pale Blue Dot

Mitsui invests in Acorn carbon capture and storage project

Japan’s Mitsui has invested in Storegga Geotechnologies, the lead developer of the Acorn carbon capture and storage (CCS) project off the UK.

Mitsui said on Tuesday that it took a 15.4 per cent share in Storegga Geotechnologies which is developing the Acorn CCS project to inject and store CO2 emissions in depleted North Sea oil and gas reservoirs using existing offshore pipeline infrastructure to reduce costs.

The project, which holds the first CO2 appraisal and storage licence issued by the UK’s Oil and Gas Authority, is being led by a wholly-owned subsidiary of Storegga – Pale Blue Dot Energy – with support from Macquarie Group and GIC which hold 21.5 and 15.4 per cent, respectively.

Also, Mitsui will cooperate with SG to identify and develop further CCS opportunities in Europe and Asia Pacific in line with its commitment to sustainable projects that reduce climate change risks.

Masaharu Okubo, COO of the Energy Business Unit 1, said: “We will work closely with Storegga’s management team and help accelerate its vision and commitment by using our extensive knowledge of upstream oil and gas industries and strong global networks.

Mitsui believes providing low-carbon solutions to hard-to-abate industries such as energy will be critical in achieving net-carbon zero targets. Through the development of carbon capture, utilization, and storage projects globally, Mitsui will help create an eco-friendly society“.

Source: Pale Blue Dot Energy Acorn Mitsui
Source: Pale Blue Dot Energy

The Acorn CCS is one of the projects that will help reduce the United Kingdom’s carbon footprint in support of the country’s 2050 net-zero emissions target. It is designated a European project of common interest and is expected to be operational by the mid-2020s.

As for similar technology, Storegga is currently also working on commercializing the Direct Air Capture technology that captures CO2 directly out of the air.

It is worth reminding that the previously mentioned Macquarie Group made its investment in Pale Blue Dot in July 2020.

Another interesting fact about the Acorn CCS is that it holds the first UK CO2 appraisal and storage licence awarded by the OGA. Through the Acorn Hydrogen project, North Sea natural gas would be reformed into clean hydrogen, with CO2 emissions safely mitigated through the Acorn CCS infrastructure.

Hydrogen would be used in transport applications, and in the gas grid to decarbonise heating in homes and industries.