Scottish Government offers to put £80m towards carbon capture project

Energy secretary Michael Matheson said the funding was dependent on the UK Government providing clarity on their support for the scheme.

Neil Pooran
Friday 14 January 2022 15:50
Emissions from the North Sea would be stored at the site (Jane Barlow/PA)
Emissions from the North Sea would be stored at the site (Jane Barlow/PA)

The Scottish Government are offering up to £80 million in funding for the carbon capture and storage (CCS) project known as the Scottish Cluster.

However, ministers in Edinburgh say the UK Government must provide more clarity on their support for the project.

Under the scheme, emissions would be drawn from the North Sea and the refinery in Grangemouth via pipelines and stored at a facility in Aberdeenshire.

In October, it was announced the Scottish Cluster would likely come in the second phase of the UK’s CCS sequencing process, after it was decided that the first facilities would be built on the Humber and around Liverpool.

Scottish Energy Secretary, Michael Matheson, met virtually with the UK Government’s Energy Minister, Greg Hands, on Thursday, setting out the funding offer.

Michael Matheson says delaying the deployment had ‘serious consequences’ (Fraser Bremner)

Mr Matheson said: “The UK Government’s decision not to award the Scottish Cluster clear and definitive Track-1 status is a serious mistake which shows a lack of ambition and leadership on climate change.

“Delaying or halting the deployment of the Scottish Cluster has serious consequences, including jeopardising the industrial decarbonisation of Scotland and our just transition to net zero, creating an un-level playing field across the UK, and endangering Scottish and UK-wide net-zero targets.

“That is why I am announcing today that we stand ready with up to £80 million of funding to help the Scottish Cluster continue and accelerate the deployment of carbon capture technology.”

Mr Matheson said the Scottish Government did not have the necessary powers to “go it alone” on funding.

He continued: “Our offer of support is therefore made on the basis that the Scottish Cluster is given certainty of its due status within the UK sequencing process, and I once again urge the UK Government to provide this certainty for the benefit of our energy sector and for our ability to deliver a just transition to net zero.”

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