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Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS): What are the shipping requirements?


While data is partly incomplete and occasionally inconsistent, estimates indicate we are emitting over 35 billion mt of CO₂ each year. Currently we are storing only around 0.1 per cent of that, but as decarbonisation grows in importance, so too does the need for comprehensive CCS solutions. In this article, we take a snapshot of existing CCS projects and look at the related shipping solutions required.

How many CCS projects are there?

Some reports list more than 200 projects in total. It is worth noting however that only around 30 of those, located in Europe and Asia, are reasonably well-known and attracting attention.

How many CCS projects will require shipping solutions?

Of the approximately 30 better-known projects mentioned above, most are established around existing offshore pipeline networks. As such, they may not require shipping, at least at the outset. Having said this, once the project infrastructure is in place, many of them are expected to provide shipping opportunities for CO₂ transported from other emitting regions.

Conversely, other lesser-known CCS projects have limited or no pipeline networks, meaning they will rely entirely on shipping from the outset. In addition, there are many potential stand-alone CCS requirements which may rely on shipping, but which are not necessarily publicised as projects.

Are shipping requirements emerging?

Undoubtedly. Here at Clarksons, we’re already aware of several enquiries circulating for multiple vessels. It is important, however, to distinguish between speculative and firm enquiries (with charterers or buyers who are in a position to conclude contracts). We would say the majority are not yet at the stage where they can be considered firm enquiries. In most cases this is because the related projects do not yet have 100% secure funding and/or there is still some uncertainty about the most appropriate shipping solution.

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