by Erin Larsen
Norway just became the first country to attempt to capture CO2 from the fumes of burning trash. A test plant at a waste incinerator in Klemetsrud will test several technologies for CO2 capture with a goal of presenting results to the government by June 2016. If successful, this innovative project will be a huge step forward for carbon capture technology and will help Norway mitigate the environmentally degrading impacts of its largest emission source.
The Klemetsrud incinerator, which burns household and industrial waste, and emits more than 300,000 tons of CO2 a year, is responsible for 60 percent of Norway’s man-made point source emissions and 20 percent of Oslo’s total emissions. Capturing emissions, also known as negative emissions, could play a central role in achieving lower CO2 concentration targets that may be unobtainable through emission reductions alone. The impact of this would be significant as CO2 is the main gas cited for rising temperatures and climate change-driven natural disasters.
The test plant will capture CO2 at a rate equivalent to 2,000 tons a year until the end of April. If the plant works, a full-scale carbon capture plant could be built by 2020, officials say. The plant will further promote sustainability by continuing to warm buildings with heat generated by the incinerator. There are also plans to transport the captured CO2 to the North Sea and inject it into oil and gas fields to help boost pressure and raise production.
Officials declined to discuss the costs of the project, but did explain that in order for the technology to be feasible the price of CO2 in the European Union’s emissions trading market would need to be much higher than the current 6 euros (US$6.50) per ton.
“Opening in Oslo: A World First for CCS – Bellona.org.” Bellona.org. Bellona Europa, 25 Jan. 2016. Web. 26 Jan. 2016.
“Bellona Europa, Opening in Oslo: A World First for CCS (http://bellona.org/news/climate-change/2016-01-opening-in-oslo-world-first-within-ccs)