IOCs Announce CCUS Initiative
The Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI), comprising international oil companies, has launched Kickstarter, an initiative to accelerate carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS), it said September 23.
Kickstarter will begin with hubs in the US, UK, Norway, the Netherlands, and China. The aim of the KickStarter is to create the necessary conditions to facilitate a commercially viable, safe and environmentally responsible CCUS industry, with an early aspiration to double the amount of carbon dioxide that is stored globally by 2030.
Separately OGCI members are on track to meet the methane intensity target, having reduced collective methane intensity by 9% in 2018. OGCI is now working on a carbon intensity target to reduce by 2025 the collective average carbon intensity of member companies’ aggregated upstream oil and gas operations.
OGCI also said it supported appropriate policies or carbon value mechanisms by governments. In a joint statement, the heads of the OGCI member companies said: “We are scaling up the speed, scale, and impact of our actions in support of the Paris Agreement. Accelerating the energy transition requires sustainable, large-scale actions, different pathways and innovative technological solutions to keep global warming well below 2°C. We are committed to enhancing our efforts as a constructive partner with governments, civil society, business and other stakeholders working together to transition to a net zero economy.”
The oil and gas industry is coming under pressure to demonstrate that it is helping to solve climate change through reducing carbon emissions, although ultimately consumers will have to pay the price of many measures, such as CCUS. A number of funds have said they are divesting or reducing their exposure to fossil fuels by divesting stocks, although many of the majors have used their cashflow to buy back their shares for themselves and so improve dividends.
This week sees a major UN Climate Action Summit in New York dedicated to finding new ways of slowing climate change affordably, including putting a price on carbon.
The European Union has a carbon trading scheme but it does not cover all sectors of the economy such as transport and heating, nor reflect the carbon that was emitted to manufacture the goods that it now imports from elsewhere. Nevertheless the European Commission says that the European Union "is the first major economy to put in place a legally binding framework to deliver on its pledges under the Paris Agreement and it is successfully transitioning towards a low emissions economy, with a view to reach climate neutrality by 2050."
Germany reached a compromise on a new carbon tax the last working day before the conference started.
The EU accounts for just 9% of total emissions as much of its heavy industry has decamped abroad, where the regulatory and labour costs are lower.