UK Storegga Draws in Financing
Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC and Japanese investment company Mitsui & Co have become new investors in Storegga, the UK company running a carbon capture and storage (CCS) project, they said March 3. They join "cornerstone" investor, Australian Macquarie. No details on the sums of money or the percentage stakes were given.
Storegga said global interest in the UK’s confirmed commitment to rapidly delivering CCS and the emission reduction technologies that it enables, has increased "markedly over the last 12 months." But the scheme needs a value chain agreed with the government and Storegga has not yet announced one, although the government has promised £1($1.4)bn in funding for UK CCS schemes overall.
Storegga is the lead developer of the Acorn CCS and hydrogen project in St Fergus, since it acquired Pale Blue Dot. The project is designated a European Project of Common Interest, providing essential infrastructure to help both the UK and Europe meet net zero targets. It is expected to be operational in the mid-2020s but initial volumes will be small.
The funds raised today will be used to progress Storegga’s funding of some of the wider aspects of the Acorn Project and its plans for a UK direct air capture facility, and support ongoing business development activities.
Storegga and Mitsui have entered into a non-exclusive agreement to initiate and progress further CCS opportunities in Europe and in the Asia-Pacific region. With Mitsui’s strong presence in the Asia-Pacific, this strategic co-operation will allow Storegga and Mitsui to pursue opportunities in the region, which Storegga expects will soon start to rapidly adopt CCS technology to meet the region’s climate commitments.
Storegga CEO Nick Cooper said he welcomed "the new investors' vision and commitment to help deliver a net zero future. The UK is emerging as a world-leader in CCS and its associated low carbon technologies; today’s investment by these partners strengthens our ability to build a world class CCS project and help the UK to pioneer this rapidly growing sector."
MacQuarie said that, as a business that has been active in the country’s energy market for many years, it saw supporting businesses like Storegga as a key part of its own energy transition journey.
Mitsui & Co said it would work closely with Storegga’s management team and help accelerate its vision and commitment by using its extensive knowledge of the energy sector and strong global networks. "Low-carbon solutions to hard-to-abate industries such as energy will be critical in achieving net-zero carbon targets," it said.
An NGW interview with Nick Cooper on Acorn from last November may be read here.