Energy firms join forces on new North Sea partnership


A group of leading energy companies have formed a partnership to drive development of offshore transport and storage infrastructure for carbon emissions in the UK North Sea.

On 26 October, BP confirmed that they, together with Eni, Equinor, Shell and Total, along with National Grid, had joined forces under the Northern Endurance Partnership (NET). The NET will aim to develop infrastructure to serve both the Net Zero Teesside (NZT) and Zero Carbon Humber (ZCH) projects, which are set to establish decarbonised industrial clusters. Both NZT and ZCH will be commissioned by 2026 and should reach net zero by 2030 through carbon capture, hydrogen and fuel switching.

If successful, NEP linked to NZT and ZCH should allow for decarbonisation of close to 50% of the UK’s industrial emissions. It will be led by BP as the operator and team progressing the project, drawing on the expertise from all of the partners.

The application for funding has been submitted through the second phase of the £170mn Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge – though the amount sought by the NEP has not been specified. Should funding be awarded, it will be used to accelerate the development of an offshore pipeline network to transport CO2 emissions from both NZT and ZCH to offshore geological storage beneath the UK North Sea.

The bid follows the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA)’s approval of BP and Equinor being added, alongside National Grid, to the Endurance carbon storage licence. The Endurance reservoir is regarded as the most mature, large-scale saline aquifer for CO2 storage in the UKCS that can enable industrial decarbonisation from both clusters.

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