A new initiative will work to identify the key challenges and opportunities associated with co-location of offshore wind and carbon capture usage and storage (CCUS) infrastructure.
On 7 July, the Crown Estate announced the formation of the Offshore Wind and CCUS co-location forum, bringing together key figures from across both industries, including the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA), Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA) and Renewable UK, along with the government and Crown Estate Scotland. Both offshore wind and CCUS have been identified as a critical to helping the UK reach net zero. However, seabed space is limited and with the capacities of both having to increase, it means there will likely be numerous areas where infrastructure is required in the same location.
The Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult and Net Zero Technology Centre carried out a study to assess the risks from developing offshore wind and CCUS projects in similar locations, with the establishment of a co-location forum to coordinate activity among its central recommendations.
It also found that while projects should be planned to avoid overlap, co-location of infrastructure is feasible with appropriate mitigation, such as through a focus on good coordination and communication between projects. Other mitigation measures include reviewing where projects could overlap and ensuring a combined approach to planning in those areas, and developing alternative CCUS store characterisation and monitoring technologies that are more compatible with offshore wind projects.