The project 'Northern Lights' consists of transport, reception and permanent storage of CO2 storage in a reservoir in the northern part of the North Sea. The storage project is part of the Norwegian State's demonstration project 'Full-scale CO₂ handling chain in Norway'.

The MoU implies that will discuss solutions for CO2 deliveries and transport, develop a timeline for possible final investment decision and start of operations, and collaborate on the CCS dialogue with national authorities and the EU.

The companies that signed the MoU are: Air Liquide, Arcelor Mittal, Ervia, Fortum Oyj, HeidelbergCement AG, Preem, and Stockholm Exergi. The partners are reducing costs and further developing the Northern Lights project aiming for an investment decision in 2020.

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Another project aims to build the CO2 network in the port of Rotterdam by 2026, with work then to be completed in the following four years on a cross-border pipeline to Antwerp and the North Sea port by Ghent.

According to Equinor, the official binding commercial agreements will depend on positive investment decisions for the Northern Lights project, the Norwegian State’s full-scale carbon capture and storage project and for third-party projects.

Sverre Overå, project director for the Northern Lights project stated

We are also cooperating with the authorities to establish a commercial framework enabling us to pursue the project.

In the meantime, Eldar Sætre, president and CEO of Equinor added that carbon storage and capture is crucial to reach the global climate goals of the Paris Agreement.

More than 150 people from Equinor, Total and Shell are currently involved in the Northern Lights project. At the end of 2019, the partnership plans to drill a confirmation well for CO₂ storage in the Johansen formation covered by the Aurora licence (EL001) to study the reservoir’s suitability and capacity for CO₂ storage. Earlier this year the authorities decided to help fund the work on this well.