Carbon capture to get no european cash

The proposed site at Grangemouth Docks
The proposed site at Grangemouth Docks

Questions are being asked about the future of an energy firm’s bid for a carbon capture facility in Grangemouth

Summit Power’s plans were shortl­isted for cash from the UK Government’s Carbon Capture Storage Commercialisation Programme, giving it access to European Union funding.

But although the European Commission handed out 23 grants worth a total of £1 billion to projects throughout Europe - including more than £30 million to two renewable energy schemes in the west of Scotland, it turned down all bids for carbon capture and storage projects because none had the backing of private or government money. The UK Government failed to meet an October deadline with a pledge to match EU funding.

This week Summit Power public relations director Ray Vincenzo said, due to the rules of the competition for funding, the company could make no comment at this time.

In November Grangemouth Community Council was given a presentation on the project by Neil Martin, of Martin Town Planning Ltd, who are working with Summit Power and its partners Petrofac and the National Grid.

The proposals, known as “Captain: The Clean Energy Project”, involve a high efficiency, low emissions power station extracting carbon by burning coal and sending the carbon dioxide produced by pipeline to be stored in depleted gas reservoirs or rock formations under the North Sea.

The development could create up to 250 jobs.

East Falkirk MP Michael Connarty said: “I am disappointed if they have not chosen the Grangemouth project. As someone who has been active in energy politics for 20 years I know capturing CO2 from coal should be the main priority because of the damage CO2 does to the environment.

“I would be pleased to look at Summit Power’s proposal if they want to get in touch.”

Planning applications for the Summit Power proposals were scheduled for submission bu the end of the year and the beginning of 2014.

If the plant does get the go ahead, construction will begin in 2015 with the development then due to become operational by 2018.