Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) says it will install CCS at a working gas-fired power station in Peterhead, Aberdeenshire.

It will demonstrate post-combustion carbon capture at a plant responsible for generating 400MW of electricity.

The project is set to be funded by external funding, with the Energy Act 2010 paving the way for financial incentives for four CCS commercial-scale demonstration projects in the UK.

SSE chief executive, Ian Marchant, said: “If long-term targets for reducing emissions are to be met, CCS technology is going to have to apply as widely as possible. This means gas-fired power stations as well as coal.

“I believe Peterhead represents the best site in the UK for a gas CCS project and I hope that our submission to the Government will be successful.”

The power company says Peterhead is well placed for CCS with several options for the transportation of carbon-dioxide offsite.

Its nearness to North Sea oil and gas fields offers the potential eventually for CO2 to be pumped back into the holes under the seabed from where fossil fuels have been extracted offering a neat closed-loop solution.

Last month the UK Committee on Climate Change (CCC) – the independent body which advises the government on setting carbon budgets – said CCS equipment should be fitted to new gas-fired power stations.

While its current policy, reflected in the Coalition Agreement, is to continue investment in CCS for four coal-fired power stations, the government is considering the CCC’s recommendations.

David Gibbs

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