De Brauw's multi-disciplinary energy and infrastructure group acts as project counsel to Gasunie, EBN and Port of Rotterdam on the Porthos carbon capture and storage (CCS) project. Last week, these parties set up the various entities they will use to develop, own and operate the Porthos Project. They also entered into several cooperation agreements. In addition, Porthos and its launching customers Air Liquide, Air Products, ExxonMobil and Shell signed the final contracts for the transport and storage of CO2.
From 2024, these launching customers will annually capture and store a combined 2.5 million metric tons of CO2 from their installations in Rotterdam. Porthos will transport the CO2 to a depleted gas field 20 km off the coast, where the CO2 will be stored at a depth of three to four kilometres under the North Sea seabed.
A final investment decision for the project is expected in 2022. Construction of the Porthos system (onshore and offshore pipelines, a compressor station, and modification of the offshore platform) is expected to take about two years. During this period, the launching customers will construct their capture installations, and the first CO2 can then be stored in 2024.
CCS is a way to prevent large amounts of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere in the short term, at relatively low cost. This makes CCS an important method to help achieve climate goals, especially where the industry has limited alternatives to make significant progress in the short term. Once operational, the Porthos project will reduce Rotterdam industry's CO2 emissions by approximately ten percent. Due to the importance of the Porthos project in achieving climate objectives, the European Union made a EUR 102 million subsidy available for the project at the beginning of 2021.
We have been assisting Porthos and its partners since early 2019 – with an integrated team of renewable energy and infrastructure experts covering a broad range of relevant areas of law, including corporate structuring and contracting, regulatory, taxation, permitting, competition, procurement and project finance.
De Brauw's team in this phase of the Porthos project is led by Diederik Maessen and Peter Nolten. The core team furthermore consists of Nicolien van den Biggelaar, Menno Stoffer, Constantijn Voogt, Sophie Rasing, Savan van de Put, Wiebe Dijkstra, Klaas Versteeg, René van Tricht and Bart de Rijke.
For more information, please see: https://www.porthosco2.nl/en/