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Norway and Denmark Award New Exploration Licences for Offshore and Onshore CO2 Storage

24th June 2024

On 20 June, CCS front-runners Norway and Denmark announced the granting of new exploration licences to investigate additional CO2 storage opportunities in the North Sea and under the Danish mainland, respectively. 

As part of the sixth call for CO2 storage on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS), the Norwegian Energy Ministry has awarded four new exploration licenses, all located offshore in the North Sea, to six companies.  

In particular, two licenses were granted to Equinor, while the remaining ones were offered to two groups of companies formed by Vår Energi, OMV and Lime Petroleum AS (group 1), and Aker BP ASA and PGNiG Upstream Norway AS (group 2). 

With this announcement, Norway reconfirms itself as a leader in the CCS space, taking a crucial step towards the development of large-scale commercial CO2 storage options that could be leveraged by other countries in Europe to meet our shared climate goals in the region and globally. 

On the same day, Denmark also granted the first ever onshore exploration licences in the country to investigate opportunities for safe and secure storage of CO2 under the Danish mainland, namely at Gassum, Rødby and Havnsø. 

The exploration licence at Gassum was awarded to Wintershall Dea, INEOS and Nordsøfonden, while the one at Rødby was offered to CarbonCuts and Nordsøfonden. Finally, Equinor, Ørsted and Nordsøfonden were granted the third exploration licence in Havnsø. 

The move marks an important milestone to further deploy Denmark’s CO2 storage capacity and position the country as a future commercial CO2 storage hub in Europe. 

If the result of the investigation process demonstrates that the Danish subsoil is suitable for commercial CO2 storage, it will then be possible for the companies to apply for CO2 storage permits. 

The Danish Energy Agency also plans to hold an online orientation meeting on 27 June to provide information around the CO2 onshore storage process and open a dialogue with the communities located in the three areas concerned by the exploration licenses. 

Read more about the four exploration licences granted by Norway here 

Read more about the three exploration licences granted by Denmark here 

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