Energy leader Equinor lays down decarbonisation strategy
Norwegian energy giant Equinor has announced a bold decarbonisation strategy that aims to reduce its net carbon intensity by 50% by 2050 and become carbon neutral across its global operations by 2030.
The firm is also seeking to boost its renewable energy production capacity by 1000% by 2026 with a view to becoming a world leader in offshore wind.
“We are now looking 30 years into the future, and it is not possible to predict an exact shape and pace of the transition. Not for society and not for us,” said Eldar Sætre, President and CEO at Equinor, in the firm’s press release.
“But we know there will have to be significant changes in the energy markets, and our portfolio will change accordingly to remain competitive. We will produce less oil in a low carbon future, but value creation from oil and gas will still be high, and renewables give significant new opportunities to create attractive returns and growth.”
As it stands, the industry’s average carbon intensity per barrel of oil is 19kg of CO2. Equinor aims to bring the intensity of its own barrels down to below 8kg by 2025, bringing its previous goal for this ambition forward by five years.
In order to bring its operations to carbon neutrality, it will augment its internal decarbonisation efforts with offsetting programmes, quota trading systems, carbon capture technologies and greater use of hydrogen-based solutions.
“The new climate roadmap illustrates our pathway to be a shaper in the energy transition and the future of energy. It is also an invitation to our partners, customers, suppliers and governments to work together on the necessary actions to combat climate change,” added Sætre.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.