Speculation was building this week over whether plans for the UK’s first commercial scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) plant at Longannet coal-fired power station in Fife, Scotland, would go ahead.
It was widely thought that energy firm ScottishPower, which runs the 2.GW Longannet station, may pull out of the CCS scheme after years of negotiations with the government. Decc and ScottishPower denied that the scheme was stopping and insisted negotiations were ongoing.
ScottishPower is currently the only remaining bidder in the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) CCS competition, which will award up £1bn of funding to develop the technology at a commercial scale. Previous contestants energy firms Centrica and Eon pulled out of the running in 2009 and 2010 respectively.
Industry insiders speculated that there was a gap between what Decc and ScottishPower were willing to commit to the scheme to develop technology to capture and permanently store carbon emissions.