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'Vital research' to support UK offshore wind and CCS

4C Offshore | Chloe Emanuel
By: Chloe Emanuel 27/11/2023 The Crown Estate

The Offshore Wind and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Colocation Forum ("the Forum”), set up to provide strategic coordination of colocation research and activity on the nation’s seabed, has commissioned two research projects designed to inform the best approach to test and demonstrate the colocation of offshore wind and CCS activities in the future.

The research projects – Project Colocate and Project Anemone - build on the Forum’s Spatial Characterisation Report, which identified areas of potential overlap for offshore wind and CCS on the seabed, and NSTA’s Seismic Imaging Report, which explored various options for monitoring carbon storage and offshore wind sites to help resolve possible colocation issues.


Delivered by the University of Aberdeen with funding from The Crown Estate and Crown Estate Scotland, Project Colocate will investigate the viability of areas on the seabed for colocation of CCS and offshore wind, with bespoke monitoring plans for each area, supporting the Forum’s ambition to create a pipeline of potential test & demonstration sites for the future.


Researchers from the University of Aberdeen will focus their investigations on the East Irish Sea and Central North Sea, both of which have been identified as having significant potential for future colocation of CCS and offshore wind, states the company.

The complementary Project Anemone will explore mutually beneficial opportunities arising from the colocation of these developing industries. The project aims to identify and map the routes to realising these opportunities to create practical guidance for how offshore wind and CCS technologies can operate alongside each other – from construction through to decommissioning.


The Forum is liaising with NECCUS, the alliance supporting industrial decarbonisation in Scotland, alongside several developers, to deliver Project Anemone, with more details to be published shortly.

Adrian Topham, Chair of the OW & CCS Colocation Forum at The Crown Estate, said: “The offshore wind and CCS capability of the UK needs to develop at a rapid rate if the country is to meet its 2050 net zero target and build electricity supply."

Topham continued: “Project Colocate will identify areas of the seabed that are potentially viable for colocation, whilst Project Anemone will help uncover how future practical demonstration might proceed. Together, both projects will help pave the way for test and demonstration, as well as facilitating greater collaboration and understanding between these two vital sectors.”

Tom Mallows, Head of Offshore Development for Emerging Technologies and Infrastructure, at Crown Estate Scotland, said: “Our ScotWind Leasing round, which saw the successful awarding of 20 projects with a combined intended installed capacity of 27.6GW, and our most recent offshore wind leasing round INTOG (Innovation and Targeted Oil and Gas), demonstrates the huge clean energy opportunity which offshore wind offers."


Mallows continued: "It also highlights how important Project Colocate will be in helping establish a clear set of measures and tools to help ensure CCS is provided for in a considered and complementary way alongside offshore wind as an essential component of the transition to a decarbonised economy."


For more information about offshore wind farm projects across the globe, click here.

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