CCSA Blog: Delivering a just transition, by Lucy Hanlon, Policy Manager at SSE Thermal


Archive for August, 2023

CCSA Blog: Delivering a just transition, by Lucy Hanlon, Policy Manager at SSE Thermal

Posted on: August 31st, 2023 by ccsaEditor

There are less than one billion seconds until the net zero deadline – a reminder from Siemens Energy’s vice president for the UK, Steve Scrimshaw, at a thought-provoking CCSA Member Discussion Forum that took place recently. While Steve’s “time is ticking” message was clear, so too was SSE Thermal’s view that we must incorporate social value into the heart of our energy transition.

This gathering of industry leaders was convened at our London offices and the attendees were left in no doubt that we must ensure we deliver a just transition as we move towards net zero.

Led by the CCSA’s UK Director Olivia Powis, the panel consisted of SSE Thermal’s Hannah Bronwin and Helen Sanders; Steve Scrimshaw; Mitsuaki Kato of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries; and Francesca Bell from CCUS Kickstarters.

The conversation was wide-ranging, touching on the need for CCS projects to be delivered, the importance of the supply chain and the need to ensure that communities aren’t left behind as we decarbonise the power system. Of particular relevance were the three key priority areas identified – the 3 Ps – which are crucial to delivering a just transition and protecting our domestic supply chains. These are Purpose, People and Place.

Purpose, People and Place

It is imperative that we decarbonise our power system on the way to net zero. Renewables will lead that charge, but we also need flexible generation to provide vital backup and this must be decarbonised in its own right. That is why low-carbon technologies like CCS and hydrogen are so important.

The Climate Change Committee (CCC) published a report which demonstrates that we need at least circa 17GW of low-carbon dispatchable power to be brought online by 2035. By decarbonising the power sector, we will not only support the net zero transition but provide new opportunities for those people working within the sector currently, while creating economic benefits for the regions in which assets are located.

Beyond the power sector, CCS can decarbonise industry, delivering clean steel and cement in the UK, leveraging our depleted gas fields to create a global competitive advantage and, in return, greater economic benefit. Having a purpose is nothing without people. CCS will provide essential jobs in our industrial heartlands which would otherwise be at risk as industry relocates. SSE is at the ‘pointy end’ of the transition and we have committed to reducing our carbon intensity by 80% by 2030. As we strive to meet that goal we have closed our coal-fired power stations, opened Europe’s most efficient gas-fired power station and are developing multiple low-carbon projects. The need to transition in a fair and just way is central to everything we do, and we recognise that we need a skilled workforce that can develop, design, construct and operate low-carbon assets. In the last two years, 900 people have joined SSE from high-carbon jobs and that is something we take great pride in.

We firmly believe that our low-carbon plans can create further opportunities – our proposed Peterhead Carbon Capture Power Station, for example, would deliver 1000 jobs during construction and support 240 jobs locally through its operational phase.

SSE has set out plans to invest up to £40bn across the next decade, with a focus on low-carbon infrastructure. Significant amounts of that investment will be focused on our industrial heartlands, which have been home to power generation for decades. We believe it’s essential that these heartlands are not left behind – they have so much to offer as we continue this net zero journey.

The role of CCS in that journey continues to be recognised, with the Government outlining £20bn in funding and now identifying four clusters in which carbon capture technology will be deployed. Now, we must all work together to ensure that workers and communities aren’t left behind while outlining the size of the opportunity to the local supply chain.

SSE Thermal’s Keadby site

Carbon Capture and Storage Association welcomes new Government Biomass Strategy

Posted on: August 10th, 2023 by ccsaEditor

10 August 2023 – The Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA) today welcomed the publication of the UK Government’s Biomass Strategy which sets outs positive steps toward delivering the UK’s net zero agenda.

Biomass-generated power is a sustainable, renewable way of making energy by burning wood chips and other plant material. It can be used in power stations to make carbon neutral electricity, as the CO2 released when it is burnt is equivalent to what was absorbed by the biomass during its lifetime.

Bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) is a technology which allows the capturing and permanent storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) produced by burning biomass – removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere whilst also generating electricity and/or heat.

As well as power generation, biomass also has industrial uses. For example, can also be converted into jet fuel known as Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

The Biomass Strategy makes clear Greenhouse Gas Removal (GGR) technologies are vital because they enable carbon-emitting sectors such as agriculture, cement and steel to continue while achieving net zero. BECCS is a key example of this technology and the strategy sets out “active work” in government to support it via development of the Power BECCS and GGR business models and clear guidance.

A report by the Government’s BECCS Task and Finish Group published alongside the strategy sets out the “substantial opportunity for the UK to develop a leadership position on the delivery of sustainable BECCS & GGRs”. Failure to pursue the technology now risks “innovation and associated export opportunities” for British businesses, increasing the cost of delivering net zero.

It follows an important announcement last week on the UK Government’s support for two further clusters in Humberside and Scotland.

Ruth Herbert, CEO of the CCSA, said: “Today’s publication of a Biomass Strategy for the UK is good news.

“Capturing carbon produced from burning biomass is an important part of the carbon removal toolkit to remove greenhouse gases from our environment, particularly for hard-to-decarbonise sectors like agriculture and aviation. It will help ensure we can protect jobs, maintain important industries and deliver our net zero ambitions.

“BECCS is one part of the suite of carbon capture and storage solutions that has the potential to underpin the next industrial revolution. We urgently need HM Treasury to set out further detail on the scale and timing of support to BECCS and other potential carbon capture sites.

“Failure to act this Autumn would risk undermining investor confidence in the UK while others such as the United States race ahead in the development of this vital technology.”


Notes to Editors

CCUS, or Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage, is a key low carbon solution – vital to meeting the UK’s statutory Net Zero target at least cost. CCUS enables the production of clean power, clean products (such as steel and cement) and clean hydrogen – which can then be used to decarbonise heating and transport. In addition, CCUS also enables greenhouse gas removal from the atmosphere through Direct Air Capture with Storage (DACS) or Bioenergy with CCS (BECCS).

The CCSA is the lead European association accelerating the commercial deployment of CCUS. We work with members, governments and other organisations to ensure CCUS is developed and deployed at the pace and scale necessary to meet net zero goals and deliver sustainable growth across regions and nations.

The CCSA currently has over 100 member companies who are active in exploring and developing different applications of carbon capture, CO2 transportation by pipeline and ship, utilisation, geological storage, and other permanent storage solutions, as well as members from management, legal and financial consulting sectors.

For media enquiries please email

To find out more about the Carbon Capture Storage Association (CCSA) please visit the CCSA website at .

UK Energy Minister Explores CATS Terminal operated by Kellas Midstream to Discuss Energy Security and Clean Energy Transition

Posted on: August 3rd, 2023 by ccsaEditor

Energy Minister Grant Shapps visited the CATS terminal operated by Kellas Midstream in Teesside during ‘Energy Week,’ as part of the government’s efforts to promote energy security and domestic gas supply in the UK. The CATS terminal, in partnership with Wood, handles a significant portion of the UK’s gas production and contributes to the nation’s domestic gas network. During the visit, Mr. Shapps discussed the UK’s energy security and its transition to net zero with Kellas’ executives and workforce. Kellas Midstream, based in Aberdeen, manages critical energy infrastructure assets in the Central and Southern North Sea, and they are also planning to build hydrogen production facilities on Teesside to support clean energy production in the region. The visit preceded an energy sector summit involving major companies like Shell, BP, and SSE, who are collectively investing over £100 billion in UK projects.