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Pilot Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters Marine Spatial Plan - Socio-Economic Baseline Review

This Socio-Economic Baseline Review provides a regional overview of the Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters area for the pilot Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters Marine Spatial Plan. It also informs the Sustainability Appraisal for this Plan.


6 Carbon Capture and Storage

6.1 Spatial Extent and Intensity of Activity and Interests

6.1.1 Carbon capture and storage ( CCS) is an approach being developed to manage emissions of carbon dioxide ( CO2). If it proves to be technically feasible and economically viable, CCS could capture approximately 80-90% of CO2 emissions produced by fossil fuel power plants and heavy industry, transport them in liquid form by pipeline or ship, and subsequently inject them into geological formations deep underground where they are stored permanently below the earth's surface. [26]

6.1.2 Geological reservoirs suitable for storage of CO2 are classified according to whether they contain (or have contained) oil, gas, or saline water. Saline aquifers have the largest storage potential but there is uncertainty about the storage capacity of individual sites.

6.1.3 Currently within the PFOW area there are no known hydrocarbon sites or saline aquifers suitable for CCS.

6.2 Economic value and employment

6.2.1 There is no CCS activity within the PFOW.

6.3 Historic and future trends

6.3.1 CCS could have an important role to play in meeting Scotland's climate change targets. However, it is unlikely that there will be any CCS activity within the PFOW in the near future given that there is currently no known suitable infrastructure present. One of the key elements of CCS is economic viability - it is more cost-effective to use existing pipelines where possible. It is likely that in the short term, at least, CCS activity will be focussed around existing infrastructure such as the Feeder 10 pipeline which runs from the Central Belt to St Fergus.

6.4 Data Gaps and Limitations

6.4.1 There is no CCS activity within the PFOW area.

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