Two Danish Firms Launch CO2-Transport Shipping Line

Image courtesy Dan-Unity

Published May 19, 2021 1:12 PM by Njiraini Muchira

Danish shipping companies Evergas and Ultragas have partnered to establish an independent firm that will specialize in vessels for transport of captured CO2 for storage and re-use.

Dan-Unity CO2 will be the world’s first carbon capture and storage (CCS)-specific shipping entity. The new company has entered into a partnership with Carbfix, an Icelandic startup that is pioneering CCS technology through natural and permanent storage solutions of turning CO2 into stone.

Carbfix captures and dissolves CO2 in water, then injects it into the ground, where it turns into stone in less than two years - ultimately enabling easy transportation and significantly reducing green gases emissions.

“The Carbfix technology provides a safe, permanent and economic alternative to conventional CCS solutions by imitating and accelerating nature’s way of CO2 mineral storage,” said Edda Sif Pind Aradóttir, Carbfix chief executive.

Through their partnership, Dan-Unity CO2 and Carbfix will offer transport and storage of CO2, thereby enabling large-scale CO2 emission reductions. The first shipment is expected in 2025.

The CO2 will be safely injected into and stored in Iceland’s volcanic bedrock, where it will be naturally converted into stone at a price that is competitive compared to conventional and offshore storage. Carbfix estimates that Iceland has a capacity of 2,500 gigatons of CO2 storage, which is more than 55 years of the entire globe’s emissions.

Dan-Unity CO2 plans to order purpose-built vessels after securing long term contract commitments, and it has received a grant from the Danish Maritime Fund to support the development of new ships for CO2 transportation. The commitments will inform the number of vessels required, and different vessel size designs are currently being developed. The vessels will sail on green energy and will not be compatible with any other trades, and one vessel will be capable of delivering safe and cost-efficient transport of 450,000 tons C02 annually.

Evergas and Ultragas decided to establish the new entity based on their extensive knowledge and expertise in the shipment of liquid gases. The two companies intend to combine their financial capacities, expertise and experience in designing and constructing these specialized gas carriers and handling all activities related to seaborne CO2 transport.

“The technology and experience are in place. Capture, transport and storage are all proven concepts. Thus, what it takes to start building the needed vessels is to secure the regulatory framework, including CO2 taxation,” said Steffen Jacobsen, Evergas chief executive.The import and storage of CO2 in Iceland is legalized, something that offers Dan-Unity CO2 the leeway to target Northern European industries as an initial source of business before venturing to other markets.   

CCS can play a central role in supporting efforts to tackle climate change and reduce emissions. The Danish government believes that CCS has the greatest reduction potential of all climate initiatives. The International Energy Agency (IEA) also predicts a "major role" for CCS in decarbonizing "sectors where emissions are often most challenging to reduce."