14 Sep 2023, 14:10
Julian Wettengel

German Greens call for joint EU CO2 transport and storage infrastructure in draft election programme

Clean Energy Wire

The European Union should set up a joint transport infrastructure and storage facilities for CO2, said the German Green Party in its draft programme for the EU elections on 6-9 June 2024. The Greens, a party traditionally sceptical towards carbon capture and storage (CCS) or use (CCU), said that there will be unavoidable carbon emissions in certain sectors such as cement, which should in the future be captured during the production process. Where necessary, such technologies should receive support, writes the party. "We want to create a uniform regulatory framework for this throughout Europe and develop an integrated European infrastructure - including joint European CO2 storage facilities," says the draft. In addition, the Greens aim to strengthen ways to take carbon out of the atmosphere. These include natural sinks such as forests or peatland, but also technologies like direct air capture. "The EU – like Germany – needs clear targets for achieving negative emissions," says the draft.

Years of protest against industry plans to use CCS as a lifeline for coal power made the technology a no-go issue for German politicians. Yet the country's target of climate neutrality by 2045 reopened a debate on the issue of combatting unavoidable CO2 emissions, for example in cement production. Parties, including the Greens, are realigning their official stance, and the government coalition wants to agree on a carbon management strategy before the end of the year to define CCS guidelines.

The Greens also call on member state governments to introduce a per capita payment to redistribute emissions trading revenues to citizens to ensure a socially just transition. The party proposes to set up a "European programme to decarbonise industry", which uses so-called "carbon contracts for difference" (CCfDs) to support companies that invest in cleaner technologies.

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