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Norway Drops ‘Moon Landing’ as Mongstad Carbon Capture Scrapped
Norway dropped plans for a full-scale carbon capture plant at its Mongstad refinery after cost overruns and delays, ending a project that was dubbed as the country’s “moon landing” by Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg. The full-scale project will be halted, Oil and Energy Ministry Ola Borten Moe said today at a briefing in Oslo. The government will increase spending on a carbon test center at the plant by 400 million kroner ($68 million) and will seek to build a full-scale plant in another location, he said....

“This is some of the worst form of incompetence I’ve seen from the government,” Frederic Hauge, head of environmental group Bellona, said in an interview. “This will stand as the symbol of this government’s total failure on climate policy.” The effort was criticized this week by the nation’s Auditor General, which said the test center project was 1.7 billion kroner over budget, according to a statement on Sept. 17. In total, the government said it has spent about 7.2 billion kroner on carbon capture, including 1.2 billion kroner on the full scale project.

“The investigation shows that the complexity of implementing CCS was underestimated in 2006,” the auditor said. “Among other things, it has proven very difficult to plan and build capture facilities on a large scale near a refinery and heat and power plant in operation. This has entailed high costs and a longer implementation period.”

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